3 Economies of Online Currency: money, reputation and attention

I think we are doing some ground breaking work with Cdling, coming up with our “seeds” monetary system.

I have been doing some related reading this evening.

When I read this post by Alistair Croll, it prompted me to get off my duff and actually post something here again, so I think that is a huge endorsement.

Check it out:

The Three Economies of Online Currency.

Check out Digital Tonto

Greg Satell has a blog called Digital Tonto that I recommend.

Here is a sample post that caught my attention:

How Social Network Analysis Solves Real World Problems.

I hope that everyone had an awesome summer.

I am working hard on cdling.com, which I think of an application of Social Capital Value Add.  And we definitely believe that SNA will deliver great insights to the investor and start-up communities that we serve.

Social Media for Government Conference, Toronto

Thank you to the organisers of the Social Media for Government Conference in Toronto this week for inviting me to kick things off by leading a three hour workshop.  Thanks also to the folks who attended.  Here are my slides:

It was an interesting challenge to lead an “Introduction” to Social Media. Two years ago when I led a similar workshop in Ottawa, 90% of the room would have had mostly fear and virtually no personal exposure in using social media. This morning, only 10% of the room would have fit this description, yet feedback was that the definitions and strategic frameworks that we went through together were still useful in helping participants process their experiences and adjust their traditional notions of brand and communications for the network era.

For the last 30 minutes we went through this “map” that was developed by Jody Radzik at the Institute for the Future. I did not set out to deliver a full understanding of each of the 13 trends in Government 2.0 that are highlighted during this time (impossible) but this piece is the best that I have seen that encapsulates the overall context of changes shaping up. I asked participants to share a project that they are envisioning or initiative that they have read about that prompted them to decide to come to a conference like this. While this map is a projection out to 2020, we were able to quickly establish that in all of these areas, the future is already here, it is just unevenly distributed.

Crowd Building: 2020 Media Future @ OCAD

Thanks to Walter Derzko for inviting me to join yesterday’s 2020 Media Futures Workshop at the s-Lab (Strategic Innovation Lab) at OCADSuzanne Stein and Greg Van Alstyne did a great job of moderating and facilitating a fairly free wheeling group of thinkers.

It looks like I was the only one using twitter during the workshop or maybe I had the wrong tag? Here are a few thoughts that emerged that could each be turned into a blog post:

  • We think about discontinuity as a threat but the new global success stories will have discontinuity at the heart of a new approach.  Are the incremental gains achieved through “baby steps” and the “go slow”, “fast follower” practices of Canadian business enough to maintain Canada’s position in the world moving forward?  At the moment many are quick to heap praise on the stability of our financial sector.  I remember a few observers noting that growth in Nova Scotia was not effected by the global downturn.  Hmmm. When achieving global success requires embracing discontinuity, what design approaches should we advocate and adopt?
  • How do digital connections qualify/disqualify people for precious face to face time?  Many of us have now experienced the little thrill of having connected with someone online via twitter or a blog exchange and then met them in real life.  As we become more connected, how will the productivity of our face to face time be impacted.  Is it a sign of disrespect if you have not bothered to “google” someone before attending a scheduled meeting with them?
  • Does copyright transform into “identity right”?  Copyright was established to protect the investment and intellectual property of creators for a reasonable time period.  Online is “busting through to reality” (pick up Jesse Schell’s talk on the Future of Gaming at the 10:56mark).  Is the final produced piece of art or software code the point where we need these protections?  When our life stream is “sensed” and iterative design is key to progress, do we need an entirely different set of rights to ensure that individuals have the ability to profit from the digital footprints that they cast off or in other words, how they direct their lives?
  • We must integrate consumers into design & production.  This generalizes to “crowd sourcing” or making sure that we make corporate decisions, not based upon the smartest person sitting at the table at that moment, but based upon having the smartest thinking anywhere available at the table for the moment of the decision.  It is the kind of motive behind the idea for a Seedling Prediction Market that initially drew me into MDes’ (i.e. Masters of Design in Strategic Foresight and Innovation) orbit. This is not really a question for 2020.  I think it is a question that we need to be answering right now to maintain Ontario/Canada’s position in the world.
  • So some “Crowd Building” related design thinking …
  • MIT Tech TV

Social Capital Value Add in Health Care: Mom’s Losing Battle with Cancer

The principals of Social Capital Value Add have wide application and I think that the health care sector, due to a combination of necessity and opportunity, is going to experience some remarkable changes.

As many close to me know, I dedicated as much time as possible last year to support my Mother (and my Dad) through her losing battle with lung cancer.

It was an eye opening experience.

(Side note: It was also the reason why blogging here was scarce & my personal investment in the development of SCVA has been put on the back burner.)

How little we really know.

How, despite noble intentions, the health care system we experienced ultimately leaves the patient and family responsible for managing care or at least they need to be their own champions in the positioning for limited resources and attention to detail.

I am sure that you can imagine how I felt about the inefficiencies of simple information sharing across nursing shifts.  Now consider this against the backdrop of governments banning use of social media in the workplace and more critically, the possibility of having real time, universal authorized access to all patient information across several hospitals, doctors’ offices, diagnostic and treatment centres.

In truth, outcomes for my Mother would not likely have been dramatically different.  We do not have a cure for cancer.  Through a lot of old fashioned community support, everyone pulled together and I feel she received excellent treatment.  For that I am very grateful to everyone involved.

Nevertheless, it is obvious that as the we try to attend to more people with limited resources there are going to be completely new methods or increasingly gaping failures of our health care system.

I would encourage everyone to take time out to watch this video of Canada’s perennial tech talk master, Don Tapscott.  It was my Mom who way back when gave me Don’s first book, Paradigm Shift as a Christmas gift and in a way turned me on to all this “junk”.  It is the first time that he presented the key ideas from his forthcoming book, “MacroWikinomics“.

In particular, I suggest that those of you who are interested in learning more about the change unfolding within the health care sector pick up Don’s talk at the 52:00 mark.  He opens by describing the health care system as the number three killer in the United States.  He then goes on to describe a collaborative health care system. He finishes with health care at 59:50.

It is an eight minute vision of how health care is going to change.  Must change.

Key elements:

1. Patients get to engage in rich communities related to their health. Isolation is a risk factor.

For more insight on this you should check out Dr. Nicholas Christakis’ 2010 TedTalk on how social networks shape our lives or his book Connected.

2. Idea whose time has come: When you are born the system opens up a web page for you that is sort of like a Facebook for healthcare … half healthcare file and half social network.

3. These health care networks will generate massive amounts of new data to aid the advancement of science and treatment.

4. Healthcare workers (doctors & nurses) engage in communities in a new way.  Less parochial.  To enable this you would need to solve the threat of litigation.  Patients become active and accountable for their health care and they will be very willing to do so.  Being involved is part of getting better.

The example that Don gives: http://www.patientslikeme.com.

The example that I have mentioned while teaching classes or leading workshops is Upopolis at Sick Kids Hospital.

Intel Fellow Eric Dishman has another great health care TedTalk that is well worth watching here.

Introducing Dr. Dima Dimitrova

In February, Dr. Barry Wellman introduced me to a colleague from his Netlab at the University of Toronto.

Dr. Dimitrina (Dima) Dimitrova has extensive research experience, which includes evaluation research and project management engagements.

Her areas of expertise are social networks, workplace and technology. She was the Principal investigator of the NetMap consulting project, which examined the social network and collaboration practices of researchers and partners of the Canadian Water Network. Here is one of her presentations on this work:

Her doctoral research “The Telework Mosaic (University of Toronto, 2002)” focused on the social implications of new technologies for social networks and new forms of workplace arrangements.  As well, she has conducted research in the areas of diversity, health care, and industrial relations.

She is active at scholarly conferences, presenting and organizing several sessions, peer review work, and in community research. Her latest publication is a co-authored chapter on Virtual Communities of Practice. Other research findings have been published, as co-author or independently written work, in the US, Austria, Britain, Norway, Italy, Russia, and Bulgaria.

Dima is currently teaching at York University and working on a paper on the use of social capital in collaborative research. She is a member of NetLab, a social network group at the University of Toronto led by Barry, who is a leading authority in social network research and theory and a founder of the International Network of Social Network Analysts.

In the weeks since meeting, Dima and I have met several times.  At the second meeting she showed up with a printed copy of my ebook that had so many highlighter marks and post it notes attached to it, I needed to pull out a copy myself just to remember how to answer all of her diligent, expert questions.

While the ebook has been viewed well over 10,000 times now, downloaded more than 1,500 times, featured by Scribd, marked as a favourite by about 60 Scribd users, “liked” by about 30 more and Olav Sorenson has given it a thorough read … I am quite confident at this point that there is no one who has given Social Capital Value Add more thorough, qualified consideration than Dima.

We have crafted a proposal to test the Social Capital Value Add approach in a precedent set of Fortune 100 companies.  If your company would like participate in this research & development program or financially support the design phase of the program please contact me.

This will be an initiative that will help define corporate management methods designed for the network era on a scale equal to similar work by MIT and IBM.

IBM MIT Virtuous Cycle IBM MIT Virtuous Cycle Michael Cayley IBM is working with MIT to define management methods designed for the network era. In the past we have not been able to see how these kinds of efforts have a direct impact investor’s perception.

SCVA research & development program is a similar opportunity for 3 to 5 companies.

Memo to the CEO: Why we need an annual report for technology

This lead into an article in The McKinsey Quarterly caught my attention:

“Memo to the CEO: Why we need an annual report for technology

Although most companies realize that business units and the technology organization must be much more integrated, many don’t know how to make this happen. Business leaders sometimes have only a vague sense of technology’s value, while technology executives often fail to address issues in terms that businesspeople find meaningful. In a hypothetical memo to a CEO, a chief technology officer proposes a solution: an annual report for technology, analogous to the annual report for investors and the broader market.”

The article goes on to succinctly capture a point that I think is true for IT and, as I have been trying to point out, even more of an issue for those evangelizing the adoption of social media and other manifestations of the broadband networked era we are moving into …

“The basic problem is a lack of shared understanding. Our business unit leaders … just see bits and pieces and don’t seem to grasp the interdependencies. It’s understandable that they get upset when things go wrong, but it’s less understandable that they hesitate to invest time and energy to sponsor solutions. Our technology leaders, for their part, often fail to address issues in ways that businesspeople find meaningful and therefore lack credibility … “

Well, the idea of an “annual report” is dead.  We would be looking for something that can be updated frequently or reported in real time.  And, despite a good effort to tackle a major problem, McKinsey’s language still highlights the chasm in thinking.  Taking a org chart and process approach to management instead of a network view leads to compartmentalization instead of integration.  Increasingly, the “value the technology organization delivers” is not somehow distinct from the value that the entire organization is delivering.

In any event, their point is spot on.  There is a need for tighter integration between day to day business and the technology that is already available.

As we have completed the Design Phase proposal of a research and development program that will test Social Capital Value Add in three to five Fortune 100 companies, I have had a chance to talk in depth with others for the first time about some of the far reaching implications of the method.

Social Capital Value Add does not try to measure all of the social capital of a company.  It zeros in on this new form of scaled up social capital that is attributable to broadband empowered individuals.  In this way, it is a leading indicator of how corporations are integrating broadband and the associated applications into their operations to postion themselves to maintain stable earnings and achieve breakthroughs in productivity and innovation.

Venturing into Social Software: IBM’s Irene Greif

Irene Greif, IBM Fellow and Director, Collaborative User Experience,  IBM Research, USA

Thursday, May 14, 4:00-5:30 pm 5 Cambridge Center, MIT Building NE 25, Room 746, McClintock Room

IBM’s new Center for Social Software is built around Venture Research – design and deployment of scaling social systems in businesses and on the web.   It’s a spin on testing software “in the wild” that has resulted in new products and insights into organizational impacts.  I’ll give examples of successes and challenges, demonstrate some of our of crowd-gathering software, and invite participation.

Speaker bio
Irene Greif heads the Collaborative User Experience Group
(CUE), comprised of a team of Computer-Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW) researchers based in Cambridge, MA.  The group has historically worked most closely with Lotus product teams on collaboration software and is now extending its impact to other parts of IBM’s Software Group — to support collaboration among software developers — and to IBM’s service businesses.  In 2008, she announced the opening of the Center for Social Software at IBM in Cambridge, with programs for outreach to academia and corporate partners.

Irene is a former faculty member of Computer Science at University of Washington and of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at MIT. She headed a research group in the MIT Laboratory for Computer Science which developed shared calendar, co-authoring, and real-time collaboration systems. She is a fellow of both the Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and Association of Computing Machinery (ACM.) Irene was inducted into the Women In Technology International (WITI) Hall of Fame in 2000.

Irene joined Lotus in 1987, formed Lotus Research in 1992, and merged that group into the IBM Research Division in 2000. Recent innovations from her group include the core features now shipping in Lotus Connections — social bookmarking (dogear) and business activities – as well as free internet services like Many Eyes, a site for collaborative visualization.

Irene received her S.B. in Mathematics, her S.M. and her PhD. in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, all from MI.

To receive email reminders of coming speakers, join the CCI Seminar Series mailing list by clicking on http://mailman.mit.edu/mailman/listinfo/cci-seminars.