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Tag: financial system

The Hack-plications That will Change Everything

Zertify, Gamidox, and Exoquant (ZGE) are NOT the applications that will change everything.  Rather, the hack-applications that follow on the ZGE data suites will, in fact, challenge the idea that periodic economic collapse and hard-fought restructuring is a necessary inevitability of the human condition.

The current financial system is vulnerable to disruption.

One reason is that it is becoming unstable.  However, by far the more important reason is that it is very inefficient.  The underlying notion that competition alone can determine a winner is wasteful because the time, energy, and resources required to battle, kill off, and dispose of an opponent may exceed, many times over, the value of a win.

What exactly is the nature of winning and losing?

Can truly winning only happen when the opponent is truly dead?  Can a student win by learning even if they can obviously be vanquished by their teacher?  Does a teacher win by living among productive citizens, as they themselves become vulnerable elders?  Can such an exchange form without there necessarily being a financial, or even governmental, intermediaries.  Today, quite the opposite is happening in companies and communities facing both knowledge gap and layoffs.

How Stable are The Stabilizers?

The legal system is very expensive to maintain.  Global military projection is certainly not cost free nor are the subsequent defenses.  Even the so-called competitive “college degree” and “intellectual property” are outliving their accessibility, and therefore, usefulness. Ironically, it will be the financial system itself that is undermined by the scarcity of the lifeblood money.  People will adapt to new forms of enterprise as they have for millions of years.  This is what Zertify accellerates.

What are the alternatives?

It would be vastly unfortunate for civilization if the financial system were to become ineffective prior to  human’s natural evolution to a high order of economics.  In fact, it seems that the failure of society to evolve is the only thing keeping the current financial system in play – there is no other game in town.  Think about it; if money does not represent your productivity, why would you work in exchange for it?  When you can no longer “harvest” your own productivity, why would you sow that field?  People would sow a different field. This is what Gamidox provides. 

Let’s Measure Ourselves Into Existence

History shows that the darkest depths of re-organization preceded prior leaps of human civilization.  But is that ultimate, inevitable competition and sacrifice actually necessary, except to measure the old system out of existence.  People are already quite organized, why do they need to be re-organized except to fit within a measurement system that has outlived it’s usefulness, applicability and relevence.  Exoquant allows the new humanity be measured into a new existence. 

Let’s get it right this time

The ZGE applications provide the intermediate step that never existed at any other time in history.  ZGE are built and structured upon trust networks and Internet connectivity.  Why not start rebuilding now while we still have a chance to get it right, very right.

How To Change Everything Without Changing Anything

Today, I am releasing an outline of the first of three sections of my upcoming book release called:

Hacking The Financial System; How To Change Everything Without Changing Anything.  

This book will be a step-by-step instruction manual for correcting the relatively tiny flaw in Market Capitalism that is driving civilization into an unsustainable future.  All the tools that we need to correct this flaw (and consequently most of our planet’s most pressing problems) exist today and are readily available to everyone.   Does it sound too good to be true?  There is a hitch:

It is easier done than said.

For example: it was not until human civilization was “ready” to realize that the Sun was the center of their universe, and not the Earth, were we able to access all of the science and technology that resulted from that profound knowledge.  Yet all the facts were clear and present to humanity for millions of years prior.

The same may be true for the next economic paradigm, as I will describe in this book.  All the fact are clear and present today, it is only our ability to shift a simple observation that will determine the advent of a sustainable future that seems so daunting today.  I am confident, with reservations, that we can do it.

I would appreciate your feedback

Please find the table of contents below for the first section of the book. Section 2 and 3 will be posted later.  The appendix will have case studies of how we are deploying The Value Game in the Construction, Aviation, software development, and Philanthropic industries.  I hope that these early demonstrations will help the entrepreneurs among us realize that there may be an alternate business method that is, in a very tangible way,  vastly profitable.

***

Find PDF link below:

Hacking The Financial System:

How to Change Everything Without Changing Anything

Table of Contents

 

Preface

Introduction

Factors of Production

Part 1: Hacking The Financial System

Part 2: The Accounting System Hack

Part 3: The Institution Hack

Part 4: The Wall Street Hack

Part 5: The Currency Hack

Part 6: Evading The Antigen

Conclusion

Next Whitepaper: How everything changes

Final Whitepaper: How Nothing Changes

Appendix: Progress to date

May The Best Currency Win

If I was a very wealthy person and I wanted to put my money in a hedge fund that protects me from all possible future outcomes or perils in the financial industry – I would be looking for a fund denominated in social currency.  Should things go wrong, the only place you can go for support will be your immediate community.  After all, you can’t eat Gold.

The Cradle of Civilization, again?

Egypt has demonstrated with astonishing clarity in a remarkable twist in human social evolution how this game plays out.  The dictator may have all the money, but the military has all the social currency – domestic AND international.  What do you think every dictator wishes that they had more of right now: guns, money, or social currency?

What would happen in the U.S. if…

…government austerity measures stop funding education, health care, police protection, and the legal system?

Social media applications will move in to fill the void.

….if inefficient industries like the travel industry, publishing, advertising, politics, academia, and financial services hold their customers hostage by acting as the gatekeeper?

Social media applications will pull the gate down.

…if government, industry, and academia can no longer innovate ways to increase the productivity of people in their community?

They will become irrelevant as people will adapt to manage their own productivity on a platform of social media.

The Great Conversion Factor

Off on the horizon, a truly remarkable new financial system is taking shape.  This system will accomplish one very important task – it will provide a conversion factor between financial currency and social currency.

Every political gridlock, corporate controversy, wikileak, and dictator challenged by their own people is adding one more piece of infrastructure to this new financial system.  Each piece will soon join together to complete the chain required to define the social currency and the form of human productivity that will support it.   Hang on grandchildren, we are getting close.

The effectiveness of this currency will not be in it’s ability to replace the dollar, rather, it will be in the ability to convert between Dollars … and Yen, Euro, Pounds, Renminbi, Dinar, Rupee, etc., in the same Game within which world currencies exchange with each other today.

May the best currency win.

(Editors note: The above post is #5 in a series [1], [2], [3], [4], [5] introducing The Value Game to a new class of business methods.  The first real world application is Social Flights; a collaborative production / consumption game being deployed to the market.  If this works, the new business method class will be generalized throughout the economy to catalyze the convertibility of social currency.  Please join us at The Future of Money and Technology Summit in San Francisco on february 28th 2011 where we will unveil the work to the technology community)

The New Value Movement

I believe that it is important to make a distinction between New Currency and New Value. The potential for confusion is high but the implications of getting this wrong could be catastrophic.

The Storage and Exchange of Value

A currency is a social system designed to store and exchange value.  Value is what people make when they do things together.  Not so obvious is that a particular type of currency may not be very good for storing and exchanging a particular type of value.  It is obvious that dollars may adequately representing the physical value of a computer, however, those same dollars may not be very good at representing the social value of a community using computer systems to interact with each other.

The New Value Movement:

From yesterday’s post: I have encountered hundreds of people developing social currencies with increasingly creative and constructive methods because their community is important to them. People are trying to solve the great puzzle of  human division because their community is important to them. People are trying to resolve the constraints in natural resources and the limitations on our planet, because their community is important to them.

The New Value Movement is precisely that; a movement to articulate, store, and exchange New Value arising from technological advances and NOT adequately served by the existing financial system that enabled those technological advances in the first place.

The Total Value is the True Value

The idea of New Value is not to replace the current financial system, rather, the net total of value articulated by both systems exceeds the maximum value that traditional money alone is capable of processing.  Convertibility between New Value and old currency will be conducted using a yet unknown New Currency that many now call “Social Currency”.  When the total monetary system can articulate the total value of the Earth AND it’s human resources, only then can an organic set of priorities be delivered to a market.

The New Currency Movement:

On the other hand, the image of a New Currency often evokes the wholesale replacement of an old currency brought about by the collapse of a financial system, hyperinflation, destruction of the factors of production, the introduction of some unforeseen peril, induced volatility, political risk, nationalization, war, terrorism, famine, plague, pestilence, etc.,…Obviously, the differences between the two movements could not be more stark…

A Clear and Present dAnger

It is also apparent that the traditional financial system has become fragile and it must never be in the best interest of anyone to benefit from increasing this fragility. The Internet and emerging social media technologies have finally integrated the tools that people need to organize themselves into New Value economic developers. However, during the transition, individual people or groups will hold the power to both stabilize and destabilize.

The danger is that a new currency ideal may seek to benefit from the premature collapse of the old currency system. This is not creating new value, this is the transfer of value by the abuse of power against the very system that supports that power. This is precisely the flaw that the new value movement is trying to correct.

Social Value Creation; A Blank Canvas

The evolution of money

Money has evolved from coins to paper to electronic accounts. Now we see the emergence of mobile electronic accounts. Money may represent value but does it actually represent the value creation process? If not, then what does and which is more important?

PayPal wants to be like the electrical socket that all mobile payment innovations plug into.   In fact, they have a standing invitation for all technology partners in the mobile payment space to integrate with them. This is called an externalization strategy (much like Facebook, Twitter and Windows), where there are so many developers, users, and participants that NOT being on the platform becomes the competitive disadvantage.

The PayPal offer represents the separation of money from the value creation process.  This exposes a very interesting point to consider.

The Frictions of Monetization

The assumption is that PayPal et al will store and exchange dollars, and only dollars.  As such, they are contained within the financial system: credit score system, a person’s name, birth date, and the social security number as a personal identifier, the IRS reporting jurisdiction, and commercial code vetting mechanisms, etc.

Similarly, the drive to monetize in Social Media is pushing applications toward the same containment within the financial system.  Not surprisingly, the complaints of privacy and data security in Social Media stem precisely from association with credit scores, IRS, personal identifiers, Social Security Numbers, etc.  But “Big Social” presses on – they know not another way. Ironically, this is precisely the battleground; the source of all intermediary tactical and social friction that hinders monetization in the first place.  It has little to do with the creation of value – only containment of value.  To win is to lose.

A Better Proxy for Value

The reality of governance dictates that all business ventures begin and end in a standard currency of commerce such as the dollar.  However, there are NO restrictions on which currency must be traded in between to “create value”.   Nor is there any schedule that determines when a venture must begin, end, or be liquidated to dollars.

While The Social Value Game may start and end with dollars, the value creation process is carried out in a social currency using a “Social Credit Score”, an anonymous “Unique Identifier”, and a collection of “Social Vetting Institutions” independent of government or corporate jurisdiction.  The Value Game is a frictionless, tax-free and self-regulating environment without the guy wires of the financial industry.  The game simply leverages existing value socially to make new social value.

Social Value Specifications

The Social Value Creation Process is a blank canvas and we are writing the specifications today.  If a social currency becomes a better proxy for productivity – it may also become a stand-alone currency fully capable of capitalization and securitization. Theoretically, a social currency may never need to be converted to financial currency any more than a dollar ever needs to be convertible to silver or gold – it simply becomes another ledger entry on an accounting balance sheet.

Is Money Irrelevant?

The value creation process is the hard part.  Transformation of Social Currency into Financial Currency will become easy – anyone can do it.  In other words, if PayPal becomes irrelevant, the money evolution chain will be broken and money will become obsolete.  The market is wide open for a money competitor who can simply transcribe a social currency transaction into a ledger entry for financial currency. It’s a lot easier and closer to reality than many people think.

Trading Money in for Value

Money is a convenient way to store and exchange value. Unless the world enters into a free trade agreement with Martians, Earth is the physical boundary of all existing value.

No matter what a monetary currency is called or how it behaves in the financial system, by definition, it can never represent any more than the value that exists on Earth.

Value is reflected by  “Market Capitalization” of corporation, Roads, Bridges, infrastructure, armies, education, food, real estate, and all so-called tangible things. Intangibles such as human resources, public assets, and shared natural resources are only valuable to the extent that people depend on those resources for survival. Not surprisingly, “tangible” means all things that can be controlled and “intangible” means everything else.

However, if you look at how all value is created, it all eventually boils down to human knowledge.  All control and influence over human knowledge boils down to the individual. All Value on Earth is stored between our collective ears.  In order to fully assess the global financial system, there must be a corresponding global inventory of human knowledge.  There is no body of any influence in the world proposing this as a means of defining solvency.

Meanwhile, the social media revolution is slowly introducing a global knowledge inventory to financial markets with effects that are becoming increasingly profound. In case you have not noticed, money no longer represents value, it represents the control of value.  Social media is disrupting who, what, when, where, and how all the value can or cannot be controlled.

With every new exotic financial maneuver, the monetary currency becomes increasingly divorced from the value of human productivity.  With every new advancement in social media applications, human productivity is becoming less controlled by money.  Watch the news – the battle fields are all about who what when where and how someone can control what is between your ears.

Not surprisingly, governments, marketers, advertisers and even academia are the first and most public victims of losing control of their message.  Their message is being re-written by forces outside their control.

This is serious – Don’t let anyone try to convince you that the value of social currency is not hedging the value of financial currency.

Today, we are on the cusp of the greatest revolution that the world has ever known. The control of money may go to the banks but the control of value will not.  It will happen when people decide it will happen.  Perhaps they already have…2012 anyone?

Future of Money and Technology Summit; Non-Quantifiable Exchanges

The above video playlist consists of the full 6 parts of the expert panel discussing non-quantifiable exchanges as recorded on April 26 2010 at the Future of Money and Technology Summit in San Francisco. The complete video is about 55 minutes. I encourage you to watch it because very few discussions about the future of money approach the subject with as much experience, introspection, and clarity as this historic panel has.

This is not another doom-gloom room – but a truly optimistic model of a future financial system built on a platform of social media. These panelists represent some of the top thought leaders, visionaries, and practitioners in the area of “Local Social” – where nothing happens until the rubber meets the road. It was a great privilege for me to be a part of this esteemed group.

Panelists:

Tara Hunt; Social Media Strategist, Author: The Whuffie Factor
Daniel Robles, Director, The Ingenesist Project
Micki Krimmel, CEO; NeighborGoods
Chris Heuer, CEO, Social Media Club

Moderator: Tara Hunt

The future of Money and Technology Summit is one of the most important conferences to emerge as a result of the accelerated innovation and organizational re-structuring forming as a result of increasing constraints on the global financial system. We all look forward to another excellent conference next year!

Should Educators Command an Equity Position in Students?

The idea that a mentor may take an equity position in a protege is not new – it happens in families and extended families as elders are fully aware that the children will provide for the family in the future. The connection is not to hard to grasp that it’s in everyone’s best interest to help the kids – all of the kids. This is the social contract.

Somehow that connection gets lost when everyone is competing for the same set of limited jobs and everyone is responding to the pressures of insurmountable debt to banking institutions.

As Social currencies begin to replace the decaying monetary currency, a new set of social instruments will arise. The scope and range of new social contracts is unlimited and should be expected to increase substantially. These social contracts will become tangible in a communities and may he used in a system of trade that stores and transfers knowledge efficiently in a community.

If a father can teach a son how to become successful in the family business, why can’t a community of fathers teach a community of sons to be successful in a community of businesses? This may need to happen whether we like it or not.

Video; You Can’t Make a Bet Without Odds

C14Dec09_290x390Entrepreneurs won’t make a bet without odds. So when it comes down to assembling knowledge assets into an innovation enterprise, how can entrepreneurs predict the likelihood that they will be successful? The short answer is that they cannot.

The simple truth is that humans have not evolved to the point where they will organize themselves as knowledge assets in a financial system – they still need to use a proxy for their productivity controlled by a master, a corporation, an idealism. It’s called money, politics, and fear.

This is the greatest constraint on economic growth that America faces, not inflation, debt, taxes, or regulation….entrepreneurs have simply run out of info juice. This is the greatest challenge of our times. What are the odds that we’ll figure it out?

Is Wall Street Irrelevant to an Innovation Economy?

The most difficult challenge facing the modern creative entrepreneur is the funding of innovation. Likewise, the greatest constraint on an innovation economy is the funding of innovation. Having great new ideas is the easy part; actually building something around those ideas is hard work.

As such, the funding all of that hard work is the constraint on innovation economy. Traditionally, the “corporation” served as the legal entity within which all the hard work would be contained and the accounting system through which it would be financed. But even that arrangement does not work well enough to support a new economic paradigm for an innovation economy.

Is Wall Street Irrelevant to an Innovation Economy?

Our modern and supposedly efficient financial system in fact punishes innovation. If a company announces a new multi-year allocation of a substantial amount of money toward new innovation, stock price of the company is pushed downward since the funding would apparently be taken from today’s profits. The market would prefer to take their money elsewhere until the (now unfunded) innovation is market ready.

The prospect for the individual entrepreneur is worse. The modern and supposedly efficient banking system does not acknowledge an entrepreneur’s good idea and the work that they are willing to do to reach fruition.

So if most innovation (and the hard work of developing it) is self-funded, and all innovation (and the hard work of developing it) is the basis of all wealth creation, why do we need Wall Street? Ironically, the ‘revelation’ of the next economic paradigm is that Wall Street is ‘irrelevant’.

The opportunity for the future is to develop a financial system that does accommodate the fact of innovation and the willingness of entrepreneurs to do the hard work of developing it.

If taken in aggregate – the total wealth creation of all private innovation is obviously some positive number. If better data were accumulated regarding all the private innovation that is happening, then that positive number for overall wealth creation can be predicted within a range. The better the data are, the smaller the range for this estimate of net wealth creation.

If net wealth creation can accommodate the past and predicted into the future, then a cash flow can be assigned to all private innovation. If a cash flow can be predicted, then a bond can be issued backed by this estimated cash flow. This cash flow, while not actually realized can be expressed in terms of an IOU credit. These credits can be traded like money

Now it becomes in the best interest of a market to protect, nurture, and legitimize the innovators who are willing to do the hard work to develop the next innovation industries.

Is Wall Street Irrelevant to an Innovation Economy?

Deep Web; Database of databases of databases….

We have posted a few articles about the Deep Web and presented an emerging technology project that promises to provide a database of databases for the next great development of Internet Search.  This short post considers the significance of one aspect of Deep Web Search.

Economics is the science of incentives

Google Search has provided a set of incentives that drives people to document their world by blogging, developing social media, and creating seemingly infinite video content.  The ability to see and be seen is the essence of market economics.

While the promise of searching a huge store of databases may not sound like Saturday social night at the local drive in burger joint, it does by extension, introduce new incentives.  The new technology will drive people to build databases.  A new generation of entrepreneurs will collect, organize, analyze and create – not information – but data.

Database of databases of databases

The first things entrepreneurs will organize are human knowledge data – starting with their own, then relating it to others. Not unlike the human genome project, the vast human knowledge reservoir will be mapped. Entrepreneurs will enter their communities (on line, neighborhood, work, school, church, social networks) and create a database for what other people know and parse the data in any number of important and useful databases.

The reason for this is simple; data are collections of human observations.This is the only thing people are willing to pay for. Markets cannot and do not get any more fundamental than that.

Old News is Bad News

Anyone who follows the news, social media, or some of the tech blogs may have noticed a lot of rehashing of old data – every blog has a posts about how social media will “really catch on”.   New media isn’t so new anymore.  The only thing that makes money is is the disclosure or new data – followed by weeks of rehashing of the data all the way down the rankings.

Next Economic Paradigm

All Financial instruments are characterized in terms of a quantity and a quality. Real news, real insight, and real productivity results from new and reliable data, qualified interpretation of data, and relevant analysis of data – relative to time.   The value of money is directly associated with the quantity and quality of the data representing money – relative to time.

Summary: Going to the source

Data alone are useless.  People must process data into information – the backbone of all economics.  Human knowledge and productivity is the source of all information – derived from data.  Therefore, the only things people are willing to pay for are, in fact, data. Monetization of social media may be the deep dive into the data. Do the math. That’s big news.

Deep Web: The Data Will Set You Free

Conversational Currency Blog continues to present components of the Next Economic Paradigm as we spot the integrations. We believe that one of these features is the Deep Web, estimated to be 500 times bigger than the surface web or “Google-verse”.

One way to get an idea of how the deep web is hidden from view is to perform any simple Google search except add the term “database”. You immediately notice that an entirely different set of results appear – much of it is extremely interesting and useful. If you do this several times over several terms you will soon ask yourself:

“Where can I find a database of databases?”

Now take your original search term and add “database of databases” to it and again an entirely new search result appears. The results become highly localized and less organized. The results show FAR LESS ADVERTISING and even a few more subscription based data enterprises. But more than anything, the results give you an idea of how large the Deep Dark Web may be.

Now return to the surface web and visit your favorite blog. Where exactly are bloggers getting their insights? Follow the trail of references back to the sources (pass through Wikipedia and Forrester) and you will eventually wind up back at the Deep web.

Revenge of the Librarians

Now here comes Internous. A technology start up by library Scientists who shines the light on the Deep Dark Web with a search engine concept that combines both algorithmic search with human classification. By introducing a new standard called The Internet Search Environment Number, Internous will soon organize the database of databases.

The Next Economic Paradigm

Meanwhile, The Ingenesist Project has specified a parallel financial system with a currency similar to the dollar except backed by innovation instead of debt (both are a proxy for future productivity). In the specifications they call for a knowledge inventory system for what people in a community know (“what’s between their ears?”) as an requirement for a proxy for future productivity in a new financial system. While nobody can predict exactly how this may eventually arise, we most certainly will watch new technologies such as the ISEN very carefully.

Special thanks to Matt Theobald. Here is the Internous video – well worth the time!!

Freedom of Speech; Use it Wisely

The recent Google quandary involving that most unfortunate rendering of Mrs. Obama led to many interesting articles about the invisible line between freedom of speech and profiting from indecency against another person (or group of persons).

Among the more intriguing conclusions is that those who exercise their freedom of speech should do so at the price of their anonymity.  As such, the community can likewise exercise their freedom of speech in response…sort of a market incentive system, it seems.

So what exactly would happen if the offensive content were accompanied by the name, address, business, and email of the person who created it?  How would their personal freedom be enhanced or restricted based on their contribution to the “self-discovery” of society?  How does a social medium enhance or restrict the inalienable rights so preserved in our nation’s constitution by our infinitely wise founding fathers?

I suppose that the founding fathers also had an issue with anonymity.  By virtue of their signature on the declaration of independence, they were willing to pay for their freedom of speech with their lives. This singular act is what empowered the document most. They bet their skin to preserve their oppressor’s freedom of speech regarding the same matter of independence.  Today we call that courage but in most communities it is common practice:

Community Currency Systems

MAC2Community Currency Systems are not new, in fact, they preceded the current financial system by, say, 50,000 years. The focus of this blog resource is to investigate all currencies and reflect them upon the image of a vast new technological breakthrough called social media.

Our hope is to discover, specify, and influence the formation a new financial system that allows communities to trade among each other for basic goods and services before, during, and after the “reboot” of our current economic system.  We are optimistic that the current economic system will ebb in favor of a next economic paradigm that reflects social priorities as a means of meeting Wall Street Priorities. We’ll be posting several articles on the subject in the coming days.

Here are some of the earlier resources to get you started on local currency and other aspects of community economics.  I like the early systems because their rationale was independent of more recent influencers such as 9/11, TARP, GWB, etc.

YOU are MONEY

money-head-suitSome HR bloggers are calling for a new profession called “Social Media Administrator”.  While there are many opinions and wide agreement about the roles and responsibilities – most of which I fully agree with – I would like to add the following considerations:

The corporate social media administrator should have a direct connection, responsibility and accountability with other social media administrators external to the corporation.  Not unlike a board of directors having diverse membership.  The membership and reputation of member of a Social Media BOD is also on the line.

Social media is just that, social.  It cannot be sequestered fully behind corporate walls and must be open and transparent in it’s message.  The Social Media administrator must protect the voices of those who speak.  While there is a constitutional amendment for freedom of speech in our government and the basis of democracy, none exists for corporations who use the information or the social media enterprise that hold “possession” of the information for eternity.

A market can only be efficient with adequate vetting mechanisms; the SEC vets Wall Street, The FAA vets Airlines, and the system of Checks and Balances vets government.  When the vetting mechanism fails, so too does the market.

Few people can see why this is important largely because the reasoning lies in economics and market theory.  Simply put, we are entering a new economic paradigm unlike anything we have ever seen or could imagine.  The idea that each and every iota of knowledge, experience, and opinion that exists between your ears behaves like a financial instrument has not fully been explained.  YOU are MONEY in every definition of the word.  Your productivity supports the value of the dollar. You own your knowledge, it is your property – you can waste it, you can mint more of it, you can borrow it, and you can lend it – and you should be able to capitalize in any currency of your choosing.

The only thing missing is a financial system for your knowledge. If we are smart – and ONLY if we are smart, this system will arise with the continued convergence of social media.  Among the KEY elements that MUST be in place is a public accounting system for Social Media Administration.

The New Economic Paradigm; Part 6: The Business Plan

The objective of this series is to contain what we know about social networks within the construct of the financial system.  The intention is for knowledge to behave, and thereby trade like a financial instrument.  In prior articles, we discovered the currency, the inventory, the institutions, and the entrepreneurs of the next economic paradigm.  This module will construct the business plan:

A business plan is the blue print for the construction of enterprise.

Like the construction of any tangible asset, an inventory of parts is assembled in strategic proportions.  The ability to accomplish this gives the enterprise a strategic and competitive advantage in a market.

Business failures are knowledge failures

Most enterprises will emphasize design, or service, or performance or price in their proprietary secret sauce of market success.  The question becomes, what quantities and qualities of strategic components allow the new enterprise to create a positive economic outcome.

Most business failure are due to knowledge deficits such as the inexperienced management team, a poor assessment of market conditions, under estimating the amount of money needed, under estimating a competitor, loss of a key employee, or the poor understanding of the technology, etc.  These are knowledge problems not financial problems.

Prediction is the quality of knowledge:

To solve the knowledge problems is to decrease the risk of innovating and increase the predictability of innovations. To decrease the risk will decrease the cost, and increase the availability, of venture capital.  To increase the predictability would increase entrepreneurial activity.

The Unit Business Plan:

The business plan of the innovation economy is very simple; it starts with the single transaction between two people.  The lender provides information and the borrower combines the information with their existing knowledge to create more knowledge.  This single transaction has a value of 1 unit of currency and we call it a unit business transaction:

The Parallel Circuit:

Now we will assemble these single transactions in many combinations.  When we combine two unit transactions in a parallel circuit.  This represents a brain storming session between two people.

The Percentile Search Engine matches the person with the most worthy knowledge supply to a person with the most worthy knowledge demand. The transaction is a simple conversation and the outcome is a prototype process, system, method, or iteration.

The Series Circuit:

The next transaction type is modeled as two unit business transactions occurring in a series circuit.  This represents a product development cycle.

Each cycle of these transactions is an improvement to the business objective. Each time the transaction occurs there is a net increase of new knowledge and therefore an increase in value.  New options are created.  The conversation stops when the product is ready for the market, cancellation, or next physical iteration.

The transaction is recorded as an event between two known persons of known knowledge inventories.  The transaction is stored in the intellect of the participants and becomes their property in the form of a knowledge asset represented by the things they create with their knowledge.

The Social Network:

Now if we combine the parallel transaction with the series transaction we have what now looks like a network.  In practice, we know that strong networks of people freely exchanging ideas make organizations better, smarter, and more efficient.  Networks are where knowledge and community wisdom is stored. A network is fault tolerant, if one person leaves, the network survives. For a relatively small input into a network, we can produce a large output of new knowledge – we have a learning organization.

However, in society, these interactions are largely accidental; people meet at Church, Starbucks, and Social Events or by word of mouth. Other times, these interactions are concentrated inside a single community of very similar people such as a technical conference, group meeting, or lunch buddies and are often not well diversified.  More recently, interaction is self selecting through social media devices such as Twitter, Linkedin, Craigslist, Biznik, and Meetup, etc.

What if the social interactions could be made less random and more intentional?

Suppose interactions be designed with a specific purpose by the entrepreneur as a means toward producing a unique outcome. The Innovation Bank will combine people of complementary knowledge assets in a calculated manner in order to arrive at specific business approaches and applications.

What if Innovation could be made less random and more intentional?

The Multiplier Effect:

A special case business plan is called the Multiplier Effect. In effect, building a network of applications from a network of knowledge assets.

Suppose that a company owns composite material technology for use on aircraft.  Since the company specializes in airplanes, they have no intention of pursuing other applications such as recreational equipment, energy production, or health care products.

The Innovation Bank:

Suppose that the company could deposit this asset in a bank and collect interest.  The Search Engine can scan the business landscape to find persons or organizations with a worthy knowledge deficit in the area of your technology. The originator holds the option to see what those other companies invent and hold the right to use their new ideas in an aircraft application. 

Contracts manage those options.  Those contracts are social contracts and they can be traded.  They are a form of currency – or stored value.

In the event of a cyclic downturn, instead of “laying off” knowledge assets, people can work in tangential industries where they will continue developing – literally putting “Knowledge in the Bank” – to be called back to their original company when market conditions improve.  A mobile knowledge asset increases in value and continually becomes smarter and more productive over time. This is not socialism, this is not capitalism, this is Ingenesism – from the root word: Ingenuity.

Market Efficiencies:

With an innovation Bank, a company can reduce their Research and Development costs and create additional revenue in a tangential innovation market.  Millions of people are being layed off work from corporations – billions upon billions of dollars of innovation potential is being squandered.  With reduced cost and risk of innovation, The new American corporations will specialize in inventing, networking, and applying new ideas as their primary revenue source.

The Fertilizer Economy

The bad, the good, and the ugly

The bad news is that United States has a global comparative advantage in producing bullshit. The good news is that we may actually be able to till it into fertilizer for the Innovation economy.

America’s financial crisis was caused by money created from money which was in turn a derivative of wild-eyed speculation in assorted proxies for real productivity, including real estate.  Stock prices were supported by imperfect information in a Tickle-Me-Elmo culture while broker fees are embedded in every conceivable transaction.

America has become a world leader in hype, marketing, lawsuits, and fantasy. None of these industries actually produce anything yet nobody can say they are not immensely creative, induce sweeping social movements, and their propagation demands extraordinary intellectual resources, flexibility, and adaptability.

The Theory of Comparative Advantage

It is not efficient for, say, Ghana to produce rice and Vietnam to produce cocoa. If they each produce their natural endowments and then trade the differences, fewer resources are expended to produce more goods.  This theory is the basis of global free trade and the efficiencies are irrefutable so globalization is here to stay.

Meanwhile, the literature on the subject of innovation agrees that innovation is maximized as a function of endowments in social capital, creative capital and intellectual capital.  Silicon Valley is widely held as the poster child for emerging from the deep social movements of the 1960’s attracting an inflow of diverse people where high tolerance, creative art and music were abundant in close proximity to intellectual centers of Stanford and Berkeley.

Comparative Advantage for Innovation:

By the theory of comparative advantage, if a country does not possess a comparative advantage in intellectual capital, creative capital, and social capital, they would not hold a comparative advantage in an innovation economy.

For example; China has a huge endowment of intellectual capital and throughout history they have been an inspired creative force.  However, the current government thwarts social capital.  Therefore, whereas China has a comparative advantage in a manufacturing economy, they would not necessarily have a comparative advantage in an innovation economy.

Many other countries have endowments of intellectual capital as well as democratic governments, but cultural norms may still constrain diversity related to gender roles, social classes, lifestyle tolerance, or the acceptance of “outsiders”.  As such, they may have comparative advantage in a knowledge economy, but the relative deficiency in creative capital would inhibit a comparative advantage in an innovation economy just as quickly.

The Fertilizer Economy:

That said, the United States has a vast abundance and tremendous economies of scale in social capital, intellectual capital, and creative capital in comparison to any other country in the world.  The problem is that these assets are sequestered behind the corporate veil, suppressed from true wealth creation by the priorities of a financial system built to produce nothing except analyst expectations.  Like sugar calories, lots of energy is delivered, but sustainable health is not.

The harvest in the wind

The brokers, speculators, and marketers are not bad people – in fact, they are brilliant.  They are simply stuck with the wrong set of incentives.  The Ingenesist Project dramatically changes the incentives and promises a far better allocation of intellectual capital, social capital, and creative capital.  By making such assets tangible outside the construct of the Wall Street, the comparative advantage of the United States in an innovation economy will be astonishing.

Where there is fertilizer in the wind, Wall Street will lead. Where there is a harvest in the wind, Wall Street will follow.

The US Financial System – Tail Wagging Dog

The financial system is not the problem.  The Innovation System is the problem – or did you notice that we do not have an “innovation system”?  Finance and Innovation in the US has engaged in the dangerous dance of tail wagging dog.  Innovation is as Wall Street does; not the other way around.  This is wrong, this is very wrong.

Doers, not shakers

[Our economic strength is derived from the doers, the makers of things, the innovators who create and expand enterprises, the workers who provide life to companies and, with their earnings, support families and invest in their future… This is what drives economic growth.] – Barack Obama

These are sobering words.  It make one wonder how everyone else makes a living; the brokers, the agents, the middlemen, the gatekeepers, the spinners, the flippers, the money managers, and everyone else in the game with their hands “in the flow of money” dragging the system into a tailspin.  Many of these people publicly criticize the working class, who have finally run out of steam, for gumming up their game.

It is also amazing that the engineers, educators, technologists, medical professionals, and public servants could produce so much for so long; enough to feed everyone else – except, as of recently, themselves.

[The financial system is central to this process, transforming the earnings and savings of American workers into the loans that finance a first home, a new car or a college education, the credit necessary to build a company around a new idea.] – Tim Geithner

Meet the Master:

The financial system is supposed to be the servant, not the master.  Innovation takes time, effort and resources before the payback can be realized.  For this reason only, the financial system bridges that time gap to allow for increased future productivity to generate new wealth for use by all.  That is the only reason why the financial system should exists.  But somehow we have gotten it backwards.

We got it backwards:

Technological change must precede economic growth.  We are going about the process of globalization as if economic growth can precede technological change.  The invention of the wheel, wedge and the pulley came before the invention of the Collateralized Debt Obligation (CDO) – there is no excuse for this oversight. This is clearly unsustainable and the process must be reversed.

An easy fix, almost:

The Ingenesist project specifies 3 web applications that will allow social capital, creative capital, and intellectual capital to become tangible outside of the bloated and failing financial system.  These applications will make innovation success predictable.  If success is predictable, then cash flows are predictable.  Using the same calculus as Wall Street, the cash flows can be combined, diversified, and split up into innovation bonds with superior returns that can be issued to fund new and sustainable innovation enterprise. Problem solved.

3 steps away from a quantum leap:

This can be done today playing by the rules and using existing technology – 3 simple applications.  That is how close we are to achieving the most important evolutionary step in human history.  The Government needs to empower the people to release themselves from the shackles of debt created by those who create little else.  For this reason, Obama is on the only correct path – buying time so that this important social media technology can mature.

To Awaken a Giant

“Our workers are no less productive than when this crisis began. Our minds are no less inventive, our goods and services no less needed than they were last week or last month or last year. Our capacity remains undiminished”.

– Barak Obama

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The gloves are off:

Mr. Obama’s statement is profound; in a single stroke, he liberated social capital, creative capital, and intellectual capital from the oppressive arm of the financial markets.  This sends a strong message to entrenched and corrupted financial operatives that they no longer hold a monopoly on American productivity.

The factors of production carried over from the last century; land, labor, and capital, can be now be challenged by social capital, creative capital, and intellectual capital as factors of production for an Innovation Economy.

The third option:

Q. So how exactly does a country meet a 50+ Trillion dollar obligation?
A. It depends on the social agreement.

First, we could default and let the system crash. Second, we could endeavor to pay it back by committing the next several generations to servitude of the debt.  Or, there is the third option that nobody talks about.

Create a new currency.

Almost every country has done it.  Mexico replaced the old “Peso” with a “New Peso” (worth 1000 old Pesos).  Europe created a new common currency.  Chinese Yuan is a “bridge currency” that gets them from point A to point B. Each of these examples is different, but they have one very important element in common; they are utterly dependent on a social agreement.

People must agree to exchange the new currency on the streets.  Social agreement, creative agreement, and intellectual agreement drives entrepreneurship and all must be achieved completely or “black markets” will form undermining the entire system.

The Tipping Point

We know a few things about currency outcomes.  If inflation occurs, people with “cash” will lose it, while people with “debt” will see it deflate.  The US can erase the deficit by inducing inflation and deflating the debt if production capacity remains undiminished. People, organizations, and governments that have exactly as much cash as they have debt will see no net loss or gain.  In fact, the entire world’s financial system is worth exactly as much as it owes to itself – minus the value of social capital, creative capital, intellectual capital and natural resources – now, set free. 

Social Agreement

As inflation progresses, there will be a point where a critical mass of the “social agreement” will hold the same amount of cash as they hold debt – their net loss will be zero.  That’s when the system can reboot.  obviously there will be serious consequences to any of the options, but this time, unlike any other time in history, social media will be the vehicle upon which the social agreement is catalyzed and not necessarily mandated by policy makers.

The Obama Factor

“Starting today, we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America”

Mr. Obama is right – the outcome depends on us. We cannot expect government or corperations to attend to all of our needs because we are the ones who individually and collectively own and control the factors of production that will support the next currency. The road to opportunity has been cleared and the invitation has been cast.  We must now reach deep into our imagination and define the new business system where social capital, creative capital, and intellectual capital are directly tangible in a new global economic imperative; the Innovation Economy.

A System of Innovation

We have established that Innovation and wealth creation are profoundly related and that one cannot be sustained without the other.  A huge problem is becoming apparent because Money lives in a complex, global and highly integrated system where billions of dollars can circle the globe daily at the speed of light. Meanwhile, innovation does not live in an equally diverse, integrated and global system.

Instead, innovation lives in the patent system which is extremely slow, prohibitively expensive and full of secret language and legal strategy – certainly not accessible to most people who actually do the innovating.  In the immediate financial crisis where we are printing money at an astonishing rate, we must increase the speed, quantity, and quality of innovation at a comparable rate in order to preserve the balance.  We need an Innovation System to balance the Financial system.

Everyone knows that innovation happens in places like Silicon Valley, Corporations, a bunch of research labs, someplace in Japan, and of course the proverbial “Steve’s Garage”; but these places do not behave like a system, they are not integrated and they often compete rather than cooperate. Everyone knows what money is – but innovation is treated like some sort of mystery potion related to supreme knowledge among the gifted few.

Nothing could be further from the truth. Remember in the last chapter, the billions upon billions of tiny ideas are basically crowd sourced.  These ideas are combined into larger advances and that process continues until, say, an IPod rolls off the assembly line.   We readily call the IPod the innovation, but not the billions of tiny ideas.

A System of Innovation

Our accounting system is used to keep track of money, it is not designed to keep track of billions of tiny ideas.  So it calls human knowledge “intangible” while the IPod is “tangible”.  Somewhere along the line our culture reinforces this idea.  The truth is that knowledge is not intangible – knowledge is simply invisible.  This is a much easier problem to solve.

Intellectual Capital, social capital, and creative capital are locked up inside corporations sitting behind processes, job descriptions, and insulated from tangibility by multiple levels of management.  The command and control system arose from the industrial revolution, and with the help of Wall Street, is responsible for great innovation advances leading humanity to a global gross domestic product of 65 trillion dollars. However, the volume of innovation under this system is no longer sufficient to sustain the debt that it has also created.

Today, the phenomenon of Social Networks is showing us that human knowledge is desperately trying to become visible, and predictably, innovation in this area is increases at a remarkable rate!  The challenge now is to marry the phenomenon of social media to the financial system just like corporations are married to the financial system through Wall Street.

In market economics there are five components that are essential for a market to work properly; first, there is a currency of trade; like Dollars, or Euros, or Yen. Second, there is always an inventory so we can find pieces, count them, and build stuff. Third, there are financial and government institutions that are supposed to protect property rights to keep the game fair so that the people that own things don’t get ripped off. Fourth, we have entrepreneurs to do the fuzzy math, they interact with the system, they fill in the grey areas, and they manage risk. Finally, there is a business plan so that the entrepreneur can do what they do best – buy low, add value, sell high and pocket the difference. That’s how a market works. It’s quite simple.

Now listen carefully, these five elements are tightly connected and must be present in some way at every transaction. If any one of these elements is missing, disconnected, or corrupted, the system will fail. This is the underlying cause of the financial crisis, the system became disconnected.

We need to make “knowledge” look like money, walk like money, and talk like money and some real interesting things should happen.

The next several modules will go step by step through the five elements of market economics and we’ll uncover as best as we can those same five elements as they exist today in our knowledge economy.  Then we’ll connect the dots, fill in the blanks – and out pops the innovation economy!!!

After that, we’ll discover the new business methods of the innovation economy. And finally, we will talk about the thousands of new “corporations” that will arise. Literally, every business that we know of can be made more efficient in an environment where knowledge is tangible and a great deal of new wealth creation will occur.

Social Media; A Public Innovation System

In order to restructure our financial system; we first need to restructure our innovation system.  ALL of the top ten reasons for business failure are due to a lack of knowledge, not a lack of money.

Top 10 reasons why businesses fail:

1.    Lack of an adequate, viable business plan
2.    Insufficient sales to sustain business
3.    Poor marketing plan: unappealing product, poor customer identification, incorrect pricing and lackluster promotion
4.    Inadequate capital, misuse of capital and poor cost control
5.    Poor management skills: lack of delegation, leadership and/or control
6.    Lack of experience and knowledge
7.    Lack of managerial focus/commitment
8.    Poor customer service
9.    Inadequate human resource management
10.    Failure to properly use professional advice: i.e. accounting, legal, financial, etc.

Lack of a viable business plan is an act of negligence where research, scenarios, and assumptions have not been tested.  Market ignorance is not an excuse nor is the failure to know one’s customer. Death by poor marketing plan is knowledge deficiency related to product appeal, customer identification, pricing structure, and lackluster promotion.  Obviously, one needs to know how to manage a company in order to be focused, let alone correctly estimate capital needs. Lack of customer service knowledge is deadly in the age of social media. Inadequate HR is an oxymoron – if it’s inadequate, it’s not a resource – human or otherwise.  Finally, failure to listen to knowledgeable people is ego driven irrationality.

The financial system is not the only problem; the innovation system is a crucial element. Information, knowledge and innovation, by any definition, are profoundly and inseparably connected.  A failure in one kills the other two.  So, just because an entrepreneur does not have the knowledge, does not mean it the ‘knowledge’ fails to exist – it simply means that entrepreneur failed to find it.

So where is the knowledge? Unfortunately, there is no public knowledge inventory – people do not know what each other knows.  There is no website where that people can go search for all 90th percentile social media experts living in zip code 06776, let alone build a dedicated local management team.  There is no way that anyone can assemble the knowledge needed to execute a business plan with a known probability of success given the information available.  As such, there is no way to finance public innovation.

Insurance companies can tell you the probability that you will die exactly on your 80th birthday, but we cannot estimate the probability that a business will be successful.  Nothing has more variables that human physiology, yet it is predictable and business success probability is not.  Why can’t this be fixed?

If we could identify, integrate, and predict public information, knowledge and innovation, we could diversify risk exposures away.  With risk exposures managed, we could insure start-ups risks.  With start-up risk eliminated, we can sell innovation bonds at, say, 6% to fund the extraordinary rate of public innovation that we need to support our debt and pressing social liabilities.   If the innovation bond returns a modest 20%, human productivity, by definition, has increased by 20%.  A 20% growth in human productivity is a 20% growth in an economy.  Again, financial system is not the only problem; the innovation system – or lack of an innovation system – is the problem.  Perhaps oversimplified, but this is an astonishing omission from the national dialog on the financial crisis.

The emergence of Social Media technology presents an extraordinary opportunity to organize a knowledge inventory outside the construct of a corporation and marry it to the financial system, much like a corporation.  Knowledge tangibility must be the most important “innovation” in the pipeline today if we expect to meet the crushing challenges that await us.  Just because we cannot predict innovation does not mean it cannot be done – it just means that we do not know how… yet. This is not about inventing a new currency, it is about the public taking control of the old one. We, the people, don’t deserve to lose this game; join The Ingenesist Project and help build a sustainable Innovation Economy.

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