Exploding TV

Jeff Jarvis writes:

TV networks will not die. But neither will they grow – and in business, isnt that as good as dying? Their audiences have been steadily falling away for a decade. Network ad revenue is now flat and a host of new gadgets compete for viewers attention.

Yet its not technology that ultimately will challenge big medias monopoly. Its the audience who will do that, for now they – or rather, we – can produce, distribute, and market our own content at a cost media giants cannot beat. Three important developments come together now to make this possible:

Thanks to new tools, anyone can make a show. Just as blogging liberated publishing, cheap gadgets and ever- easier software can turn anyone into a broadcaster.

The internet enables us to distribute what we make to the world. No longer do we have to beg the guy who owns the broadcast tower for time.

We can now market via links. That is how some blogs have built audiences the size of midsize newspapers. That is how podcasts and vlogs (video blogs) will grow.

There is the real revolution in media: The one-way pipe that was broadcasting is giving way to an open pool that everyone owns, where anyone can play. The end of the network era isnt just about losing audience or revenue or profits. Its really about losing control.

Blog Reader Wishlist

Alex Bosworth wants a different kind of blog reader:

What I really want is to use something takes the isolated blog, single page for all posts concept that bloglines pioneered, but gives me a lot more control than clunky left navbar folders.

Instead I want tabs. I want to keep all my blogreading on a single page organized by tabs. If I have too many tabs, I should be able to merge them into folder-tabs.

When new posts arrive in a blog, the tab should change color, and possibly indicate the number of new posts. My selecting the tab would indicate I had paid attention to the entries.

I should be able to set up rules on my tabs as well. If someone mentions me in a blog, or something interesting I care about, for example a good deal on RAM on Slickdeals.net or a post about Ajax, the tab could highlight in a different color or even send me an email or sms.

The last thing i’d like to do is be able to comment within the blogreader. As it stands now, I never ever want to leave my blogreader. Half the sites whose blogs I read, I’ve never even seen their webpage. If I want to make a response, or see other peoples’ responses, I want to stay in my blogreader.

Knowledge Workers

ACM: Ubiquity has an interview with Thomas Davenport, who has written a new book: “Thinking for a Living: How to Get Better Performance and Results from Knowledge Workers.”

UBIQUITY: So then what does it take to develop a good knowledge worker?

DAVENPORT: Well, the approach adopted by most organizations in the past is that all you really had to do is hire high-quality people in the first place I refer to this as the HSPALTA syndrome (“Hire Smart People and Leave Them Alone). Of course, it’s always a good idea to hire smart and capable people, and so it’s always a good idea to put a lot of energy into attracting the right kind of knowledge workers and retaining them; but in my book I really focus on what are the kind of interventions you can make into making knowledge workers more effective. These include technological interventions, managerial interventions, workplace interventions, and social interventions.

Web 2.0 Explanation

John Hagel offers an explanation: “an emerging network-centric platform to support distributed, collaborative and cumulative creation by its users.” His post elaborates on each of the words.

Dion Hinchcliffe writes:


1) Using the entire Internet as your API for new applications. The leverage and reuse possibilities are probably boundless.

2) Permalink requirements make your Web 2.0 applications stable, even when they’re based on a dozen underlying services all over the Web.

3) Trust becomes a critical service in the Web 2.0 platform (which is the entire Web). Leveraging Wikipedia entries, Google PageRanks, Amazon Reviews, del.icio.us bookmark counts, and many others makes collective trust a measurable, quantifiable, and so vitally, a reusable service in the Web 2.0 stack.

4) Remixing data with high quality Web 2.0-friendly sources yields new possibilities and value. This is one of the bigger concepts that would help many organizations leverage Web 2.0 the most. When they ask: Why care about Web 2.0? Tell them: You may only be realizing a fraction of your potential. Read the Wikipedia entry article link above to see how remixing information can quickly add vast value to your IT infrastructure.

TECH TALK: Rajasthan Ruminations 2: Water Problem

Rajasthan like its temples seems to be frozen in time. I get this feeling every year as I travel through the state. There are incremental signs of progress, but it is too little to get a state on the road to development. The root cause is the lack of water. Without water, power is a challenge. There is little agriculture and development taking place. Industry is also hobbled.

Talking with some local people during the trip, it became clear to me that the only solution lay in the major government plan of interlinking of rivers. That is the only way water can be made available across the state. The Indira Gandhi Canal has made some progress, bringing regular supply to Jodhpur. But a lot more needs to be done.

I was reminded of my travel a year ago through Californias Central Valley. That part of California also lacks water, but the state fixed the problem through the Central Valley Project. Here is a brief on it:

California’s Central Valley Basin includes two major watersheds–the Sacramento River on the north and the San Joaquin River on the south–plus the Tulare Lake Basin. The combined watersheds extend nearly 500 miles from northwest to southeast and range from about 60 to 100 miles wide.

The basin is surrounded by mountains, except for a gap in its western edge, at the Carquinez Straits. The valley floor occupies about one-third of the basin; the other two-thirds is mountainous. The Cascade Range and Sierra Nevada Mountains, on the north and the east, rise to about 14,000 feet, and the Coast Range, on the west, rises to 8,000 feet. The San Joaquin River runs northward and most of its tributaries generally run east and west. These two river systems join at the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta and flow through Suisun Bay and Carquinez Straits, into San Francisco Bay, and out the Golden Gate to the Pacific Ocean.

The Central Valley Project, one of the Nation’s major water conservation developments, extends from the Cascade Range in the north to the semi-arid but fertile plains along the Kern River in the south. Initial features of the project were built primarily to protect the Central Valley from crippling water shortages and menacing floods, but the CVP also improves Sacramento River navigation, supplies domestic and industrial water, generates electric power, conserves fish and wildlife, creates opportunities for recreation, and enhances water quality. The CVP serves farms, homes, and industry in California’s Central Valley as well as major urban centers in the San Francisco Bay Area; it is also the primary source of water for much of California’s wetlands. In addition to delivering water for farms, homes, factories, and the environment, the CVP produces electric power and provides flood protection, navigation, recreation, and water quality benefits.

This multiple-purpose project plays a key role in California’s powerful economy, providing water for 6 of the top 10 agricultural counties in the nation’s leading farm state. It has been estimated that the value of crops and related service industries has returned 100 times Congress’s $3 billion investment in the CVP.

So, what is the solution for bringing water to Rajasthan?

Tomorrow: Water Solution?

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