Ends, Beginnings, the Dangerous Effects of Reading, and Too Much Buzz

To conclude this year's business and technology trends, I found a couple of posts that sum up nicely both where we've been and where we're going as we head into 2012.

Whether we believe in calendar year distinctions, everything in life is a cycle with an end and a beginning. Wherever we come from and whereto we're going, at any point in time, there we are.

Ends, beginnings, the dangerous effects of reading, and too much buzz

Is a fitting title for a year end post. I've long mused on the dangers of analysis paralysis and inflating expectations.

My take is we often focus so much on where we've been that we fail to see where we're going, we place more faith in the writings of popular personalities, instead of believing in our own mastery with more practice, and we keep giving power away in exchange for very little value back.

I cannot help but think about Pixar's own Buzz Lightyear at this point and say: can do.

Saturday Three

The three posts that caught my eye this week are.


1Starting from the beginning of a new era, Stowe Boyd offers counter points to the tech blogosphere being dead:

The points that Jeremiah makes to support his argument are very tactical, not looking at the strategic changes going on technologically or societally. His ‘trends’ aren’t really trends, but narrow extrapolations from recent events masquerading as business advice.

… the ‘audience’ — by which Owyang means everyone else. I will put to the side that social media was supposed to be about the end of the audience — Jay Rosen’s famous ‘the people formerly known as the audience’ — and simply state that Owyang and the others groups he appears to be concerned about have largely internalized a media-centric worldview, while mouthing mostly empty platitudes about the power of social media.

Boyd then lists the rise of the web of flow, and the fall of the web of page, the social revolution and social tools, and social learning, innovation, and curation as part of the larger context in need of examining.


2Are we optimizing our way out of creation? In the Dangerous Effects of Reading, David Tate invites pause and reflection on our daily consumption habits:

I think we should all agree that getting faster at judging things is bad, but I think the real danger in having a super-efficient-filter is that your default mode is exclusion – you reject long enough and you lose the ability to create things that pass your own filter.  You stagnate at work for fear of everything you do being judged like every news article or viral video that you view.

So how do you break the power of consumption? By creating your own things.

Creation builds capacity for the pursuit of freedom, happiness, and plays to your strengths that feed your ability.


3Social media provides huge opportunities is too much buzz, says Schumpter in The Economist:

[…] some of the new social-media technologies have a clown-suit quality to them. They are amusing the first time, but rapidly become tedious.

A new medium: neither rare nor well-done

Most commentary on social media ignores an obvious truth—that the value of things is largely determined by their rarity. The more people tweet, the less attention people will pay to any individual tweet. The more people “friend” even passing acquaintances, the less meaning such connections have.

When everyone is talking at the same time, it becomes even more important to be able to detect and parse what matters most to you.


With so much emphasis still placed upon being noticed, plenty of opportunity is left in the noticing arena.