[FoRK] Video I like, automating yourself, cognition distributed

Jeff Bone jbone at place.org
Fri May 28 06:31:09 PDT 2010

A few intertwingly thoughts.

Per recent rant against video presentations, there's an exception I like:  O'Reilly's Ignite.  It's like TED for folks with severe time constraints and infoglut-induced ADD, i.e. everyone these days (though few, it seems, really recognize the constraints.). (Well, maybe it is more useful for insatiably curious polymaths and autodidacts with said constraints, but whatever.)

Fixed format:  5 minutes, 20 slides, slides auto-advance every 15 seconds.  Needs better metadata and transcripting, and I'm not sure if all slides are mandatorily available, but still: a much better medium for broad idea-tasting.  Not suitable for depth-first, but that's by design:  feature-not-bug.

One in particular caught my attention:  Hilary Mason's IgniteNYC presentation, "How To Replace Yourself With A Very Small Shell Script.":


Resonates nicely with the whole "you are what you do not automate" idea mentioned some time ago.  

Though really I think that's a bit wrong: I think you're the sum of what you do and do not automate, with emphasis on the latter but really the union of both.  And indeed, part of you can even be the parts you outsource / crowdsource / etc.  

Verging on a much more useful, technological and, paradoxically, social notion of the individual.  Riffs with the "distributed cognition" idea and some of the more interesting recent research in neuroscience and ideas of self-perception.

Presently awaiting dead-tree version of the following from Amazon along those lines:


Anybody read that yet?



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