4 Steps to an Epiphany

First of all – credit to the man who pointed me to this important document Hugh McEvoy, Head of Product at Sefaira, where I also work.

Secondly, here is the link.

Thirdly, I sped read it so will be coming back to update but here are my first impressions in a self contained 30 mins;

  • The journey can not be completed in one step so be humble enough to accept why people cannot see the finish line and use the steps that are already there to bring people along. You do not need to build a whole new road to a new destination if there are flagstones laid already.
  • Customer development is time critical and can work both ways, being quick on the up  and quick on the way down.
  • Predictions are hard – hybrids are great and found a market but at around 3% of new sales they are not the breakthrough predicted to be 35% of the US car market.  So the theories in the book/paper are as susceptible to the external market and do not produce a product which is intrinsically better but simply help to avoid massive failure.
  • The split between senior management and sales/marketing is an anachronism and, I think that  turning this on its head is a key to success – efficiently using the data points garnered by the whole team to crowd source priorities. Everyone has their different motivations and biases but also their own skillset. It is a rare senior manager who can do everything well. So, if they are trying with limited resources to deliver feature improvements they may actually not be best placed to get the head up and look at the next feature/product.
  • A different model to the Product Development Model is smart but the baby does not go out with the bathwater. You still have to finish the feature the customer tells you it wants, whether it is called Beta or MVP, before you can draw a conclusion.
  • Customer Discovery is an essential way to think about matching and targeting customers ahead of having a product/feature. Do not extrapolate from the early adopters, especially if you are one yourself.
  • PERT analysis (Program Evaluation Review Technique) uses probabilistic time estimates for the program definition

Optimistic Time + (4*Most Likely Time) + Pessimistic Time

6

  • There may be a lot of confusion around whether you are a new product in an existing market, a new product in a new market or a new product in an existing market which you are trying to re-segment as a niche entrant or low cost entrant. This is a key difference and should be defined and debated and redefined before action.
  • A Bass Model helps forecast adoption rates for “new-to-world” models (based on an S curve but distinguishing between early adopters and more conservative adopters) using coefficients of Innovation and Imitation. We either need a similar product to extrapolate from or to extrapolate from several data points – otherwise it is pure speculation and we are likely to weigh to heavily to early adopters.
  • The Technology Life Cycle Adoption Curve and The Chasm ARE REAL THINGS! Do not diminish them, in the same way as dislocating the sales and product timeline, someone should be looking at the chasm even in the middle of all the early customer problems.
  • Early adopters should be seen as problems and treated as such.
  • Learning and Discovery cycles, although essential, should not be seen as a virtuous thing in themselves but a means to an end. Do not re-learn the same thing twice and again. Be humble and honest the first time.

Etc, etc.

Probably the most important point would be to align philosophies like this as a senior team at the outset and reaffirm through each key step for the company. The customer validation process could so easily be misunderstood. The acceptable minimum in an MVP could be different in so many heads. The point at which it is assumed scale can be achieved should be honestly revised most often as this step, above all steps, changes the drive of everyone and sales must be able to sell what they have.

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Reform/Reboot/Renua/Repeat

renua

I have to be fair. They are trying something. And they may be successful. But at what?

The first comes from way back at ‘the discussion’ in the RDS. A group of those who had left on principle trying to get away from the narrow principle which loosely bound them. And almost succeeding except for the final bow and the standing ovation which shone the light on the audience as the social conservatives they really were. The balance between listening and telling had not been struck as sweetly as it might and I left thinking this is career politics with the thin veneer of reform.

The second comes from the sheer lack of weight, heft, sparkle or vision. A nameless and spineless mumbling on the radio to caricature the void of thrust or content around the only president. Except that there are two presidents, in a formless and temporary marriage, not long for this world. Highlighting how little they have to differentiate them, how desperately they need the next headline and how tricky it will be to bind opposites – something which only genius and crisis can achieve and neither of those two are available.

The third is to come, being both agile and principled is not possible and so it will fail. Despite all the febrile ground which 80 years of corruption, laziness, crisis, indecision, nimbyism and 10 of outright panic has exposed, it will fail. It is not possible to be open, agile, modern and retain the perception of principled and safe which the targeted electorate requires. The existing machine will continue unperturbed unraveling first openness, then principle and then basic cohesion. The wrong electorate was targeted and the wrong mandate has been sought. Kingmakers do not become Kings. Or Queens.

To be successful you need to be half the price or twice as good. Twice as good among the 18-35s would have been possible, hell 10x as good would never have been easier if that strategy had been tried, but with old fashioned ways of discussing social views, incorrect choice of candidates, lack of coherent social media strategy, no innovation in political engagement (giving your ideas is not enough to a very instant feedback generation) no attempt on this wide open group was ever made. Half the price cannot work unless the model is completely different and it is not. The model is still people and face to face and bums on seats and how is your road. The machine is already quite good at that. That’s why they didn’t die when they both allowed 2008 to happen.

What we have is some very interesting ideas – conscience votes and open cabinets and flat structures which will subside over time to the practicalities of the school run. We have no-one willing to sacrifice themselves because there is no need. So what we have is simply a weaker machine. Full of great people, wonderful bluster and necessary hope but ultimately a distraction to how removed the young are from the political process. A wonderful opportunity has been deliberately missed and we can only blame ourselves. Again.

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1% can be a big number

Bear with me here.

I have been thinking about the power of positive framing as I furiously research the built sustainability space again. We hear so much talk about ‘reductions’ and ‘efficiency’ and ‘savings’ but I also, conversely, believe that human nature precludes us from being saving creatures. We want more meat. More fat. More water. More sex. More warmth. More safety. More respect. More friends. More energy. What animal wouldn’t?

My idea is to stretch for 1% of something. But to affect 1% of something in conjunction with enough people to affect 100% of something. And to make that explicit.

For example, I am reading every day about stats showing how much energy is consumed in buildings – ~43%* of primary energy in Ireland which is around 6Mtoe annually. How can I affect a number as large as this? This is an argument that I have constantly with those people that I call ‘energy vegans’ (those who spend their days obsessively counting the joules that they consume and usually telling everyone about it) – If everybody did it great but they won’t so why should I?

Image  

So what can I do? Well, I’m a quant so here’s some quanting. 1toe = 11.63MWh, 1Mtoe = 11.63TWh and 6Mtoe = 69.78TWh or 69,780,000,000,000 Wh. This means that to affect 1% of the Irish building energy consumption by reduction or efficiency that I need to personally save 697,800,000,000 Wh or switch off 790,000 lightbulbs for the whole year. Even if a 100,000 people join me that is still around 8 lightbulbs off EACH for the whole year. To affect 1% of the total. I am not becoming a vegan…

Let’s try another tactic. Generation of renewable energy. Let’s say that I train up and work with a company like Mainstream Renewable Power and develop wind energy in Ireland for consumption in Ireland and by some miracle work on a project that installs 100MW in 2014. Let’s assume that it is operating at full capacity for 30% of the time and generates 250GWh of clean energy in 2015. If I personally claim 5% of the credit for that project and attribute all the displaced energy to buildings I affect 12.5GWh of change. And that’s in a dreamworld. I am not a god…

So how do I achieve my 1% goal? Surely its not possible. Let’s look at another way. Say there are 1 million buildings in Ireland. This means that to achieve my personal goal I have to come up with a way of saving each building (on dumb average) 0.7MWh a year. Not possible, but what is?

Using CIBSE typical office benchmark of 250kWh/m2/yr (and that is SITE ENERGY USE so PRIMARY ENERGY USE could be 400kWh/m2/yr) and saying that each buildings is 1,000m2. Then each building consumes 1,000 x 400  = 400,000 kWh/yr or 400MWh/yr. If I offer fundamental and passive energy saving advice to 2 buildings a day which saves them 20% of their energy bill (or 80MWh annually) then I am affecting 40GWh of change. Not quite my 697GWh but a reasonable target…

So there it is. A simple way of affecting the greatest change that I can. Set a positive and growing personal target for the year and grow that target each year. How many cows do you have to not eat to save 40GWh? And for how long can you say no?    

 

 

*must refind the link to this but even assuming its 30% its a big number

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It’s ok to give The Beatles less than 5 stars

I just had the strangest feeling. I felt that I was breaking some rule by not liking a Beatles song. Julia came on and I went to skip the song and from deep within me came a resistance, an internal voice louder than the one to stop eating cake or watching Youtube videos which said DON’T YOU DARE!

That means that I have a bunch of connections in my brain that say STOP! when I try to express my dislike for a Beatles song. I can bite the inside of my own mouth or stub my toe and nothing happens. Meaning that my own mind has prioritised a muscle memory that kicks in one second after the thought “I don’t dig this, next song”. Thanks brain.

…hand moves towards iphone

Come on, its ‘Julia’, it’s crap, its basically one note over and over and its John Lennon long after he had checked out of The Beatles….

No!

It’s my arm, I’m in charge here, I’m changing the track…

That’s what you think!

I’ll just turn it down a bit…

Not an option buddy!

Right! This is not on. I am the master of my own fate and captain of my own soul and all that stuff. SInce when did the Beatles have this hold on me? Since why are they sacrosanct? They have a ton of great tunes and a fun mythology and all that but that was a time before anybody could make and share music. They are from another time that gets more distant every day, even for those that were there.

That was from a time before the 80s synth-pop spawned derivative bands by the bucket-load. That was from a time before 80s synth-pop was rebelled against by punk and grunge and brit-pop. Hell, that was before the 80s was the 80s.

For instance Dirty Projectors and Yeasayer are two bands who need the space on my iphone so get out of the way ‘Julia’

Still not gonna fly

Fine, but I’m only rating it 4 stars and I’m gonna blog about it

Deal

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In response to Daniel Lacalle…mostly wrong

The macro-trifecta of economic competitiveness, national security and environmental sustainability is all about energy. Well, some of it is about banking, tax havens, intellectual property, climate, colonialism, Lockheed Martin’s F-35s, planned obsolescence, Angela Merkel’s legacy but mainly, it’s about energy.

A betting man might ask in which order do we place these three horses but a visionary asks is there a way that we can get them to come home together. Either way it’s a punt.

horses

So, as with any bet, it’s informing to get multiple opinions but once you bet you have to stick. This is where the real value is created. Hedging or active management dissolves the potential value created by decisive long-plays. So far, Europe has neither bet nor stuck.

In this regard, China has a model that stands to be refuted – 500m lifted out of poverty in 30 years.  Not their coal-heavy energy model per se but their long term commitment once a strategy has been decided. Lay out your vision and drive it home. There are a myriad of issues with China’s single-minded drive but the sovereign debt crisis in Europe indicates one thing – you can tell someone you’re going to screw them and then screw them or you can tell them it will be fine and then screw them but in the end they get screwed. Europeans have just been practicing another form of cognitive dissonance about the balance of pain now or pain tomorrow – just look in Berlusconi’s or Bertie’s constituencies.

As traditional energy sources can, even in the best case scenario, only achieve two of our big three and renewables can provide all three, the vision is clear – bet big on big renewables.

Why big renewables? Energy generation isn’t cheaper or more efficient as you distribute it around, it’s less efficient. In Ireland and most European countries the grid can’t take it without investment so the energy is neither shared nor stored and sometimes wasted. So as the generated energy isn’t differentiated the greatest benefits come from economies of scale.

wind

Renewables at scale is the answer. Generating huge dollops of renewable energy and sharing it between countries is the purest international trade. Ireland has an abundant supply of wind while Spain has an abundant supply of Sun. If governments and incumbents could find a way to remove themselves from the interfering side of the equation it is a story that a 5 year old would understand.

Unfortunately, the European model of targets, fines, horse trading over ROCs and carbon trading has not provided the renewable solution that we expected. So how do we get there? Enter Daniel Lacalle.

daniel lacalle

The prevalent form of energy technology should establish itself by, “…competitiveness and cost rather than intervention by the government…this is the first time the government has tried to incentivise and promote more expensive ways of generating energy rather than cheaper

There are two points that I would like to address here. The first is that it is not the first time that government has attempted to subsidise initially more expensive forms of energy generation. Where do you put the brackets on that cost? Immeasurable costs were, and are, incurred in electricity transmission and distribution infrastructure not to mention geopolitical instability costs of redistributing primary fossil fuels or Operations of Enduring Freedom as they are more commonly known. In fact, most European countries ran hugely inefficient state monopolies for generations which, on the whole, continue to exist as an artificial switching cost, resisting improvement and change and risk and innovation. So perhaps he is technically correct – maybe it isn’t called a subsidy if it is a payment from government to government – but monopolies aren’t best known for their competitiveness and cost.

The second is that fossil fuels are not cheaper. Suffice to say that the world is paying some cost for burning fossil fuels which is not currently being priced in to the trade of fossil fuels This may be a more philosophical point involving the price of vague externalities (unless you live in some cities). To discuss in philosophical terms while businesses pay monthly bills is to get ahead of ourselves but equally to talk about traded price alone is to oversimplify.

It is US and German solar subsidies, via both university research grants and private business PPAs over a concerted period of time, which incentivised the initial technology and the market for more recent Chinese innovation which has brought these technologies and their supporting systems to the point where they can nearly be profitable on their own. The opportunity to finish the job is one that Daniel misses in the name of free competition. 

Germany has a pretty good example as incumbent energy utilities struggle (if €2.4bn profit is struggling) against the gains made by renewables in the last 20 years. While subsidising renewable technology, Germany can exempt those large energy consumers which it deems to be of national interest from subsidising renewables. This pragmatic solution got Germany to the point where on one day in June 60% of electricity consumed came from renewables[1]. If Germany were bold enough to introduce a more realistic carbon tax and give up its subsidies of traditional generation the rest of Europe might have the model. Balancing business competitiveness during the once-off transition is essential but business loves nothing more than certainty.

Convincing people to pay for the future is a mountainous task. The narrative is perhaps too visionary for the current political cycles. Paying for things that we have already bought is hard enough.


[1] Unfortunately the situation is always more complicated when politics and profit compete and the Green Paradox has reared its head leading to an increase in CO2 levels last year as cheap coal fills the energy bridging gap that was supposed to be powered by gas. How much longer Germans will support the 3rd highest domestic electricity prices in the EU while seeing increases in CO2 is anyone’s guess.

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Assange again or?

Image

This guy. Again. And in fairness, he never went away. Imprisoning himself for both practical and personal reasons. His very real fear of US extradition, his guilt for Bradley, his addiction to work. His being on the spectrum? It is a wide spectrum after all.

The story hasn’t changed; he is still a divisive figure, one of those ‘types’ who we all know – a little self involved, obsessive, unshakable, stubborn, full of fault, uncompromising, with no time for charm but the debate (and the eventual outcome) is one of the highest importance. So we must face him and not be irked.

He has done much good. Snowden and the next guy come through the door “that had been pried open by Wikileaks” and have put figures of unequivocal power on alert that they are also being monitored. Probably driving them further into the shadowy caves of clandestine behaviour but it is essential to hold them to account in the same ways that they do us. Doesn’t this seem reasonable?

The putting people in harms way excuse is the only point of real intrigue in the whole mess. Those on active service in countries should be protected, of that there is no doubt but there is doubt as to whether Assange insisted on un-redacted info to be published. NYT claims this was a key journalistic difference between him and they but they also received calls from high up US powers to persuade them to publish in a certain way. I have seen no evidence of any operative harmed directly due to the Wikileaks activities and surely this would be a giant smoking gun (or more probably smoking crater) which would swing public opinion?

Some holes in the US investigative systems defenses were exposed – good for US, some (all) diplomats were shown to be a bit rude about each other – good pruning  for diplomatic health but most importantly the public has woken up and entered the debate. Occupy, and other movements, have shown that people are not atomised, we are all suffering from the hoovering upwards of wealth, information and power and if we come out together we can do something about it.

Why should your politician know more about you then you know about him?

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Where’s the green elephant? part 1

It was a huge pleasure and very interesting to hear from John McGeachie of Evernote during my MBA Technology and Innovation class with Enrique Dans last week. However, my opinion of Evernote itself is mixed at best.

Almost but not quite

Evernote collects, organises and retrieves your notes and although the definition of ‘notes’ continues to broaden, I think that most people should intuitively know what their own use would be – photos, shopping lists, holiday plans, newpaper articles, ideas for books or presentations etc. In theory then this could be an excellent way to aggregate and externalise those things that interest you and a huge problem solved. For me, unfortunately not. Why?

Evernote should offer 3 things perfectly;

  1. Collecting should be simple,
  2. Organising should be fun,
  3. Retrieving should be quick.

In my opinion they fail on all 3 counts. And I will offer my opinion why, but first, let me paint you a picture of my average daily technological interactions so you know the context of my criticism;

iPhone wakes me up. Vaio open. Twitter, Gmail, FT and AlJazeera open. Since MBA, FB and Campusonline open too. Usually late and can’t read all I’d like to. Sometimes open interesting links in new tabs to read later. Never get around to them all.

Refresh podcasts on iPhone and walk to college listening to Football extra/Radiolab/Economist/NPR/WSJ.

Sitting in class. Attention span is about 20 minutes so inevitably go looking for distractions. Guardian sport, Linkedin app, Flipboard app, SkySports app, Marca app, TheJournal.ie app, BBC app etc.

Lots more skimming during other meetings or in study breaks with the rare post to twitter or FB and more recently this blog.

News catch up at the end of the day and usually some Comedy Central on Youtube.

In other words, I am the avid consumer of disparate content with a latent urge to organise, comment and share that Evernote should be able to pick up without blinking. I am young, engaged and forgetful. I should be among Evernote’s prime entry targets. Why don’t I use it then?

  1. Collecting – There is no Evernote button prominently displayed on most content providing websites. I have to go and install a webclipper which took an age to load and requires re-passwording frequently. Huge barrier for me. Lost me here.
  2. Organising –  I have a Vaio and so Evernote comes with the pre installed bloatware. I immediately uninstalled all this after asking my techy friends what to keep but for some reason tried Evernote. I found the UI uninspiring and impersonal (I’m thinking that for something where you are supposed to use to channel creative ideas a customisable background or nicer buttons/colours/simple design would bring me back)
  3. Retrieving is not quick enough. From forgetting, to opening the app, to getting the info out this is not as quick as using the search bar on my iPhone and going immediately online to relevant (and up to date) info.

I believe that Evernote falls into an unfortunate middle ground between essential software and frivolous app. I haven’t got the time to learn the tricks required to operate it smoothly even though I can see the eventual benefits. Nor does it communicate security and discretion enough to entice my previous employers to allow it as a business service i.e. whenever I was out on site to access sensitive documents. Nor is it so nimble and user friendly that I can download and start using immediately on all devices for personal use. It has failed by trying to be all things to all users.

For me its still Flipboard and a Moleskin for private use and Chrome folders/Google Drive and Dropbox for work.

However, they seem like an awesome company and for sharing their time with us I will give Evernote one last chance via iPhone and web and report back with Part 2. I’m sure you can’t wait…

Works for me

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The Daily Mail

journalism, apparently

journalism, apparently

Apparently the new model for ‘newspapers’ online, The Daily Mail  has been churning out scum into the world for a long time and is now doing it better than ever.

Check this out to see why.

This is exactly the sort of perverted behaviour that they scream about and condemn daily on their front page and here they are, without an ounce of insight or irony, pushing society past the edge of acceptability.

An 8 year old child, photographed and sexualised to make money.  Why isn’t that illegal? Why can this company still exist?

This is now an established formula within their website. It is usually accompanied by “Look who’s all grown up” or similar lechery in the headline and is so ubiquitous that it is the subject of pretty good parody at Suri’s Burn Book.

I have to say that I am a little surprised that women in general have allowed the boundaries to be pushed so far so often. You’d expect this sort of apathy from men but women are usually better at defending those that can’t defend themselves and I’ve seen little of it in this storyspace either online or in the real world. Apparently lots of women will sacrifice their values to see cute kids paraded online and the line is crossed more and more frequently.

I have to say that I follow one or two people who write for The Daily Mail on twitter. I do this for balance and to sometimes puncture the personal narrative that I can get wrapped up in. I can be politically correct and allow other people’s opinion even when I am vehemently opposed to it. I can take my position on abortion, religion, gay marriage and adoption, stem cell research etc and accept that other people may disagree. In fact, its crucially important to try to see through their eyes. This is how I reinforce the strength of my own convictions.

However, the eyes that want this sort of material are not seeing in the same subjective realm. They are not up for debate. They are wrong but unfortunately, some people gloss over it and continue through the website. A lot of people actually.

Racist, misogynist, ignorant scumbags. I feel dirty even linking to them

quality through and through

quality through and through

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I like the little bird…

twitter-icon-1024x1024-300x300

There is one company that has changed my world for the last 2 years; Twitter. I don’t know much about the people behind it  but I know that they have largely stayed true to the best intentions of the internet 2.0 – connecting people directly and in the way that they want to be connected.

I have been able to communicate with some of my favourite comedians, journalists and writers. I have even been able to broadcast my temporary nonsense to my (very few) followers and get the feedback that for that one moment, somebody, somewhere GETS what I’m saying.

Granted, my first tweet wasn’t poetry. I called my friend, who introduced me to twitter, a twat. I think he got the postmodern angle I was going for but in fact I was probably hedging. I wasn’t sure if this was a fad or something as great as it promised. I have since gotten down off the fence.

Twitter is to the web what Mobile phones are to the world. If you had the phone numbers of almost anybody in the world that you find interesting…

Hey Steve Martin, what’s going on? Oh, that’s hilarious, poor old trusting wife, she gets such a hard time…

Hey young lady in Libya, is that the military police coming up the stairs for your father? Oh, that’s devastating, let us know, we are all hurrying our governments in any way that we can.

Hey Graham Linehan, is that your angle on the Norway massacre, seems to me to miss the point. Oh, that’s a new angle, hadn’t thought of that…

Hey Rob Kearney, how do you prepare for a big match? Oh, I would have thought that you would have to be in the zone much earlier than that, interesting…

Hey Dean, is that what Socrates said about tech startups? interesting…

Hey Rory McIlroy, hope the Nike clubs work out, oh they suck? don’t aim for the trees this time….

Where was there ever such a source of insight before? It doesn’t even feel like a website or a company. It feels like a community. A community that I made. And a community that I continue to make. For whatever reason, I made myself some rules;

  1. follow 99 people or less,
  2. no more than 1 tweet per day,
  3. at least 9 people who I fundamentally differ from,
  4. no commercially motivated (re)tweets or competitions,
  5. no extended 1 on 1 conversations

The idea being that I need to constantly prune my content providers to those who are current and those that I tire of. I also need to not binge and to keep opinions around that I disagree with to hone debate or see an angle I may not have considered. Rules 4 and 5 are pretty obvious; a waste of the opportunity provided by the forum. It can disappear as quickly as it was created, I have to treat it carefully. I realise that sounds pompous and exaggerated but it is a powerful tool and I’d like to keep from pouring a little bucket of scorn on it

I have followed many of the events of the last 2 years (Libya, Egypt, Syria, Afghanistan, Brevik, SOPA, Murdoch, Charlie Sheen, Global elections, Fin Crisis, Irish Rugby, Joey Barton, even Normal Life) in such depth that it has weaned me off newspapers, maybe forever. And, with a little work, I found people with that wonderful balance of interest and insight about current events but without the posturing of an editorial or newsreader.

Take Robert Peston as an example; from explaining the fallout of the latest top-level, golden parachute first-hand to his continuing frustrations as a Gooner watching Wenger flap at his beloved club as they stumble from disappointment to disappointment. As an Irish, Chelsea supporter I am perfectly placed to enjoy his commentary!

Anyway, this is a company that provides exactly what I didn’t know that I needed so badly in a way that is so intuitive and current that I only hope that SOPA and sponsored tweets don’t eat away at the original intent. This site has power in the real world and I hope they continue to prioritise that.

In the meantime, the world is waiting for my mum’s second tweet…

tweet 1

tweet 1

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Is Google Evil via Noam Chomsky and Chavez

Along with Hugo Chavez, I would also recommend Hegemony or Survival as a better place to start a Euro or US-centric education about South and Central America than the ubiquitous Open Veins.    

On almost everything else, we differ. I’m sure he noticed.

The question that I have is whether or not Google News amplifies the intellectual bias towards government-shaped opinion as opposed to dissention, particularly in the US? The short answer is no.

Regardless of the debate around the payments from Google News that online newspapers may want, there is a democracy to its service that reflects the best about the ‘open’ internet era. Were it to get out that Google had a filtering factor that biased news that made it onto its front page Google would surely face a backlash that would test even its cashflow and innovative revenue generating capabilities. We know this as users of the service and, in particular, get out of our bubble of only reading those publications that reinforce our current world view. This is a circularity that google news avoids and one that traditional publications have been mining and exploiting for over a century. No wonder they are worried.

I’m curious about circularities. In the article you can see a very interesting one. 100%  Pentagon funded MIT creates the modern internet which allows criticism of government and military on a scale never before seen and incubates arguably its most consistent critic who raises MIT’s profile and paves the road for creeping, capitalist funding of the campus into the future. And in this circularity is whats best about the US – although it is heavily weighted against him in mainstream media, a free internet and Chomsky still stand.

Another curious circularity is that many people have been duped by web 2.0 into believing that there are an infinite number of circular and sustaining business models that mean any service on the web can fund itself via a back door or advertising and continue providing for the end user free of charge. We are finding out that this is not forever.

The outrage that people feel when isohunt or piratebay go down for even a few minutes reflects a missing link of understanding in the traditional chain of cash from customer to business. You didn’t pay for it and so, you’re not entitled to it  it is a privilege. If Gmail has to be abandoned I cannot be angry, rather I should be grateful for over 10 years of free email management and ever growing storage space.

Are you willing to put cash down for a Google service that respects your privacy via the settings that you control? Of course you are and they already provide it for free! just check your settings and manage your free service a tiny bit and you can control everything that gets recorded and shared.

I’ll make a pretty tenuous link between the mindset of those who are happy to receive the handouts of populist governments, like Chavez’s, at the expense of future generations well-being and those of us who take all the services that the advertising-sponsored internet provides us with and bellyache when asked to do any of the spadework ourselves. Google Reader and Chavez are dead and we are better off without them.

The more evil you think that Google is, the more you have been spoiled by the free ride of the past 10 years.

p.s. Collusion is a great way of tracking sites that monitor your usage of the web. My online banking website produced zero connections while Aljazeera.com produced 9…

 

collusion

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