Four Pillars: Time for a recap

We have a Foundation.

The Foundation covers tin and wire and connectedness and storage; it deals with the bits and bytes; it is independent of vendor or device, agnostic on platforms and driven by community standards. Any device any connect mechanism any form of information anywhere anytime. All recorded and archived and searchable and retrievable.

On top of this Foundation are Four Pillars. Syndication, which pushes out information, subscribed to and personalised as needed. Search, which pulls in information, collaboratively flitered and preferenced and heuristically-improved as needed. [In both these cases information is acquired on a non-deterministic relevance and ranking basis, with training and learning being the basis of improving accuracy]. Fulfilment, which is the transaction process of discovering inventory and price for an interest, identifying the buyer and seller uniquely, exchanging value and proceeding with the logistics. Fulfilment is fulfilment for a book, a bed, a bond or a body. And Collaboration/Conversation, which is the “markets are conversations” Cluetrain glue that binds all this together.

The Four Pillars underpin the new world of information. You create, publish, receive information that you never had before. Social information, cooking-pot information. You visualise it in ways you could never do before. You move it and share it and enrich it and aggregate it and disaggregate it using tools you could never have conceived before. And you do all this with presence and location and attention and mobility. You teach it and learn it and shape it and train it. You cleanse it and repair it and fuse it and melt it. The it is information. Yes, this is a blog about information -)

And the you doing everything is not me nor my generation. All we are doing is preparing for Generation M and learning from them.

Utopia, yes. But all it needs is common sense in avoiding visible pitfalls in vendor-lock-in, in “industry” standards, in DRM and in IPR. The elephants in the room.

This needs all of us, the market participants, to work differently. Take into account the impact of opensource, understand that we have to move from geographic utility to virtual global utility, from generic utility to ever-changing vertical utility. Work out what problems are unique to us and solve them, and use the community to solve community problems. Refactor our attitude before our code. See what all this means to us as vendors, as software builders, as “IT departments”, as telcos, as regulators, even as “consultants”.

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