Think Bigger. Aim Higher. Go Further.

Month: August 2010

Intellectual Property In the Cloud

The Patent system is slow, static, and expensive. Sure it’s great for corporations and wealthy institutions, but what about the rest of us? How do we get paid for our intellectual property? We make rapid fire decisions every day that can make or break markets – who’s got time to patent?

Intellectual Property In the Cloud

Or maybe the last thing that Wall Street wants is for Engineers, Architects, designers, and creative people to get “royalties” on their work. Wall Street is quite happy collecting the royalties of the creative people in America – those people who actually produce something real and tangible.  Social media is a social contract and Intellectual Property is our tangible currency. Hello.

The Definition Of Innovation Must Change

Innovation is currently defined as “A new idea that has a favorable economic outcome”.  The problem is that nobody can solve one equation with two unknowns, i.e., what’s a new idea? and what’s the economic outcome?  By this definition, you can only identify innovation after it has occurred.  So, it’s not very useful – in fact, it is a tragic definition and it must be scrapped immediately.

The trick is to identify the new ideas and direct them to the appropriate economic outcome, not the other way around as many companies and agencies try to do.  Most good ideas can’t find a place to be profitable in a silo, so they are scrapped. This is not the fault of talent or the idea, but invariably both are lost.

The existing definition of innovation is insufficient for use as a way to identify innovation in the present. There is no way to build an innovation economy upon a flawed definition and unpredictable value of innovative activity. This new interpretation will allow innovation to properly behave like a financial instrument.

An IPO For Humanity

The term IPO conjures images of empire-making where a hot young company with a great product offers pieces of its future-self for sale to the public as a means of raising money without incurring debt.  The money is then used to create the next titan whose new jolt of growth is shared with all who participated.

Today, every annual report to shareholders touts the great team of people whose social, creative, and intellectual capital make it all happen, the worthy and stoic investors whose vision drives sound decisions, and the legions of happy customers who make it all worthwhile.

Essentially, an IPO is people buying into the productivity of other people.

Yet, the IPO is a strict and complex legal and regulatory maneuver that establishes property rights on these small pieces of future productivity – represented by “stock” in the company.

There are underwriters (usually a bank), battalions of lawyers, the securities and exchanges commission (SEC), brokers, insurers, re-insurers, institutional investors, private investors, and retail investors.  There is a full infrastructure supporting the facts of incorporation, disclosure, accounting, and proper management of internal “inside” information.  And, of course, there is a media /PR campaign.  All are integrated to keep the game fair, yet viable.

In the Age of Social Media

I could be wrong but it seems that such vast infrastructure appears a bit awkward if the end result is simply for people to buy into the productivity of other people.  This happens everyday in Social Media.  At some point, we really need to ask; why can’t an individual or a group of individuals raise money without incurring debt like corporations can?

In Social Media, people own and deploy their relationships,  communities, motivation, their knowledge, creativity, intellect, mentorship, leadership, teamwork, their network, and even their ability to form corporations – people own their time.  Social currency is backed by the scarcity of time and the availability of surplus knowledge.

All of the structural components of the financial system are appearing in an analogous form in social media; social vetting, social gaming, aggregation, influence, knowledge inventories, communities of knowledge assets, local social, global social, tag search, deep search, semantic search, stream of consciousness search, geolocation, mobile computing, multi-media, and many more innovations are being created and deployed everyday which literally serve the functions of banks, lawyers and legislation in an invisible economy.

The Ingenesist Project tries to string this all together with just enough specificity so that an alternate financial system will jump start itself and become both visible and available to everyone.

We’ll hold an IPO for Humanity

All of the infrastructure and the potential for people to produce things would remain intact regardless of what happens to the currency.  Think about what would happen if all the dollar based money system evaporated. The only safe haven for the storage and exchange of value will be in people and their communities.

The only thing missing is a system that can articulate social capital, creative capital, and intellectual capital instead of land labor and financial capital.  This system can be built today.

The Last Mile: Social Media Battleground

Sure Bro…Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin are great for broadcasting across the Ocean, but how good are they for meeting your neighbors? As wonderful as all this global chatter appears, nothing tangible happens until the rubber meets the road.

Don’t Worry, Be Neighborly…

Nothing “Economic” can happen is Social Media until real people get together to build things. Sure, Marketers are trying their hardest to penetrate the last mile, but communities are trying to defend it too. This is the final battleground of Social Media. The end game must be as follows: Social priorities must ultimately drive Wall Street priorities – not the other way around. That is the only sustainable thesis for the next millennium.

The following video describes how the components of the next economic paradigm must act locally, but share globally. For anyone wondering what to do next or where the great opportunities are, think about building out the Last mile of Social Media.

Google CEO Warns of Information Armageddon

In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Google CEO Eric Schmidt warns of the future consequences of social media and networks, and the vast amount of personal data that users put out there on the Web.

The article goes on to describe how Google is looking for what is next – that is, a world where the Google Icon no longer dominates the center of our lives.  He warns future societies about creating a “future” by documenting the past.  A future president, CEO, or just a job hunter can be haunted forever by the words and images that are becoming indelible in social media today.  Mr. Schmidt insists that information is social currency.

Actually, I do not believe this to be true.  I believe that is more likely than not a severe disruption is on the horizon which will deeply impact social media, Google, and Facebook, etc.  This disruption will alter the course of the future that Google predicts.

All it would take is for humans to step up one more rung on the evolution ladder.

Think of it like this:  a dollar is used to store and exchange value yet it is completely anonymous – you don’t know very much about it’s past or future – you do not need to know much about the exchange device in order to carry out the transaction.

Google is an information company, not a knowledge company. The next economic paradigm will be based on the creation, storage , and exchange of knowledge – not necessarily information.  Knowledge exists only between the ears and once it is made tangible, I will not need to know where in the past that knowledge was excecuted – college keg parties included.

Neither Google or Facebook have indicated that they realize how value can be created, stored, and exchanged while maintaining anonymity if the public knowledge inventory were properly coded. Likewise, billions of people who use Social Media are dismally unaware that nobody else needs to posess any of their personal information to execute a knowledge transaction – seriously, noone.  In fact, not only is relative anonymity a possibility, it is an imperative to market efficiency in Social Capitalism.

The “next Google” will, in fact, filter out irrelevant “information” as a means of creating time. Time is the real currency. For more on this please see http://ingenesist.com/introduction.

Google needs to figure out how to get the most worthy knowledge surplus connected to the most worthy knowledge deficit in the shortest amount of time.  Information brokering alone can’t do this, so it’s Armageddon for whom?

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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

Please Vote for The Ingenesist Project; SXSW

TagCloudPhotoThe Ingenesist Project has submitted the following presentation to the South By Southwest Conference in Austin Texas on March 2011. We sincerely encourage our readers to vote for this presentation. It promises to be hugely compelling, deeply controversial, and boldly disruptive. This is for a 60 minute solo presentation to the Advanced Technical Track – the competition is impressive. Voting ends Friday August 27, 2010

Please select the following link to vote

Thank you very much for your support

The Ingenesist Project

Description:

Today, we have one of the most extraordinary opportunities in human history playing out before our eyes. Social Capitalism is no longer merely a band-aid for an amoral Market Capitalism, it is a new form of Capitalism in it’s own right.

In the age of social media, many entrepreneurs no longer allocate land, labor, and financial capital as a primary means of production. Rather, they deploy social capital, creative capital, and intellectual capital to the production of a vast amount of “value” that is stored and exchanged in communities. The objective of The Ingenesist Project is to make this value tangible outside the constructs of government and corporate interaction.

This presentation identifies the five essential components of Market Capitalism and demonstrates similar elements emerging in social media. It then specifies how these elements can be integrated to perform the essential analogous functions of financial institutions. Next, we specify three relatively simple social media applications that may create a new class of business plans enabling millions of social entrepreneurs worldwide. Finally, a new financial instrument is described which can be capitalized and securitized to form the basis of a fungible social currency to hedge the dollar.

The net result could create a condition where Wall Street priorities are subservient to social priorities rather than social priorities being subservient to Wall Street priorities.

Questions Answered


What can replace market capitalism when it finally runs out of steam?
What exactly are people producing when they engage in Social Media and why does it create value?
What characteristics must a social currency have in order to be fully convertible or even a replacement for the dollar?
What is a knowledge inventory, how should it be formed, and why should every community have one?
What would be a powerful strategic plan for the Internet in the absence of one today?


[Level Advanced Category Entrepreneurism / Monetization Tags monetization, Social Capitalism, Social Currency Type Solo Event Interactive 2011]

The presentation will mirror some content found in the following video series

Photo credit:


Social Capitalism and The Innovation Bond

We know the Venture Capitalists look for returns of 1000% on their investments. We also know that Corporate innovation (as reflected by the S&P 500) enjoys a long term median return rate of about 9-10%

It follows to reason that all of the innovation that could return somewhere between 10% and 1000% goes largely un-capitalized. This does not mean that the innovation does not exist – it only means that it is invisible to any existing financial system, it is accounted as “intangible” – or worse, it shows up as a liability.

Parents caring for children, Children caring for elderly parents, Mentors educating proteges, groups of people organizing, sharing knowledge, and growing families – all increase the net productivity of society. Legions of people creating options and opportunities for themselves and each other in communities, social media, and extended networks – all increase the value stored in communities.   Billions of people-hours inventing better ways to do the things that they do, compensating for the shortcomings of governments and corporations – all of this innovation falls into the range between 10% and 1000% ROI, yet, remains invisible and un-capitalized.

Social media as a whole is growing at well over 200% per year where every single interaction creates incremental multiples of social value – otherwise people would not do it (to say that people are irrational is to say that markets are irrational).  Where is all that value going?  Meanwhile, in the current Global financial debt crisis, institutions that hold huge amounts of cash are scouring the globe for pockets of low-risk productivity as sanctuary from volatile financial markets.

Now, suppose that an innovation bond were to come along which produces a risk adjusted return of, say, 15%. This means that human productivity is being reliably increased somewhere in a community by only 15% per year. If this were the case across a broad sector of inter-related communities where productivity were denominated in a fungible currency, investors would seek refuge in the Innovation Bond.  If the Innovation Bond returned say, 20% or more – all the money in the world may drop the debt based currency in favor of the innovation based currency by seeking refuge in innovation bonds.  Yes, I said it – “all the money in the world”.  Now, get over it.

Proceeds would be distributed to organized communities whose knowledge inventory is formatted like a financial instrument in the form of entrepreneurship. Proceeds would go to communities where the probability of success is known long before the bets are made in the form of Cheap Venture Capital. Proceeds would go to communities where productivity is defined by an un-corruptible algorithm through decreased volatility coefficients. Proceeds would go to communities where assets are valued accurately by true supply and true demand.  Proceeds would go to less developed communities with the highest social arbitrage potential rather than those with the most powerful marketers and lobbyists.  Most importantly, money would go to corporations that adopt the innovation economy. The stronger the institutions of Social Capital become, the greater the value of an innovation bond.  New production of goods and services would reflect these social priorities in the True Value Game.

In effect, Social Priorities will drive Wall Street priorities instead of Wall Street priorities driving Social Priorities – that is Social Capitalism

In the future, there will be only one sustainable investment left – people, communities, and their natural willingness and ability to be productive with their time. The rest is history.

***

Material based on video series here

Social Currency and Time

I recently published a video suggesting that Social currency is backed by Time as part of my series on Social Capitalism.  I made the argument that time is the true scarce commodity because it is not easy to debase, counterfeit, or forge; it is therefore the perfect basis for a currency.

Still, a few people always come back with the idea that influence, reputation, game tokens, tweets and more recently “checking in” (a la Foursquare), are all social currencies – citing the experts, of course.

There are several problems with this.  First, none are really scarce – I can find an honest person anywhere.  None are actually commodities because nobody is deploying the identical influence as any another person.

The idea that “currency” as the storage and exchange of value is also insufficient – a glass of water stores value as does a digital camera or a even a goat.  Nobody in Silicon Valley is twittering feverishly about the latest surprise goat farm acquisition.

Indeed influence and reputation are valuable and may act like a financial Instrument but until the purveyors come out and actually describe it as such, I need to call them on their choice of words – and I have.  A typical response is, “Well, uh, you know what I mean”.  My response: “…And, uh, you DON’T know what you mean?”

Beanie babies, tulip bulbs, and CDOs were financial instruments too.  Seriously kids, clarification is extremely important because the consequences of misconception, especially in this important emerging subject area, are tangible. Real people trying to make the wrong ideas real actionable are wasting their real precious time.

Here is what they mean to say:

a Derivative is something whose value is derived from the value of something else.  So when we talk about influence, the value of a person’s influence can be derived from the value of many things.  If you are in a burning building, the influence of the firefighter is different than an endorsement from Shaq, yet both may be valuable at different times.

The premise of my argument is that the basis of all currency is in Time.  Time is limited for everyone.   A good reputation saves people time.  The right influence applied in the right places at the right time saves people time.  Passion, purpose, productivity and persistence are measures of how someone spends their time.  Checking in at the trendy hotspot on foursquare is an expression and commitment of time. Co-location is a function of place and time. Like love, the value of time is in the eyes of the beholder. Valuable yes, currency, no.

Talk about how your product lives in time and you’ll earn all the social currency that it’s worth – not the other way around.

 

Social Currency = Time

Thousands of social currencies are emerging as people lose confidence in the ability of the dollar to store value. At the end of the day, a currency is a social agreement. People need to agree that whatever they use for the storage and exchange of value accurately represents their productivity – otherwise they will not work for it. Social currency is a storage place for social value.

Of course this is much easier said than done. Alternate currency advocates continue to stumble across substantial structural issue is defining their currency; It must be scarce, it must be difficult to forge, debase, or counterfeit and it must be accepted by everyone.

The only thing that fits all of those criteria is ‘Time’

 

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