A Capitalist’s Dilemma

In the last three recoveries, however, America’s economic engine has emitted sounds we’d never heard before. The 1990 recovery took 15 months, not the typical six, to reach the prerecession peaks of economic performance. After the 2001 recession, it took 39 months to get out of the valley. And now our machine has been grinding […]


While it is conceivable that PayPal could become a ‘financial API’, capitalizing all of the pieces of a production value chain, PayPal, like eBay, is an artifact of the transition to hyperconnectivity, an arbitrageur exploiting imperfections in hyperconnectivity. Once everyone is directly connected, it is possible to transfer capital between peers, without any mediating exchange […]

The Local-Global Flip, Or, “The Lanier Effect”

The Local-Global Flip, Or, “The Lanier Effect”. Absolutely fascinating interview. Two technologies on the cusp of going mainstream: self-driving cars and (dis)assembling robots. Also, technological efficiencies tend to have a positive benefit to the already wealthy (you save more money) but a negative benefit to the already middle-class or poor (you don’t have any money to begin […]

The University Has No Clothes

The University Has No Clothes. Data point one: Nearly half of all students demonstrate “exceedingly small or empirically nonexistent” gains in the skills measured by the Collegiate Learning Assessment, even after two years of full-time schooling, according to a study begun in 2005 by sociologists Richard Arum and Josipa Roksa. Data point number two: In […]

The Great Ephemeralization

The Great Ephemeralization. Big picture: Today’s economic growth indices, like GDP, are poor at accounting for the effects of ephemeralization, or the processby which “special-purpose products are replaced by software running on general-purpose computing devices.”

Idea: Tracking support costs

It would be sweet to have capability within a support ticketing tool or CRM to track the “cost” of a given client or topic. When the agent logs a transaction, they’d record their perceived cost to the transaction. The system would capture this information against client, topic, and type of support. A type of support […]

Economics is not a natural science

Douglas Rushkoff easily wins the most quotable essay of the day award: We ended up with an economy based in scarcity and competition rather than abundance and collaboration; an economy that requires growth and eschews sustainable business models. It may or may not better reflect the laws of nature — and that it is a […]

Micro-currency extrapolation

Andrew Spittle has a post up on ideas for expanding Spot.Us. The skinny is to give the funding community more power over who is reporting on what stories. In addition to allowing them to choose which stories are funded, they’d also have some amount of influence on who reports on which stories. Let’s take this […]