Personal perspectives on information science, the evolving Internet, delivery of public services online, Web 2.0, the Web of Data, the Semantic Web, communities, folksonomies and more. With an emphasis upon convergence between some or all of the above, and a UK slant.
I almost pointed to thenews(pointless and annoying subscription required) that Disney are to start releasing some of their popular programmes (one is being watched on video downstairs, as I type upstairs) online the day after they are broadcast.
I almost pointed to some of thecoverage. I almost pointed to the fact that theBBCis making full use of the freedoms afforded them by the licence fee and making sizeable chunks oftheirprogramming (such as theApprentice) available online already, at least to their licence fee payers in the UK.
I almost said how good all this was, and almost agreed with Jeff that Disney/ABC's immovable ads would soon be moved.
The podcast was, as usual, great. But it was doubly interesting to me tonight as I listened to it straight after getting off the phone to California, where I'd been recording one of ourTalking with Talisconversations withEd Batista... Executive Director of theAttention Trust.
As Robert said, more than once, that Microsoft should join AttentionTrust, I'm sure he'll be interested to listen to our chat once it goes online.
“Once some technical challenges have been overcome, the 'digitised' books, journals, maps and manuscripts would be made available on the library's website and on a new MSN Book Search service which Microsoft plans to launch next year.”
This new generation of deals between content holders (such as the BL) and access providers (such as Microsoft or Google), in whichbothparties retain rights to exploit the resulting content, mark an important step forward from earlier arrangements in which content holders gave access providers exclusive distribution rights in exchange for money and other services.
Jonathan's messages, about the need to explore quite radical new models of doing business, and about the importance ofunlockingcontent in order to realise (greater) value at a point downstream from the original act of accessing it, resonate.
In the new model, access to content and services need not be controlled by the Gate Keepers who purchase licenses to monolithic blocks of content on our behalf. Economies of scale obviously still have a place, as do coordinated acts of selection. But our employees and our public are increasingly going around the glacially slow straitjackets of institutional/organisational purchasing and interacting directly with those sources of content and services smart and nimble enough to respond. The value of each of these individual interactions is minuscule. The potential is enormous, as is that for a new breed of 'Gate Keeper'; one thatfacilitatesandmediatesrather than controls and constrains.
Jonathan has agreed to talk with me for aTalking with Talisconversation, and we're working out the final details on that just now... I've heard Jonathan a few times now, and am very much looking forward to it. Once we have a firm date I'll invite your questions, as usual.
As is my wont, I listened to this while driving home late yesterday evening. All the clinking cutlery to be heard in the background did my grumbling stomach no good whatsoever! I wonder if the Churchill Club's food tasted as good as it sounded?
“The Government has published 'Transformational Government - Enabled by Technology', a strategy for transforming public services using technology. The strategy sets out how effective use of technology designed around citizens' and businesses' needs can make a real difference to people's daily lives. It is not simply about the internet, but is a far more profound approach that goes to the heart of public services delivery.”
APress Releaseis available on the Cabinet Office web site, which lists the ways in which public services will be improved through the report's recommendations. Of these, the first two resonate particularly well with Library 2.0, and activities at Talis;
“Designing technology and services around the needs of the citizen improving the citizen's choice of interaction with public services.
Sharing services and information across public sector to achieve efficiency and reduce duplication for staff and the public.”
Jonathan Schwartz atSunalsopostedon more or less the same topic which was, I am sure, entirely coincidental.
The move towards network-empowered applications and modes of working is undoubtedly both welcome and powerful, leveraging services and data from around the world, and (Microsoft argue) largely freeing us from the tyranny of the upgrade. As in the old days, someone else updates the applicationonce, on the server, and we simply receive the enhanced functionality.
At the moment, though, we suffer from lack of access toinformation resourceswhen we are off-Net. How crippled will we be when fundamental aspects of our applications (or the applications themselves) and 'our' data are beyond our reach in non-Lufthansa planes, non-GNER trains, or on the other side of exorbitantly expensive hotel network access charges?
The move to embrace and embed the Network has many benefits. We need to crack ubiquitous and affordable access to that Network if those benefits are to truly be realised by people other than those who spend all their time sat at a desk, connected to a wire.
My article on Library 2.0, Web 2.0, and points between, was published inAriadneover the weekend.
Web 2.0: Building the New Librarytakes a look at some of the buzz surrounding Web 2.0 at the moment, and presents a set of high level principles that I feel the concept encompasses. It really sets the scene for a number of pieces to appear in the coming months, in which I shall explore the importance of 'the Platform' in more detail, and assess the fundamental shifts (in policy, outlook, technology and delivery) required of our sector if it is to reassert its value in a rapidly changing world.
“While as a fully paid-up cynic I could be forgiven for fingering the metaphorical revolver on sighting a technology evangelist, the evangelist in question has an excellent track record as Ariadne readers will know. Paul Miller in his article Web 2.0: Building the New Library would seem to lift our eyes above the merely technological and in a series of 'Principles' underpinning Web 2.0 provides us with a set of aims with which relatively few might argue violently - on the face of it. Irrespective of whether Web 2.0 becomes reality or yet another Holy Grail, the debate it has engendered over recent months, centred upon its usefulness to end-users, must be a welcome one. While cautiously recalling previous false dawns, Paul provides an overview of the potential Web 2.0 represents for us, as a concept at least.
In detailing his principles, Paul indicates, for example, the possible capacity of Web 2.0 to address the demands of the Long Tail which is already beginning to rival traditional market behaviours for the attentions of innovators and entrepreneurs alike. But it is the potential for what Tim O'Reilly terms an 'architecture of participation' which should interest us, (in particular the cynics). In an era in which every other politician on the stump bangs on about community values while (sometimes unwittingly) condoning measures which serve only to dilute them, Web 1.0, for all its sins, has fanned, however gently, the embers of community activity. It has provided a means of communication and information for concerned but increasingly isolated citizens who no longer have the time to operate along the traditional but rusting lines of community activity. The capacity of Web 2.0 through technologies such as blogging, file sharing, etc. to empower the ordinary user through more effective means of communication remains to be seen. But it could bring enormous support and even clout to consumer and pressure groups and those at the grass roots of the democratic process. If indeed small is beautiful, flexible, re-combinative, disaggregating, modular and sharing, then Web 2.0 might just be beautiful too.”