Monday, December 17, 2007

In what fields does my view of leadership apply?

"Fields" is an interesting term...and one I would push back on. Fields are melting.

For example, EDTECH is the hot topic now in education research, teaching, and lots of related technology areas. Now, it's hot for me because it's about to become a lot of my life again. But I think it is fair to say it is still hot in the general buzzosphere.

Is EDTECH education? Technology? Org theory? Management? Human ecology? Training? As it becomes more diffuse and's all of these in my opinion...and more.

In technology "clouds" I think we are seeing a move toward a network of "servers" and a set of very light clients called "appliances" or the iPhone or the ASUStek Eee PC 4g or the new ultra portable PC by Everex called Cloudburst, etc.

On the software side, you see it in things like Twitter, which a lot of people don't understand even while others say it defines the future of net interaction--immediate, personal, ephemeral and ad hoc. Twitter is, in my view, a way for humans to "implant" light connections to each other...what sociologist Mark Granovetter called "the strength of weak ties." It's like building a network of thousands of people you ride the bus with every day. You don't really know them...but you do know them too...and then when a snowstorm are mates of a sort to solve ad hoc problems. These are leaderless organizations in a proto-state.

FedEx/UPS and Amazon/Ebay have a similar relationship with "sellers" who are melted retailers. We're not sure what relationship we have with them or their brands. It becomes buzzed at times...when some brand or need heats up or our needs become highly specialized because we want to brew our own beer or take a trip to conquer K2.

RSS is the circulatory system of the new economy. Leadership as enabling comes from Google, Firefox, people who build free (libre) software, and their supporters.

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