Last week, the Oxford Internet Institute celebrated its 10th anniversary by bringing together some of the brightest minds shaping the web for a panel discussion: A Decade in Internet Time. I went along and clung to every word these legends of internet had to share; here’s a recap of what ideas, research, theoretical questions and jokes really stuck…
(*from left to right)
Manuel Castells, Professor of Sociology and Director of the Internet Interdisciplinary Institute at the Open University of Catalonia (UOC)
The internet is a technology of freedom and the rise of a network society. These interactive networks are at the heart of modern day business and are responsible for the shift to globalization.
As people, we have a need to create meaning in life and the internet is not about the intended use of the technology created, but the unpredictable use people assign the technology to meet their personal needs and give meaning.
Also, there is no anonymity anymore, no privacy - get over it!
Dame Wendy Hall, Professor of Computer Science at University of South Hampton
Working along side Time Burners-Lee during the early days of the WWW, it became abundantly clear that in order for the web to be successful it needed to be created using universal standards - it needed to be given away. The information on web is only as powerful as the network sharing it, making it inherently democratic and all about the people.
Vint Cerf, Chief Internet Evangelist at Google
What happens when everything is connected to everything (yes, it’s possible!)? How will our data system and the software it’s made of evolve?
We need to outline patterns or guides for the birth, life and death of information because the current system is unstable. This will require distinguishing between what leaders and users want to do with data.
Also, the future implications of the web on physical space will be really fun (and yes geeky) as Vint talks about the internet enabled light bulb and the censors he has set up in his wine cellar http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EGSsjOynXg4
Eli Noam, Columbia University Institute for Tele-Information
We need to be more willing to accept fundamental negatives that come along with greater ubiquity of the web across all disciplines involved. Is mobile really a replacement for broadband in rural or emerging geographies? How should today’s 24/7 newsroom affected by PR production be regulated? Is the internet really green? How can we stabilize currencies and economies as money passes more swiftly between countries? What will be the run-off effect of virtualisation on the consumer electronics industry?
got to love contextual advertising gone wrong. also a fear of being watched by a duck is pretty hilarious.
"everybody gets so much information all day long that they lose their common sense"
gertrude stein and picasso’s portrait by man ray.