Seb's Open Research
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25 février, 2003
Vivisimo search engine

This search engine not only indexes, but also clusters the World Wide Web's documents. Interestingly, the cluster names do generally seem meaningful; their contents a little less so. Here are the results for "personal knowledge publishing", "semantic blogging ", and "sébastien paquet". I especially like the fact that (as I write this) the last displayed cluster for the PKP search is "love"...
What do you think? []  links to this post    11:16:05 PM  
The challenge of getting people to author metadata

Here's a presentation on "The Economy of Distributed Metadata Authoring" by  Stefano Mazzocchi . A few passages ring especially true to me.

First Law of Metadata Quality:

  • Artificial intelligence is just that: artificial!
  • So: for a system that feels smart to humans, you need human-crafted metadata


  • Do all efforts to make instant return on the investment of metadata authoring
  • Don't ask too much
  • Be smart but not smarter

Some of the same wisdom went into the design of the Internet Topic Exchange.

What do you think? []  links to this post    11:15:15 PM  
Exploiting symmetry in nature

Storm A. King: Watermelon: How to remove all the seeds
What do you think? []  links to this post    10:51:48 PM  

Fellow research blogger Eszter Hargittai has an interesting bibliography on social networks.
What do you think? []  links to this post    10:49:13 PM  
Leadership and readership

Joi Ito asks what is in my mind an essential question for virtually all fields of human activity: Can we control our lust for power?.

[...] We have lusts of many kinds, can't we try to condition ourselves away from the lust for power? Hollywood movies tend to reinforce the lust for power. Maybe it starts by changing the role models in society?

What is this leadership thing anyway? Dee Hock has a great piece about how leaders should focus on managing their superiors first and peers next and that the followers are the ones who manage the leaders. Emergent leadership is not about control or taking power, it is about ethics, integrity and holding together so that you are empowered by others. A system that promotes leaders quickly as necessary and destroys leaders who retain power for power's sake is what I want.

However, whether we promote good leaders or bad leaders depends on the people. The people will get the leaders that they deserve in such a system and the burden will be on them. (Which, I think is how a democracy is supposed to work.)

[via Channel 'emergent_democracy']

Dee Hock is a visionary man who founded Visa International and has thought a lot about chaordic organizations. The piece linked to above is really great and at one point reminded me of blogging dynamics. Here, read this:

A compelling question is how to ensure that those who lead are constructive, ethical, open, and honest. The answer is to follow those who will behave in that manner. It comes down to both the individual and collective sense of where and how people choose to be led. In a very real sense, followers lead by choosing where to be led.

In blogspace, "choosing where to be led" means pretty much "choosing who to read". In a world where most bloggers' links can't be bought or controlled, I believe that indeed true leaders will emerge.

Now, how true is it that links can't be bought or controlled? And should we expect changes in that state of affairs as the blogosphere inflates?

What do you think? []  links to this post    10:20:26 PM  
The semantic web explained (without the agonizing pain)

A very neat, painless introduction to the Semantic Web (pdf), from Toronto-based Semaview. [Co-construction des savoirs à IDITAE via Michel Dumais via Gilles Beauchamp]

From the same source, check out these one-minute overview charts: The Semantic Web, RDF vs. XML.

And while we're at it: there's a new Journal on Web Semantics.

What do you think? []  links to this post    10:17:09 PM  
Thought contagion in weblogs

This is a nice little story illustrating various mechanisms by which ideas rapidly spread from one blogger to the next. The critical human decision element is a little downplayed, though.

Ivan's adventures in weblog space. A story about how Ivan, a meme, is created by Alice and makes his way through weblog space. I wrote this little story to try to illustrate how microcontent cruises through blogs. I try to include all of the applications and services that I use regularly when I blog. [Joi Ito's Web]

What do you think? []  links to this post    10:07:03 PM  
What could Google do with Blogger?

Alf EatonSome things I'd do if I owned a major search engine and had recently acquired a major blogging system. [HubLog]
What do you think? []  links to this post    9:56:12 PM  
Is standardization good or evil?

My short answer: it depends. Good insights on the topic in this article by George Siemens.

A Dialogue: Sharing, Trust. I've posted an article on elearnspace: A Dialogue: Sharing, Trust, Collaboration. The article summarizes discussion with a colleague, Guy Dugas... [elearnspace blog]

What do you think? []  links to this post    9:41:18 PM  
Wow. A festival about knowledge management.

I just *knew* it was going to be hipper than hip when I got into this whole KM business!

deaf03: data knitting (from wunderkammer to metadata). Dutch Electronic Art Festival (DEAF) is a biennial international and interdisciplinary festival organized by V2_Organisation, Institute for the Unstable Media. Deaf 03 explore the artistic and strategic potential of databases, knowledge management and archives in very diverse forms. [context weblog]

One of the events, "Can You See Me Now?", is actually a real-life version of an old favorite game of mine. Intriguing.

In the board game "Scotland Yard" six players move their pawns over a map of London, chasing Mister X together. The players are allowed to confer, for if X gets caught, they all win. With the project "Can You See Me Now?" the artists' group Blast Theory introduces a modern variation of the game, which takes place live in the streets of Rotterdam. The game incorporates the latest communication technologies and is played simultaneously on line and in the streets. For a period of five days players, while sitting at their computers, can be chased by living pawns at the Kop van Zuid: the members of Blast Theory.

What do you think? []  links to this post    9:35:00 PM  
David Brake: Some critical thoughts about 'Emergent Democracy'

This is a cogent analysis of Joi's recent piece on emergent democracy. David is right to point out that the paper leaves out a discussion of the "significant technical and cultural barriers to be bridged before this could become a reality". Indeed the tools must get better, easier, and more noticeable before the promise of emergent democracy can be realized. David's critique ends as follows:

"In short, I want to remind the authors that there is no necessary connection between the theoretical capabilities of the Internet and the mass adoption of those capabilities by a broad public.

That's not to say that it's not worth pushing towards the goal of greater Internet-mediated political inclusion. I'm all for that. I feel, however, that the market (or the open source community) are unlikely (for different reasons) to provide the kind of tools needed and that governments and NGOs need to get behind them. But that's the subject of another discussion!"

[via Channel 'emergent_democracy']

What do you think? []  links to this post    9:06:40 PM  

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