I have some plans for 2007.
I will be diversifying my personal portfolio. What does that mean?
It does not mean I am reducing my commitment to RedMonk. Absolutely not. It does mean I am going to be giving some energy to some other things that are really important to me. Small things like – you know, the future of the planet.
I am going to help get a new organisation focused on sustainable mobility and next generation energy-thinking off the ground. I will be doing so on an advisory capacity. Mark Charmer is the guy behind The Movement Design Bureau, ably assisted by his right hand man and unabashed gearhead Joseph Simpson (how many people do you know that have ridden in the Tesla Roadster?). What is the aim of the organisation?
Our aim is to contribute to the re-design of movement – not just as a response to factors such as congestion, environmental damage and political pressures – but because there is scope to do it better.
This isn’t work you can do sitting in a cupboard. Our job involves connecting and engaging with all kinds of people in design, engineering, social and public policy, science, information technology, the arts, investment communities, academia, the media, schools, consumer brands and amongst end users.
Big but important goals. The two of them are now writing what is emerging as an extremely cool blog, rich in analysis and contrarian thinking. I looked around the web and you just won’t find the level of detail and insight about the GM Volt, for example, that you find at Re*Move. Seriously – the depth of knowledge about the design of sustainable mobility is probably what I find most fascinating. Joe and Mark are spending a lot of time with the designers that will shape the future of movement. So why not learn from them. I warn you though the thinking is viral – every thing I read now has a new movement lens. The idea is sticky and Mark is looking to create A Sticking Point.
I don’t know about you, but it seems to me GM has a lot of the same problems IBM did in 1994. If I was the GM board I would be making Louis Gerstner an offer he can’t refuse. I mean can you imagine the kudos for rescuing 2 American Icons – IBM being number one. Mark tells me Gerstner is working with the Carlyle Group now – come on out of the VC shadows Lou, your country’s auto industry needs you…
That’s the charm – I think tech, management, clean energy are closely related concepts that can be leveraged with distributed advisory (open source analysis), and so I can bring something to the table. I strongly believe in open source solutions to tough infrastructure and social problems, which is another reason Mark enlisted me. One of his first projects concerns design solutions for clean water in the developing world, while the attendant blog post shows what a good writer Mark is, and how he groks the new media of abundance and attention management: Why Open Source Marketing Changes Everything. I will sign out with his words, but first let me say that you should subscribe to Re*Move if you’re interested in the future beyond the latest gizmos.
An entire industry – of journalists acting as gatekeepers, of advertising sales executives funding the operation through demand management, of public relations advisors deriving earnings from being well connected and able to package a story in the ‘right’ way has grown around the basic constraint that there is only so much space in which to report stories or advertise.
A major change is going on today driven by the rise of a much broader range of commentary and commentators, and a fragmentation of where people look for information and inspiration. This is driven by user participation online and the explosion in blogging and ‘pro-amateur’ journalism, research and collaboration.