Nine things you need to know about the net

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16 Responses to “Nine things you need to know about the net”

  1. Anonymous says:

    “In the natural world, increased biodiversity is closely correlated with higher whole-system productivity – ie the rate at which energy and material inputs are translated into growth.”

    Actually, according to ecological succession theory, higher biodiversity is typical of more mature ecosystems, which have lower net productivity.
    http://www.physicalgeography.net/fundamentals/9i.html

    That’s the reason for our crops being communities artificially kept in early stages of ecological succession, when net productivity is highest.

    Captcha: one chaining – appropriate considering we’re talking about ecology here ;-)

  2. Ocker3 says:

    growth is fine as long as you have somewhere to grow, vis spaceship earth and total population, is growth always good? At some point we need to think about doing things better, rather than just doing more of what we were doing before.

  3. hapa says:

    compared to the radically inventive (& yes also destructive, because all intensely physical) responses to the stresses of the 1930s, what have we done lately — facebook? we look like wankers history is about to beat to death.

  4. Patrick Nielsen Hayden says:

    Of course, another image of “radically increased biodiversity” overcoming a “slow-moving” status quo is that of a town being swallowed by a jungle. There was violence and unfairness in the town, but it was at least to some extent constrained. In the jungle, “fair” isn’t even an aspiration; it’s just nature red in tooth and claw. Why this is something we should be enthusiastic about is a little hard to see.

    I think this is a good piece overall. But I think it’s worth noting that the role of most of us in “an ecosystem whose biodiversity has expanded rapidly” isn’t “fun bohemian,” it’s “lunch.”

  5. loonquawl says:

    The stuff before the actual nine items – ‘misunderstood’ ‘depend greatly on it’ ‘vilified’ ‘most know nothing about it’ – might as well be written about the internal combustion engine, plumbing, banking, and industrial agriculture.

    The actual nine items are nice, but i fail to see the target audience. The uninterested won’t read it, the uninformed won’t understand it, and the untargeted will wonder whom it’s for.

    Reminds me of the recent xkcd on blogging…

    • sabik says:

      The actual nine items are nice, but i fail to see the target audience. The uninterested won’t read it, the uninformed won’t understand it, and the untargeted will wonder whom it’s for.

      Ah, the traditional point of preaching to the choir (if that is your complaint) is that it provides the choir with pre-packaged arguments and talking points to use in their own conversations.

    • Anonymous says:

      The actual nine items are nice, but i fail to see the target audience. The uninterested won’t read it, the uninformed won’t understand it, and the untargeted will wonder whom it’s for.

      Probably interested and informed people are being targeted, then. :)

  6. Anonymous says:

    … was the piece in the Observer or in the Guardian? I (and the link) think the latter :)

  7. heng says:

    Wow, reading point three I finally get network neutrality and why it is so important. Its not what we have at the moment. Its patently obvious that some data types would benefit from the tweaking the infrastructure we have. Its that we don’t have any idea what might become of the network, and by extension we don’t have any idea how to optimise – any attempts are doomed to find local and, crucially, temporary maxima.

  8. dequeued says:

    So it sounds like more people trying to justify theft.

    • sabik says:

      So it sounds like more people trying to justify theft.

      Here, have some of the troll biscuits. I understand they’re rather good today.

  9. squidish says:

    In paragraph 3 of the snippet posted here, metaphors start getting seriously mixed up.

  10. turn_self_off says:

    i keep seeing declining growth as a bad thing. To me thats just a natural thing, a indication that the available market have reached saturation. The time to be worried is not when growth stops, but when it stars to recede.

    i find myself reminded of a story about a US power company that had a stable stock price for decades, and the local town around it where happily doing their thing. Then new management got promoted, and started investing power company resources left and right in an attempt to drive the stock price up. End result was that local businesses that had been going at least as long as the power company went bankrupt as the power company investments failed, resulting in increasing electricity prices to make up for the losses.

  11. jphilby says:

    Dear Apple: read this part.

    “Traditionally, organisations have tried to deal with the [complexity] problem by reducing complexity – acquiring competitors, locking in customers, producing standardised products and services, etc. These strategies are unlikely to work in our emerging environment …”

  12. abb3w says:

    Of course, ecology still has to deal with limited resources; and conventional economics deals badly with periods of exponential resource re-allocation leading to bandwagon effect distortions.

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