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recursive collaboration

building linden lab and second life

cory ondrejka
cory.ondrejka@gmail.com
topics for today

communication
innovation
collaboration

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using sl development as a setting

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as well as the broader context of

climate change
global recession

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concluding with some challenges

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or, perhaps, opportunities?

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45 minutes, 201 slides

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45 minutes, 200 slides

hope you’ve had your coffee

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first, some questions

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how many of you...
text
tweet
instant message
update a blog or sns
play videogames
play mmos

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on the other hand

know anyone who still has


their assistant printing email?

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on the other hand

know anyone who still has


their assistant printing email?

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disclaimer

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not technological determinist

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not technological determinist

but new technology changes options

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not technological determinist

so failure to understand it means


we are missing opportunities
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most true of communication technology

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so, why am i talking about this?

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distant past

drove submarines in the us navy


national security agency
defense contracting lockheed sanders

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distant past

drove submarines in the us navy


national security agency
defense contracting lockheed sanders

(ie,the stuff i can’t talk about)

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distant past

drove submarines in the us navy


national security agency
defense contracting lockheed sanders

(which i raise to establish my non-hippy


cred before covering collaboration)

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more recently
arcade game development
console game development
second life

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focus on linden and sl

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so, from our original list

communication
innovation
collaboration

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it all starts with communication

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by which we mean

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sharing information

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sharing experience

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at a distance

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the experience economy

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the experience economy

what happens when the


information economy
becomes interactive
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getting cheaper

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and more flexible

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the history

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point-to-point sequential

pony express
telegraph

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point-to-point simultaneous

telegraph
telephone

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one-to-many

radio
television
(ie, broadcast)

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many-to-many

packet-based
the internet
the web image cc:by matt britt

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and colliding with games

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you know the history, right?

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30 second online game history

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30 second online game history

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30 second online game history

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30 second online game history

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30 second online game history

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emergence of virtual worlds

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second life

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what is second life?

user-created, online world


an online game without the game

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a synthetic place

create
work
play

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real-time, collaboration

as opposed to the web’s solo, sequential experience

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on a vast scale

millions of people and places


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economic scale, too
residents have built thousands of businesses in an
economy generating more than $1 million every day

built on microtransactions in digital items and experiences

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breaking the magic circle

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the magic circle?

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all about context

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all about rules

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all about rules
beating each other up OK

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all about rules
beating each other up OK

beating each other up frowned on


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for online games, about restrictions

of commerce
of communication

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no magic circle in second life

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like much of the web

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innovation beyond second life

ability to create markets


collaboration at a distance
participation

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sl and real world mix

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with more expressive user creation

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power of place

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text, sequential, monologue

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place, collaborative, dialog

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bringing us together

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‘cause when you can do anything

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we celebrate our collaboration

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even better
collaboration is a gateway drug to
technology and to participation

to entrepreneurship

and community formation


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with impressive results

1.2 billion internet users


3.5 billion cell phone users
100’s million social network users
10’s million game/virtual world users

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and then...

technology, participation, entrepreneurship,


and community lead to something else...

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leading to the second topic

communication
innovation
collaboration

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innovation?

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innovation?
productized knowledge

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innovation?
productized knowledge

innovation is the engine


of per-capita growth

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innovation?
productized knowledge

innovation is the engine


of per-capita growth

innovation leads to
exponential curves

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in other words, dramatic change

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that doesn’t play favorites

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that doesn’t play favorites

buggy
whip
sales

schumpeter and creative destruction

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leads to interesting times

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leads to interesting times

we predict linearly

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leads to interesting times

reality is exponential

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leads to interesting times

so we’re often really unprepared

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consider the internet/it revolution
moore’s law

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a good thing
moore’s law

radical drop in
computing costs

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connecting us
moore’s law

radical drop in
computing costs the internet

image cc:by matt britt

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in unanticipated ways
moore’s law

radical drop in broadband


the internet
computing costs explosion

3D
acceleration

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with far reaching results
moore’s law

radical drop in broadband friend


the internet
computing costs explosion networks

3D online
online games nichification
acceleration communities

trust friends,
virtual worlds not experts

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driving the need for more innovation

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but innovation is hard

expect ready, aim, fire

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get random walks

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with lots of false starts

start
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before we find the next big thing

eureka!

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and we see lots of false patterns

correlation versus causation

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what we know about innovation
knowledge collisions

communication

learning

participation

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knowledge collisions

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at the edges of networks

bringing disjoint knowledge together


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with easier communication

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helped by trends

decreasing
costs

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helped by trends

decreasing
costs

increasing flexibility, availability

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learning and innovation

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maximizing participation

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long tail participation

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this isn’t just consumption

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this isn’t just consumption
total value of hits

more or less equal to the rest

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but also potential contributors

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but also potential contributors
traditional employees

everyone else

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examples all over

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wikipedia

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“but that’s easy”

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(who would have bet on it?)

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something harder

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“but those are open source people”

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lowered barriers are a big deal

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participation
Web Wikipedia Sims
Open Source Mainstream Media
70%

35%

0%

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participation
Web Wikipedia Sims
Open Source Mainstream Media Second Life
70%

35%

0%

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leading to the third topic

communication
innovation
collaboration

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what impedes trying?

capital
stigma
regulation

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capital

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stigma

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regulation

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so, to maximize progress

lots of communities

sharing knowledge

creating together

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bringing us back to the web

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which has some broad trends
moore’s law

radical drop in broadband friend


the internet
computing costs explosion networks

3D online
online games nichification
acceleration communities

trust friends,
virtual worlds not experts

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free-ish

computing
bandwidth
storage

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communities
connecting

learning collaborating

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enabled new models

cheap computing
+
communities
=
crowdsourcing
collaborative filtering
niche fulfillment

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this is a real power shift

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consider 935

image cc by:nc 2007 esther dyson

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the gray lady 935

1851
98 pulitzers
1.5m circulation
$4b advertising
(1999)

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lots of free stuff 935

1995 1851
0 pulitzers 98 pulitzers
sf classifieds 1.5m circulation
incorporated $4b advertising
(1999) (1999)

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about as threatening as 935

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about as threatening as 935

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and if there ever was a problem

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go clubbing

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simple, right?

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except

2008
advertising down 63%

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except

2008
2008
#1 classified ad service
advertising down 63%
30 million ads/month

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except

(despite $500m from


nyt.com)

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except

“little interest in (despite $500m from


maximizing profits” nyt.com)

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what have we learned?

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don’t screw with baby seals

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incredibly powerful

cheap computing
+
communities
=
crowdsourcing
collaborative filtering
niche fulfillment

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moreover

experience economy
+
crowd computing
=
new economies of scale

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remote collaboration redefines

distance tradeoffs
local/cluster hiring
face-to-face

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driving value and participation

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nichification

finding what you want is valuable

friends more trusted than others

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which shouldn’t surprise us

ebay
wikipedia
youtube
flickr
google
second life
etc
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and what can niches do for you?

markets
employees
partners

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consider crowd computing

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getting the right people

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doing the right work

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when you need them

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just in time employees

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consider the development of sl

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2000-2002

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2000-2002
linden street
several desks right next to each other
a&os
culture of asking questions

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2000-2002
linden street
several desks right next to each other
a&os
culture of asking questions

face-to-face interactions
ad hoc meetings
whiteboards
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2002-2004

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2002-2004
2nd street
one large room
beta and release
remote employees

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2002-2004
2nd street
one large room
beta and release
remote employees

entangled seating
local face-to-face
social signals
email, wikis
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2004-

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2004-

sansome and davis

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2004-

sansome and davis


and mountain view, battery

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2004-

sansome and davis


and mountain view, battery
seattle, boston, brighton
and singapore

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2004-
sansome and davis
and mountain view, battery
seattle, boston, brighton
and singapore
rapid scaling

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2004-
sansome and davis
and mountain view, battery
seattle, boston, brighton
and singapore
rapid scaling
multiple offices
irc
voice
second life
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reducing non-local penalties

mixed-reality meetings
pure virtual meetings
virtual rooms
live channels
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more complications awaited

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residents

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plus metaverse entrepreneurs

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and the fortune 500

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all collaborating remotely

most employees never meet in the real world


most hired directly within sl

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brings challenges for the future

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user experience

ease of use
accessibility

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search

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making the lessons real

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how can remote collaboration help?

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relating this to the headlines

unemployment

financial crisis

climate change

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but that’s just the start

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we’re smarter together

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bridges two key challenges

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economics and education

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because as we worry about

math and science education

stimulating entrepreneurship

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with accelerating complexity

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we need new options

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for entrepreneurs and education

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and

whether we call it learning by doing

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or situated learning

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or performance before competence

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we’re smarter together

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and it’s easier to do online

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critical for innovation

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innovation is exponential

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innovation is exponential

small differences today

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innovation is exponential

huge differences tomorrow

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which curve do we need to be on?

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and this is just the beginning

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because remote collaboration today

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is the web a decade ago

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we’re just getting started

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stop talking now

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cory.ondrejka@emimusic.com

image credits to flickr users


torley orphum
shadoe landman thomas roche
uma ceawlin nancy redgrave
metamidia jake sutton
r.rasmussen joe shlabotnik
katiya rhode poid
choi skinstad chrispearson72
Sougent Harrop eflemming
hvx silverstar mahovlich
badgerstew ttrinoid
isfullofcrap mako kungfu
saeru Meta.Live.Nu
laura grace Fleep Tuque
atul666 Erehwon Yoshikawa
for cc-by licensed images

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