TED Conversations » Lindsay Newland Bowker's Comments

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    Lindsay Newland Bowker

    A reply on Conversation: What is Truth?

    Apr 29 2014: Carl, beautifully said .Thank you for your wisdom.
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    Lindsay Newland Bowker

    A comment on Conversation: What is Truth?

    Apr 29 2014: "truth, real truth, is seamless and indivisible" Cynthia Bougeualt
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    Lindsay Newland Bowker

    A reply on Conversation: Is modern technology reducing our critical thinking by "just" affirming or confirming our preferences?

    Apr 28 2014: Dirk (hmmm the answer depends...) yes, it is only a tool but has uniquely emerged to foser and create community through things like TED and Face Book etc. It is up to us how we use it and children who are shown and encouraged to use it for idependent exploration to form independent thinking will be well served by it.
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    Lindsay Newland Bowker

    A reply on Conversation: Is modern technology reducing our critical thinking by "just" affirming or confirming our preferences?

    Apr 28 2014: Hi Dirk..I wouldn't classify /dichotomize as positive or negative nor set the goal as necessarily "opinion"..but yes whatever calls out or encourages independent critical thinking is a worthy aim..whatever elevates above meme and "mere opinion" or pre canned ideology is valuable. Differences that may result are part of the creative tension and creative process..if we only take and listen to people who already agree with us we will eventually lose ground even if we started on solid ground.. Our shared views in a group that holds the same views and opinions will decline to mere opinion and meme.
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    Lindsay Newland Bowker

    A reply on Conversation: 'Democracy', Power to the People? What do you think of Democracy?

    Apr 28 2014: Lejan,

    Enjoying this exchange very much..nothing like TED as I remember when I bring something back here or check in.

    "For open discussions I very much like your leaderless approach, although I am certain that without an impartial moderator, discussions can easily blur out or end in confusion or worse"

    By leaderless I mean not starting with one fixed proposal and debating that..I mean all voices, all stakeholders speaking to and trying to define the issue, the problem. Depending on how the "conversation" is taking place I agree it may require a moderator/facilitator. The main thing is that each voice have a way to hear all other voices. ( Also, I used the phrase to describe the "public voices" experiment my work is about not as model of government. but even there I think the important thing is not just "I spoke my piece" but hearing and seeing what all other voices had to say.

    By definition every issue that rises to a level possibly requiring law and regulation is complex and gets to the attention of legislators because there are competing or conflicting benefits and impacts among stakeholders. A structure that hears all of these conflicts and allows each interest to hear all others is more likely to draw a careful and well informed line between private and public interests in law and regulation.

    Also with the internet citizens can answer their own concerns through research and investigation and be instruments of bringing more and better quality information to the process than might otherwise have been available. I am very much against move on petitions and interest group canned letters and don't feel they add to any meaningful expression of "the public interest".

    That is what I mean when I say I am a great believer in "the common wisdom" and "crowdsourced solutions"
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    Lindsay Newland Bowker

    A reply on Conversation: BITCOIN : Basis/Model For a New Global Currency?

    Apr 26 2014: nothing to do with bitcon but a fabulous story..someone should write a move about Basel!
    ay be we shoud call Basel and see if he can direct enough curency into Bitcoin to make it truly influential in world currency markets. !!! ( just kidding)
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    Lindsay Newland Bowker

    +1

    A reply on Conversation: BITCOIN : Basis/Model For a New Global Currency?

    Apr 26 2014: I posted this to learn ore about bitcoin myself..but the whole point of the bitcoin is that it was designed to solve that problem. clearance of a bitcon transaction is supposed to be 100% certainty that the other party has sufficient bit coin to pay and the party has no recourse ( as in a cash transaction) The total costs ( including the pro rata of the total costs of all it takes to effect a "normal" internet transaction..monthly fees on bank accounts,credit cards, finance charges, overdraft charges, canceled check charges , charges for currency exchange).
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    Lindsay Newland Bowker

    A reply on Conversation: 'Democracy', Power to the People? What do you think of Democracy?

    Apr 26 2014: Lehan & Ted Friends here is a blurb from the wikiedia decsriptions of the swiss direct democracy.

    "By calling a federal referendum, a group of citizens may challenge a law passed by Parliament, if they gather 50,000 signatures against the law within 100 days. If so, a national vote is scheduled where voters decide by a simple majority whether to accept or reject the law. Any 8 cantons together can also call a referendum on a federal law.[57]

    Similarly, the federal constitutional initiative allows citizens to put a constitutional amendment to a national vote, if 100,000 voters sign the proposed amendment within 18 months.[note 6] Parliament can supplement the proposed amendment with a counter-proposal, and then voters must indicate a preference on the ballot in case both proposals are accepted. Constitutional amendments, whether introduced by initiative or in Parliament, must be accepted by a double majority of the national popular vote and the cantonal popular votes.[note 7][62][63]


    we have referendum to initiate or oppose a law here in Maine ( and the results have been mixed..depends on the knowledge & skill level of the person drafting the petion)

    EDD ( electronic direct democracy) should make it possible for citizens to give a white ball or black ball to any piece of legsilation under consideration and/or to post a proposed citizen initiative for a similar vetting.
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    Lindsay Newland Bowker

    +1

    A comment on Conversation: What is the correlation between happiness and one's career choices?

    Apr 26 2014: I love this question!!!!

    I am grateful that my career all my life was perfectly suited to who I really am at my core..was perfectly suited to my gifts and abilities and was the perfect venue for these abilities. I understand that better now, at the age of 6, then I did when it was all unfolding. getting paid for doing what yu would do anyway is 100% core consensus and a precious thing.

    There is a wonderful school within the Buddhist tradition that John Cage often referred to with his term "infinite interpenetration"

    It means tat each of us is unique and that our uniqueness is critically needed "by the whole"..that we become fulfilled when our little unique essential self plugs into and finds its perfect fit "in the whole" and that each well fitted piece enriches the well being of the whole.

    The trick, of course, is how to orchestrate that or whether we can orchestrate that if earning a living is essential to securing food,& housing. Even if you have a glimmer of what would be most suited ( which I did) it is very diffcut to orchestrate that, to call that into being .

    I think for milennials who do not have the bountry and support us leading edge baby boomers had that will be expressed in entreprenurial endeavors and alternatives that are various forms of "self employment" rather than working for others.

    I see that in Maine where bright young people have returned after college and just invented industry out of whole cloth. Black Dinah Chocolates, 22 Vodka and Liquid Wireless are three examples of milennial start ups that are global and have created shared culture employment centers.
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    Lindsay Newland Bowker

    A reply on Conversation: Is modern technology reducing our critical thinking by "just" affirming or confirming our preferences?

    Apr 26 2014: Bryan..Yes I agree that if we are already "outside the box" by virtue of an illness or just our inherent self we are less prone to just accept others opinions or even to operate in a mode that is based on a currency of opinion..

    I agree that is a pre condition for invention and creativity.

    My inherent self was also "out of the box" from the get go and I love the internet because it allows me to explore deeply things I want to understand and know and along the way I meet folk who are already there.

    So the internet doesn't automatically homogenize..it can equally well if the user is so disposed to support inquiry in a very individuated way that supports creativity and develops new insight and information ..

    Backaways here at TED conversation we had lots of discussions on memes.which can propagate so quickly and widely with the internet that they become accepted as truth or at least as normative belief.

    I agree that people whose identity and social engagement is base on mere opinion and memes are not enriching to be around and that that mode of "community" ( shared memes and opinions) are not themselves "full empowered"

    I am interested to know whether you have found that the internet allows you to be fully empowered. How do you use tit fro both community and for information?
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    Lindsay Newland Bowker

    A reply on Conversation: 'Democracy', Power to the People? What do you think of Democracy?

    Apr 26 2014: Lejan. , thanks for your thoughts on nulti party systems and direct democracy. You have obviously given this issue a great deal of thought.

    I agree that direct democracy is superior . Backaways here at TED Conversations we were doing a lot of work on this .Is it the Swiss Confederacy you reference that accomplishes this through a vetting system either law makers or citizens can advance proposed legislation and it s "vetted" by a direct vote of all citizens. That seems doable in our modern technological world

    I am huge believer in the collective wisdom..in crowdsourced solutions..

    Majority rules in a two party system doesn't allow much room for wisdom to emerge. What emerges is a barter system for votes t secure the needed majority. A many party system , poor second cousin to "direct democracy", forces collaboration and therefore is theoretically more likely to result in a solution that is "the common wisdom" that a "poltical solution" .

    My work here in Maine through my non profit is an experiment in "many voices" solutions. applied to environmental issues with a potential for catastrophic non remediable loss.. It is a form of direct democracy in that by engaging all parties with the "best knowledge" "best science" analysis of the present legal structure applicable to the issue, the shared experience of other communities who have confronted this same issue,

    Through this all stakeholders, all voices process the conversation about the issue changes and that in turn changes what is politically tenable. Once the conversation changes the 'politics" of an issue changes. It's not "direct democracy" but more an intervention strategy based on engagement and networking that is a "direct democracy" equivalent.. My model is a leaderless model..it doesn't start with trying to sell a position or solution, it starts with trying to understand the issue or problem and from there the solution that works best becomes clear.
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    Lindsay Newland Bowker

    +1

    A reply on Conversation: BITCOIN : Basis/Model For a New Global Currency?

    Apr 26 2014: Hi Keith & Thanks for joining here. Yes, Time Banking is, I think a parallel to bitcoin in that you can provide a product (labor) for one buyer ( beneficiary) and redeem it for another product ( labor from another party) These systems, I agree, do work well at the local community level and perhaps could work well on a larger scale. Like Bitcoin user management keeps track of how much participant has in the "time bank"

    So in many ways time banking is a "moneyless currency" with the added advantage of building ties, and support networks as the "time bankers" perform services for one another and get to know one another

    Bitcoin was designed for internet trades/purchases where the buyer and seller don't know one another and where "trust" works in the time bank system, security is needed to make sure issuers of bitcoin can cover their have sufficient bitcoin on hand to settle the transaction, that the shift of bitcoin to the seller ocurrs promptly and that the settlement system is "hacker proof".

    If you have ever used paypal for a transacition, as buyer or seller bitcoin had you in mind. Paypal is a third party to whom each party provides bank account information to receive and credit funds. All e-check payments for credit cards, utilities, etc. require that the payer provide routing number and account information to the payee ( the entity to whom you are making a payment) and all that involves layers of feeds and costs

    Bitcoin is more geared to the issues arising from pay pal, e-check and on line credit card payments.
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    Lindsay Newland Bowker

    A reply on Conversation: BITCOIN : Basis/Model For a New Global Currency?

    Apr 25 2014: Revett,

    According to the paper "nakamoto" wrote and to which I provided a link in my opening comment, it was just to provide a secure no recourse ( like cash), lo cost aletenaive of settlling on line transaction.

    I thank you for joining the discussion and co-exploring what other implications,& possibilities there may be for bitcoin. Your note that it isn't after all called "bit pay" dos suggest it was meant to and actually does offer an alternate currency.

    Best to you

    Lindsay
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    Lindsay Newland Bowker

    A reply on Conversation: Is modern technology reducing our critical thinking by "just" affirming or confirming our preferences?

    Apr 25 2014: What serves life and serves earth has an infinite number of expressions and possibilities and each of us has some unique capacity to offer.

    Our host asked whether technology has homogenized us to a pont where we no longer even try to do our own research, do our own thinking, form our own purpose and intent.

    I answered that we can't blame technology..that always within us, we can choose.

    Life isn't about persuading other people or getting others to agree with us or judging what others do is it? Isn't our own life t our own creation and our own responsbility?
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    Lindsay Newland Bowker

    A reply on Conversation: Is modern technology reducing our critical thinking by "just" affirming or confirming our preferences?

    Apr 25 2014: Bryan no, not at all, ..telecommunications and the internet are just tools. How we use them can enrich or alienate, serve life and earth or just serve our own needs..

    Would you say there is a difference between writing with an expectation/hope of audience and writing to tell the world what you think and how you feel. Even in writing there is a line but what is pure ego and serve no one and what expresses humanity.
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    Lindsay Newland Bowker

    A reply on Conversation: Is modern technology reducing our critical thinking by "just" affirming or confirming our preferences?

    Apr 25 2014: It is easier sad than done...I am the first to confess..Our lives are s intimately and critically co entangled with internet & portable communications technology it is hard to establish a clear boundary between mere convenience and an arresting disempowering addiction and possibly manipulation.

    I live on a remote island my business, my banking & finances, my rich connection to an e-community are all dependent on my computer ( no cell service here so I am safe from that addiction & all the apps and temptations that go with that).

    It takes quite a bit of mindful and personal management to keep that boundary clear between convenience and commodification of ego..

    How do you manage that?
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    Lindsay Newland Bowker

    A reply on Conversation: BITCOIN : Basis/Model For a New Global Currency?

    Apr 25 2014: BITCIN was not designed to be a "new currency"( although I am interested in those possibilities) but only to create a lower cost more diret buyer-seller system for settling internet based transactions ( it was inended to be used to buy groceries )

    " What is needed is an electronic payment system based on cryptographic proof instead of trust,
    allowing any two willing parties to transact directly with each other without the need for a trusted
    third party. Transactions that are computationally impractical to reverse would protect sellers
    from fraud, and routine escrow mechanisms could easily be implemented to protect buyers. In
    this paper, we propose a solution to the double-spending problem using a peer-to-peer distributed
    timestamp server to generate computational proof of the chronological order of transactions. The
    system is secure as long as honest nodes collectively control more CPU power than any
    cooperating group of attacker nodes"
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    Lindsay Newland Bowker

    A reply on Conversation: BITCOIN : Basis/Model For a New Global Currency?

    Apr 25 2014: Harald,

    First I thank you for your several posts here. I brought this conversation here because I wanted to earn more about it and hear what other people had to say about it. We have had many discussions here at TED on new visions controlled by people rather than institutions or governments and it has popped up in mainstream wall street talk.

    I am interested in everything people have to say about it, because I know nothing.

    what you say is true for now , that the value of bitcoin is ultiately determined b the value of some existing currency and its place in the market lace is still too small now to free us of government currencies..

    I do though like the idea of having accepted global alternatives to national currencies and see possible future uses for people whose lives ar more and more global and not local community centered: and also for people who are not served by banks now--transient workers,etc..

    And I guess my interest arises from my concern that currency and politics are too closely aligned and right now in ways that serve the many of us the least.. I like the idea od a "peoples currency" evolving to a point where it would be impossible for other currecies to be merely creatures of national politics and international trade related agreements..
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    Lindsay Newland Bowker

    A comment on Conversation: Is modern technology reducing our critical thinking by "just" affirming or confirming our preferences?

    Apr 25 2014: Tom Atlee ( Co-Intelligence Institute Founder and head) calls it "commmodification of ego" it has disengaged us from a "common purpose" and "community" but we allow that. It only works if we accept that. The key to changing that s us.
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    Lindsay Newland Bowker

    +1

    A reply on Conversation: 'Democracy', Power to the People? What do you think of Democracy?

    Apr 24 2014: Bryan, That's what our constitutional framers decided. That's why our constitution doesn't follow frrom Jeffersons eloquent and humanitarian values and aspirations expressed in the declaration of independence.The present distribution of wealth and its increasing disparity is a result of a democracy that facilitates exploitation. Many new constitutions of old countries are making that course correction in their democracies.