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Meta ideas, Memes, and Mind morphing...



How blogging was born

via @davewiner



I believe it’s true not as two people conversation but reflections within one blogger’s mind in micro-level. We have many meta ideas in mind deciding whether we share, the thinking process itself is valuable if we try to understand ourselves and find the magic co-incidence from others.

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Micropipeline as unblockable infrastructure

As more and more people are now on various social applications(over 10 types of such Social Software), Micro-pipeline is also emerging to show how information can flow over different kinds of social application from people to people in a more efficient way than traditional media.  We can predict that "Micropipeline" as a new concept will be studied more in the coming years to see how this infrastructure can be applied to form a larger scale of social fabric to make the world more flat and equalized.

For different kinds of social application, we can now link them easily by importing/exporting their RSS/Atom feeds. In this way, they can be connected like a pipeline system(Do you still remember the classic fun game "Pipeline"?).  Meme with XML format can flow over different pipes to reach different users eventually . There are different kinds of pipeline building blocks in the system including pipes, Tee joints("T"), and elbow joints, etc. Since there are more and more such type of components can be chosen by users, the system becomes more complex than a traditional one-to-many system(like the urban waterworks). The many-to-many relationship between those building blocks can generate non-linear chain effect that maybe possible to amplify little voices into big bang. It's the new type of media, "Social Media".


I'm making an illustration on "Social Media" big picture  by putting some typical "Micropipeline" applications on one map to show how information could flow from one person to mass population by routing those pipelines and possibly generate impact. Of course, the value of the original meme should be recognized along the path.  Traditional media like "Reuters" is no more than a super node on such a big map. The picture is not finished yet, but I would love to share some draft works to get your comments to improve it.

Someday in near future, I think the connection between different pipeline application won't be just limited to RSS. They can eventually "talk" to each other in more flexible and semantic way.  Some new kinds of authentication methodologies like OpenID could be applied in such scenario to ensure that information are authentic enough. And I'm sure XML-based Microformats will play key roles in future picture.

Micropipeline will be more important to some totalitarian countries like China to confront it's censorship system("Great Firewall", or GFW in short). Those seems-redundant building blocks(like Google Reader v.s. Bloglines) just more helpful to build fault tolerant media pipelines to serve people in such countries.  E.g. It's found that were blocked two weeks ago by GFW in China:

As feared, we've been blocked in China again.

Soup user kunshou has posted some new suggestions on how to circumvent the block (in Chinese). Should these fail, Tor remains your best bet.

This is an unsatisfactory state of affairs for our Chinese users – but as much as we'd like to, we can't just keep changing our IP address every day.Sorry! :(   ---[via  Censorship evades Soup, has stronger kung-fu]

Bloggers got very angry(Chinese) on such blockage with curses all the time. But they are now becoming smarter to build more complex personal pipelines to avoid of single point failure.  They switched to as the alternative solution to burn their social feeds as life stream.  And their subscribers can response as well to keep their information pipes flowing at normal level.  The same trick applys to Yahoo Pipes! when people found Feedburner was blocked in China half year ago.  If it's a mouse and cat game, the mouse seems faster and smarter now.

For the draft illustration shown above. I'm actually using Zooomr as the picture link here instead of Flickr since the later one has been blocked in China as well. However, I believe they can't block every picture sharing site around the world to kill themsevlves. So I think it's a great hack that we Chinese can survive in such a Social Media age.  We can even change the country in a longer extent for sure.

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What's the social media means to professional journalism?

During the talk over "Social Media" as Luncheon Addresss(Slide) at the conference of "Changing Dynamics in the Asia Pacific: Power Politics, Economic Might, Media Challenges", I also presented the situation of the "lonely family" of Hu Jia.

There were bloggers tried to send powder milk the small girl last week, however, it's still impossible to break the cordon to enter and conduct. They didn't give up though. More tools will be expected to be used to make things smarter. You can find Hujia's house in a vivid way from Google Maps(same using Google Earth). More bloggers are called to join the action to update the map time by time. And furtherly the leaks can be found anyway to save the baby.

I hope the audience really understand Sharism in such a context because it's really relevant to each of us. And most importantly, I've got a lot information from the local bloggers meetup last night and some insights from other speakers in different panels.

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10 Emergences May Lead Us to An Intelligent Future

Just finished my talking at Ci'Num conference, a event with very Frech context trying to predict the future of "our" society and response to the possible changes. The talk is very condensed due to time limitation. But I have shared my slide online for audience's future check-back.

What I want to share in the conference is telling people that the world is changing with many sutble and micro signals. We may feel them everyday, but we can't grasp them or control them in anyways. And if you are not experiencing those blogging, web 2.0 servies, you won't be able to feel those nano-sized changes happened everyday.

We can see more and more Chinese people started to involve in the emergence of "The World Think Together". Just a recent case as instance, there are already thousands of people gatherred on Facebook to support Burma people. And many Chinese people in this social networking service has been impacted. The interesting thing is that most of them are bloggers and I can predict that they will transfer the message to their audiences as relaying. That's the another emergence I talked "Social Media".

The format of the conference is good. They also invited some International people like me to join and try to expand the border and understanding. The problem is how can such a short period can really understand the complex world.

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Sharism is not Communism, nor Socialism

In my talks on PICNIC'07 about Sharism, some people commented that it is actually the new bottle of old theory of Communism. I think he may not really understand the real meaning of Sharism though I myself also carefully introduce the new term. And it's a concept to be evolved by itself.

Sharism(分享主义 in Chinese) is about sharing, for sure. It means a tendency of sharing your works(everything) to be used by your social network(or public domain), but still keep your right and property based on your consensus. It's really not strange concept especiall after blogging and web 2.0 stuffsemerged for years. As well those new copyright movements, like Creative Commons. You can practise sharism anytime by communicating with others, writing blogs, posting photos, or organizing an offline meetup to generate some group discussions, etc. And step by step, you can feel the change course that you are becoming more open-minded.

An avoidable question raised along sharism. What's the incentive to people if they would like to share? The answer if very simple. You share one piece, you can get times of return. The current social norm may always suggest people that be careful of sharing, otherwise you will lose control of your own stuff, or maybe very dangrous to love prvicy? Is it true? Let me use a metaphor to tell you that actually sharing is in a new space that won't hurt your privcy, instead it shows new possibilities and upside to everyone.

As the figure shows above. There are a big gap between privacy and publicity today that many people may not realize. So actually, the knowledge spectrum could be broken to most of us. The gap,however, has big potential to become a valuable space for social creation and sharing. Many people, however, still have no idea how to bridging the gap because they are over-concerned about privacy. It's not strange because there are still many abuse on Internet that people can't afford to fight with those bad behaviors with individual power. However, it's also a paradox. The less you share, the less power you have. And the more you share, the possible you get social support and become seems-virtually but truely powerful. You can start from small practise, e.g. from a personal blog, harvest small. Then decide how to invest more to get larger return. The gap will transform into a social space belongs to yourself can eventually can help you to maximize your social capital.

Sharism is human nature long timeline of life. It should be accumulated everyday, instead of looking forward any favors from others. And it can be practised anytime anywhere without insulting others right. So its not a big untouchable utopoia like Communism, nor absued political hype of Socialism. It's actually very personalized mindset and practical spirit. Those really experienced blogging, web 2.0 and creative commons, can easily understand what's the real meaning of sharism. Even those people with suspicious and concerns to sharism can find the value of sharism if they try to publish their opinions online, try it! :)

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