TED Conversations

John Gianino

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Social Network or Tribe

We have the ability and the resources to change the world.
Please read the comments below and reply to them, if you have thoughts.
The TED Talks I've related to this conversation are very inspiring, check them out.

Large social networks can be thought of as groups of tribes. We form tribes early in life based on where we are born and raised. These tribes or social circles can have tremendous impact on our development and our direction in life.

In our current system. we compete for money and we work for attention. The more skilled you are, the connections you have, and the attractive qualities you possess come to form our personal value along with our contributions.

The idea is similar to a human brain. The body supplies resources to the entire brain and certain regions of the brain get more based on stimulus but every cell gets enough to live and has the opportunity to be stimulated and grow. The functional structures of the brain can be an analogy for organizations and companies in our world.

We now have the the foundation to establish a virtual social network that can basically govern a population and supply jobs. In virtual social networks there are accountability, qualitative, and quantitative indicators already built into virtual social networks that can give value to the contributions we supply online and offline. If we supply good contributions we are rewarded, if we supply bad contributions or nothing at all, we are not rewarded. This can be implemented on a personal performance basis and we can still supply resources to everyone connected on a lower sustainable level.

http://youtu.be/qv8Xn7PUcI4 This is a similar idea but still based on an antiquated concept that money will always we necessary.

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    Mar 3 2013: As you say ... " We actually don't work for money anymore we work for attention." This is certainly true in Detroit. The center for Unions and the rights of men according to Marx has served you well.

    People have come to realize that this is not a workable solution and are kicking unions and that philosophy out for right to work and freedom of choice.

    Those who continue to work for attention will become very hungry in bankrupt cities (Detroit) ... I do not suggest this.
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      Mar 3 2013: DEFINITION: Attention - is the cognitive process of selectively concentrating on one aspect of the environment while ignoring other things. Attention has also been referred to as the allocation of processing resources.

      I used "attention" in my statement in place of money because currency is just a medium of exchange and attention if more about focus of resources. Please maintain cogency in reading my idea. I can explain and clarify details better if I can understand your perspective.

      Can you briefly explain in your own words what you think my idea is?
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        Mar 3 2013: As I re-read your explaination I see many thoughts (my opinion)

        1. That you are suggesting that the value of the product is in the skill of the worker.

        2. That each person should work / contribute in order to share .. but maybe not proportionally

        3. That you embrace trading and bartering except that we do not exchange pigs, cows, and rice ... we gain credits. Another exchange just like money.

        I just read it again and think that you are saying down with capitalism and bring on a socialist government ... which is the current popular political thought.

        John, you ask for my opinion ... IMO I think you are begining to enjoy the taste of the kool ade.

        I still wish you well. Bob.
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          Mar 3 2013: Hi Bob,
          I have absolutely no interest in public ownership of real or intellectual property and to me bartering and trading becomes a hassle because value perceived is value received.

          My idea is to bring attention and resources to a community in much the same way the human body reacts to a wound. Imagine every person as specialized cells in the organ systems of the human body. We receive a signal (pain) and we dispatch resources to the affected area with great efficiency because everything is connected in a biological network.

          Each person should be responsible for their own family, home, and community. A person's job should be to complete tasks for an organization within their community. This contains the opportunity costs and benefits within the region in which a person is most effected. People will respond to problems more quickly and effectively if the problems effect them directly.
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        Mar 4 2013: John, Sounds like you are describing the Amish Society in the USA. As far as I know they are the only true practictioners of a true Socialist society. Each has a assignment within the society and they all participate in the common good of the whole.

        Is this a fair comparison of what you suggest.

        Bob.
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          Mar 4 2013: If you need to relate a culture to my concept, imagine science fiction for a moment. I'm not going to get geeky with you but, Star Trek has influenced our technology so much that there are actually books about the science behind the fiction. People have been working to develop innovations for years based on this series. What do you think would motivate a technology based society to work together?
  • Mar 14 2013: Have a look at Gajantic.com ... That's a bare-bones version.

    It doesn't appear to be what you're aiming at, but the result might be similar in the end. I have a Cognitive Science / Philosophy of Mind / Artificial Intelligence background, so I kind of get what you're going for. One thing it seems to me is: If we try to change people too quickly or give them something that looks radically different...they won't like it, or adopt it. So Gajantic is designed to use familiar terms, a familiar platform, and familiar procedures....to let people get where you're aiming by themselves.......

    ...Just for fun: For an example of giving people something radically different, check out ClientPlaza.com, which I also developed -- ClientPlaza turns the tables on advertising by letting individuals broadcast their needs to companies (the opposite of companies advertising to them).

    But no one used it because they just couldn't understand something so different than they were used to (and it's really not that different!).

    Anyway, let me know what you think of Gajantic if you want. Maybe it's not what you're after at all.
  • Mar 14 2013: Hey John and everyone, I've watched 3 of the Talks you recommend. Good ones, all.
    My company (ironically, a for-profit venture) has produced Gajantic.com. Gajantic isn't designed to make much profit in dollars, so it's not alien to your thinking.
    It does, kind of by accident, lean towards providing some of the features of the system you propose.
    Can you make it work for you? Might only need some copy-and-paste to start getting things done.
    With your own social network fully engaged, of course ;-)
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      Mar 14 2013: Hi Warrick, how do you imagine this website to look?
  • Mar 6 2013: Problem is tribes lack funding.
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      Mar 7 2013: Tribes do not require money they require members...Members that care and that listen, everything else comes from that.
      • Mar 8 2013: You miss the point, tribes that have no resources are ineffective. The world is largely the way it is because good people don't have control of the wealth of society and so it is irresponsibly used.
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          Mar 8 2013: People do not control the resources the resources control us. Give me one example where this is not the case and if I cannot disprove it, I will kindly submit to your way of thinking.
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    Mar 6 2013: Hi Charles,
    Social media is different from a social network. A sports league is a social network, congress is a social network, Facebook is a social network. Social media is a chat, blog, video, phone call, music station, its content. Social networks "interact" with social media as a means of communication. Its like the electrical impulses passing through neurons.
    What I'm suggesting is to facilitate content through platforms already established in a more economical process. Why do you login to facebook? Most likely to interact with its users and to explore its content. Why not login to a state or city website and interact with its users? Why? Because its one sided, its not interactive its like a road map in a tiime when we have turn by turn virtual or real guides.
  • Mar 5 2013: Ok so your basically saying we should switch our government over to the social media's platform? what's the purpose of that?? life is exactly how you just said it could be like if you spend all your time doing nothing aka social media then you'll do nothing in life, the world will never revolve around social media the people that succeed are the ones that don't give into the cultures influences of non stimulating mind melting media
    and i'm not really sure how the social media's indicators and structure would be any better then the structure and platform ALREADY in place for the exact reasons this just seems like a pointless idea please explain further if this isn't what you mean?
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    Mar 5 2013: Hi John,

    This is a good question!

    Here's some things to ponder:

    1. What does the human unit bring to the group?
    2. What are the roles of the institutions we create?
    3. Are institutions entities?
    4. What does the environment we inhabit have to say about us and our institutions?
    5. How do we keep our laws and institutions in step with our environment?
    6. What is the diference between "adapted" and "adaptable?
    7. What are the limits of human comprehension of complex non-linear systems?
    8. Would you willingly live next door to a redneck?
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      Mar 5 2013: Mitch,
      We can Google all these answers and relate them to the conversation. What are your interests in the conversation?
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        Mar 7 2013: Hi John,

        True. Google has some advantages.

        My interest is to see where this thread goes - and I hope more than one person actually did google these questions - they are cogent (even the redneck one - gotta have it where you live and not just in the google-cloud).

        So - firstly, we don't need to go looking for some design of a society - it is default .. we don't make it, we allow it. So anarchy is the way forward. This is what is being demonstrated on the internet today .. it's a very pale copy of real-life community, but you can see it happening like some kind ofg new thing .. but it's just what happens when people are allowed to be default. On that score, we should defend our right to be wild and not tollerate the CISPA/SOPA/ACTA attempts to destroy it.

        So look at all the things that destroy our default wild-community,. These are ythe enemy of community. including: law, religion, schools, prisons, governments .. i.e. all our institutions.
        Institutions begin OK, but they all get poisoned .. and what are they poisoned by? alpha males .. and after that - alpha females. HAve a look - institutons start out as a passive principle. Take for instance "education". When practivced as a passive principle, the students go to learn, when active they go to be trained, disciplined and indoctrinated. Law is instituted as a resort for those in conflict - but now it is the instrument of violation, government started as enslavement by alpha males, after thousands of years we pulled it back to "democracy" so we could choose our persecutor .. for a little while it even looked a bit like representation, but that fairytale is ended. We created corporations to gather the increase of human collaberation, and they have turned to viruses on community and government.
        Our institutions are at war with us and each other - simply by switching from passive to active.
        This is the measure of a pathalogical entity - the difference between a parasite and a symbiot.

        Don't create any more of these.
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          Mar 7 2013: Mitch,
          Everything changes and people may compare our societal behaviors with different organisms but, we are uniquely human. Our ability to create change for good or for bad is influenced by our interest.
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        Mar 7 2013: Yes .. but we are constrained in language to deal with extrinsic symbology - the extrinsic .. and these extrinsics must reduce the noise of result for whatever entity we are promoting for survival - meta or instantiated.

        All I aim to do here is to point out that our meta capacity was not our doing - it is a reult of the continuum of the instantiated. We assume that we are the master of our history, and thereby own our futures - which we do not. And, it looks like we own that future in a descending curve.

        we can have our meta. And in that meta, I try to help by observing that the meta-creatures we spawn and instantiate are immature.

        I hint that the turn of an entity from symbiote to parasite is based on teh principle of passive/active.

        I cannot know for sure, but I investigate the modulation of entropy as the genesis of a skin - if it has a skin, it is an entity - and by virtue of that skin, the flow of entropy is modulated to give rise to a "self" and that all which defines a "self" is survial. this infers a definite atractor, and yet the meta can be strange - e.g. the weather .. and our meta constructs all seem strange - e.g "mother nature".

        I would say that if you can pinch a skin and get smacked in the head for it, then you are dealing with reality. All else is strange, and we had better admit it and work out the damn math if we get smacked in the head.


        I recommend you download netllogo and get exploring. Or join up with this little course:
        http://www.complexityexplorer.org/
        And/or present your papers .. it would be nice to allow the "wild university" to start delivering de-institutionalised scientific method - peer review from real peers.
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    Mar 5 2013: Hi John,

    I agree .. with a small caveat .. social networks are cellular autonomata .. they behave according to the shapes they are allowed.

    I played "tribal wars" a few years ago .. it was all good except it was "tribal" and "wars". I got a tribe going and we killed lot of other players .. game-wise .. and i got it going well enough to set up safe-tribes to protect the little kids in "don't kill" tribes .. you know - for the little 6 and 7 year olds who hadn't learned how to be ruthless .. that worked for a while until I found many players were enslaving the kids for personal avantage .. so we had to eat all the kids.

    Yes .. social networks "rule" .. but to what end?
  • Mar 5 2013: hi John
    You wrote: "We now have the the foundation to establish a social network that can basically govern a population and supply jobs."

    To govern populations, supply jobs and also, to solve problems. We are two people discussing this kind of project. http://www.ted.com/conversations/16652/community_driven_website_that.html

    The idea I had is this: Make a website that connects: The best ideas, the best workers and financing to make it happen.
    It would be like a combination of Reddit, Ebay, Facebook etc.
    The project I'm thinking of however does not focus primarily on jobs. It focuses on problem solving. Its a very basic idea right now. Anyway yea, join in if you're interesting. We started a forum.
    Your idea is sort of abstract and at this point, ours is too. I'm just replying here so this topic is bookmarked as I might visit it again later.
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      Mar 5 2013: Hi Tao, This idea is about the evolution of a website. I tried to imagine network structures after working through this lession http://ed.ted.com/on/NTwRKjCq Companies such as Google and Facebook create websites (virtual hubs) to aggregate content to pull your attention in to profit from marketing. My idea is to create a physical hub associated with the website. Detroit.gov was my first thought.
      Detroit is virtually bankrupt and it needs to change. The city has a user database already established through state identification. I had to set this possibility aside because the government in place is in crisis and things move slow so, I made and offer to buy detroit.org and set it up as a non profit to hand it over to the city after i can work the bugs out.
      • Mar 6 2013: Great idea to work on Detroit. Yea that city needs help. Good luck! I saw the video, thanks for the link.
  • Mar 5 2013: Would you want to be watched all day? plus the system would be abused, its a great idea but a government should not control its people. How about we reward our government services including the military with the same process. For the people by the people is our motto so lets reward programs like education, systems that improve our ways of life. and lets reduce or eliminate any office that is wasting our money. the network page would show the employees, the total profit or loss of the office and what they have been doing. That would be much better than a few thousand people trying to watch a whole country, if it was like that you could get away with almost anything....
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      Mar 5 2013: Patrick, no one wants to be under the microscope all day. Everything can be abused but, not everyone can be abused. People are the government and their control is only as powerful as we allow it to be. The military is made up of people in organized networks. Everything is a network, links, nodes, hubs, connections, etc.
      Imagine no loss of profit in business. How could you make that happen?
      Try imagining a situation existing in your mind that CAN BE, then try to defeat the idea. I'm not imaging people looking a videos and photos all day long, I'm imagining people going about their day as normal, talking to people on the phone, walking on the street, sleeping, its all about perspective.
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    Mar 4 2013: Are you talking about social capital? If you are, it is distinct from physical capital in as much as it is more value oriented than price controlled. Moreover, unlike physical capital where one principle economic element is ownership, it has sharing as its principle element.
    Do you propose that social capitalism can replace physical capitalism in economically meaningful way?
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      Mar 4 2013: After you raised this question, I did some research. If you think about social capitalism implemented into an economic system how do you imagine it would function from your personal perspective? How would you do it?
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        Mar 5 2013: I am not sure and I am no economist. But social elements can certainly be built into services and goods that are Capitals. For example, reading books is a service and libraries share books to readers which creates a value (social bonding, exchange of reviews, enhancing reading tastes you name it) as well as lessens consumption of resources. The downside is the writer loses royalty, which I think can be overcome by pay per read sort of arrangements.
        Holiday time sharing is another example. Car sharing is another.
        However, I am not so clear about basic products like food, energy or shelter. But it is an interesting thought.
        I am not clear about social networks or what you mean by attention in this respect of course.
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    Mar 3 2013: I find it ironic that you are writing about capitalism from the city that is the poster child for socialism and corruption.

    Your idea reminds me of the .com bubble...
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      Mar 3 2013: Handing out resources and/or fighting over them is not effective, I see that first hand. If you have the time I'd like to read your interpretation and perspective of my idea. You could even sum it up into a paragraph or so, I'd like to put myself in your shoes looking at my idea.
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        Mar 3 2013: It is true that you are rewarded for gathering favorable attention (PR) and who you know.
        However the key is in what is exchanged and how that product or service is perceived.
        The governing body on this is the individual who votes with his pocketbook.
        It is impossible for anything but the free market to govern this as every individual makes 100 or more economic decisions per day times 7 billion = 700 billion decisions per day. This can only be governed by individuals freely exchanging without government perversions that create bubbles.

        The free market embraces the free exchange of ideas which makes it elegant and complex and connects everyone in the world. Think about any product and how it is connected from raw material to communication to packaging to manufacture to transportation to advertising to marketing to training etc etc. Watch this video and you will get the idea.

        http://www.ted.com/talks/matt_ridley_when_ideas_have_sex.html

        I don't mean to shoot down your idea it is just that I don't see it as workable.
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          Mar 3 2013: I really enjoyed this TED talk, thanks for sharing!
  • Mar 3 2013: Capitalism means:
    capitalizing on what others don't know, and then profiting by taking advantage of that.
    It is also taking advantage of bad things that happen to others. Profiting off the illness, accidents,
    crimes, mistakes and catastrophes that happen.
    It is also capitalizing on these 'breaks' and using that advantage to keep others down, thus maintaining
    a disadvantage that works to your advantage and then:
    Capitalizing on that advantage to widen the distance between those with and those without.
    It is fraught with reasons for fear, greed, crime, creating inequality, poverty, slavery and so on.
    It is by default, an unjust system that cannot be made just.
    Let's say you have a great job John. But many are out of work and need a job that pays well.
    Why don't you give them your job? Because it is only one job and there are thousands out of work.
    So, how do you reconcile one person stumbling upon a pothole first, through sheer luck, getting the credits and having others follow up, who didn't know the pothole was reported, i.e. taken?

    I agree with you that Socialism can work and it must not have money involved. So far, we haven't had Communism or Socialism that didn't involve money and thus all the reasons for corruption. In fact, with money, any monetary system can only survive with corruption, greed, crime, and so on.

    Why not make all jobs equal to begin with, because they are. It is only when we put money, value, credits or other forms of separating us from one another, on jobs, that we begin to see, believe and treat each other with different values that involve, lack of respect, disdain, contempt and so on when the truth is we need all jobs done and there are enough humans to do all jobs.

    I believe we have to start, nay, we must start with Human Needs. There are a certain number of Human Needs that are the same for everyone. I think you touched on that. They should be Universal Human Rights and guaranteed, supplied and so on before we begin more fighting.
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      Mar 3 2013: Your reply appeared to begin with great disdain for capitalism, let me address that first. I looked up the definition of capitalism and previously paraphrased it in my reply to George Lockwood. You defined capitalism as if it were a corporation that was managed by narcissists and its mission was to convert all people into obedient slaves.

      Why do people need jobs? All life needs resources to survive and life forms perform tasks to acquire the resources they desire. People do not have the same desire to perform all the tasks in humanity.

      My idea is to be part of a system in which people create an awareness of a need and this awareness is the catalyst and the fuel to fill the need.

      Correct me if I'm wrong but, is your comment more of a suggestion to focus on basic human needs?
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    Mar 3 2013: I do not see the point of so much engineering. Would life be simpler then?
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      Mar 3 2013: Jedrek, by "see" do you mean understand or do you mean to have interest in the point? By saying "so much engineering" do you envision more than you can handle yourself? What makes life complicated? To me, life is complicated when there is an absence of resources to provide solutions. Life becomes easier when we share our resources and migrate them to areas in need. Imagine a healthy human brain distributing nutrients throughout the network of cells. When an area of the brain that is responsible for creative problem solving is active and stimulated it grows stronger and uses less resources to solve complicated tasks.
  • Mar 3 2013: I don't completely understand . What does capitalism really mean? Are corporations really that capitalistic. Finally, everyone needs money.
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      Mar 3 2013: Capitalism is an economic system whereby goods and services are sold for a profit. Corporations operate by organizing people into a network node or hub. Employees then follow directions to complete a mission to sell goods and services through this node or artificial entity known as a company. What I'm proposing is system based on contributions to exchange goods and services.
      Online Example: You are a writer for a blog and you post an article. The more views, comments, likes, karma, etc your article receives the more you credit you accumulate.
      Offline Example: A pot hole is photographed and reported to the social network. The attention the issue receives by comments, views, alerts, etc is equal to the writers blog article. Someone in the network is connected to a person that can most effectively fix the problem and after which, he is awarded the credits.
      This system of credit can take the place of currency and I'm sure I'm not the first to think of it. George, you have 10+ TEDCreds do you think that will be something of value on this website? A big difference with what I'm imagining and TEDCreds is that my idea for credits has more to do with currency than status. Status can fade with inactively.
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        Mar 4 2013: You raise an interesting point when discussion TEDCreds; is credit given to the best ideas, the most well argued thoughts, or is it given to popular responses, comments that appeal of a mass audience, but provide little in the way of new and innovative thinking? Similarly, those that comment often productive commenter, may or may not receive credit. Additionally, innovators and creative sorts are often under appreciated for their contributions. Van Gogh is an example.
        Your notions about the value of such credit system is not supported.
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          Mar 4 2013: I don't understand your last statement, could you elaborate?