Monday, March 22, 2010

Go to

This blog is no longer maintained : come to my French blog Zéro Seconde

Saturday, March 24, 2007 in Montreal

For all of you guys who were at the last Montreal Vloggers meetup, here's what Gabe bring back. Don't miss Galacticast's interview.

"We are in Montreal, Canada this week. It was great travelling around and to meet up with all the great vloggers thanks to Martin Lessard arranging a meetup. We talk to Galacticast creators Rudy and Casey, check out some animals and the Society of Art and Technology. A big thanks to Catelina, Guylaine and Marcel for making a fabulous stay for us!"

Friday, March 09, 2007

Feedback from the Montreal Vlog gathering

The Montreal Vlog gathering held yesterday for Gabe from was a succes. Gabi alias Bad Mother Vlogger, directly from Amsterdam even gave the firs of us some xolo sticker and fake press-card!

Gabe, Tanara, that was a terrific evening. Thanks to coming by! The jet lag and your Philadelphia hub downtime didn't turn you off! (Version française de ce billet ici)

We were about 20, including people from la Journée de réflexion sur le multiplateforme ( l'Alliance NumériQc ) in perticular Dominique-Sébastien Forest from, Iain Tweedale from and Claire Dion from Bell Funds).

Not enough time to speak with everybody. As usual. At least, I make it sure nobody gaet bored. Some came directly from France or United States --not counting UK and NL ! Gabi & Tamara quickly gathered with the wonderful team Galacticast who came! Rudy, Casey, thanks too to coming by -- we all know you had a plane to catch!

The team did some shooting with there astounishing equipement (a headlight and a nanocamera!). Gabe did his weekly interview with Rudy et Casey (Galacticast). I'll put the links here when they will be available.

For the rest of us: a handfull of cell-camera did capture the essence of the gathering.

The conversation was going in any direction. I've kind of undestood that some spoke about how TV industry didn't really care neither understand multimedia world, other deplored the lack of montreal vloggers gathering, and some new commers how Montreal give such an impression that culture is part of the city life --even at zero farenheit.

I got a astouning conversation with Iain who is Acting Editor, New Media, at BBC about their wonderful multiplaform production structure, which might be the biggsest on this planet and alos on a very strange fact in on portion of their hiring contract : no-blog allowed inside or outside bbc. This is weird. And I ll keep you posted on it as soon as he transmit some more information back to UK.

End of the evening: time to go find the family, to see girlfriend before she flight away, to eat a real meal, to sleep , to fetch some VC cash in US, to talk about TV's future ou simply to try to find out where the hell the cell stocked her photos....

This was my first Internet-driven gathering : everything went well! Thanks to all, folks!
The (traditional) question of the day was : "How many clips did you watched this week on Internet" (et guess you saw the most!)

Michael Pauluzzi --> + 50

Marie Kuter --> About 10

Sébastien Provencher --> 5 - 10

Philippe Martin --> 5 - 10

Christian Aubry --> about 25

Laurent Maisonave (Zelaurent) --> 10 - 15

Gabe MacIntyre -->about 200 (Editor : you bet he's the winner)

Tamara LeRoy --> about 15

Paulina Podgorske --> about 5.

Dominique-Sébastien Forest --> about 100 - 150

Claude Maisonneuve -->at least 100 per week

Michel Leblanc --> less than 10,

Casey Mckinnon --> about 10 per days, so approximately 70

Rudy Jahchan --> ditto for me, 70

Catalina Briceno --> ... (Editor: got her signature, but lost her in a tornado -- how surprised are we?)

Guylaine Courcelles --> a bit of youtube (4) some Bob l'anarchie culinaire - (from and maybe 3 other sites / 3 video each. I'm more of a listener than a viewer (keeps me company while I work, cook, try to sleep)

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Bad Mother Vlogger in Montreal

Gabe MacIntyre, AKA Bad Mother Vlogger, XOLO.TV Vlogger will be in Montreal. (French version)

To welcome him, I planned a gathering for all active/non-active/wannabe/curious blogger/vlogger/web2.0 trend setter of Montreal and vincinity,

Come on in for a drink: March 8th, 2007, from 5 pm à 7 pm at the Méliès. (Quite central, isn't!)

Everyone are invited, join the club! (and 7pm isn't really a formal limit)

So far here's the one who confirmed their presence (wednesday night update): Casey & Rudy de, Philippe Martin (from YulBuzz), Michel Leblanc, Éric Baillargeon, Sébastien Provencher, Laurent Maisonnave (Zelaurent), Claude Malaison, Muriel Ide & Louis Delage (from L'AMM-PCM), Shawn Carpenter (The LOUD tour), Catalina Briceno et Michel Beaudet.

If you're interested, please leave me a comment to confirm that you'll be joining us (just to make sure I make enough reservation in the lounge area).
Gabe MacIntyre
(bio form dld-conference)

Gabriel McIntyre has become an European authority on the subject of video blogging, traveling all over the world to talk to companies, media agencies and at conferences about the subject. In his video blog XOLO.TV, both Gabe McIntyre and Gabe Bauer have created an internationally popular video blog doing reviews, interviews, and news about the vlogging community.

Both Gabe and Gabe are founders of XOLO.TV which will be releasing new software for bloggers, podcasters
and bloggers in 2007 that should reshape the way we think about online media.

Gabriel also teaches at the College of Arts for the City of Utrecht for the Faculty of Design for Virtual Theater and Gaming. Gabe is always out teaching about new media, or helping start new media projects with schools, companies and individuals. On the
internet he is known as a "Bad Mother Vlogger".

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Dissemination of knowledge

I stumble over a very intersting blog that o focus on Open Access Anthropology. I'm not sure what this is really about, but sounds at the first sight an interessant topic. And thanks to the author, Enkerli, I'm now being a tag ;-)

You well know that I do blog most of the time in French. As per its French name, Zero Seconde, easily understandable, I do feel having zero second for what pleased me the most. And translating my posts in English would have been a pleasure. Beeing a father of two young kids, this already a miracle to have time to even blog in French so much -- and did I tell you I'm working for the most time-hungry industry : multimedia?

But here I am, coming back to this English version blog. That is all about the blog I found. And taking time to have a decent conversation. I see him having a passion that isn't so far away from mines.

As I can see -- and what I like the most about blogging-- is we can have a asynchonious conversation about a passion we have both of us ... at two different time. This would even be possible before the event of web. Web allow now backlinks that keep a conversation alive.

Dissemination of knowledge was one of my particular suject a while ago and if this isn't too bullish, I would like to point him directly to some of my earlier posts I maid about blog/academia/knowlewdge.

My thought behind this exchance is that he might take some of my insights and go further with it. That was the intent behind my postings. I'll happy if this happens. (And won't be sad neither if not). It has be writen in 2004-2005, so it might also seems a bit old at Internet time.

It is in French, but I guess this isn't an issue for him. I know that some of my insight has already been spread a bit in Spanish, but I guess so far he's my only gateway to the English speaking World. I wished I could be more fluent in English. Oh, well.

But first let me define what is blogging:

The blog is a very powerful tool for self-representation on a digital network that works as a proxy to identify a person when having "conversation" amongs peers over the network.

And here's some posts (in French) about it:

1- I do believe Academia represents the future of blog : the presure of "publish or die" will boost auto-publication among academia (especially young people).

2- "Posting before processing" allow a fast turn around of idea, something even less formal that a communication at a conference, that allow procesing more data.

3- Academia has to face a new challenger : a new pool of amateurs challenging their idea, creating new ones and manipulating some kinds of rhetoric tools that will take out some credibility of academia and give more to the "wishdom of crowd".

4- The blogosphere is a pool a amateurs' theories. Let's live with it: it won't desappear (i.e.: 911 conspiracy theories)

5. Academia developed a way to access to the world : this is way too heavy for the blogsphere. Having a ligher back channel may help -- but at a risk...

Other insightful posts-- you tell me if it's true-- can be found here.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

I take part in the event "Whose Web is it anyway?" that Word citoyenne and CitizenShift , initiatives Internet of the National Film Board of Canada (NFB), present on Wednesday May 3rd (6:30PM) at the Société des Arts Technologiques (SAT) in Montreal. The entry is free. The conference is bilingual.

It is a jam sessions with somes thinkers, creators and the users of the users generated content web site. Short films, networking on line and pannel talking about with this new autonomous media that will transform society.

I will be on the panel with Marie-Chantale Turgeon and Omar Bickell , which I know well, and also Marcus Bornfreund , member of Law Society of Upper Canada , Electronic Frontier Canada , and Free/Open Source Research Community at the MIT (and from Creative Commons ) and also Alexandre Berthelot alias "Gadget" of Homeless Nation .

This evening is presented in collaboration with Bande at Share (Radio-Canada) , CKUT , and SAT.

Monday, January 02, 2006

Why middle-class Americans votes like rich people

David Brooks wrote in the New York Times ( Sunday January 12, 2003 -p.wk15) a piece about a weird question: Why middle-class Americans votes like rich people. Puzzling!

Top 1 %

The most interesting survey the author quoted goes like that: when asked, 1 people out of 5 (19%) say they are in the top 1% of richest people of America . And another 20% think that they will be there one day.

What's wrong?

As it appears, if you are good at math, 40% of the US citizen seems then to be in the top 1%. That is, when the Democrats proposes to fight the Republican's Estate Tax 40% feel directly attacked. 39% percent are wrong, however. But their vote are counted. On the wrong side.

The people vote according to his economic aspiration
So Americans do not vote according to their social class, according to Brooks, America being a culture of abundance, the people dreams about success being accessible, waiting for the ones motivated enough to reach it. Nobody is poor, says Brooks, everyone is "pre-rich".

The American media (magazine, tv, etc) portraits richest persons as the man next door. So when the Democrats want to take from riches to give the poors, then 40 % of the american felt they will be robbed by Democrats.

The differences in incomes is not an issue in America
To live with 125 000$ in Manhattan, surrounded by ostentatious and inaccessible richnesses, creates a feeling of perpetual lack. But the middle class elsewhere is not in this situation, notices Brooks, they aren't constantly solicited by Lexus dealers every corner, with these out-priced restaurants, and rich-only niche stores.

The middle class outside downtown NY can treat itself to all Wal-Mart. The restaurants of the corner are affordable. In their circle, it is even badly seen to parade itself with a Jaguar or to have its own personal cook, says Brooks. They are not confronted with a feeling of perpetual lack. They do not live this cruel feeling not to have what the other seems to have easilylike in Manhattan. Average American lives in normal cities like Nashville, adds Brooks.

The Americans admire the rich person
Brooks tells this story in Nashville: the richest family, Frists, is admired for her entrepreneurship and her contribution at the community. If they could, they would elect them to the Senate. And it is what they did.

As long as the rich person appears as "remain ordinary people", they are admired. What the middle class does not like are these journalists, these academicians or the cultural elite who look negatively at their culture, says Brooks. Bush Jr. can cut the taxes for the rich person and appear the following day in a suburb mall and eat a hamburger with ketchup. Barbara Streisand, who denounced these cuts, cannot say so. She's not "one of them"

Social classes, what social classes?
The most significant reason according to Brooks it is that the Americans do not see the social body like a pyramid with several floors, with the rich person on the top, the class-average in the middle and the working classes bellow. The Marx's classes is not a known concept.

No, american society, and Brooks gives here a beautiful metaphor, is an huge school's cafeteria where the communities sat each one with their table. Mine here, yours over there. Each community is convinced that to be the most pleasant to live in and the one over there, in Manhattan or L.A., with all its money, without friends nor time to themselves, makes a pity.

If there are no classes, there cannot be redistribution of the richness. 'Be rich or die trying..."

Sunday, December 11, 2005

What are the differences between a blog and a forum?

The significant difference is about "the agenda setting".

A blog is a "personal" space where the author controls the agenda.

A forum is a "public" space (sometime with restricted access) where the participants, with the help of a moderator, control the agenda (within the limits of the forum's topic).
  • In a blog, the author(or author's thoughs) is in the main focus. In a forum, the topic is in the main focus.
  • One reads a blog to know the author's point of view . One reads a forum to know the debate surrounding a topic.
  • In a blog, the author is the authority. In a forum, the members are equal (theoretically) or at least a bunch of experts inside the membership.
One can also see the blog as a forum where the moderator would be a dictator who control the conversation, allowing only comments but not topic picking.

One can see a forum as a blog where the microphone would be opened for all, in as much as the conversation is not out of order...

The differences as a matter of fact lie on "the agenda setting" which is focused towards outside (for the blogs), and towards the interior (for the forums).

In other words, the blog has a vocation (even at an homeopatic dose) to "modify our perception of reality" ouside of its space by generating comments or post elsewhere in the blogosphere (or Internet in general). The forum limits the range of its agenda setting to its own internal space (i.e. that it is necessary "to come" inside the forum "to be heard")

From my point of view, I would tend to use the following tools in this way:
  • blog is a space to develop an point of view

  • forum is a space to develop a topic

  • wiki is a space to develop a document

  • email is a space to develop a message

It is about of content creation, but each of them seems to be specialized to allow easily a specific kind of output. That said, you can do what ever you want, but bear in mind it might be less optimal...

Thursday, November 10, 2005

The birth certificate of Web 2.0

There is to doubt, no more, the Microsoft war machine is set for a new objective. The Web 2.0 universe. Remember the Gates' Internet Tidal Wave memo that transformed (successfully) Microsoft?
(french version of this post)

We now have one for the "Disruptive
Internet Services ".

Web 2.0 represents a transition from the isolated universe of lonely Web sites towards free flows of contents and open services based on a Web platform. Microsoft is aiming exactly at that.

Two " internal memos" just hit on Internet yesterday (November 9). One come from Bill Gates himself, the other of the chief technology officer Ray Ozzie.

Ones might be suspicious about memos' disclosure, but ones must say they reveal a tremendious move from the Redmont Giant toward Web 2.0 model (that they call "Internet Software Services").

This is a bomb!

The new battle field of Gates
Mr Gates declares, as serious and grave as in his memo about Internet Tidal Wave, that: "this coming" services wave "will be very disruptive. "

Gates stress out that the next wave will be the Web Services one: "We will build our strategies around Internet services and we will provide has broad set of service APIs and uses them in all of our key applications. "

The Microsoft's founder affirms, and I do not have hard time to believe him, that the company has the resources to harness the wave and to take advantage over it quickly.

But wait! Here's the crux: "Advertising has emerged have has powerful new means by which to directly and indirectly fund the creation and delivery of software and services along with subscriptions and license fees"

Advertising is recognized a vital vector on Internet! An explicit recognition of the Google business' model(that is, adSense, its key word advertising) as a viable model, trustable bet and the future of the software, the services and the contents on Internet.

That also means, that MS wants to beat Google on its own business' model, on its ground.

This announced the beginning of the Web Platforme war and this memo is really a declaration of war.

But not necessarily a dirty war.

The birth certificate of Web 2.0
In the second memo, the Ozzie's one, much longer, much more detailed and by far the most interesting and the most fruitful - this very memo indeed - it is the birth certificate of Web 2.0.

Not the birth itself. The birth certificate . Recognition, in other words, by the authority of the authorities, Microsoft itself, that the web 2.0 phenomenon forms a true basic wave. Lets call a cat a cat, "Internet Software Services" is Web 2.0 core phenomenon...

Yes. This phenomenon has existed for a few years, obviously. But as Microsoft speaks about it, and because it is precisely Microsoft itself. this will show the next move to so many more business people than all the blogosphere had succeeded in the five last years.

In other words, Microsoft has just made credible this phenomenon, simply by naming it.

The Ozzie Manifesto, " The Internet Services Disruption ", embrace three Key tenets:

1. The power of the advertising-supported economic model.

Online advertising has emerged as a significant new means by which to directly and indirectly fund the creation and delivery of software and services. In some cases, it may be possible for one to obtain more revenue through the advertising model than through a traditional licensing model.

2. The effectiveness of a new delivery and adoption model.

Products are now discovered through a combination of blogs, search keyword-based advertising, online product marketing and word-of-mouth. It’s now expected that anything discovered can be sampled and experienced through self-service exploration and download.

3. The demand for compelling, integrated user experiences that “just work”.

The PC has morphed into new form factors and new roles, and we increasingly have more than one in our lives – at work, at home, laptops, tablets, even in the living room. Cell phones have become ubiquitous. There are a myriad of handheld devices. Set-top boxes, PVRs and game consoles are changing what and how we watch television. Photos, music and voice communications are all rapidly going digital and being driven by software. Automobiles are on a path to become smart and connected. The emergence of the digital lifestyle that utilizes all these technologies is changing how we learn, play games, watch TV, communicate with friends and family, listen to music and share memories.

"Products must now embrace has" discover, learn, try, buy, recommend "cycle - sometimes with one of those phases being free, another AD-supported, and yet another being subscription-based. "

Complexity kills , Ozzie Says. It is necessary to develop light and reduce complexity.

And therefore: "We will design and license Windows and our Internet-based services have separate products, so customers edge choose Windows with gold without Microsoft' S services."

Yes, you didn't had hallucination. The Microsoft Internet services will be modular and works seemlessly with other services.

Shall I repeat if you didn't get it already : "We' ll design and license Windows and our services one terms that provide third left with the same ability to benefit from the Windows platform that Microsoft' S services enjoy."

I insist, please read again: "Our services innovations will include tight integration with the Windows customer via documented interfaces, so that competing services edge plug into Windows in the same manner have Microsoft' services. "

That is, the end of Web 1.0...

Source of the scoop: Scripting News of Dave Winer
Memo from Bill Gates: Internet Software Services
Memo from Ray Ozzie: The Internet Services Disruption
Financial Times: The Microsoft memos revealed
Tim O' Reilly: What Is Web 2.0 (Design Patterns and Business Models for the Next Generation of Software)
Nicolas Carr: The amorality of Web 2.0 (just to show we aren't making religion out of Web 2.0) Gates telegraphs Microsoft' S software services Microsoft to reorg; Allchin to withdraws
NY Times: Crucial Internet Services, Microsoft Memos Say
Web 2.0 (wikipedia)
posts sorted by Technorati

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Some recent work in epistemology

Knowledge in a Social World

Goldman, Alvin I. (Regents Professor of Philosophy, University of Arizona)

Abstract: A certain conception of social epistemology is articulated and applied to numerous social arenas. This conception retains epistemology's traditional interest in truth and reliable inquiry, but replaces its customary emphasis on solitary knowers with a focus on social institutions and interpersonal practices. Postmodernism, science studies, and pragmatism pose worries about the meaning and attainability of objective truth and knowledge. After laying these concerns to rest, "veritistic" social epistemology is advanced as a normative discipline seeking practices and institutions that would best foster knowledge. The book explores forms and methods of communication, including norms of argumentation, information technology, and institutional structures governing speech and the media. Social dimensions of knowledge quests are explored in science, law, democracy, and education. The book examines popular topics in contemporary epistemology such as testimony and Bayesianism, while breaking new ground by connecting epistemology with historically unrelated branches of philosophy such as political and legal theory. Democracy's success, it is argued, requires the attainment of certain epistemic desiderata, and substantive justice depends on well-chosen procedures of legal evidence.

(from :
See link for Table of Content details and abstracts
Part 1 : foundation PDF
Definition of social epistemology

Pathways to Knowledge: private and public

By Goldman, Alvin I. Regents Professor of PhilosophyUniversity of Arizona

Explores issues ranging from introspection to social epistemology. "Internalism Exposed" pinpoints problems in the defense of internalism as an approach to epistemic justification. "A Priori Warrant and Naturalistic Epistemology" argues that naturalistic epistemology is compatible with a priori warrant, and shows how scientific research supports an innate faculty of number cognition that can generate arithmetic belief with a priori warrant. "The Unity of the Epistemic Virtues" examines the prospects for a unifying account of distinct epistemic values, such as justified belief and true belief. The next three papers consider intuitions and introspection from an epistemological perspective. One paper explains how intuitions can play the evidential role that philosophical practice assigns to it. Two papers argue that introspection plays an unavoidable but legitimate role in the science of consciousness despite being a "private" method. The final three papers deal with aspects of social epistemology. One asks how novices can justifiably choose among two or more competing experts. Another explores the possibility of an epidemiology of knowledge, of which memetics is a prominent example. The final paper provides a critical survey and guide to the diverse approaches to social epistemology.

(from :
See link for ToC details and abstract

Monday, August 29, 2005

Corporate blogs research by Deutsch Bank

(french version of this post)

Deutsch Bank Research publishes a document on the corporative blogs (August 22, 2005).

"Blogs - did The new formulate for the corporate communications?" (pdf)
( German original Version/Auf Deutsch - pdf).

Excellent (and credible) review about what is called Corporate Blog. As the research shows, it comes in various styles. Until now, only the small offices or the mega corps had launched out their blogs online. The companies between these two poles have now a practical and serious document to think aloud about doing the same.

The 8-page document classifies differents corporative blogs on a very clever table. I found a more up to date version of the classification of the corporative blogs on the site ( ) which happends to be the author of the table, Ansgar Zerfass . It contains an additional style of blog "topic blog/ Themen-blogs" (the table is in German - so refer to the English pdf to understand all the words.)

(Click to increase)

The conclusion finishes with a long comment which deserves to be quoted:

"Two questions are possible (and both must be answered!). The first (the one I would ask): So what?"; and the second (which is typically German): And now?"

(note: The stress is mine, not the author's)

So what? : "(...)So what should we do? Get going! Be bold. Activate, access, act rather than react, create rather than repair. Set the agenda rather than having it set for you. Be a motivator, not a censor. Consider blogging to be a mindset, a philosophy of life. Be an entrepreneur, not a taskmaster. Let the genie out of the bottle."

And Now? : "(...) Let s face it without experience in the blog swarm we won t accomplish anything. If we don t skilfully exploit the opportunities and carefully avoid the pitfalls of the new medium, we will be lost. We need to develop a blog culture (just as we need to develop an email culture and a mobile culture, because both are sorely lacking)."

"Feedback culture must become second nature to us (...)"

Coming from Deutsch Bank, here is a suprising point of view, isn't it?...

The cluetrain manifesto would it start to make effect?

Monday, August 22, 2005

Moving Power to the Edge

Article found on (Google Cache)

(DoD seems to have discontinued this article - here's my own cache)

Moving Power to the Edge
By John P. Stenbit


Secretary Rumsfeld came to the Department of Defense two and a half years ago with a vision for transforming DoD to meet the changing, asymmetrical threats of a new and different world. True transformation can only be achieved by transforming the way we communicate, by making the network work for us, and by taking full advantage of information age technologies to ensure that our warfighters have immediate and direct access to the information they need. We are making great strides toward that goal.

When I arrived at the Pentagon in August 2001, I talked about the need to move toward net-centric warfare and operations -- to create a network that had plenty of bandwidth and that people could to trust, to populate that network with new dynamic sources of information, to protect it, and to ensure our adversaries do not have similar advantages. This effort is a driving force in enabling DoD’s transformation. Our successes in Afghanistan and Iraq point to the progress we have already made within a relatively short time, and give us reason to be very optimistic about where we are headed.

By exploiting technological advances that continue to shrink the costs of bandwidth, information processing, and information storage, we are moving from the "smart push, smart push" regime of the past to a new "smart pull" paradigm where our warfighters—wherever they may be in the world—will be able, to "pull" from DoD, other U.S. agencies, and allied powers the information they (the warfighters) determine they need to complete their mission. This will move power from the center (headquarters) to the edge (fighters), and it is a transformation we must accomplish if our forces are to be able to operate with the speed and flexibility necessary to overcome the threat posed by small, hidden, dispersed, and fast-moving terrorist groups.

Technology determines how we can communicate and operate. This is illustrated by the differences between the telephone service of the 1970s (i.e., before voice messaging and wireless telephones), direct broadcast television, and the Internet. In the 1970s, when I was doing my first stint at the Pentagon (1973-77), we were in an era when communications bandwidth, information processing, and information storage were all expensive. Consequently, we relied upon a telephone system as our fundamental information system because at the time it was the best system for optimizing use of those expensive resources.

Consider the limitations DoD operated under when it had to rely on the telephone system as its fundamental information system. Someone in DoD with valuable information first had to be smart enough to recognize that the information was valuable, and second, had to be smart enough to know to whom the information should be communicated. (How else would he or she know what telephone number or numbers to dial?) In other words, in the 1970s, DoD had to rely upon a smart push, smart push information system that relied, in turn, on the judgment and knowledge of the few to push information to the many, rather than on the exponentially better judgment and knowledge that can be achieved when the brains and experience of the many are harnessed together. That telephone-based information system imposed additional limitations on the Department. Specifically, even if someone with information was smart enough to recognize its value and know to whom it should be communicated, there was nothing he could do if the latter wasn’t at his phone when he called. That is, the person called had to be at the right place at the right time—what I have termed being "synchronous in time and place."

The limitations imposed by this system sometimes had serious adverse consequences. For example, there were two separate incidents before my first stint at DoD involving impending danger to two of our ships – the Liberty and the Pueblo. Because of the limits of the communication systems then in use, we were unable to share information that might have saved those ships.

Fortunately, technology has brought us a long way in a very short time. Our communications and information system today is a smart push system that takes advantage of the same broadcasting technology that has created commercial direct broadcast television. That is, someone at DoD just needs to be smart enough to recognize the value of the information they have and the need to push it to others. Having made that determination, they need only put the information on a transmitter and broadcast it to everyone with access to the transmitter. They don’t have to determine who needs the information. Moreover, since the information is broadcast—rather than sent down a particular wire circuit to a particular receiver as was the case with our 1970s telephone system—it’s available to anyone with a broadcast receiver. Recipients no longer need to be synchronous in place.

The price of processing and storage has gone down so much that we now can afford to have many people listen to all of the broadcast channels, store what they receive, and then put the information together to meet their own specifications. That’s why Operation Iraqi Freedom worked as well as it did. That’s also why in our post-September 11 action in Afghanistan, for example, a guy on a horse with a wooden saddle could broadcast "I need a bomb over there," and another guy in a B-2 who had flown all night from Missouri could drop a Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM) right on "there."

Certainly, the smart push broadcast system represents a big improvement over the old smart push telephone system. However, it still relies upon the few to decide for the many what information is valuable and needs to be pushed to the many. It is in conflict with two basic truths: (1) Information consumers are the best judge of the information they need and; (2) Many brains working together are exponentially smarter than a single brain working in isolation.

That is why we are moving aggressively to put in place the satellite laser and fiber optic bandwidth as well as the information processing and storage capacity that will enable us to complete the quantum leap to a network-centric smart pull information system linking all DoD’s personnel, systems, and assets (including, as appropriate, other U.S. agencies as well as agencies and forces of other nations) so they may communicate, think, and act together.

The Internet is the closest we have to a commonly recognized model for the network-centric system we are building. Those with information need not be smart enough to ascertain the information’s value or to whom it might be valuable. They can just post the information on the network and leave it to everyone else who is browsing the net (information consumers) to pull that information from the net, use it, assess its value, and offer (post) additional information. Information can be quickly exchanged by a nearly limitless number of participants dispersed all across the globe but connected to the network, i.e., many brains can be "networked" together to greatly accelerate learning and problem-solving just as we link computers together to crunch enormous amounts of data. The network of lasers, fiber optic lines, and information processing and information storing computers will be at the center of this network-centric model.

DOD’s National Imaging and Mapping Agency (NIMA) illustrates the huge potential value to DoD of building a robust network-centric information, communication and warfighting system. NIMA has a Web site where the user can specify a particular geographic site or area and download (pull) all the latest satellite photos. That’s the good news. The bad news is that the downloading is slow because there is insufficient bandwidth. And, of course, that underscores how critical it is that we rapidly put in place the bandwidth that is essential if we are, in fact, to achieve a robust, network-centric system that will link all our brains and other resources together to multiply our capabilities and make those capabilities available to be pulled (used) by those "at the edge" – most particularly America’s fighting men and women -- wherever they may be in the world.

Marketplaces of Information

Net-Centric Warfare allows users the ability to create and share a high level of awareness and to leverage this shared awareness. But achieving shared awareness alone will not guarantee success. We need to think about information differently, as we move from a set of monopoly suppliers of information to an information marketplace. In essence, we want to create an environment where these five critical architectural tenets prevail:

"Only handle information once." Collecting information and entering data multiple times is costly and adversely affects efficiency in both combat and business operations. The concept of only handling information once requires that processes be reengineered, and that technology and processes are integrated to minimize the time and effort dedicated to data collection and entry.

"Post before processing" means that access to data for disparate needs is not delayed by unnecessary processing. Everyone is a provider and consumer of information. A provider has the responsibility to post data before using or manipulating it; consumers will have the technical capability to securely access the data they are cleared to access when they want it and in the format they need.

"Users will pull data" as needed instead of having massive amounts of information pushed to them regularly—regardless of whether it is needed. TPPU (Task, Post in parallel, Process in parallel, Use in parallel) means that information moves us away from the stovepiped information that characterizes the old TPED (Task, Proces, Exploit and Disseminate). A key tenet of net-centric warfare is that the consumers of information are smarter than their sources about what is needed operationally right now and that they should be able to pull those data when they need it. Smart pull promotes speed instead of drawn out analysis. Further, the network will provide the access to information at multiple security levels (MSL), avoiding the technical challenges and high cost of Multi-Level Security (MLS) systems, which required users to have a trusted operating system to process information at multiple levels simultaneously.

"Collaboration technologies" will be employed to assist users in making sense of the data that is pulled. For example, subject matter experts from diverse units or organizations are frequently called upon to come together to make sense out of special situations. The ability to pull expertise from within a unit as well as from across the Department is a value-added feature of a net-centric environment.

"A reliable network is key." Diverse information pathways must be in place to ensure reliability. Security must be designed into networks and systems. Information assurance and interoperability – critical elements of "net-readiness,"– must be the rule rather than the exception.


The approach to interoperability needs to change. The pace of advancing technology requires us to move from an approach that is based upon application standards to one based on data standards. The key is to give data users an opportunity to use the applications that make sense to them while maintaining the ability to exchange data. We also need to give more support to peer-to-peer relationships and information exchanges that transcend individual systems and organizations. Net-Centric Warfare involves a historic shift from platforms to the network. In effect, the single greatest contributor to combat power is the network itself. However, moving power to the edge will multiply the power that can be generated from a given set of assets and available information.

DoD’s Net-Centric Transformation

The Department has undertaken key initiatives that provide a solid foundation for DoD’s net-centric transformation. Just recently, I signed a policy memorandum that will institute the next generation Internet protocol, IPv6, throughout the Department by 2008, and bring DoD closer to the goal of net-centric warfare and operations. IPv6 will facilitate integration of the Global Information Grid – sensors, weapons, platforms, information and people and ensure that our warfighters are secure and connected in a fast-moving battlespace.

Communications or the Transformational Communications Architecture, consisting of the Global Information Grid Bandwidth Expansion (GIG-BE), the Joint Tactical Radio System (JTRS) and the Advanced Wideband System and Transformational Communication Satellite Efforts. This defines the transport element of the GIG and will be composed of three fully integrated segments. The terrestrial segment will be based on fiber optics and includes the GIG-BE. The wireless or radio segment will be based on the software programmable JTRS and its wideband network waveform. The space-based segment will be based on the Transformational Communications Satellite capability using lasers in space.

GIG BE. Current telecommunications lines are not robust enough to handle the volume of information needed for optimum strategic decision-making. The GIG-BE is designed to be robust enough to address current bandwidth constraints. It will use advanced fiber optic backbone and switching technology to upgrade telecommunications lines at DoD critical installations, and provide networked services with unprecedented bandwidth to operating forces and operational support activities. The GIG-BE will provide approximately 1,000 times the current capacity to critical DoD sites worldwide. New security technologies are being developed to keep pace with expanding capacities and enhance performance.

Installation Bandwidth Modernization. Service-specific efforts to upgrade base or installation level communications capabilities will guarantee successful connectivity and ensure maximum benefits are obtained from the GIG-BE initiative. DoD components are developing installation bandwidth expansion strategies that will provide a bridge from the installation or base level telecommunications infrastructure to the expanded GIG.

Joint Tactical Radio System (JTRS). The radio-based or wireless segment will migrate to the software radio-based JTRS technology. Software radios are essentially computers that can be programmed to imitate any other type of radio and thus, can be readily configured to operate in different networks based on different standards. JTRS will also serve as a gateway between users with different hardware radios – a capability that speeds the transition to universal interoperability.

Transformational Communications Satellite (TSAT). The space-based segment of the transformational communications architecture is critical because many users are deployed in areas where optical fiber is unavailable, and many of our information sources – particularly intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities – are airborne, making them especially difficult to link into a wideband network. TSAT, in essence, will extend the network’s full capabilities to mobile and tactical users and will incorporate Internet protocol and laser communications capabilities into the Department’s satellite communications constellation.

Net-Centric Enterprise Service (NCES). NCES provides a common set of information capabilities for the Global Information Grid to access, collect, process, store, disseminate and manage information on demand to warfighters, policy makers, and support personnel. These capabilities will enable shorter decision cycles by providing near real-time connectivity and computing power for warfighters and other users to get the right information at the right time and in the right format to meet operational, tactical, and mission support needs.

Horizontal Fusion. Networks are essential to a net-centric environment, but they have limited value without quality data that are reliable, accessible, and usable in an integrated manner. The Horizontal Fusion Initiative will provide the tools and means to integrate the smart pull of data with expert interpretations of the information. It will also provide tools to allow users to identify what data is available, access it, smartly pull and fuse it, and make sense of the data gathered. These tools require investing in data content and management, and the acquisition of commercial applications. While the initial focus is on intelligence RDT&E (research, development, test and evaluation), lessons-learned from the intelligence community will be exported to and employed by the DoD business communities – finance, logistics, and personnel.

Data/Information Management. Computers and communications networks process, transport and deliver data. Horizontal fusion tools provide the means to search for, pull and fuse data from a myriad of sources, and allow users to make sense of data. Clearly, the crux of it all is "the data" – its visibility, accessibility, trustworthiness and understandability. Accordingly, the DoD Data Management Strategy has evolved with several features. For example, it emphasizes the use of catalogs, registries and other "search" services so that users can discover the existence of data with or without prior knowledge of its existence. It addresses means by which data is posted, tagged, advertised, retrieved and governed, as well as methods that facilitate trust in the data.

Joint Strike Fighter (JSF). Although the F-35’s super cruiser capability, reduced radar signature, and vertical take off and landing capability are impressive, it is the aircraft’s advanced avionics, sensor/radar and communications systems that truly stand out. They are designed to facilitate interoperability – enabling the JSF to exchange information with over 100 U.S. and allied platforms or systems including AWACS, JSTARS, sensors, aircraft, UAV ground stations, etc., – and also to be usable with new technology as it becomes available. Consequently, these avionics, sensor/radar and communications systems make the JSF particularly well suited for net-centric warfare where unhindered communication is an essential element, while helping to ensure that JSF will not be rendered obsolete anytime soon by the rapid evolution of technology. JSF, in essence, will plug into the net to satisfy its needs for information while also providing information to other platforms on the net.

Business Modernization The business community supports the warfighter and must be incorporated in business functions. The Under Secretary of Defense (Comptroller)/Chief Financial Officer is leading an effort to transform business processes. The CIO community’s involvement includes assessment of architecture products for compliance with the Global Information Grid architecture; promoting business process improvements and ensuring that net-centric architectural tenets are reflected in these improvements; system acquisition oversight; and providing for the IT infrastructure and ensuring that its capabilities are in sync with the business functions’ requirements for these capabilities.

Information Assurance: The vision, "People throughout the trusted, dependable and ubiquitous network are empowered by their ability to access information and recognized for the inputs they provide," holds profound implications for the Department’s information assurance program. Because trust and confidence in our information is a primary concern when developing and deploying the information network and providing needed services, none of our critical systems, networks, platforms, and sensors can be deployed without the necessary security and interoperability capabilities to make them net-ready. As such, our information assurance program has developed a strategy that supports this concept and has focused on providing the Department with robust protections, agile network defenses, integrated situational awareness, transformational assurance capabilities, and a professional, highly aware and trained workforce. Each of these elements works together to provide the necessary dynamic and agile information assurance capabilities for a net-centric force. I view these capabilities as integral to our efforts to transform the communications capabilities of the Department and see information assurance as critical to successful business and warfighters operations.

We are working hard to put all these pieces in place, and to institute a seamless, common network linking the Department and the Services. This new, integrated network will discourage anti-collaborative behaviors and allow us to exploit Information Age technology to our fullest advantage and turn the network into the single greatest contributor to combat power.


Thursday, June 09, 2005

To be a journalist on the web

Apophenia raises a question: "Are Bloggers Journalists?" She answers " Wrong Question."

She stresses that anyone can name a blogger who doesn't want to be journalists. That does not lower them as diarists, nonetheless.

She proposes a change of metaphor. Paper. Which use do make people of them? To take notes, to write lists, to document their life and to publish ideas. Isn't this what obloggers do? Technically, they are two different tools. But the means is similar. It is a notepad. An Open notepad.

But if a blogguer wants to be a journalism, using a blog instead of a real paper does it make him out of the journalist world?

And how do we determine who can be a journalist?

Well, historically the selection was done on the basis of "access to the material", i.e. paper and the printing press. The institutions built themselves on this exclusive access. The institution then could tell who can be journalist. The institution had the authority to make thus because it owns the monopoly. Nobody could, only by merit, become journalist, if he/she does not have already the access to the printing press...

The commercial corporations took this right: ownership gives the authority. No independent organization can do this...

But today the access to the diffusion slashes their capacity. Several sites offer free blogs. A new way of creating an authority settles slowly. Something based on the meritocracy.

A democratic access

But let us not be too vindicatory. It is only a change of guard, not a revolution. The access to the diffusion tools carries on its slow way to democracy...

Welcome at the era of the media citizens...

Friday, May 27, 2005

Zero targeting citation

How to quote a Web page? By linking to it, duh!

But how do you quote a portion of this web page? Gee... Linking to URL might be a little confusiong for your reader especially if the page is long and you have hard time to find the citation in context.

I would like to point, to zero target, the very exact sentence, in one word I would like to highlight it.

I (over)use a features of Google cache for it.

First you should make sure Google had cached the page.

Then you do a research with the sentence you want to quote.

If you aren't in bad luck, you'll find the page in the Google's result page: click on the cache et voilà! Just link to this cache page. Google does the hightlight for you.

For example if I refer to the specific sentence in a long (but how interesting) post of Dave Pollar, I might show it that way : "We have been driven to overpopulate and despoil the planet and exhaust its resources by our DNA" by DavePollard in How to save the world (hightlited citation)

The first link is the permalink, the second one shows the citation in context.

I don't know if this have been done before for that specific matter, but as far as I am concern, I'll start using it as often as I need it.

Sunday, April 10, 2005

Google Real Estate

Paul Rademacher combined Craigslist and Google maps to create something I might call Google Real Estate: houses listing mapped over Google Maps. (via CFD)

With user friendly side of Google Map, it is simple, fast, effective. (Kind of RedFin but on a national range and without satellite stills).

One small step for Paul, one giant leap for Googlekind...

The real estate sector does live on information friction ("where are the best house in town? - ask your agent"). Definitively, this will have to change. With such a tool, why having an agent?

Google should develop such a tool as soon as it can. Billion dollars are the reward. Google will offer inscription for a small fee in order to lists your building, house, or apartment.

"Google's mission is to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful."

This time it might pay back big time...

Sunday, February 27, 2005

Wiki as digital palimpsest

[French version available here]

What else can be a wiki?

A palimsest is a manuscript page, scroll, or book that has been written on, scraped off, and used again.

This definition comes from the wikipedia, which is THE palimsest of choice.

Wikipedia is an encyclopaedia of page/parchments from which one may overwrites ad infinitum the writings of others...

A wiki is a very technological palimseste in the purest Early Medieval scribes' tradition.

Here's my (modern) definition:

The digital palimpsest
(new definition of the wiki)

Text on a Web page whose copyists of Age Internet erased the writing of other to write another text.

The word palimpsest comes from the Greek "scraped again" and indicates a Web page from which the sysadmin took out the read-only constraint in order to anyone to modify it.

This method was used at the beginning of the 21st century by Net surfers copyists who re-used the same page to overwrite new texts. Thus contributed actively to the creation of knowledge sharing culture.


To create a palimpsest, one re-used same technology as a Web server but which had been opened for all for modification without constraint: no authorization, no download and no HTML. All can modify the palimpsest.

Because of this opened method, several writings were temporarily lost. One manages however to find the old text thanks to the modern techniques of document restoration ("previous version" button, Google cache, RSS agregators, wayback machine).

The palimsest allows a writing of several authors who co-construct the thought of the group on a particular subject. The applications goes from the writing of a perticular topic to the creation of users guides because the palimspsest benefits from the collective intelligence for the factual improvement as well as typo corrections.

Famous palimpsests

These palimsests are accessible with any Web browser and await your contributions.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Google analyst day

As Google Inc. has moved beyond Web search and entering in the All-World Information Gathering and Serving, it decides to talk to a bunch of Wall Street analysts on Wednesday Feb. 9th.

Thanks to their mission statement, a videoconference have been archived here.

Learn about Google and the long tail here and here.

It seems Google sees personalization as critical to future improvements in relevance.

News coverage hilites can be find here.

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

How to calculate ROI for intranet searchs

This combined hardware and software rack box is your next company' search engine, your Google in a box": The search engine inside is similar to Google's search site, aimed for the enterprise market. It runs on Linux operating system inside Intel box. (Apparently Google rolled it out in Europe last week

Designed for Intranet users, it fetch results in a format that is very similar to Google's SERP, including small excerpts and links to cached versions.

Want to give a try but can't find a way to convince your boss?

I've been talking about findability [French] on my French blog recently.

"[Findability is] the quality of being locatable or navigable. At the item level, we can evaluate to what degree a particular object is easy to discover or locate. At the system level, we can analyze how well a physical or digital environment supports navigation and retrieval."Morville

A lot a time is spent searchin' the web. A good corporate search engine should help prevent loosing too much time retrieving informations, especialy if it is for inside-the-firewall documents.

But how do you calculate ROI to be eable to buy a search engine?

Quite easy :

1. Let's say there is three categories of users. Heavy users; moderate users; light users.

2. Let's say category represents 20%, 30 % and 50% of the company. (these numbers are quite realist)

3. Let's put how long they look for information : 100 ; 50 ; 25 (let's say it is per year for each category of users).(average milage may vary.)

4. That's make for a 100 employees company, roughly for each category this much time spent (number of hour spent times number of employees): 2000 hrs; 1500 hrs; 1250 hrs. That's the number of hours per year spent looking for information in your 100-employee company.

To simplify the math, let's say all employees get a 50,000$ annual salary, that is a roughly 25$ per hour.

How much does it cost to look for information? That is 50,000$ for the first category(20employees x 100hrs x 25$/hr); 37,500$ for the second category; 31,250$ for the third category.

That's make 118,750$ per year

Let's put here a percentage of time saved with a good corporate search engine : 50% (that'a a guess). That's is a 59,375$ savings. Let's round it to 60K$ per year

You're now allowed to calculate the pay back period. My information told me that the low-end Google box start around 40K$ for a 2 year license.

That's rougly 3 months pay back period per two year. Now you can play with the numbers: time saving is half lower? double the pay back period. Employees receive 100K$/year?, cut in half the pay back period...

For knowlegde workers this is a good ROI proof to show to your boss. If Google is your primary internet tool, you might want it for your intranet too.

( I'm not affiliated with Google or any Search engine company )

Thursday, October 14, 2004

Wikalong, collective web page annotation

Wikalong, it is a simple, clever, wiki in your browser sidebar for collective annotations of Web pages.

Wikalong is an FireFoxExtension (Firefox is a hype navigator right now; compatible Mac, Windows and linux).

Wikalong appears in your sidebar and indexes the web pages you surf: ywant to make an annotation? open Wikalong, write your note and save ! That's it, that's all!

Web page annotation is not a new idea, but the use of the wiki for this goal is quite clever. Wikalong, allows you to see the notes left by the others as well.

The practical application?

If you build a Web site or you visit pages. You want to share corrections or comments! Instead of infinite email exchange (which you loose track of pretty soon) or instant messaging (which of course you'll forget) or posting on an external wiki (which URL you can,t remember). Wikialong do associate a wiki page with the Web page. Web page validation is maid easy!

The teaching application?

The professor leaves annotations like : word definition, related URL, contextual explanations (history, policy, technical), exams questions, etc.
The pupil leaves annotations like: vocabulary questions or meaning ambiguity questions, related URL, quotation excerpts, etc.

The commercial application?

I see a bright future for the wiki here: as wikalong web server is public, you will want to pay to have your private workspace. The wikis farms should offer this extension, this may bootstart wikis hosting industry!


No inscription, not software installation.
1.install Wikialong extension ( (for Firefox)
2. Restart Firefox
3. Go to menu::VIEW::Sidebar::+Wikialong
4. Click on my permalink and you will see the comments associated with my web page.

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

Future of Real Estate

RedFin this will change forever the way you look to buy/sell a house. An internet real estate tool, with flash interface.

With satellite photos, overlayed with city and street information, then overlayed with information on houses for sale : here's your RedFin tool to buy a house. Forget all other DB-driven tools, this really rocks. (Seattle area data only right now) .

Link: Redfin :
Via : Karl Nelson :
Feench Version:

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Clickwrap nightmare

"I have a recurring nightmare. Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer shows up on my doorstep demanding my left kidney, claiming that I agreed to this in some "clickwrap" contract."

Mark D. Rasch in Wired 12.10