on attaining a majority

November 25 will be 18 months since I first started writing the blog (although it was on hiatus for a few months this summer, so, it’s true, I haven’t actually been writing it for 18 months but I bite the bullet and write this anyway). The last blog summary proper was back in February and I give you the link just for tidiness sake – the post itself doesn’t say very much useful now.

Getting a tweet nod (see about this blog) from Lee Rainie, Director of the Pew Internet Project, in August, was heartening.

After a year I had built up what I think is a good working people’s definition of Cloud-based and that’s on this page.

There have been two main ideas so far. The first is the notion that the ecosystem of social networks can be considered as a Cloud-based collection of digital countries together forming a digital world that parallels our Real World. It connects physically to the Real World only by the cable that carries the electricity to power it. I call that world cldwrld (cloudworld) and populate it with Digital Inhabitants. By creating such a model many of the challenges presented by Cloud-based services, ranging from privacy to economy, make for easier analysis and I have skipped around those topics. There is a page called ideas from the first year which gives a good idea of that.

The second, which kind of took my breath away and was responsible for me taking a leave of absence from this blog during the summer to explore more fully, was the idea of Cloud-based Dynamic Information Mapping, a term which I came up with, discovered was in use by only a few people for something else, according to Google and thus appropriated. The Mapping part refers to spatial mapping and not geographical mapping and it’s really dynamic mapping of dynamic information since an important part of the mapping is that the map and its elements actually move on command. But that sounded cumbersome so I squeezed the two “dynamics” into one.

The exciting thing about DIM is precisely that the foundation of information Gathering and Sharing is now space and not time as it is in books, ebooks and blogs (in that order). So it’s a dramatic other track for the future of Gathering and Sharing and I have some thinking about that in a blog post called everything everywhere everybody. Furthermore, since it’s Cloud-based it immediately allows for collaborative and real-time updating and, with map linking, allows for constellations of maps to be created.

You can find my personal map at an organization called debategraph here, with links to other maps that talk about this and my example map for news about the Gulf oil spill 2010. Debategraph itself is a tool for facilitating group discussion and has already been used in collaboration with the White House, the UK Prime Minister’s Office, CNN, The Independent in the UK and the European Commission. I think of Debategraph as a specific implementation of dynamic information mapping and am a Debategraph Associate here in New York. Clearly I need to move my work with Debategraph off this blog and I’ll let you know soon, I hope, about how that’s going to happen. Because I know you’re dying to know.

I started a water-cooler blog (contributions I might make to water-cooler conversation) in August 2009 and you can find it here.

Oh, and I still couldn’t find a paying gig.