08 November 2009

Summary of this week 1 Nov - 8 Nov

From my Diigo Bookmark this week. Please also feel free to follow me on twitter at http://twitter.com/Web_Evolution!  

[Open Source]

Michel Bauwens's presentation at eComm 2008


The Politics of Peer Production


Essays 2 - P2P Foundation

"Continued listing of key Essays on P2P-related topics."



P2P Foundation » Blog Archive » Open City New York: an update by Matt Cooperrider 

"The Open Planning Project (TOPP), one of the organizations mentioned in Ms. Chen’s article, has been a major driver of the open data movement. They have produced useful one-off applications, such as FixCity.org, which crowdsources potential locations for new bike racks thus speeding their installation. They have also acted as stewards of open standards in the Geographic Information Systems (GIS) community and, more recently, the Open 311 community. Mayor Bloomberg pioneered the 311 non-emergency telephone-based citizen information service, but has been slow to open up the data for mashups by eager civic hackers. Washington D.C. was the first to move on this, and TOPP is now stewarding the effort at Open311.org to create a standard for all Open311 APIs in any city."
"Another telling example can be found in Ms. Chen’s article. Tom Lowenhaupt has been fighting for almost ten years to bring the .nyc top-level domain to New York City. His vision has been to use the revenue generated from this civic resource to provide digital literacy and civic education through neighborhood-oriented online community spaces. In that time, Tom has built a knowledge base (within a TOPP wiki) that has become a common reference point for City TLD initiatives globally. It contains a wide range of information, including arguments for why a TLD needs to be as carefully planned as city streets, and the potential civic benefits that can accrue through such planning. Tom has worked with parallel initiatives in global cities such as Paris and Barcelona to develop international standards for City TLDs, ensuring that non-English speakers can easily access the city’s resources."


DATA.nsw.gov.au | NSW Government 

"NSW is on the brink of an information revolution

A new attitude towards open government information is shifting the way we think about the information assets of our state.

Making public sector information available not only strengthens democracy by increasing accountability and transparency of government, it stimulates innovation and leads to economic benefits."


The NSW data catalogue provides a single point of access for public sector information which includes publications, spatial information, raw data, audio visual files and web services from agencies across the state.

If you have any comments or questions we would love to hear them, please get in touch."


eGov AU: NSW government launches data.nsw.gov.au with over 400 datasets

"The NSW government has released a catalogue of over 400 datasets at data.nsw.gov.au, making it probably the second largest government data catalogue in the world (after data.gov in the US)."

Online Community Engagement: Promising Practices in Online Engagement

"Another day another resource! This publication by the US based Public Agenda's Centre for Advancement in Public Engagement includes a bunch of pretty well known case studies from around the world. "

Critiquing Matthew Hindman's "The Myth of Digital Democracy" | Personal Democracy Forum

"Hindman is the author of "The Myth of Digital Democracy," which argues that a) the internet is just reinforcing elite voices in politics rather than opening the process to more diverse voices, b) that we live in a "Googlearchy" ruled by search engines that concentrate attention on just a handful of "winner-take-all" sites, and c) that the idea that the internet is empowering more ordinary people to be active participants in the process is basically a myth. You can read shorter versions of his argument in his recentinterview with NPR's On the Media, or this article he wrote for the Berkman "Publius" Project last year. Or read his book. It's well-written and provocative, even if it's basically wrong."
"To conclude, let me just suggest that it is dangerous to make conclusive statements about such a young and dynamic space. Four years ago, YouTube was just starting. Two years ago Twitter was just starting. Now something like 30 million people now have iPhones, and by 2012 the number of Americans with some kind of smartphone will probably be double or triple that. We are just beginning to scratch the surface of what happens when you combine real-time web access with location services with tools that you can carry anywhere in your pocket. While Hindman is right to warn us about how information and attention may be concentrated online, I'd much rather see the glass as half full rather than half empty, and most important, a trend that is moving in the direction of greater meaningful participation in the process for more people."

Omidyar Network puts $2.4 million into government transparency abroad | VentureBeat

"“We wanted to fill an information gap in the field of good governance,” said  Nathaniel Heller, a co-founder and managing director. ” These reforms matter and they empower businesses in the developed world. But the data has been — to put it imprecisely — pretty squishy and crummy.”"
"“We’re very interested in the global use of technology to disseminate information about government transparency, so citizens can hold their governments accountable,” said  Stacy Donohue, who is the director of investments at Omidyar Network. “We’re particularly interested in organizations that use scalable technology platforms.”"


Open Source Progress in Malaysia | Open Source Initiative 

"More than 70 percent of Malaysian government offices are running open source software, according to figures released by the country's Open Source Competency Centre."

"The centre was established as part of the 2004 Malaysian Public Sector OSS Master Plan, to guide and co-ordinate the implementation of OSS in the public sector."

"The latest OSS adoption figures, released on 24 July, show that 521 of the country's 724 public sector agencies (72 per cent) have adopted OSS. This is a significant increase from 354 agencies (49 percent) in 2008 and 163 (22.5 per cent) in 2007."


Travel Diary: Secretary Clinton Encourages Use of New Media Communications in Pakistan | U.S. Department of State Blog

"But what really was amazing is that she did this while also bringing a new technology and communication forum to this country of 170 million people. At Government College in Lahore, she announced support from the United States for the first free Pakistani mobile phone-based social network, known as Humari Awaz (“Our Voice”). She declared that the United States would fund the first 24 million text messages for people to communicate directly with one another in what she noted is “a service you can use on your cell phone to distribute news stories, to invite people to an event, to share your thoughts and opinions, to report problems that you see, to call for actions to solve those problems.” With more than 95.5 million mobile phone users, many of whom are youngsters, the mobile platform have enabled immense opportunity for wide range of community strengthening and social uplift applications like the one that was launched today."




Visible Banking: 43 Social Media Initiatives Launched by Financial Institutions in November (Twitter, YouTube, Blogs)

"A few months ago, I started to give more visiblity to the financial institutions which engage on Twitter, YouTube and blogs. From now on, in addition to my twitter updates I plan to publish a monthly list of anniversaries on Visible-Banking.com."
"Visible Banking Social Media Watch Series: Tracking over 1,300 initiatives in 40+ countries
To find out more about social media in finance, I invite you to follow me on twitter, and check my four social media watch series:
* Visible Banking Twitter Watch - 800+ accounts / 40+ countries
* Visible Banking Facebook Watch - 250+ pages / 35+ countries
* Visible Banking Blog Watch - 135+ blogs / 15+ countries
Visible Banking YouTube Watch - 165+ channels / 20+ countries"


PayPal X Developer Network: Jive SBS: PayPal X Developer Network

"Launched officially this week at PayPal’s first developer conference in San Francisco, the Adaptive Payments API allows developers to build applications that enable payments from PayPal account holders to anyone with a web presence, be it a mainstream retailer or someone with a widget running on their Facebook page to collect donations."

At the launch, PayPal president Scott Thompson made an important acknowledgement: “The whole world is going digital, and the future of how we communicate, how we get information, and even how we transact, is in the hands of developers”.
" But what if you could tap the collective wisdom of freelance developers that wish to remain independent? PayPal is banking on this strategy, today announcing plans for an inaugural Australian developer program, kicking off in January 2010."
"PayPal says the competition will challenge the Australian developer community to create the most innovative payment application using Adaptive Payments. It says the winner will receive a “substantial cash prize” to help them commercialise their application."

PayPal Seeks New Ways to Use Its Payment System - Bits Blog - NYTimes.com

"On Tuesday, PayPal held its first developer conference in San Francisco to officially open its platform to software developers wanting to include payments in their Web or cellphone applications."
"Osama Bedier, the vice president for platform at PayPal, predicted that cash would soon be the payment of choice for only “tooth fairies, drug dealers and senators paying their household staff.”"
"The conference was a big deal for PayPal. EBay’s payments business is driving the company’s growth, and John Donahoe, eBay’s chief executive, reiterated that PayPal would soon be a bigger business than eBay’s marketplaces. To get the crowd as excited as PayPal’s executives were, there were free netbooks for all registered attendees, white-clad violinists to serenade people upon entry and roaming candy carts."
"Mark Glasberg is using PayPal for his start-up, iCents.net, which will offer online publishers a way to charge viewers. “Before today, there wasn’t a way to do this because it would disrupt the user experience if we were always asking you to go to PayPal and type in all your information,” he said."
"Using the new technology, developers can now also let buyers send money to multiple people with one payment. This could be useful on sites like eBay and Etsy, where a shopper might make purchases from several people at once, or for a company using PayPal for payroll. A start-up called Payvment is using PayPal to let shoppers move from one virtual store to the next, add items to their carts at each stop and check out once."


Android’s Impact on eBooks, Reading « Kindle Review – Kindle 2 Review, Books 

    "Why are so many companies taking up Android?
    1. It’s free.
    2. Phone and Netbook Manufacturers can customize it as they like.
    3. It brings the promise of Apps.
    4. It brings the promise of Openness.
    5. Companies are desperate to do anything/something to counter Windows.
    6. Companies are desperate to do something/anything to counter the iPhone.
    7. Windows Mobile has really messed up.
    8. iPhone OS isn’t available to anyone else. "               
    "Which brings us to the possibilities for reading apps -
    Every ebook store can add their own ebook app.
    It’s open so neither the carrier nor Google can block apps (in theory).
    Google does take 30% of revenue on paid apps (like Apple does). However, it’s less than what authors/publishers would pay retailers etc."


    It's a phone! It's a browser! It's a wallet? - Fortune Brainstorm Tech

    "Now, one startup in the nascent world of mobile payments has moved to lower the barrier for merchants to offer mobile payments. Last week, Palo Alto, Calif.-based Zong announced that users would be able to link their mobile number to a credit card, instead of paying through their mobile carrier."
    "Zong claims to have processed payments for more than 10 million unique users in 2009 in virtual worlds like Gaia and IMVU and in games that are played on social networks like MySpace and Facebook. It also boasts the ability to convert shoppers to buyers at rates up to 10 times greater than traditional methods like credit cards.
    “By reducing the cost of transaction we can address an additional 10 billion transactions,” says Zong CEO David Marcus. “For a typical merchant, even if only 15% of customers become Zong Plus users, then that merchant will double their pay out rate.”"
    "With its new offering, Zong may jump ahead of its startup competitors, like Obopay and Boku. The company already has a strong foundation that includes direct relationships with 107 carriers in 25 countries, and partnerships with the major card networks. (Obopay also recently began offering the ability to link your mobile number and credit card but its focus has been on mobile phone person-to-person transfers of funds.)"
    "The bigger question for Zong is whether it stands a chance against payment and ecommerce giants like eBay’s Paypal and Amazon.  At Fortune’s Brainstorm Tech conference this summer, eBay (EBAY) CEO John Donahoe made Paypal's strategy clear: “Payments is a winner-take-all business.”
    “We’re opening up the platform for all types of innovation and we expect it will happen on a number of devices and that includes mobile,” says PayPal President Scott Thompson."


    Phone Smart - What Your Phone Might Do for You Two Years From Now - NYTimes.com



    Top News - Yale researchers examine online accreditation

    "Online learning is a relatively new thing for lawmakers, so all countries don't know how to deal with it yet," said Shai Reshef, founder and president of the University of the People, which has 179 students enrolled in its two fields so far: computer science and business administration. "We want to … determine the barriers that we need to overcome to operate." Accreditation for online schools, Reshef added, "is a big issue right now."
    "Jack Balkin, director of Yale's ISP, said law school officials partnered with University of the People because both institutions have a foundational understanding that "affordable education is a crucial ingredient for human development and human freedom.""

    "Harnessing new technologies to deliver low-cost education to people around the world is a daring venture," Balkin added. "It is also the kind of experiment that everyone should want to succeed."
    "University of the People has seen an international, although somewhat mild, response to its tuition-free online programs, which are designed by educators and taught by about 800 volunteer professors--about half of whom are American."


    State of the Internet Operating System


    Swedish government promises superfast broadband to all

    "Sweden] The Swedish government is following in the footsteps of the Finns (well almost), as their IT-ministry is now promising that 90 percent of all Swedish homes will have access to a 100 mbit/s broadband connection before 2020.
    The Swedish government is therefore launching a new broadbrand strategy, according to which there needs to be a set minimum level of broadband speed."


    David D. Burstein: The Case for the Internet: A Human Right

    "In a little noticed story, late last month, Finland declared internet access to be a legal right for all its citizens, and come this July, the Finish government will be ensuring everyone in the country has at least a 1 megabit internet connection (and by 2015 the legal right will be to a 100 megabit connection). In addition, France made headlines in June by declaring internet access to be a human right. (Incidentally France also declared that all 18 year olds will get a one year free newspaper subscription for their 18th birthday), although they have yet to figure out how to enforce this. These two examples raise quite an interesting question, is the internet a fundamental human right? I'm going to boldly stand with the Finns on this one and say yes."
    "I might get some angry emails for this, and while today it might be difficult to make the case that internet access is as much of a basic right as food or shelter, in five or ten years, I believe there will be basic agreement on this. Those of us who have internet access now, don't know how we would live without it. Everything we do and everything we want to do is somehow linked to our computer and our internet connection. It's not a joke to say that those who have internet connections now need them to continue surviving. It's how we communicate with our relatives and friends, it's how we find phone numbers and addresses, it's how we get our basic goods and services, it's how most of us work and keep our jobs, and by extension provide for our families, and it's how many people find jobs. Many of us have jobs that would be impossible to maintain without the internet, without the ability to do research or send emails we would be fired in a day."


    The Complete Guide to Google Wave: How to Use Google Wave

    "The authors of this guide have published technology how-to books this way.[2][3] This time, we're trying a different approach."
    "Instead of a locked-in, static text doomed to an early death, this book is a living thing that will grow and change in parallel with its subject, in public on the web."
    "You always have access to the latest and greatest version of this guide's contents in its entirety at completewaveguide.com. In addition to the web site, this guide will be available as a DRM-free PDF (forthcoming) and an independently published softcover print book (coming early 2010). We'll continuously update the pages on the web site as we become aware of corrections and additions to its contents."
    "Because Wave is still very early in its development and adoption, we've committed to four editions of this book that will become available as Wave grows throughout 2010."


    Official Google Blog: Introducing Google Commerce Search: Finding holiday gifts faster

    "The holiday season is right around the corner, so online retailers are gearing up for spikes in traffic. When people go to shop online, search is big part of finding the right product, whether they're looking for a gift or just something for themselves. Today we're aiming to make e-commerce searching as easy as using Google.com with a new enterprise product, Google Commerce Search."
    "Google Commerce Search is hosted in the cloud, meaning it lives online, so e-commerce sites can get up and running quickly. Using a cloud search tool will also help site owners meet the rise in demand from the holiday rush without having to devote extra time or resources to worrying about their capacity or infrastructure. Online retailers are free to focus on their business, while Google focuses on search, and shoppers can find what they need faster."

    Is Enterprise 2.0 A Crock? - ReadWriteEnterprise

    Business Process Optimization

    "More people do not come into the office for work. The virtual office is such a reality that collaboration tools become increasingly important. This is evident with the announcements such as the one from Second Life today about their enterprise offering and similar products from companies like Proton Media.
    But still, for Murray of Booze Hamilton, said It comes down to baby steps. The reality, though, is it would never have seemed likely in 2006 that there would be applications plugging into Sharepoint."

    Intellectual Property/Privacy

    "Data security always elicits fear. It's no different than how security is viewed in any context. Trust is always the big issue but it is also about keeping some form of control. At Eli Lilly, employees, a lot of them who are scientists, are chomping to use more collaborative tools.
    Williams, Eli Lilly: The challenge is mitigating risk. "We have to find a way to herd the cats without putting data at risk.""

    Religious Wars (technology/generational bias)

    "With any movement, revolutionaries have the tendency to make those in power feel a bit uncomfortable. It is no different with enterprise technologies.
    Galinsky of MetLife said that the issue is often about provincial differences. One group may prefer Microsoft while another group is into IBM, while a third may do whatever pleases them. The reality is it just takes time."

    Bottom Line Business Benefits

    "The reality: Enterprise 2.0 technologies are early in the adoption phase but the soft cost savings are mounting. Microblogging is helping people find information faster and people are questioning the viability of email.
    For example, Murray said they did a study of the costs to "reply all," to email. The end savings added up. "It is a toe in the door, an indicator. If I can save that much, what about the big stuff?"
    What's striking about asking questions about all of this is the absence of discussions about the monumental waste in IT spending over the years. Hundreds of billions of dollars have been lost to IT projects that have gone hay wire. The new world of enterprise 2.0 technologies are lightweight in comparison and a fraction of the cost.
    But the answer is readily apparent. The culture takes time to shift. That shift will occur but it's not going to happen overnight."


    Twitter / Tim O'Reilly: The Unreasonable Effective ...

    "The Unreasonable Effectiveness of Data :: IEEE Intelligent Systems (March/April 2009) PDF: http://bit.ly/3gcm4J How Google works its magic."


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