Interesting elsewhere – 10 December 2010

Things which caught my eye elsewhere on the web

  • Caterpillar, cynic, evangelist or diva? « Clear message No-one seems to deny digital these days, but many pretend to acknowledge it, whilst harbouring deep seated pessimism and clinging to the notion that the web is an add-on to what we do, rather than integral. Not to be ignored, but far harder to catch than caterpillars. Send them your ideas and offers of support. The email may be printed out before it is read, but you have to try.
  • WHAT’S THE RETURN? | Engine There’s no doubt that return paths are about to change forever. And something we can all look forward to is a world where searching for information is more sensory, more immersive and more creative than ever before.
  • Faster Future: Publishing possibilities now and beyond: Revolution requires Government thinking that understands the web It’s time we adjusted our thinking away from driving people online to deliver services more cheaply and instead use the advantages of online to develop new models in keeping with the network. Ones that make better services with less waste and deliver new services with those who need them. And everyone can join in that revolution.
  • Newspapers are dead as mutton -HG Wells, 1943 (No, they’re not) – Boing Boing The experiment that we are presently conducting as a society is aimed at discovering what kind of information and transactions are really and truly “newspaper material” and not material that we stuffed into the margins of a newspaper because we needed it and newspapers were the only game in town. It may be that there’s nothing left when we’re done, that there’s a better way of delivering every word and every picture in the newspaper than to print it … in which case, newspapers may die, or they may end up being the territory of newspaper re-enactors, the equivalent of hobbyists who… re-enact the Battle of 1066.Or it may be that newspapers do have a small and important and moving clutch of information and stories and images that really, really are better on paper. Maybe the audience for that will be too small and specialized to support a large business, and maybe the audience will club together and treat newspaper like a charity, the way that opera … functions today.
  • Webmaster blog » Guess what? Digital tools are not a panacea for inefficient public services Digital innovation in the public realm requires all sorts of other skills, and links across lots of policy areas. In order to for the impending upheaval of public service delivery to have any positive impact, in my opinion, the decision-makers in that process need to be careful not to become blinded by the promises of well-meaning but often excitable digital enthusiasts.
  • Enough of the stupid – honestlyreal We can mitigate the fragility of systems either by reducing our use of them to a safer threshold within their maximum capacity, by increasing that capacity, or by providing extra resilience. Unfortunately we’re not very good at this.