Posted by Morten Blaabjerg, October 20th, 2012 in Shared stuff
By enigmax, TorrentFreak – October 20, 2012 at 03:02PM
During the dying days of August, Pirate Bay founder Gottfrid Svartholm was arrested by Cambodian police in Phnom Penh, the city he made his home several years ago. From his comfortable apartment above the Cadillac Bar on the riverfront, Gottfrid was taken into custody.
The immediately recognizable Swede is best known for his connections to a rather infamous BitTorrent site and it was initially presumed he was going back to Sweden to face a pending jail sentence for copyright infringement offenses. That turned out to be only part of the jigsaw.
After landing at Stockholm’s Arlanda Airport, Gottfrid was hit with new charges relating to the hacking of an IT company closely connected with Sweden’s tax authorities.
Gottfrid has been detained ever since, with little to zero information coming out of the Swedish system as to his health or whereabouts. But one person, his mother Kristina Svartholm, knows exactly where he is.
“He’s being held in a newly built custody house 15 minutes by commute north of the city, Häktet i Sollentuna,” Kristina told TorrentFreak. “Very large, very impersonal, very frightening for visitors who don’t like surveillance cameras, lifts that move automatically, security checks…”
Of course, the most important questions concern Gottfrid’s well-being, but first let’s hear a little bit more from Kristina on her son’s circumstances to better understand his position.
“He is in custody suspected of hacking. It is called the ‘Logica case’ for which two other persons were arrested earlier this year. They are still under suspicion but free, waiting for the trial – if it comes to one,” says Kristina.
“This is not a proper case yet, no prosecution so far. The crime is said to have been going on from early 2010 to summer 2012 according to the prosecutor. The reason why Gottfrid is being kept in custody is that he ‘might destroy evidence and disturb the investigation’.”
Three weeks ago the authorities gave another reason why Gottfrid should continue to be locked up, unlike his co-accused who remain free. If he remained at large, the prosecutor argued, he would “continue with criminal activities.”
“Maybe the court realized that this latter claim was a bit stupid because he in fact should be in jail now anyway – if the Swedish police who picked him up in Cambodia were telling the truth,” notes Kristina. “His old Pirate Bay sentence, one year in jail, was what the international spokesman for the Swedish police, as well as people at the Swedish embassy, gave as the reason for bringing him here.”
Whatever the reasons, the end is result is that Gottfrid is now in custody, locked up for 23 hours a day in solitary confinement.
“He is kept under restrictions as decided by the prosecutor. TV in his cell. He can buy cigarettes and sweets from a kiosk that comes Monday and Wednesdays,” Kristina explains.
“He is offered one hour ‘outdoors’ each day in some kind of exercise yard with high concrete walls. That is all he is allowed to leave his cell for. No gym, no opportunities to meet other people except for the guards.
“I have got permission so far from the prosecutor to meet him once a week for an hour each time, together with two policemen who listen to our conversations and stop us if we get close to the ‘case’, which we happened to do in the beginning. It has been a process of amazing bureaucrazy (Freudian spelling!) every time before getting there, I assure you.”
Being locked in a cell for 23 hours every day must be a mind-numbing experience, especially for someone as intelligent as Gottfrid. But Kristina says that her son is filling his time watching television and reading books, since the one newspaper he’s given access to is a tabloid that he refuses to buy. “It’s not exactly his favorite,” Kristina says. Overall though, Gottfrid appears to be coping well.
“He is perfectly fine!” says Kristina. “I haven’t noticed any health problems whatsoever since his arrival. He is very thin, yes – but he is strong, amazingly strong, both physically and mentally, I assure you. When we meet we have fun together, he jokes and tells stories and makes me laugh.”
While Gottfrid’s stories are keeping Kristina entertained, it’s other people’s stories that are keeping the Pirate Bay co-founder entertained once his cell door closes. This is where every TorrentFreak reader can play their part.
Gottfrid is allowed to read books but what he also has access to are letters. To that end Kristina has set up an email address (see the end of this article) through which his supporters can write to him with words of encouragement.
Of course, there are some ground rules and a couple of things people should know.
If letters are to get through there can be no discussion of specifics on the case, that much should be obvious. Also, anyone writing should be aware that although their email addresses will be stripped away by Kristina before she prints out letters for physical mailing, the Swedish authorities will read all emails before allowing Gottfrid access to them.
Hopefully a steady flow of letters will keep Gottfrid busy, encouraged and entertained before the next notable points in his detainment are reached. Some of those are due in the short-term, others in a more extended timeframe.
“Every second Friday there is a court decision about another two weeks in custody or not, as suggested by the prosecutor. Next time will be Oct 26. This will probably go on for another 1.5 to 2 months or so, it’s just a matter of wait and see,” Kristina explains.
“Then I would guess he will be taken to prison , whichever it will be. There will of course be restrictions for him there as well – including getting access to Internet and so on – but there will be more people around and hopefully it will be a bit easier for him as to receive visitors etc.”
With good behavior it’s expected that Gottfrid could be released in May 2013 but as for developments with the Logica case, the state of play is somewhat of a mystery.
“I know nothing,” Kristina concludes. “Absolutely nothing is known to me except for what has been reported in the media.”
To write to Anakata use the following address: gottfrids[at]yahoo.se
Special thanks to Jenny
Source: Pirate Bay Founder Held In Solitary Confinement – Write Him a Letter Today
Posted by Morten Blaabjerg, October 16th, 2012 in Shared stuff
By Iona Harding, The 1709 Blog – October 15, 2012 at 11:38PM
Tomorrow the Federal Court of California
will be asked to decide whether a takedown notice issued by Universal Music in
respect of a home video
posted on You Tube is an abuse of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.
The video is of a toddler dancing to
“Let’s Go Crazy”, by Prince. In 2007, Universal Music claimed that
this particular dancing baby video (and there are many many dancing baby videos
on YouTube) infringed Universal’s rights in “Let’s Go Crazy”. Stephanie Lenz, the baby’s mother, responded saying
that the video was a fair use of the song. She asked for declaratory judgment
that her home video did not infringe any Universal copyright, and also claimed
damages and injunctive relief restraining Universal from bringing further
copyright claims in connection with the video. In 2008
the court held that copyright holders cannot order the removal of an online
file without first determining whether the posting reflects fair use of the
The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF),
an organisation which seeks to protect online free speech, will represent
Stephanie Lenz in court tomorrow. It will ask the court to grant Lenz’s motion
for summary judgment and rule that Universal’s takedown was improper and an
abuse of the DCMA.
EFF has said
that “Parents are allowed to document and share moments of their
children’s lives on a forum like YouTube, and they shouldn’t have to worry if
those moments happen to include some background music.”
The pleadings and court orders so far can be
found on EFF’s website.
Posted by Morten Blaabjerg, October 15th, 2012 in Shared stuff
By Fred, A VC – October 14, 2012 at 04:05PM
Alexis Madrigal has an interesting post up on The Atlantic about “dark social” vs “public social”. Alexis makes the point that private sharing via email, IM, and other means drives more traffic around the web than public social services like Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, Pinterest, etc.
Alexis makes the broader point in the piece that the Internet has always been social and that the emergence of these newer social platforms is overblown. I agree with Alexis that “dark social” is a very powerful driver of traffic, but I think Alexis is missing a big point about the power of public sharing.
Public sharing opens up the share to all sorts of interesting engagement that is just not possible in “dark social” systems.
I will give an example of something that happened yesterday to make my point. I went a walk on the High Line yesterday afternoon. As I was headed north at the 10th Avenue Ampitheater, I came across this huge billboard art installation:
I was smitten with this piece and spent five or ten minutes taking it in. Then I snapped a few photos of it on my phone and posted them to Instagram, Foursquare, and Tumblr. I was curious about the artist and the piece but didn’t really do anything to figure out who had created it.
This morning as I was looking through Tumblr, I saw that my post of the art installation on Tumblr had gotten quite a few reactions, including this reblog from Kevin Slavin. Here’s what Kevin had to say about it:
I’m so excited to see this wash up in Fred’s feed and to see others responding to it.
It’s not labeled anywhere and there’s no obvious way to know, but this is an old piece by one of my two great early mentors: Thomas Bayrle.
Looking back, I realize I’ve blogged about him frequently in the last few years including Five films, Documenta, an old piece I helped him with, a quick reference in a post by Greg, and his inspiration in an old essay for Brockman.
There are so many things to know that give this piece additional gravity. To know, for example, that this was made by hand, back in the 70s, no computers, and that the distortion of the logo was done by stretching latex with pins and tracing it.
To know that Thomas was a textile designer before he was a full-time artist. To understand the direct connections between Thomas, Peter Roehr and yes, Andy Warhol, who had similar predilections and procedural approaches to repetition, all at the exact same time.
Twenty years ago exactly, I was an artist working in Thomas’ studio in Frankfurt, and it’s no exaggeration to say that he taught me how to see. Like any great artist, Thomas is an astronaut, and he’s brought back images of places we might someday get to.
That this car has arrived some 40 years after he made it… well, that’s because we’re slow. No matter how fast the network gets, no matter how fast the market moves, they’ll never catch up to artists who have all their sensors in play.
How awesome is that? Now we know who the artist is – Thomas Bayrle. And we know when he made this work, we know how he did it, and we know that Kevin studied with him.
Public sharing of social media made all of that happen. Sharing a picture of the art installation with my wife and/or kids via gmail, sms, kik, or some other form of private sharing could not have and would not have produced this information. And even if it had, it would not have produced it publicly.
So say what you will about “dark social” and private sharing. I’ll take brightly lit public social any day.
Posted by Morten Blaabjerg, October 14th, 2012 in Shared stuff
By Kevin Carson, P2P Foundation – October 13, 2012 at 01:54AM
An old Downfall parody by Paul Fernhout, in which Hitler reacts to news of a post-scarcity economy. Any similarities to the current policies of the United States government are purely coincidental, of course.
“It looks like there are now local digital fabrication facilities here, here, and here.”
“But we still have the rockets we need to take them out?”
“The rockets have all been used to launch seed automated machine shops for self-replicating space habitats for more living space in space.”
“What about the nuclear bombs?”
“All turned into battery-style nuclear power plants for island cities in the oceans.”
“What about the tanks?”
“The diesel engines have been remade to run biodiesel and are powering the internet hubs supplying technical education to the rest of the world.”
“I can’t believe this. What about the weaponized plagues?”
“The gene engineers turned them into antidotes for most major diseases like malaria, tuberculosis, cancer, and river blindness.”
“Well, send in the Daleks.”
“The Daleks have been re-outfitted to terraform Mars. There all gone with the rockets.”
“Well, use the 3D printers to print out some more grenades.”
“We tried that, but they only are printing toys, food, clothes, shelters, solar panels, and more 3D printers, for some reason.”
“But what about the Samsung automated machine guns?”
“They were all reprogrammed into automated bird watching platforms. The guns were taken out and melted down into parts for agricultural robots.”
“I just can’t believe this. We’ve developed the most amazing technology the world has ever known in order to create artificial scarcity so we could rule the world through managing scarcity. Where is the scarcity?”
“Gone, Mein Fuhrer, all gone. All the technologies we developed for weapons to enforce scarcity have all been used to make abundance.”
“How can we rule without scarcity? Where did it all go so wrong? … Everyone with an engineering degree leave the room … now!”
[Cue long tirade on the general incompetence of engineers. Then cue long tirade on how could engineers seriously wanted to help the German workers to not have to work so hard when the whole Nazi party platform was based on providing full employment using fiat dollars. Then cue long tirade on how could engineers have taken the socialism part seriously and shared the wealth of nature and technology with everyone globally.]
“So how are the common people paying for all this?”
“Much is free, and there is a basic income given to everyone for the rest. There is so much to go around with the robots and 3D printers and solar panels and so on, that most of the old work no longer needs to be done.”
“You mean people get money without working at jobs? But nobody would work?”
“Everyone does what they love. And they are producing so much just as gifts.”
“Oh, so you mean people are producing so much for free that the economic system has failed?”
“Yes, the old pyramid scheme one, anyway. There is a new post-scarcity economy, where between automation and a a gift economy the income-through-jobs link is almost completely broken. Everyone also gets income as a right of citizenship as a share of all our resources for the few things that still need to be rationed. Even you.”
“Really? How much is this basic income?”
“Two thousand a month.”
“Two thousand a month? Just for being me?”
“Well, with a basic income like that, maybe I can finally have the time and resources to get back to my painting…”
Posted by Morten Blaabjerg, October 13th, 2012 in Shared stuff
By Colin Marshall, Open Culture – October 09, 2012 at 02:15PM
Yesterday saw the launch of what you’ll surely find the most intriguing use of Syria’s domain name extension yet, especially if you follow the visual arts. It serves the punning site Art.sy, to which you’ll soon point your browser whenever you want to discover new imagery that appeals to your aesthetic sensibility. Thus holds the theory, in any case, behind this service created by the Art Genome Project. It aims to become to visual art what Pandora has become to music: a virtual mind that can take your tastes, turn right back around to recommend works that please those tastes, and — in the best of all possible outcomes, little by little — broaden those tastes as well. Tell Art.sy what has recently captivated you in the museums, and it will dig through pieces from Washington’s National Gallery, the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art, the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, the British Museum, and elsewhere, trying its best to find something else that will do the same. In total, Art.sy hosts “17,000+ artworks by 3,000+ artists” from “300+ of the world’s leading galleries, museums, private collections, foundations, and artist estates from New York to London, Paris to Shanghai, Johannesburg to São Paulo.”
Melena Ryzik in The New York Times describes Art.sy’s elaborate system of code-based aesthetic classification as developed by “a dozen art historians who decide what those codes are and how they should be applied,” in which “some labels (Art.sy calls them “genes” …) denote fairly objective qualities, like the historical period and region the work comes from and whether it is figurative or abstract, or belongs in an established category like Cubism, Flemish portraiture or photography,” while others “are highly subjective, even quirky.” Ryzik lists the possible codes for a Picasso as including “Cubism,” “abstract painting,” “Spain,” “France” and “love,” and those for a Jackson Pollock as “abstract art,” “New York School,” “splattered/dripped,” “repetition” and “process-oriented.” Here we have yet another reason to maintain a high artistic awareness in our high-tech time. Still, I can’t help but recall the wise counsel Stephen Fry offered in an interview we featured back in August: a truly life-enriching recommendation engine wouldn’t give you the same art you’ve always enjoyed; it would give you the exact opposite.
You can learn more about the ins-and-outs of Art.sy here.
Colin Marshall hosts and produces Notebook on Cities and Culture. Follow him on Twitter at @colinmarshall.
Art.sy Rolls Out Huge Archive of Fine-Art Images and an Intelligent Art Appreciation Guide is a post from: Open Culture. You can follow Open Culture on Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus and by Email.
Posted by Morten Blaabjerg, October 13th, 2012 in Shared stuff
By Anna Ebbesen, Digitale tanker fra hverdagen – October 09, 2012 at 05:23AM
Det her er den slags, jeg gerne så alle politikere altid blev tvunget til at lave. Et geografisk scoreboard, så man som vælger kan se, hvordan ens liv er blevet forandret (gerne en smule til det bedre) af den førte politik. Den slags har jeg samtidig altid fået af vide er umuligt at lave, hvis gerne vil give et sandfærdigt billede. Både det er svært at redegøre for og kræver gode datasæt for at kunne give nogen menig for brugeren.
Obama kampagnen har da også valgt at fokusere på særlige områder essentielle for kampagnen og i stedet for den enkelte, fokuseret på lokalområdet. Det er et hurtigt hack, ser det ud til, men det er gode tal for kampagnen, når de gerne vil overbevise amerikanerne omkring “facts on the ground”.
Også selvom, der ikke er data for alle hovedområderne i alle stater, synes jeg, at de er sluppet godt fra forsøget.
Posted by Morten Blaabjerg, October 13th, 2012 in Shared stuff
By Bo Jørgensen, papskubber.dk – October 09, 2012 at 12:36AM
Søndag aften d. 8.oktober 2012 var der reception for det nye danske strategispil Colonies i København.
Spillet er udviklet af en lille gruppe brætspilsdesignere som allerede har udtænkt flere brætspilskoncepter, men først med Colonies har haft lyst til at sætte det i produktion.
Colonies er et tungere brætspil
Colonies tager spillerne, som koloniherre i rummet, ud i kampen for ressourcer, mad, energi og teknologiske udviklinger. Spillet er i den tungere ende – men repræsenterer på flotteste vis at de danske designere kan lave et vaskeægte euro-game som er 100% båret af spillets mekanik – ressourcehandel.
Designere bag Colonies er
- Morten Andersen
- Tina Christensen
- Robert Bonde Jensen
- Lone Gram Larsen
- Claes Willina Hart Schütt
- Troels Vastrup.
Kun få tilbage ..
Spillet er produceret i Kina med Moxibox som fødselshjælper, og da det er usikkert hvor stor målgruppen er til et tungt strategispil er spillet i første omgang taget hjem i et par hundrede stk.
Man kan købe via firstname.lastname@example.org for for kr. 500. Ligesom spillet vil komme ud til et mindre antal special-butikker og potentielle websites. Desuden kan man se og prøve spillet på Viking Con og SPIEL12 i Essen. Hvor holdet bag Colonies bla. deler stand med Mark Rein-Hagen, det forventes at blive et stort tilløbsstykke.
Posted by Morten Blaabjerg, October 13th, 2012 in Shared stuff
By Ernesto, TorrentFreak – October 08, 2012 at 09:29PM
Over the past two years a small group of copyright holders have started thousands of mass-BitTorrent lawsuits, targeting more than a quarter million people in the US alone.
The copyright holders who start these cases generally provide nothing more than an IP-address as evidence. They then ask the courts to grant a subpoena which allows them to request the personal details of the alleged offenders from their Internet providers.
The plaintiffs in these cases, often described as copyright trolls, are mostly adult movie studios. Malibu Media is one of the most active studios, and this year alone they have filed 349 mass lawsuits, targeting thousands of alleged downloaders across the U.S.
This strategy has earned the adult studio millions of dollars in settlements, without going to trial once. However, this is going to change soon thanks to Pennsylvania District Court Judge Michael Baylson who delivered a landmark ruling late last week.
In a memorandum covering three mass-lawsuits, the Judge reviewed the motions of five anonymous defendants who protested the subpoena which ordered their Internet providers to reveal their identities. Judge Baylson summarizes one of the Doe defendant’s motions as follows.
“Among other things, the declaration asserts that Plaintiff has brought suit against numerous unnamed defendants simply to extort settlements, that the BitTorrent software does not work in the manner Plaintiff alleges, and that a mere subscriber to an ISP is not necessarily a copyright infringer, with explanations as to how computer-based technology would allow non-subscribers to access a particular IP address,” Baylson writes.
“In other words, according to the declaration, there is no reason to assume an ISP subscriber is the same person who may be using BitTorrent to download the alleged copyrighted material. Similar assertions are made in memoranda filed in support of the other motions.”
However, the Judge also notes that the copyright holder’s rights can’t be ignored. Both the plaintiffs and the defendants present their own version of the truth and Judge Baylson believes that a trial is needed to decide who’s right.
“The Court cannot decide substantive issues on these conflicting documents. Discovery and, ultimately, a trial are necessary to find the truth,” he writes.
For this reason Baylson has ordered a Bellwether trial, which often take place when many plaintiffs file proceedings under the same theory swamping courts with an enormous caseload. The five defendants who filed a motion will now go to trial, and the verdicts will be used to rule on similar proceedings in the future.
The Judge notes that the five defendants can enter into a joint defense agreement, and ask for other interested parties to join them. He also calls for a speedy trial to resolve the matter in a few months.
“In this case, the Court will require that the pleadings be completed promptly and will enter an order which provides for discovery to start without delay and be completed expeditiously so the case can proceed to final disposition on the merits, within six months,” Baylson writes.
The Bellwether trial will be the first time that actual evidence against alleged BitTorrent infringers is tested in court. This is relevant because the main piece of evidence the copyright holders have is an IP-address, which by itself doesn’t identify a person but merely a connection.
In a past RIAA court case experts described the evidence gathering techniques of other file-sharing services “as factually erroneous”, “unprofessional” and “borderline incompetent.” In addition, academics have shown that due to shoddy technique even a network printer can be accused of sharing copyrighted files on BitTorrent.
Sophisticated Jane Doe, a critic of the copyright troll cases, is optimistic that the defendants will emerge as winners of the trial.
“The beauty of a Bellwether trial design is both in its pace and in its binding power: finally, trolls’ evidence (or lack thereof) will be tested. You won’t be surprised to learn that I really doubt that trolls will present enough evidence to declare victory; that’s why I’m excited and full of expectations,” she writes.
Considering what’s at stake, it would be no surprise if parties such as the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) are willing to join in. They are known to get involved in crucial copyright troll cases, siding with the defendants. We asked the group for a comment, but have yet to receive a response.
On the other side, Malibu Media may get help from other copyright holders who are engaged in mass-BitTorrent lawsuits. A ruling against the copyright holder may severely obstruct the thus far lucrative settlement business model, meaning that millions of dollars are at stake for these companies.
Without a doubt, the trial is expected to set an important precedent for the future of mass-BitTorrent lawsuits in the U.S. One to watch for sure.
Source: Finally: BitTorrent Piracy Evidence to be Tested in Court
Posted by Morten Blaabjerg, October 13th, 2012 in Shared stuff
By Fred, A VC – October 08, 2012 at 06:42PM
First we’ll take care of some logistics and then we’ll get to the post of the week in my Skillshare Class on sustainability in business.
Office hours will take place at 6pm eastern today. The link to the hangout is here. I don’t like the way office hours worked last week and so I am changing them up. I will start by asking people to post questions in this discussions section. Then I will review a few business model canvas projects live for everyone to see. Then I’ll finish up the 30 minute session by answering as many questions as possible while time lasts.
There are roughly 80 business model canvas projects posted so far. You can see them here. Since I will only be able to review a few of them today in office hours, it would be great for anyone who is taking this class to stop by and pick a few to give comments on.
If you are looking for a web-based tool to build and share your business model canvas, this thread mentions several of them.
OK. Now that we are done with the logistics, I will move on to my second post in this series.
Last week we talked about long term thinking vs short term thinking. But sometimes, no matter how long term you are thinking, things happen that you didn’t plan for and they can impact your business. Actually, this always happens. And that is when you need to adapt.
You will not stay in business forever if you don’t adapt to changing market conditions. This doesn’t mean adopting the “business model of the hour” model and this doesn’t mean pivoting either. What I am talking about is the once every few years “oh shit moment” when you realize that the path you are on isn’t going to work in a year or two and that you need to make some changes.
This is a frustrating realization. I have a good friend who has been running a business for more than a decade. He told me a few weeks ago that he thinks the market he has been operating in is changing and it is starting to impact his business. And just when he had everything firing on all cylinders.
That’s how it is in business. Just as you are taking the victory lap for the kickass execution you and the team have delivered, the track takes a tilt and things start getting harder. Businesses don’t operate in a vacuum. They operate in a dynamic ever changing market that is going to make things difficult for you, especially if you want to be in business forever.
I think some examples will help. The one that comes to mind front and center is Microsoft. By the middle of the 1990s, Microsoft had it all. They had a dominant share in desktop operating systems and a dominant share in desktop apps. They were literally printing money. Then the commerical internet happened. Netscape showed up. And Microsoft’s market changed, forever.
Microsoft did adapt. They built Internet Explorer in reaction to Netscape and then used their desktop dominance to push it into the market, hurting Netscape so badly that it had to sell to AOL. That got Microsoft into trouble with the Justice Department and they were investigated as a result.
But what Microsoft didn’t see in 1995 was Google because it didn’t exist. And they didn’t see the emergence of cloud based productivity apps because they didn’t exist. In hindsight, it is pretty easy to see how fundamentally transformed Microsoft’s business has been by the Internet and it is also pretty easy to see that they have not been able to adapt sufficiently to maintain any semblance of the dominance they had in the mid 90s. This stock chart tells you everything you need to know about what the Internet did to Microsoft. They may be surviving but they are certainly not thriving.
Another great example is RIM. I don’t even need to tell this story. Everyone knows that the dismissive tone and stance that RIM’s management took toward the iPhone and what it represented was essentially the death knell of a great company. I suspect they wish their stock chart looked like Microsoft’s.
But let’s look at a more positive example. As Ron Ashkenas points out in this HBR article, IBM saw that the hardware market was changing and their competitive position in it was changing with it. They sold their PC hardware business in 2005 to Lenovo and doubled down on consulting and related services. Their stock chart tells the rest of this story.
Adapting doesn’t always mean exiting a business that you decide has issues. You can also retool, reshape, and refocus the business. A company that I’ve worked with for more than a decade saw the industry it services go through some painful transitions in the 2008/2009 downturn. They built an entirely new line of products that service the growth part of the industry while working to maintain the older products through an orderly and gradual decline. It’s been a difficult transition because it has meant that the company’s top line hasn’t grown during this transition. But the company is still in business and the new products are growing quite nicely.
Every situation is different and I don’t have some “silver bullet” to help you all think about how to figure out when to adapt and when to stay the course. But I do have some observations. The comfort of a strong balance sheet (and a nice looking stock chart) is often your enemy not your friend in these situations. The most agressive CEOs I’ve seen in these situations are often the ones with less than a year of cash in the bank and survival instinct in full on mode.
Another observation is that getting your organization to adapt is harder than you might think. Organizations have inertia. The bigger they are the more inertia they have. If you think you need to adapt your business quickly, you will need to figure who is in the boat with you and who is not and make the changes you need, particularly on your senior team, to align the team with mission and get going.
Finally, you cannot be in adaptation mode all the time. If you map out long living successful businesses, you will see they go through periods of great stability followed by periods of great change and then move back into stability mode. You have to know when to get into which mode and you need to see each one through to its logical conclusion.
Given how hard all of this is, you might wonder if you really want to stay in business forever. The answer may be no. But even if it is no, you had better plan for and act like you do. Because I am certain that if you don’t, you won’t.
Posted by Morten Blaabjerg, October 11th, 2012 in Shared stuff
Projekt : Læringsvisualisering
Udkast til projektbeskrivelse
Undertitel : Hvordan lærer vi eleverne at lære mere effektivt?
Formål : Projektets formål er at afdække, kortlægge og udvikle pædagogiske praksisser for visualisering/eksplicitering af faglige sammenhænge og læringsprocesser i læringsrummet i undervisningen indenfor gymnasiets fagrække.
Produkt : Projektet skal munde ud i to produkter, en bog og et website, der samler erfaringerne.
Antagelser : Projektets implicitte antagelse er at visualisering af faglige sammenhænge i undervisningen ved hjælp af værktøjer som f.eks. begrebskort (analogt eller elektronisk) og elektroniske, kollaborative visualiseringsværktøjer som f.eks. Prezi kan tydeliggøre, konkretisere og dermed styrke læringsprocesserne i et givent undervisningsforløb.
Værktøjer : Fysiske undervisningsredskaber som begrebskort, digitale redskaber som Prezi, Google Docs, blogs m.fl. med fokus på det ekspliciterende/visualiserende aspekt af anvendelsesmulighederne.
Deltagere : En gruppe interesserede lærere ved Aabenraa Statsskole, med en tilknyttet forskerfunktion, hvis fokus er at fungere som forbindelsesled til forskningsverdenen og projektets læringsteoretiske validitet samt styrke forpligtelsen på projektets mål og produkt. Deltagere mødes regelmæssigt, dels fysisk, dels via Skype, for at forpligte sig på den regelmæssige erfaringsudveksling. Skolens ledelse inddrages i fht det hensigtsmæssige i, at det kan lade sig gøre at fordele lærerne i gruppen på f.eks. 2 stamklasser.
Finansiering : Første delmål er at kvalificere projektet med henblik på at bringe det i en position til at komme i betragtning som forsøg i UVM, samt til at opnå støtte hos andre mulige interessenter, f.eks. GL m.fl.