Yesterday Amanda and I had the pleasure of hanging out with Dave Winer. I have been meeting a lot of amazing people and almost everyone has given so much, but I cant remember being struck so hard so many times in one day with drastic yet reasonable new perspectives to consider.
Over the course of recording Amanda's excellent interview, lunch and a walk in the park, here are a few of the remarkably major ideas now swirling around in my head:
The Ad Sea
Advertising. In for a BIG change. Could advertising erase itself as part of adjusting to the information age? As people continue to gain more information they seem to become more critical. Soon, advertising may not work at all. Instead of seeing a misplaced advertisement (i.e. undercover information about one thing invading an intended subject matter with another), the object for sale behind the advertisement need only exist by-itself or in a forum with other like kinds of information. Imagine for example that there is a catalog you requested to get in the mail from a store that you like to buy things from. The catalog is not an ad at this point, it's desired information. Question: What are the most popular RSS feeds on Yahoo? Shopping feeds. Perhaps the more that people will refuse invasion, the more they will explore and seek out the information that they want delivered.
The Aspen Tree
This is about something I suspect Dave was considering deeply but he never outright said to what degree. Its certainly a feeling I am having. He brought it up and we both agreed its very big and it is a must. Its an intended component for the OPML project but what he didn't say - what I'm going to go out on a limb to predict - is that post blogging, post RSS, post Podcasting, post OPML, the biggest ship which is about to set sail with Winer (and me already onboard), inevitably destined for global change is all about one word, and it's not plastics: Bittorrent; The Kleenex brand of an entirely redistributed internet. RSS+Bittorent is already late in coming but this is just a detail. Denying a peer-to-peer distributed internet in general, especially where individual computers are free to transfer data at maximum speeds in both directions (upload and download) would essentially be lobbying to keep a square wheel from turning round. That is, why cause one guy to carry all the load while everyone else consumes and then stagnates lethargically? No good reason. Peer-to-peer would be exponentially, perhaps even chaotically more efficient as a way for the internet to work. More like an aspen than a pine.
The Will O the Wisp
I'm really doing it up with the poetic subtitles, eh? Blogging can be a lot of different kinds of things and it can be one of those things in your life that eventually you feel like you must leave behind in order to move on to the next thing I suppose, but then again, I'm thinking blogging for some people might be more like brushing your teeth each day, something that is just a part of caring about life, something that you dont ever move on from as a good thing; Dave has been threatening to quit bogging. I'm thinking maybe it would be more natural to keep it, Dave!
"Why cause one guy to carry all the load while everyone else consumes and then stagnates lethargically?"
Makes perfect sense from the consumer's point of view, but it doesn't make economic sense for the incumbent broadband providers.
Verizon/Comcast wants to control the pipe because in their eyes they built the infrastructure of the Internet, and they want to profit on the digital traffic that they see is currently getting a free ride.
So network neutrality seems to be the biggest open question regarding independent broadcasters, and how open the Internet is going to be in the future. It's somewhat of a complicated and boring issue for most, but I see it coming up more and more as something to be thinking about.