In this video from our Futurist Forum, Jamais Cascio says that the people hacking a tech to make it serve more shady purposes (or to help them have sex) might be the best window into how it works.
"If you what to find out how to use a new emerging tool, don’t ask the people who invent it, because they have a very narrow view of what it’s supposed to be used for. The people who are hacking it–the people who use it for crime, who use it to have sex, who use it to do something fun or different–those are the people who are going to find out the little interesting variations."
See on www.fastcoexist.com
The report has good data, tries to separate out active learners from window shoppers and not short on surprises. It’s a rich resource and a follow up report is promised.
Main driver – learning, low interest in certificationThis is a lesson that many MOOC commentators are learning, that MOOCs reflect, not demand for certification but demand for ‘learning’ with only around a third interested in certification or career. . That’s not to say that certification is not important, it’s just less important than educators think. Curiosity about online education and MOOCs, however, is the temporary pollutant in the data.
Pope Francis rocked some religious and atheist minds today when he declared that everyone was redeemed through Jesus, including atheists.
Using scripture from the Gospel of Mark, Francis explained how upset Jesus’ disciples were that someone outside their group was doing good, according to a report from Vatican Radio.
“They complain,” the Pope said in his homily, because they say, “If he is not one of us, he cannot do good. If he is not of our party, he cannot do good.” And Jesus corrects them: “Do not hinder him, he says, let him do good.” The disciples, Pope Francis explains, “were a little intolerant,” closed off by the idea of possessing the truth, convinced that “those who do not have the truth, cannot do good.” “This was wrong . . . Jesus broadens the horizon.” Pope Francis said, “The root of this possibility of doing good – that we all have – is in creation”
See on www.huffingtonpost.com
A row over using English in universities has blown up in France, where language is at the heart of the national identity
The front page of Libération, one of France’s leading dailies, was printed entirely in English on Tuesday.
[...] Roland Barthes famously described language as essentially "fascist", not because it censors but, on the contrary, because it forces us to think and say certain things. The idea that we are spoken by language as much as we speak through it is, I think, an important one here: French offers a different world view from English. Today, the symbol of British sovereignty is an independent currency. In France, it is an independent language, and that is indeed something to be cherished.
See on www.guardian.co.uk
“The Machine Age,” an essay written for The New York Times by Norbert Wiener, a visionary mathematician, languished for six decades in the M.I.T. archives, and now excerpts are being published.
[...] Almost 64 years after Wiener wrote it, his essay is still remarkably topical, raising questions about the impact of smart machines on society and of automation on human labor. In the spirit of rectifying an old omission, here are excerpts from “The Machine Age,” courtesy of the M.I.T. Libraries (all rights reserved).[...]
[...] if we move in the direction of making machines which learn and whose behavior is modified by experience, we must face the fact that every degree of independence we give the machine is a degree of possible defiance of our wishes. The genie in the bottle will not willingly go back in the bottle, nor have we any reason to expect them to be well disposed to us. [...]
See on www.nytimes.com
If I’ve seen any theme come up repeatedly over the past year, it’s getting product cycle times down. It’s not the sexiest or most interesting theme, but it’s everywhere: if it’s not on the front burner, it’s always simmering in the background.
Cutting product cycles to the bare minimum is one of the main themes of the Velocity Conference and the DevOps movement, where integration between developers and operations, along with practices like continuous deployment, allows web-native companies like Yahoo! to release upgrades to their web products many times a day. It’s no secret that many traditional enterprises are looking at this model, trying to determine what they can use or implement. Indeed, this is central to their long-term survival; companies as different from Facebook as GE and Ford are learning that they will need to become as agile and nimble as their web-native counterparts.
Integrating development and operations isn’t the only way to shorten product cycles. In his talk at Google IO, Braden Kowitz talked about shortening the design cycle: rather than build big, complete products that take a lot of time and money, start with something very simple and test it, then iterate quickly.
See on radar.oreilly.com
In the United States, 3D scanners are now providing new opportunities for technical manufacturers such as bicycle makers to raise the level of product personalisation and thereby attract new customers.
3D modelling using scanners is helping to shape the future of product personalisation. The apparel industry seems to have lost no time taking on board this way of making garments, for both protective wear and made-to-measure suits. Now the technology looks set to spread fast to more technical industries. The Ohio-based company Roll: is a good example. The company, which sells bicycles, has come up with the idea of creating 3D body images of its customers in order to ensure that the bike s/he has chosen is totally personalised to his/her body metrics.
See on www.atelier.net