[As ever, this can be read on the BBC News website]
I recently had an opportunity to re-read a pamphlet I wrote in 2000 for a series on new thinking about mutualism published by the Co-operative Party. In ‘e-Mutualism, or the tragedy of the dot.commons’ I talked at length about the co-operative basis of the Internet, the need for online public spaces which are not controlled or dominated by commercial interests, and the opportunities that the network offers for mutual organisations of all sizes, from small co-operatives to retailers like John Lewis.
I pointed out that the internet is ‘an excellent example of the power of mutualism, having been created and managed through the co-operative effort of tens of thousands of individuals and organisations’ and that it ‘provides an infrastructure on which mutual organisations can thrive, opening up new potential for fast, effective communication and co-ordination of action, collaborative and consensus- driven decision making and global action.’
Continue reading “Keeping Cyberspace a Public Space”
Here’s what I tagged on del.icio.us between July 13th and July 17th:
[As ever, you can read this on the BBC News website, and Nick Carr has an excellent piece on ‘miasma computing‘ that moves the argument on nicely.]
My friend Simon is one of those net entrepreneurs with the attention to detail it takes to have an idea and turn it into an effective company. He’s currently on his second job search service, and it seems to be going very well.
One reason for the success may be that Simon has embraced the network age with a dedication that most of us can only wonder at. He uses a range of productivity tools, scheduling services and collaborative systems to manage both his personal and professional life, and once confessed to me that he had ‘outsourced his memory’ to Microsoft Outlook and its calendar service.
So far I’ve resisted the temptation to pay a team of hackers to break into his laptop and add ‘jump off a cliff’ as his 10am appointment on Thursday.
Recently I’ve noticed that Simon’s head is in the cloud. Or rather, his business is, as he and his team have moved most of their systems online, taking advantage of the move from local storage and processing to ‘cloud computing’, where data and services are provided online and accessed from a PC or any other device.
Continue reading “Storm warning for cloud computing: more like a miasma”