Apologies to Pizza!

Posted 26 Apr 2008 at 14:46 UTC by lkcl Share This

informal though this is, it's important enough to say as an article. i've been keeping an eye on the series currently being written and some of my comments - most notably to Pizza - indicate that i'm "jumping up and down". so Pizza - many apologies! :)

the purpose of the series currently being written is to encourage free software people to consider creating (and talking to people with money about funding!) entirely infrastructure-independent and adaptable software (on top of infrastructure-independent hardware), with the goal being to provide the average person - and ourselves - with I.T. that actually ... _helps_ us and _empowers_ us, rather than constricts our lives.

therefore, if i start "jumping up and down", imagining that people are "not listening", and start saying so, it's kinda... counter-productive. if anyone catches me doing this, please bl****y say so!!

in many ways this _is_ frustrating for me, because the extent at which i move through issues from "didn't even know it existed, guv" to "complete comprehension and understanding of the technology and its implications" can be frighteningly quick. that doesn't necessarily mean that i can then adequately explain that level of understanding to people - hence the frustration.

so to those people whom i appear to have "jumped at", please do accept my apologies - especially Pizza - it's not intentional, just a lack of confidence in my abilities and patience, especially given the timescales, and the scope of the endeavour behind this series. it's a bit... mind-bending :) fortunately i have the good sense to re-read what i've said, and, well... at least it's not as bad as this!.

anyway, all that having been said, i'd rather not take up much more of people's time going "oops" and would rather get on with the next article in the series, which will be the expansion of the outline on the "rsync VFS layer" idea.

... anyone having fun yet? :)


No apology necessary, posted 27 Apr 2008 at 12:48 UTC by Pizza » (Master)

It's been a good exercise for me; I haven't had something substantial to wrap my head around in quite a while.

That said, it's not that you were "jumping around", it's that you were taking great leaps all over the place, making it very hard to follow what you were saying, and even harder to figure out what was at the core of it all.

Your thought process is remarkably similar to my own, for what it's worth.

...and there is nothing new under the sun, posted 27 Apr 2008 at 16:14 UTC by Pizza » (Master)

The core of what you've been raving about (Grameen &| Social Business) isn't a new idea, but rather a new/better implementation of a very old idea. As the saying goes, "Give a man a fish and he'll eat for a day. Teach a man to fish and he'll eat for a lifetime." Add to that "Have him teach others to fish..." and it'll self-sustain forever.

...that is, until the growing number of men over-fish the river on which they live, causing the fish population to collapse, and the men to starve until they learn a new way to feed themselves. (This process traditionally involves a degree of bloodshed...)

(I realize that the Social Business model has an explicit goal of self-sufficiency, but even that isn't new -- many NPO/NGOs already work this way. Coming up with a way to make a micro-loan system work -- now that's an accomplishment! But I worry about what will happen as it grows larger. Perhaps the books will address that.)

One of my strengths/flaws is that I'm an armchair historian. While occasionally something truly new comes along, it's a rare thing indeed. Empires come and go, new technology inevitably disrupts, but people will always be people, for all their strengths and weaknesses.

The thing about technology is that it's a race. It disrupts the status quo, empowering the upstarts at the expense of the establishment. That is, until the establishment figures out how to use/leverage it, at which point the technology ends up being used to further cement the powers/goals of the establishment. With luck the disruption is irreverseable by that point. (All this assumes that said technology wasn't developed by the establishment to begin with...)

Free Software is extremely disruptive; it truly empowers the users, and uses the tools of the establishment to do so. So what happens? The establishment comes up with new rules. (Witness locked down hardware, DRM/DMCA, Patents, etc), and the cycle starts over again.

Anyway, I'm just rambling now.

... fortunately..., posted 27 Apr 2008 at 18:12 UTC by lkcl » (Master)

there are sovereign states that ignore DRM etc. DRM-locked DVD writers only works if LG and other manufacturers stop making non-DRM-locked drives!

thanks for reassuring me - and yes, i know i keep jumping from one thing to the next - there's such a hell of a lot to write.

Interesting books., posted 7 May 2008 at 20:16 UTC by Pizza » (Master)

I finished _Banker to the Poor_ last weekend, and now I'm about a third of the way through _Creating a World Without Poverty_.

There are some outstanding problems/weaknesses I see so far, but I'll reserve judgement until I get to the end of the book.

Back to your um, advocacy -- You apparently left out a major point that makes things much clearer: Investors and Owners are not the same; although Investors can own, and Owners can invest. The Social business model explicitly repays investors (which can in fact see a gain when you look at investment from the perspective of a loan) but once repaid all profits remain within the business.

Another requirement is that the workers and/or clients of the business need to make up the lion's share of the owners.

But no matter what the business's bylaws are, it still relies on the integrity of people in charge (or who want to be in charge...) in order to stay true to the original spirit of the business.

integrity, posted 11 May 2008 at 07:11 UTC by lkcl » (Master)

pizza i'll reply on the other article, ok?

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