Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Your Extended Mind

I have been finding when I leave Twitter open in Tweetdeck on one of the screens on my desk it seems to become a mind extender. Folks tweet about things I am interested in and provide a link to more on the subject. I end up following links and threads I would have never otherwise have been aware of.

My connection with tweets brings me new information and knowledge I would not have had. It has extended my mind.

I have read much recently about robots and war, and Ray Kurzweil's thoughts on exponential change.

Here are a few thoughts from P.W. Singer's new book Wired for War that illustrate the exponential change that has occurred in combat. Note, Singer's point is that we ain't seen nothing yet.

  • In Greek and Roman times it took 500 soldiers to cover the area of 1 football field.
  • By the American Civil War it took 20 soldiers.
  • By WWI it took 2 soldiers.
  • By WWII it was 1 soldier to 5 football fields.
  • In Iraq it is roughly 1 soldier to 780 football fields.

That is an example of the acceleration in change created by exponential change.

Services such as Twitter mean information and change are now circling the globe in basically real time.

I learned about the US Air crash in the Hudson within 5 minutes of it happening. It took so long because I was not directly following the Twitters at the scene. I never watched a single TV news coverage of the event because I already had all the information.

Your business, my business, our world is changing at this pace. I need mind extending tools just to hope to keep up. Of course, you don't have to keep up, and if you are a competitor of mine I sincerely hope you will not.

What mind extending tools do you use? Do you use them just to learn or to share your learning and information with others?

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