Global Challenges Collaboration
One interesting thing would be to ask new people to dump THEIR list of own relevant material, so we learn about it, might eventually be able to add it to our lists, get to know them, find alignments or differences to respond to them, make them feel welcome.
Maybe we could alternatively try out to collaborate on collaborative writing, to write an overview/introduction for the purpose of keeping it up to date (how would we ensure that, every time of onboarding checking if something is obsolete, regularly scheduled review?), or video-clipping such a thing, so it can immediately be made available to whomever considers joining? Just some suggestions. What would a new person (want and actually) get out of the process and what would we feel important to fit in there (with or without conflict between the two), do we have different approaches prepared based on who the new people are and where they come from (technical side vs. human system thinkers, as one example)?
Best way to invite people, that implies that we find potentially interested people first or we spread the message very wide regardless of an target audience in mind. If we get some leads (?), follow ups established because of that, we might want offer a way for people to indicate their interest, and it could be a mailing list, but almost shouldn't (not in the traditional sense), but entering them as passively associated/observing (until they become active), offering them some intro as well as the option to look at what the most recent developments are, hinting that the older history is also available, and then have them exploring what topics they want to follow and what they want to offer. Low-frequency signals to not overwhelm them, with as least friction as possible (maybe navigatable by demand, enriching their own profile/identity in the process). Very, very vague, I know, if at all supported by software somehow, and not my most immediate concern, but what if you would see each participant with his core statements and then the whole feed attached, but also letting people choose if they want to enter the space via the people metric, topic metric (if we can do that reasonably well), and then dispatching to group activities, to a 1on1, CCC, action items, invitation to relevant discussions, whatever else mechanisms will be in pace to direct the new person towards what they want to engage with?
@bridgetime - I think the frustration you express is common to co-creative efforts and is really one of the biggest challenges in bridging the gap between the existing paradigm and the one we all hope to manifest. The reality is that many people have many obligations and most are trying to bridge this new way of being with the reality of needing to make money and get things done in other pursuits - so their attention is divided. Co-creativity is exciting because it offers the potential for new ways of collectively getting things done. But the flip side is that we have to actually figure out how to get things done collectively, with decentralized leadership. I've been working on a pretty extensive write up about this very challenge ( I am not sure exactly which range of things GCC is looking at accomplishing. If there is a bullet list or agenda of some sort, then I would suggest taking the highlights and turning them into discussion groups on Sutra where some action items might be distilled. If no such agenda exists, then a discussion group can be created for that very purpose and as specific areas of exploration emerge, those can spawn new discussions. I would say the most important thing to recognize is that it isn't necessarily about moving forward on action items at this point in time. I'd say it's more about figuring out how a co-creative process can work in real world practice with a group of well intentioned people such as the GCC. The biggest problem we're solving is actually the one that you're frustrated about.
Glenn, I believe it is possible to make ourselves ill by clinging on to the idea of how we want things to be, rather than how they are. What you say sounds reasonable, and even valid and it might seem you are putting forward a way for improving things. But the feeling I am getting is one of anxiety, about loss, and time wasted etc. I'm wondering if you can just stay with what you are feeling at the moment, stay with yourself, give yourself the tender loving care you are craving. This is not easy to communicate over the Internet but I'm guessing it is the need you expressed in the last line just now, the human friendly, intuitive, simple, relationship to be yourself.
@atvpn I'm not sure if I understand correctly, are you saying that you considered handing out the team mates an e-book, PDF or web page, but instead gave or want to give them a business card with a QR code on it that will link them to an e-book, PDF or web page? Is it about being able to hand something physical/material?
As an outside observer, I don't know much about the origins (Global Challenges Prize 2017?) and how that developed into other goals or if the challenge application was only a limited side project in an otherwise much broader movement, but it looks like the GCC is an experimential space that acknowledges that our urgent, complex world problems are so big, complex, interrelated and therefore inscrutable that it is unlikely that the participants of the group themselves and all of humanity by extension can solve any of it, that it isn't much effective to try to cure symptoms, not even with maximum efficiency. The question is if there can be something that addresses the root causes and how that would look like, if that can be found/discovered/designed/constructed. Is it ways to change the minds of the larger population, is it new/other ways to think about things as a theoretical framework/model (and therefore a "tool"/methodology), is it scaling collaborative activities, or something else? To me, it looks like a more systemic/cybernetic approach to complex problem solving, where the practice is not necessarily at first to do changes to a system, not even to analyze the problem/system, but to find out how a system/problem could be approached, looking at many involved meta-levels holisticly. The meta-levels include questions such as: is there a problem, if so, does it need fixing, how would one communicate, different ways to look at the system or problem, how would people organize work related to the study and problem solving attempts, how would people decide or agree what and how to do things and is there even the need for decisions/agreements, is the GCC a "group" or not, is there an inside/outside, and does a systemic/cybernetical approach make any sense at all, etc. So developing the theory seems to be the main occupation for now, including the question if there should be a theory developed, if it is a unified one, if there can be, what it would mean, the process or the result, if there can be one, and every other fundamental question for everything. Does it make progress, what is progress, is there a need for making progress, and then: for whom in what way? It's probably a (self-)study group for which it doesn't make too much sense to prematurely define a narrow end goal, it could be called a practical Collaborology exploration/study/study-bed, but then surely people will claim that it is or should be something else, and then we again experience first-hand effects that are no surprise for those familiar with complexity and complex systems, be it on the planetary level or from computers and networking, or finance/economy, or politics, or whatever else. All of these instances we encounter can be interpreted as systems, everything is a structure, the methods to analyze and deal with them are universal. It could be a temporary first purpose/goal to watch this space to see what evolves, to learn from it.
OK, guys, I've now heard several things that made me increasingly suspicious about your seriousness in regard of an Engelbartian approach or complex, urgent world problems despite those themes continue to be invoked, I understand that you're people of the telephone and not participating in Zoom or on Facebook translates to lack of interest/seriousness on my side, and while @samhahn + @bridgetime might be too busy or have their reasons to not approve my comments on YouTube, I decided to "donate" those comments out of practical considerations at least for and where you face the same issue, that an admin needs to approve those comments, and because I verified that stupid Google/YouTube doesn't publish more than 3 comments of the same author under a video, I might go and publish my YouTube comments independently, but potentially only for recordings uploaded by @tammyleameyer as they're published under Creative Commons BY 3.0 (if participants of the calls don't agree with this licensing, that's your/Tammy's problem, and if that source material is pulled from with-under my references, then I would consider those comments too as "donated"/wasted as they're not too many). This weekend is a long one again for me, so I might have some time available to do something, while there's also other stuff to work on, but I wonder if you guys have an idea this time what could be worthwile in terms of curation, at least hesitantly for Tammy's uploads.
@bridgetime - i don't think too many people in the GCC know about this forum. how can we open the doors a little more?
Hi all of you, I have also been reading here and enjoying this. I would love to be able to do what you described @lorenz to annotate as I was reading and be able to look at what emerged from mine and others annotations/tags
I don't want, have need for or have time to read a bunch of blogs. A discussion thread endeavoring to surface and then distill understanding around a specific question is about all I can manage, or maybe it's interested in managing.
@skreutzer - I'm a software developer :-) and I built this software (sutra)
@skreutzer great :-)
Hello Sutra thread :) If we could have one place as a main repository of the core articles, that would be very helpful, just to have one place to find it all. The GCC webpage and wordpress blog...Basecamp...maybe even Sutra? They seem like good candidates. Lets say we have a place we can call ”the main repository of quality GCC related articles”. It is important that it is easy to find relevant material + copy/paste text from the repository. Then we can copy/paste a given piece of text and cite it as an inspiration. After this we can begin offering “interesting alternatives”. This could be a very simoly model for how to begin building the material collectively. We may want to use questions similar to these. Then write shorter responses which convey essential ideas of interest. Then longer versions of this, building in it. “An interesting alternative” can be offered at any point in the process. Also, whenever something really interesting comes along, perhaps something relatively complete and coherent, it can be posted on Facebook as well to increase visibility and engagement. This will be a way to “Play it forward” to a larger group of peers. Perhaps this will be certain core pieces, considered to be interesting and well written, and worthy of consideration by a broader audience. Choosing ONE main repository, simple to use and with robust and bugfree software, regularly attended to, is enough to get the ball rolling.
Thanks for the insights skreutzer! Some thoughts about speech recognition software. The system I could imagine is something like this: 1. You speak naturally to the program, with normal pauses, and the program notices the pauses and uses these to create grammatically correct sentences and paragraphs. 2. The program registers semantic patterns, and creates relevant tags + headlines, + includes relevant contextual data ( for example: this recording was made on this and this data and time of day, at this location ). Maybe this is somewhat advanced, but it is interesting. 3. The program presents the complete text, with relevant tags and headlines, as a suggestion for a complete readable document, after the speaking session is finished ( perhaps a totally hands-free session ). 4. The program can recognize the voice of each person in a group call. 5. When the human reads through the suggestion, and then makes changes, these actions are stored and associated with similar occurrences, so that the program learns from the times the human corrects the manuscript. The goal is that over time the program makes less and less errors, and knows what the human means in this and that kind of situation, where certain patterns tend to repeat themselves. 6. Suggestions for alternative formulations, or links to relevant ata sources based on semantic analysis, could be very interesting. Some of this may be more advanced than other parts, but a lot should be possible today or what do you think?The basic idea is quite simple, that we can talk naturally to the device, and the device can automatically create a draft without us having to touch the keyboard once. Then later we can look through it and make changes, and these changes are stored in the programs memory and utilized for similar kinds of situations, so that the program over time learns to know what the person means with a high degree of accuracy. Its all about using as little time and energy as possible on formalities, and max time in creative flow mode. That is maybe somewhat more into the future. For now I agree that youtubes transcripts are quite good and it seems like a promising task for several people to make adaptations. Speech recognition aside...What seems even more interesting at the moment as I see it, is for each active participant to write certain relatively short essays about their thoughts on key questions, and begin a process where we can build on this by suggesting "interesting alternatives". Then the point is that an actively engaged person in the collaboration chooses material which they for some reason or other consider interesting / valuable / promising. This is where I see a very interesting potential for building on one anothers ideas and formulations and create multiple interesting alternatives, in different styles and lengths and modes of thinking.
@lorenz Didn't respond to your e-mail yet, will do, probably on the weekend with more mental capacity ;-)
I have the same sense as it relates to the individual blog initiative. Attentional load is already stretching at the seams, somewhat. This seems a hugely valuable improvement of the "thread" piece of the GCC puzzle, that is currently defaulting to facebook, which is completely illsuited and unmanageable as a threaded conversation affordance.
Hmm, let's see...there are no software developers in the GCC group, are there? Would you agree or disagree that the web is already offering the things that seem to be needed for some sort of knowledge worker? In terms of text and hypertext, I would claim that we still lack a universal digital library augmented by software, which is almost impossible to build under the current paradigm(s), but as we don't want to loose the old material in books and on the web, imports and bridging are important of course. From that, I guess it's obvious that I can imagine a canonical "main repository" from whatever sources it turns out to be compiled, so it can be curated and augmented. If you're a little bit familiar with Doug Engelbart's NLS/ARG Journal, that would be something we still don't have today 50 years later and yes, it's a tool system, but I guess Doug did it with bootstrapping and with the intention that it would support human system activities, for both to co-evolve. So if you're discussing which blog would serve GCC best, feel invited to keep that in the back of your mind, exept you guys want to do different things entirely.
I misunderstood what the blog flurry was about so a few words here: Maybe I got confused so you don't have to! :) I got a blog as Joshua suggested, but later realized this wasn't necessary. I already have a blog and it's closely aligned with my interest in GCC. So if you have a blog, you don't need to get a new one for here. Here's my blog post from today. Have a 3-minute read and subscribe if you like it! Personally, and unfortunately, I don't have time to read everyone's blog. I want stuff that points to GCC initiatives OR might help move them forward. Isn't that what Basecamp is for? Basecamp is a kind of group blog it seems to me. So I'm wondering, wouldn't that be enough? Individual blog's seem to me to be gravy, tasty stuff but drifting into Too Much Information if they're a default!
That's cool, but I guess you're busy with Sutra and won't necessarily co-evolve software to the needs of what the GCC group wants to do, be it urgent, complex problem solving or organizing collaboration on a large, maybe even global scale, or whatever else turns out to be their main interest(s), in Doug Engelbart ways. I saw the "Sutra is currently evolving into an open source community supported project" where Sutra could become a little bit more interesting to me personally not only for mere usage, but "open source" means many things to many people, I'm more in favor of a new hypertext system that doesn't have the problems of proprietary software, SaaS and web limitations.
So I don't even know about the GCC background and remain unconvinced when it comes to their ideas, concepts and approaches despite trying to listening to their conversations, but there might be the chance to build supporting software systems in hypertext fashion to augment and support their activities, so I'll stay and wait here if there is a chance to do some of that.
To @lorenz or not to @? ;-) "New hypertext system": I think some participants in the GCC are disciples of Doug Engelbart because he had a conceptual framework on how to deal with the ever-increasing complexity of our problems, while our tools and mentality don't improve, and he didn't only theorize, but also attempted to build support systems with the new, promising machine/invention of his time, the computer, by redefining how and what this machine could do for humanity, in the process prototyping personal computing, networking, teleconferencing and a lot of other things that historically ended up defining the way we use computers today. Who knows if the ARPANET would have survived and evolved into the Internet without his contributions, or it would have taken much, much longer. The AI hype, the end of the cold war/space race prevented him from getting the funding to realize more of his vision, so for some 40-50 years there's not much progress in those fields, we even lack the capabilities he had in his systems back then.
But I'm not only a disciple of Doug Engelbart, but also of Ted Nelson, plus a lot of influences from other people like early Internet pioneers (Licklider), David Gelernter, Robert Cailliau, Brewster Kahle, John Bosak, Bret Victor, Ward Cunningham, etc. I don't see why one shouldn't pick the best of all of those worlds, as especially in digital, there are no technical reasons why we should "run out of space" or should be locked into only one presentation as imposed by physical media.
Very rough, fast description, I should have just asked how familiar you @lorenz are with Douglas Engelbarts work ;-)
Here's what I did so far and may continue to do:
That's great to hear! The trouble I find myself in is that the material tends to be scattered all over the place, I can't find it or conveniently read it, and contributing isn't supported in useful ways. I wondered for a moment if something could be done with the WordPress blogs, Google Docs and recordings on YouTube, not to be the end goal of the GCC of course, but to support the discussion by bootstrapping, co-evolving tools/capabilities that allow flexible handling of the body of amounting material, so it can go places going forward and won't get stuck or lost eventually. I don't know if that makes a lot of sense to you guys, I just like to do the supposedly very simple things first. Furthermore, I would like to learn a little bit more about the collective meta-cognition machineworks, if there's something publicly available about it.
@mindwheeel Yeah, there are several ways to go about this, but, for example, technically, the ViewSpecs of Doug Engelbart define on the client side how something is presented/rendered, so it's not the server providing one single fixed way to view things, but us wanting customizable renderings, while those configurations can as well be shared, so we can pick the best from a (template) library ("ViewSpec store", software repository). Those ViewSpecs can also act as filter to not display certain data or combine different things into one view, but that might not be ideal and the task of a separate function to not overload and mix retrieval, data management and rendering. Notwithstanding, those ViewSpecs should work on standardized, good quality data formats that are agnostic of the rendering (separation of layout and meaning, WYSIWYM). There can also be EditSpecs, but they're probably more tricky, so we should start with simple steps, editing might need a whole lot of other optimization than renderings that mostly will be passively looked at.
Another way, for example, could be a methodological one. Why not co-create the views each user wants/needs? With close feedback loops between software development and design? I mean, if it's a generic mechanism, people certainly could configure their layouts all by themselves, but I guess we would want to iterate and experiment a little to find out what works well or leads to new, interesting perspectives.
Speech to text, I don't know, I mean, I work on your close captions/subtitles/transcript from the YouTube recordings, but the thing is: as far as I'm aware, it's never perfect or good enough to remain as it is, if done automatically, there's always the need of a human to go in there and tidy it up, for various different categories of imperfection. So it's fine as raw source material to work with and improve it, but not to be printed or to end up as the authoritative, canonical transcript. The audio/video material generated from the group would be interesting and useful to work on, but I wonder if that should be the highest priority. Doug Engelbart was pretty much against speech interfaces, because language and voice has serious downsides (not only upsides) in comparison to other sensory interfaces, depending on the task at hand.
If speech/audio is really important to you, we could look at this first. Whereever I commented on Google Docs that contain a YouTube transcript, I adjusted the transcript, so we could look at what I changed there, and maybe do the same curation for other audio pieces to learn more about what's possible, needed, wanted. What Google does is pretty decent, especially as a raw source to work from and despite the inconvenience of lack of proper tools (except for those who do it commercially for audio books), but maybe there are better engines for the analysis we just have to find and get access to, but then sometimes there's noise in the background, bad microphones, words are ambigious or only indicated by very suble differences in pronounciation, or it depends on the context how it must be written (is it a name, noun, etc.). Is that important at all? What do we want to do with the audio or text, once we've hypothetically gotten it?