David Weinberger really is the perfect TummelVision guest. He’s an Internet philosopher who focuses on the big picture of how we learn and what the Net is reflecting and doing to our culture. His current book is Too Big To Know: Rethinking Knowledge now that the Facts Aren’t the Facts, Experts are Everywhere and the Smartest Person in the Room is the Room.
It’s a subtitle almost as big as the Internet itself but it reflects how little concise vocabulary we have (“tummel” anyone?) to reflect the changing reality of the way we’re operating in a more networked world. Often David’s work is explaining things that are realities that any person who is “of the web” or really lives with this midset and trust level knows intrinsically.
On some level the Net itself may be doing the same thing for a reality that was always there: everything connected and flowing… all the intelligence you could ever need just right there outside you, but something we weren’t as aware of in the left-brain rational era and culture until we built something that made us *think* about this as we made it.
David has all kinds of impressive formal affiliations and qualifications, like being a Senior Researcher at the Harvard Berkman Center for the Internet and Society, a Co-Director of the Harvard Library Innovation Lab and being a guy who got a PhD in philosophy and who wrote jokes for a Woody Allen comic strip. But what’s more impressive to me is that he doesn’t just noodle around abstractly about how life is meaningful, but lives in the moment as an affable guy who cares about connecting and does just that.David’s first book The Cluetrain Manifesto was written with a few other savvy cohorts in 2000 (inc. TummelVision 42 guest Doc Searls) and put into clear language and awareness outside the smallish world of dedicated netizens the way that sharing and conversations work and the way the Net made these things the new picks and shovels of business and any functioning institutional infrastructure.
Links discussed in this episode:
- Too Big to Know
- How to Stop Worrying and Learn to Love the Internet – Douglas Adams in 1999
- It’s Not Whether Google’s Threatened. It’s Asking Ourselves: What Commons Do We Wish For? – John Battelle’s Search Blog
- SOPA Boycotts and the False Ideals of the Web – Jaron Lanier at NYTimes.com
- If Google predicts your future, will it be a clichÃ©? – Kevin Marks