In order to thrive online as individuals -- and for the health of the online commons -- we need to understand literacies of attention, crap detection, participation, collaboration, and network awareness. I believe that the critical uncertainty about the future value of the Web depends on whether a sufficient proportion of the population learns these skills. So I've written a book that I want to be well-received by the knowledgeable and given as a gift to the less knowledgeable. Slated for March 2012 publication by MIT Press, I plan to launch the book at SXSWi.
New York Times executive editor Jill Abramson discusses her vision for the future of The Times in the digital age in a session moderated by Texas Tribune editor Evan Smith. Does Abramson's leadership at The Times present a blueprint for sustainability for the newspaper industry?
One of the great failures of any company - for that matter of a capitalist economy - is ecosystem failure. Great companies build great ecosystems, one in which value is created not just for a single company or group of industry players, but for partners who didn't even exist when the product or service was introduced. Many companies start out creating huge value. Consider Microsoft, whose vision of a computer on every desk and in every home changed the world of computing forever, and created a rich ecosystem for developers. But as Microsoft's growth stalled, they gradually consumed more and more of the opportunity for themselves, and innovators moved elsewhere, to the Internet. Internet innovators like Google, Amazon, Facebook, and Twitter have also created a rich ecosystem of opportunity, but like Microsoft before them, they are leaving less and less on the table for others. This is a bad trend. Wall Street firms, which got their start trading on behalf of clients, then began trading against them, then created vast Ponzi economies to drain the value from entire segments of the economy are even more dire examples of this trend. But this crisis of capitalism goes beyond individual industry segments. For example, the race by companies to eliminate labor costs has been a short term profit win but a long term loss. Since the cycle of capitalism depends on consumers as well as producers, and consumers are less and less able to find employment, at some point, we're going to have to start thinking about how to put people to work, rather than how to put them out of work. At O'Reilly, we've always tried to live by the slogan "Create more value than you capture." It's a great way to build a sustainable business and a sustainable economy.
Andrew McAfee, author of "Race Against the Machine," will engage with Tim about these ideas, and about how rethinking the economy becomes even more urgent in the face of the trend he explores in his book, in which jobs are being outsourced not just to low-wage countries, but increasingly to machines.
by Jaron Lanier and Nicholas Thompson
A conversation between Nicholas Thompson, a senior editor covering technology for the New Yorker, and computing pioneer Jaron Lanier. They'll discuss the virtues of technology, but also the ways it has made us less imaginative, more distracted, and less connected to other people. Lanier is one of the founders of "virtual reality," but he has since become the most prominent critic of what technology has wrought. Last year, he published “You Are Not a Gadget: A Manifesto,” a provocative critique of digital technologies, including Wikipedia (which he called a triumph of “intellectual mob rule”) and social-networking sites like Facebook and Twitter, which Lanier has described as dehumanizing and designed to encourage shallow interactions.
Legendary visionary Ray Kurzweil will join writer Lev Grossman from TIME Magazine for a mind-expanding keynote conversation about our future.
As social and Internet entrepreneurs search for ways to effect IRL social change by using online tools and platforms, the focus has been on social media. However, while social media has been the Internet's buzzword for some time now, research shows that content consumption actually represents 53% of all time spent online. Given that content takes up most consumers' time on the web, it's time to harness it as the most effective way to drive social change in the real world.
by Matt Barrie
The Internet is delivering its next tectonic shift upon society - disruption of the global labor markets. There are 7 billion people in the world, but only 2 billion people on the Internet. The other 5 billion are connecting now, at double and triple digit rates. Remarkably, they live today on around $8 a day or less. The first thing they are looking to do when they connect is raise their standard of living- by finding a job online. This is the vanguard of an economic revolution that is sweeping emerging economies and the developing world. Find out from Matt Barrie, CEO of the world's largest outsourcing marketplace, what this means for society, business and how you live your personal life. Discover how a new entrepreneurial class is arising on both sides of the world as both developing and developed world small business owners serendipitously work together, and find out how YOU can transform YOUR business into a virtual multinational corporation on a shoe string budget!
From broadband spectrum to HDTV, from gaming to Hollywood and social media, innovation is happening through industry, entrepreneurs and technology advances. How is consumer electronics driving innovation in the U.S. and abroad – and what role does design play in consumer electronics innovation? Come hear from the head of an organization that represents 2,000 technology companies and produces the International CES Conference – in conversation with a CE innovation and design leader.
9th–13th March 2012