Capital Musings

Politics, Business, and Innovation

Category: Innovation (page 2 of 2)

How to reclaim our information

I have finally gotten around to reading Who Owns the Future? by Jaron Lanier. It is one of the most compelling treatises about the information age in quite some time. The basic thesis is we need to start reclaiming our information by getting remunerated for it. While his “space elevator pitch” requires an extensive redesign of cyberspace-as-we-know-it, for now, I have decided that the fastest way to begin is to take two small steps:

1) Control your own information by putting it on your own servers.

2) Ameliorate the effects of “Siren Servers” such as Facebook and Twitter by using them to redirect traffic to your own servers.

If the network effect-derived powers of the Siren Servers mean you cannot leave, you might as well figure out a way to partially monetize your own information.

Therefore, henceforth, the urtexts for all my public musings, serious or trivial, less than or greater than 140 characters, shall be housed here at And the goal of all posts on Siren Servers should be to funnel traffic from the Siren Servers to your own servers. Good luck.

NASA announces first planet found in habitable zone (full video)


NASA Ames has posted a full video of the announcement of their newest planetary discovery. Here is a short description of the video above:

The Kepler mission’s science team announced its latest finding at a press conference on Monday, Dec. 5, 2011. The team announced the confirmation of Kepler-22b, its first planet found in the “habitable zone,” the region where liquid water could exist on a planet’s surface. The planet is about 2.4 times the radius of Earth, orbits around a star similar to our sun and is located 600 light-years away. Scientists don’t yet know if Kepler-22b has a predominantly rocky, gaseous or liquid composition, but its discovery is a step closer to finding Earth-like planets. The planet’s host star belongs to the same class as our sun, called G-type, although it is slightly smaller and cooler.

Kepler also has discovered 1,094 new planet candidates, nearly doubling its previously known count. Since the last catalog was released in February, the number of planet candidates identified by Kepler has increased by 89 percent and now totals 2,326. Of these, 207 are approximately Earth-size, 680 are super Earth-size, 1,181 are Neptune-size, 203 are Jupiter-size and 55 are larger than Jupiter. The findings, based on observations conducted May 2009 to September 2010, show a dramatic increase in the numbers of smaller-size planet candidates.

Messy inception

Last week on Edge, Brian Eno wrote a piece on Composers as Gardeners.

So for me, this was really a new paradigm of composing.  Changing the idea of the composer from somebody who stood at the top of a process and dictated precisely how it was carried out, to somebody who stood at the bottom of a process who carefully planted some rather well-selected seeds, hopefully, and watched them turn into something.

This is reminiscent of one theory of creative inception put forth by Dean Keith Simonton in The Origins of Genius.  Those whom we recognize as great artists or composers are also among the most prolific.  Their higher production level lead to a faster learning process.  But more important is that their prolificness increases the probability of one of their memes.

This idea of complexity is not limited to music, as Eno connects his musical experience with cybernetics and chaos theory.  In Kevin Kelly’s piece on How technology evolves (see below), he talks about the increasing diversity of technology.  Our increasing sophistication is not a linear, deterministic process; rather, it is an exponentially complex mess.

Featured Photo Credit: flickr/matsuyuki

Newer posts