Think Bigger. Aim Higher. Go Further.

Month: July 2010 Page 1 of 2

The Next Google

Everyone wants to know what “The Next Google” is.  From WIKiD Tools, the answer should be obvious:  Google is an information company.  Their stated objective is to organize the World’s information.  The next element up the human development ladder from the Information Economics rung is Knowledge Economics rung. Therefore, the next “Google” will deploy technology that can organize the World’s knowledge.

A State of Mind

Unfortunately, knowledge can only exist inside the minds of people, so consequently, “The Next Google” must also engage in the messy task of organizing the World’s people as well as the knowledge contained in each one of them.  Not an easy task in dog-eat-dog Global Market Capitalism.

The Facebookie

At first, it seems that Facebook may be converging on this – they are certainly trying.  The problem with Facebook’s approach is that they continue to  insist that Market Capitalism is valid (obviously preparing for the killer IPO) when they should be pioneering the hedge fund called “Social Capitalism”.  Facebook continues to bank on the suggestion that people really really want to share  their personal details and will tolerate invasion by armies of anonymous data miners in order to do so.  Facebook’s best shot may be for one of their gaming currencies to become a black market currency so that when the dollar collapses,  people would gladly sell their privacy in exchange for food.

Since a gaming currency can only be created by people performing frivolous tasks, at best, gaming currencies – phenomenal growth or not – are no more robust than the dollars it seeks to displace.   Sustainability? Uh, no.

Anonymity rules

Think about it this way.  Real human productivity is stored in a dollar bill; otherwise nobody would “work” for it.  The recipient does not know or care if the dollar bill was last used by someone to buy cigarettes or Girl Scout cookies.   The dollar bill is completely anonymous.  Likewise, value is stored in the brains of every living person – there is no need to know who they are until the transaction is exercised and profits are distributed.  Everything else is unnecessary invasion of privacy and certainly not something to build a currency around let alone the next economic paradigm.  The Next Google will treat people like the currency, not ‘like’ the Girls Scout Cookies.

The “Next Google” will be a percentile search engine that will return odds – or probabilities – based on an anonymized public knowledge inventory. Search results will predict the likelihood that any combination of knowledge assets can produce or execute any combination of products or services at a known cost based on the supply and demand for those known knowledge assets.  End of mystery.

Everyone can now make their bets and play their games with real productivity because, in effect, the percentile search engine will match most worthy knowledge deficit with most worthy knowledge surplus and throw the rest of it in the trash bin.

The only thing people want to know is what they want to know, and nothing else.  Now that’s what real productivity is made of, that is what real money is made of.

Please Vote for The Ingenesist Project to present at SXSW 2011

The Ingenesist Project specifies an Innovation Economy built on a platform of social media as the next economic paradigm.  60 minute solo presentation in the advanced technical track.  Your help is deeply appreciated. All comments welcome.  Material based on video series here

Social Capitalism; The Scarce Resource is Time.

The difference between market Capitalism and Social Capitalism is that factors of production are reversed.  In Social Capitalism, creative capital, intellectual capital, and social capital are the “tangibles” while land, labor, capital become the “intangibles”.

But the currency for social capitalism must still represent productivity – otherwise nobody would “work” for it.   Productivity is defined as “all the stuff we can make within a certain period of time“.  Market capitalism is built on “stuff” while Social Capital is built on “Time”.   Waste stuff and you’ll lose money.  Waste time and you’ll lose social currency.  Every living person is allocated a certain amount of time on Earth.  Time is impossible to forge, debase, or otherwise counterfeit – unless stolen from someone else – as such, Time makes an excellent currency.

What is the ROI on Land, Labor, and Capital in Social Capitalism?  ROI is wholly dependent on the knowledge assets deployed upon that Land, Labor, or Capital.

So what exactly is the underlying asset that supports Social Currency?

WIKiD Tools introduced the idea that everything we produce will ultimately come as a result of transforming data into information, or transforming information into knowledge, or transforming knowledge into innovation, or transforming innovation into wisdom.  We can articulate a very powerful Equation to model productivity in Social Capitalism.  This equation can be translated as follows:

Wisdom is proportional to the rate of change of innovation with respect to time.  Innovation is proportional to the rate of change of knowledge with respect to time.  Knowledge is proportional to the rate of change of information with respect to time.  And Information is proportional to the rate of change of data with respect to time.

Note that in each case, the “rate of change” (hence, time) is the underlying asset.

The creation of Social Currency:

Sounds complicated?  Well, it happens every day in every city where a person sees an important issue and convenes a conference where they invite relevant speakers and guests into the discussion.  It happens when a manager notices people talking about something important to them and incorporates it into their job description.  It happens when a teacher helps a student to the next level.  It happens when someone spends some of their time so that you can enjoy more of yours.  It happens with stay at home moms.  It happens with volunteerism.  It’s created by mentors, parents, neighbors, civil servants, and everyday citizens. It is created in Communities, not factories.  It is created by time.

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Please Vote for The Ingenesist Project to present at SXSW 2011

The Ingenesist Project specifies an Innovation Economy built on a platform of social media as the next economic paradigm.  60 minute solo presentation in the advanced technical track.  Your help is deeply appreciated. All comments welcome.  Material based on video series here

Bizarro Capitalism

In the 1960’s Superman comics, Bizarro World was a place where everything was the opposite as Normal World.  On the planet Htrae (Earth spelled backwards) lives Bizarro Jimmy Olsen, a Bizarro Lois Lane, Bizarro Superman, etc.  Of course, Normal World is the standard bearer for all that is great and good to the reader.

Normal Capitalism:

In the study of Normal Economics, currency always represent productivity – otherwise nobody would “work” for it.   Productivity is defined as: all the stuff we can make within a certain period of time. We measure it with expressions like “dollars per hour”, “miles per hour”, “5% compounded annually”, board-feet per minute, etc.

Abnormal Capitalism:

Suppose we were to describe a Bizarro currency as:  All the Time that can be produced within a certain amount of stuff.

After all, every living person is allocated a certain amount of time on Bizarro World.  Time is a scarce resource whose value is determined by supply and demand.  Time is not easily forged, debased, or counterfeited.  It makes for a perfect Bizarro currency.  Of Course the Bizarro Currency would be called the Rallod (Dollar spelled backwards).

Bizarro Capitalism:

In Normal Economics, land, labor, and financial capital are the factors of production called “Tangibles” while social capital, creative capital, and intellectual capital are called “Intangibles”.  By contrast, in Bizarro Economy, social capital, creative capital, and intellectual capital are Tangibles while land, labor, and financial capital are the Intangible factors of production.

Of course in Bizarro World, it takes rallods to make rallods.  So if you want to get rich, you need to invest your time in one of two things: Saving time for other people, or reducing the amount of stuff they need to consume on their time.

Likewise, in a Normal Banking, an entrepreneur assumes that they have the Knowledge to execute a business plan and they borrow the money. In Bizarro Bank, the Entrepreneur assumes that they have the money to execute a business plan and they borrow the knowledge.

In Normal World, money is backed by debt.  In Bizarro World, money is backed by innovation.

What if we got it backwards?

Probably the most immediate concern is whether the Rallod can hedge the Dollar, or will the two planets collide?

Material based on video series here

Social Capitalism: Meet The New Intangibles

Today, land, labor, and capital make up the “Tangible” assets allocated by entrepreneurs in the production of all products and service.   Meanwhile, Social Capital, Creative Capital, and Intellectual Capital of people and communities are called “Intangible Assets” on the corporate balance sheet.

As soon as you leave the Corporation, this condition reverses.  What if the new generation of corporations were built on this reversal?

Suppose it is already happening.

The next economic paradigm will be built on Social Media as soon as people start getting together to build things.  Social Capital, Creative Capital and intellectual capital will be allocated by entrepreneurs in the production of all products and services.  Meanwhile land, labor, and capital will be the intangible assets.

This may not be so far out.

LAND: with Social media, Mobile internet, geolocation applications, mobile applications, and speed blogging – most activity is independent of physical land.  Instead, Public “land” or private “land” behave as the intangible component where people assemble and produce things.

LABOR: no longer means that two physical parts are assembled into a machine.  Instead two ideas are assembled into a third idea and redeployed as data, information, knowledge, innovation or wisdom.

CAPITAL: Seriously; what exactly is Capital these days except the thing that banks play with and politicians argue about? Capital is created from debt.  The continuation of Capital Markets as we know them exists more as the absence of a reasonable alternative than an actual proxy for true value or productivity.

Instead; 500 Million people flock to Facebook, Twitter, Google, Linkedin, Foursquare, Gowalla, etc., to collect options and store social value.  Uhm…Why?

The next phase for social media will become user generated productivity.  That is when people get together outside the construct of government and corporations to build something.  If we are lucky, this transition will happen before we are forced to “rebuild” something.

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The Ingenesist Project specifies an Innovation Economy built on a platform of social media as the next economic paradigm.  Material based on video series here

What is Social Capitalism?

July 8, 2014 Update:

Wikipedia defines Capitalism as an “economic and social system in which the means of production are privately controlled”. 

 Factors of Production (from classical economics) are presumed to be some proxy for land, labor, and capital.  Suppose, however, the factors of production for modern society were something like “Social Capital, Intellectual Capital, and Creative Capital” of people and their relationships?  After all, these are the assets that are deployed in order to produce the proverbial basket of goods upon which most currencies are compared. 

Since these factors of production exist between the ears of each individual person, they are, by definition “privately controlled” and readily exchanged among other people in social networks.   If the US Supreme Court can rule that Corporations are people, then it is equally valid that people are corporations. Therefore, Social Capitalism refers to the economic and social system in which the means of production are social, creative, and intellectual assets.  

In order for Social Capitalism to become the dominant form of social organization, quite literally, society must reorganize itself to trade “abundant intangibles instead of scarce tangibles”. Then, all the decentralized innovations can integrate. The following video describes a system for reorganizing society so that the new economic paradigm; called Social Capitalism, may emerge.

Reorganizing For The Era Of Social Capitalism

Social Capitalism is similar to Material Capitalism with the exception that society would trade in abundant intangibles instead of scarce tangibles….and, everything changes.

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The Article below is from 2010 – more than 4 years ago – when Social Capitalism was just beginning to enter the lexicon of the social media practitioners.  This article below quotes the Wikipedia Article on “Social Capitalism”.  That article has since been removed by Wikipedia for failure to be a real -ism; I suppose.  That is, Wikipedia does not yet recognize the movement as a real form of Social Organization.  It is interesting, if not historic, to watch the progress of a social movement from its tenuous inception:

The Adaptive Cycle: Holling, C. S. 1986. Resilience of ecosystems;

Social capitalism is an old idea taking on an new form in the age of social media where social capital, creative capital, and intellectual capital are deployed outside the construct of the prevailing corporations or governments.

Throughout human history, societies have reorganized themselves in response to tyranny, innovation, environment, new wisdom, etc.   I believe this to be the root of what Social Capitalism is, and therefore, how it should be defined.

In The Shadows:

The dominant definition of  “Social Capitalism” from Wikipedia reflects a social cause cast against the backdrop of market capitalism.  This definition acknowledges that economies work better when everyone participates; specifically, the so-called tier 1 and tier 2 people.  Tier 1 individuals have steady financial incomes that allow them to function without private or government support. Tier 2 individuals cannot meet the prevailing standard of living and rely on private or government support. Therefore the prevailing definition of Social Capitalism often refers to efforts to bolster tier 2 persons as a means of reinforcing the economy for everyone.

Conflict:

There is an inherent conflict where tier 1 is held responsible to support tier 2 as a means of protecting their tier 1 status. Traditionally tier 2 included poor families dependent on food stamps; children who depend on public education; elderly people who are no longer able to work, and low-income criminals who require police intervention, etc.

Ideally, getting more people from tier 2 into tier 1 is the desirable objective.  Indeed political division is marked by the theories and practices on how exactly that objective would best be accomplished.

A worst case:

What happens when tier 2 is simply forgotten; they are simply allowed to fail in the mainstream economy?  What if the government becomes too weak to bolster their economic prospects?  What happens when a critical mass of tier 1 people involuntarily enter the tier 2 environment bringing along their substantial knowledge inventory.  They are otherwise very productive people that had been laid-off, outsourced, underemployed, or otherwise marginalized.

The Special Case:

What happens when Tier 2 deploy new technologies that responding to their priorities, not necessarily Wall Street priorities.  What happens when tier 2 people trade a social “currency” among themselves? What happens when tier 2 swells to a size and scope that they are able to bear broad political and economic influence.  Many great human struggles emerged from under the hand of a Tier 1 constraint using their own manner to store and exchange value  (currency) represented by their own knowledge inventory and productivity.  Why would that not happen internally in American Society?

Structural Capitalism:

Social Capitalism is where factors of production in an economy are purely human and technological and less structural:. Specifically, social capital, creative capital, and intellectual capital deployed outside the construct of the prevailing corporations or governments.  Maybe it should be called “structural capitalism” because that is what is actually changing. We are at an extraordinary time in history where an extraordinary structural reorganization is taking place.

That’s Social Capitalism as it’s always been.

The Next Great Leap for Social Capitalism

The Knowledge inventory will become the most important element of Social Capitalism.  Today, knowledge is largely sequestered behind the walls of corporation in the form of titles, skill codes, resumes, job descriptions, certifications, and college degrees.  In order to predict the future, we point to the things that we have done in the past.

2nd Place is 1st Loser

10% of the country is unemployed and less than 10% are fully actualized in their profession.  Competitive forces drive the hiring manager.  The consequences of all business decisions eventually lead to win-or-lose market scenarios.  People compete with each other for promotions, the boss’s time, the corner office, or just staying off the unemployment line.  That is the only future anyone can truly predict based on the past.  It’s easier to predict the loser than the winner – so that’s what happens.

Social media is very different.

People are organizing themselves in a new form outside the construct of the corporation.  Linkedin aggregates intellectual capital, Facebook aggregates social capital, and You Tube aggregates creative capital.  Millions of blogs, Twitter, and a generation of search engines reassemble all these parts in ways that create social value.  People are not competing with each other, instead, they live on a bell curve.  They are seeking cooperation and collaboration. People use “like” buttons, tweet counts, and analytic data to “value” the quantity and quality of another person’s knowledge.  There are fewer losers, hence more winners,  because there are a greater number of  markets – not just one corporation.  Everyone is a corporation.

No Governance, no anarchy, no problem

Since social media is outside the construct of a corporation, there is no governance. There are lots of people trying to control only to experience diminishing returns.  Microsoft, Apple, Google, and Facebook must tread extremely carefully on the landscape of public opinion precisely because of their dominance.  People use Facebook to attack Facebook, PowerPoint to attack Microsoft, YouTube to attack Google, and Twitter to attack everyone.  Retribution would be suicide.

The Last Mile of Social Media

Now, geo-location services are filling in the Last Mile of Social Media where communities will form to produce things that are tangible and real.  As a result, there is a sharp increase of interest in a form of currency that can represent this social value.  Some of this is because the dollar is losing its ability to represent people’s productivity.  So they engage a different economic system.

Social Productivity

The next great leap in Social Media will happen when people reorganize themselves in an external knowledge inventory, outside of corporations, and segmented in high granularity of knowledge assets in close proximity to each other.  Entrepreneurs can then assemble people in unique, efficient, and productive ways.   People will then build things for profit using a new currency – a new social currency.

War Is A Social Agreement

I often make the point that a currency is simply a social agreement. People need to agree that a monetary unit represents their productivity so that they will use it to trade their productivity with the productivity of another person. The test question for any so-called currency (coined by Jay Deragon) is: “Yeah, but can you buy groceries with it?”

I am now seeing a SHARP increase in the social interest for an alternate currency to the dollar. The dollar does represent productivity – albeit future productivity in the form of debt – that’s why it is still exchanged for the work that we do. My suspicion however is that the social agreement regarding the dollar is, in fact, increasingly becoming a social disagreement.

People have a deep seated unease with what the dollar is and what the dollar represents. To escape the dollar is to escape a tangle of influence that impacts everything we say, do, and think about ourselves and about each other. It almost seems that to escape the dollar is to escape ourselves.

That’s just the idea that came to me after watching this video about a soldier questioning the occupations. He is saying something very interesting:

War is simply the soldier’s willingness to fight it. It is a social agreement.

Stock Harmony; Exchange of Social Value

I came across an interesting business model for the deployment of a social currency. Stock Harmony, quite simply, sells itself to interesting people. Those people then interact with each other adding social value to Stock Harmony. The more social value is created, the more the original shares are worth. The more the shares are worth, the more interesting people will join further increasing the value of the shares. From that position to deploy social value, Stock Harmony can amplify the voice for social priorities over Wall Street priorities, effectively re-allocating factors of production.

Actually, the same thing happens all the time in typical social circles, networks, affinity groups, and political action committees. However, I am not certain that anyone has yet been successful (ethically) in using social circles as a way to store and exchange value. That is why Stock Harmony is interesting.

It sounds so simple, right? Well, … not really….

It’s all about structure. The way that a process or system is structured determines how people interact with it. Structure also determines how governments, markets, laws, politics, and even public opinion interact with the process or system as well. Interestingly, the structure of facts often keeps secrets tight. In short, structure shapes human behavior and human behavior shapes structure.

Companies sell shares to raise money. Per SEC regulations, the “sale of shares” must comply with certain disclosure and accounting standards. The SEC regulates companies in the sale of shares as a means to safeguard investors.  In other words, it is illegal to sell shares without government oversight.

Raising Money

The possibility that anyone can sell shares in themselves or their private enterprise as a means of raising money is, by default, relegated to the banking system. A person essentially sells shares on their productive time on Earth to buy a house, a car, or a business, etc. The structure begins to crumble when the employment contracts begin to crumble. As people leave the old system, they take their value with them and tend to create new ones. This is where Stock Harmony treads.

What if the shares are issued in non-dollar denominations?

Today we see many non-dollar denominated structures arising apparently at the same rate that the financial system is failing. Google secretly invests 100M in Zynga – a gaming company with a common gaming currency. Facebook established a system of currency-like Credits. Groupons deploy social currency to incite monetary discounts, etc, and PayPal stands ready for the next killer currency app. Any of these transaction systems are poised to hold a black market currency if fiat currencies fail. If the fiat currencies fail to recover, the black market becomes a gray market and ultimately a legitimate market. So, there is a lot at stake.

Currency must act as a proxy for human productivity;

So this is what makes Stock Harmony interesting. The successful “next currency” will be the one which best represents human productivity. Only then will someone be willing to trade their productivity for that of another person using a currency note as an exchange mechanism. This is where other alternate currencies fall apart and where Stock Harmony shows greater strength. After all – what would you rather accept in exchange for your services – Farmville gaming currency or a currency backed by the harmony and productivity of real people in real community?

It will all come down to structure.

Alternate Currencies Ending the Monopoly on Money

Hundreds of community currencies are forming across the globe. Gaming currencies are jumping back into reality. Europeans communities are calling for the authority to print their own money arguing that the fractional reserve system is like trying to recover from a war by waging more war (a novel thought).

Many people doubt that the dollar has more than a decade or so of steam left as the interest on debts mythically exceeds the total amount of money on Earth. Yet banks march on, heading straight for the cliff.

Governments are polarized against themselves to solve any problem – except by reducing services to the people.  Do the math: Interest on debt can approach infinity while austerity measures can only approach zero.  You don’t need religion to predict that outcome.

But isn’t this why Governments exists in the first place – to provide social services? Are politicians suggesting their own elimination?  Of course not, so they issue press releases and have tea parties worth about as much as the photons they are broadcast on.

Meanwhile, corporate media is trying to dominate (and subdue) social media….ultimately, the end game will flip.  This short video invites the status quo to look at what people are “doing and saying with their productivity”.

(editor’s note:  The language here is generalized to reflect trend not to endorse any system of finance)

Alternate Currencies Ending the Monopoly on Money

The Secret Weapon of Social Capitalism

It should be fairly obvious that there are some extreme financial anomalies on the Global Horizon.  That legendary, but long-in-the-tooth social system affectionately known as Market Capitalism, is up against the ropes as the debt monster gobbles up everything in it’s path faster than any austerity measures can ever keep pace.  Take note that debt can reach infinity but austerity measures can only reach zero … you can do the math on a postage stamp.  If there ever was a need for a secret weapon, it is now.

The following 4-minute story-board video is part 3 to the series called “Will Social Capitalism Replace Market Capitalism?“.  The video introduces an important futures methodology and algorithm called WIKiD Tools for the management of Social Capitalism.   The next few videos will define WIKiD tools more fully while introducing a segment called “The Knowledge Inventory”.   Next, the SC>MC series will lay out scenarios for the capitalization and securitization of knowledge assets. Finally, we’ll revisit the Airplane Game to wrap it all up.   In other words, within the next few weeks, I should have published a fairly explicit set of functional specification for the next economic paradigm answering the question “What comes after Market Capitalism?”

Hold on to your hats and thank you for joining us on this wild ride.

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