The world is flat (lined)

Peter Jones Wu Wei

According to Thomas Friedman, we need a green revolution. And we will get one, by necessity and the need for local resilience in the face of the global wave of multiple defaults. Another green revolution is underway – a green (money) revolution, but perhaps not as we planned or designed. Allow me to post the most compelling of the last week’s economic news articles and a few responses. No analysis, just the linkage: Ray Dalio, Barron’s: Recession? No, It’s a D-process, and It Will Be Long Basically what happens is that after a period of time, economies go through a long-term debt cycle — a dynamic that is self-reinforcing, in which people finance their spending by borrowing and debts rise relative to incomes and, more accurately, debt-service payments rise relative to incomes. At cycle peaks, assets are bought on leverage at high-enough prices that the cash flows they produce aren’t adequate to service the debt. The incomes aren’t adequate to service the debt. Then begins the reversal process, and that becomes self-reinforcing, too. In the simplest sense, the country reaches …

Who’s Your City? (Toronto!) Who’s your Company?

Peter Jones Transformation Design

Richard Florida’s latest dive off the springboard of the Creative Class shows up in geography – where you choose to live determines your destiny. In the Globe and Mail, Florida himself reviews the premises and thesis of the book Who’s your City? Where we choose to live, argues the director of the University of Toronto’s Martin Prosperity Institute , is crucial not only to how we live and who we share our lives with, but also to what kind of career we end up having. In this passage, he describes how this “geographic clustering” is dictated by five basic personality traits: openness to experience, conscientiousness, extroversion, agreeableness and neuroticism. The choice to live in a certain city – essentially a situated culture with its unique set of circumstances – generates an enormous new set of options for the individual. It has taken us three years of continual learning and exploration to become Torontonians-in-training. However, even on the very part-time basis of one week a month, we have created a huge network of new friends by choice (all of them brilliant, …

Visual Global Sensing

Peter Jones

Could the mashup of Flickr + geovisualization generate a global Panopticon?  Robert Ouellette’s Gagglescape tipped me off to Flickr’s World Vision, a constantly circulating slide show of extraordinary images picked up from every point on the globe. The slideshow effect is mesmerizing, because these are images you would not be finding otherwise, it’s unlikely you would search for or find any of these in association with other images or keywords.  It has the effect of an autonomous global intelligence, a reminder that everyone else, everywhere, has a point of view, a location, and a camera. Flickrvision gives me new reason to actually post on Flickr for the fun of it, not just when there’s something to share.

Bursting at the Seams

Peter Jones Dialogic Design, Human Values

Jeffrey Sachs – Speaking on solving global problems at the Reith Lectures. He may be a one-man Club of Rome. And how can it be, ladies and gentlemen, that we think we can be safe? We think we can be safe when we leave a billion people to struggle literally for their daily survival, the poorest billion for whom every day is a fight to secure enough nutrients, a fight against the pathogen in the water that can kill them or their child, a fight against a mosquito bite carrying malaria or another killer disease for which no medicine is available, though the medicines exist and are low cost, thus letting malaria kill one or two million children this year. How can this be safe? How can we choose, as we do in the United States, to have a budget request this year of $623 billion for the military – more than all the rest of the world combined – and just $4.5 billion for all assistance to Africa and think that this is prudent? One might say it is …