Paul DiPerna has an interview with Howard Rheingold:
What is happening now has to do with not only the expanded capabilities of individuals, but the new forms of collective action that people will inevitably concoct with the technological platforms and the media that are built on those platforms. The action is on multiple levels simultaneously, just as it is in biology. Now, it’s the individual technology, the technical network, the application layer, the psychological, social, economic layers. In biology, it was the cellular, organ, organism, ecosystem layering.
Danny Sullivan has a Q&A with Gabe Rivera, Creator of Techmeme, a site I check daily.
Q. Is Techmeme an echo chamber, just showing blogs commenting about blogs commenting about blogs? Does Techmeme feed into that echo chamber? Or how do you break apart the conversations on a particular topic into sub-conversations or topics?
Clearly Techmeme creates superficial incentives for “echo chamber” participation, yet I don’t see clear evidence that this makes things noticeably worse. I still like to trot out the example of the day my site launched. eBay’s acquisition of Skype became one of those huge story clusters, and this was hours before Techmeme [then tech.memeorandum] was publicly launched, i.e. before anyone believed they could get on the site by linking to stories.
EirePreneur writes: “My predictions for 2007 were dominated by Google Reader because it’s one of the products best placed to dominate the Read/Write web. The addition of support for tagging and link blogging were the warning shots but the coming months will see Reader evolve into a fully fledged Reader/Writer (let’s call it ReWriter). Google ReWriter is the first product that will tie the major pieces of the Read/Write web together – RSS/ATOM (feeds), OPML, Social-Bookmarking/Tagging (folksonomies), Attention and Microformats.”
Robin Good has compiled a list. “RSS tools and services play an increasingly important role in the effort to effectively aggregate, syndicate, market and distribute online content.”
Howard Rheingold: “The tools for cultural production and distribution are in the pockets of 14 year olds. This does not guarantee that they will do the hard work of democratic self-governance: the tools that enable the free circulation of information and communication of opinion are necessary but not sufficient for the formation of public opinion. Ask yourself this question: Which kind of population seems more likely to become actively engaged in civic affairs a population of passive consumers, sitting slackjawed in their darkened rooms, soaking in mass-manufactured culture that is broadcast by a few to an audience of many, or a world of creators who might be misinformed or ill-intentioned, but in any case are actively engaged in producing as well as consuming cultural products? Recent polls indicate that a majority of today’s youth the “digital natives” for whom laptops and wireless Internet connections are part of the environment, like electricity and running water have created as well as consumed online content. I think this bodes well for the possibility that they will take the repair of the world into their own hands, instead of turning away from civic issues, or turning to nihilistic destruction.”
From Duncan Riley. Among them: “Its sad to note that there has been no great innovation in the blogosphere since the successful uptake of WordPress some 2-3 years ago. Of course, WordPress success itself is a quirk of history, being in the right place at the right time, particularly as SixApart imposed fees on its user base. But where in the past, every year bought great innovation, from GreyMatter to MovableType to WordPress, and others in between, the last few years have been a barren wasteland of conformity and similarity. Whether 2007 will provide a great new innovation of blogging is, I suppose, best left to conjecture, but word that AOL may release Blogsmith in one form or another offers some hope. Surely, amongst the masses of VC funding and startups a company exists that will revolutionise blogging for us all once again.”
[via Atanu] The Bayesian Heresy has a compilation of the favourite economics blogs of 2006.