My Second Life exploits get a write up

eurekaMy exploits in Second Life have been picked up on in an article on

From the article titled “Flying with disability in Second Life

Australian David Wallace, a quadriplegic who works as an IT coordinator at the South Australian Disability Information and Resource Centre in Adelaide has also found an outlet for his artistic side in Second Life. He recently held an exhibition of his Second Life art at the building that Illinois-based Bradley University have established on Information Island.

The article is well written by Margaret Cassidy, go take a look….

Thanks to a comment from a reader, Janet, for the heads-up.



Just watching my friends twitter feeds makes me tired.

Because I’m not watching them as a twitter user they don’t know.

Be afraid.


PS: Does this mean I have no recognition or anything useful to say?

PPS: Because I’m not a twitter user and one of my friends has a closed list, does this mean twitter is a silo or maybe a ‘clique’?

LongTailJewel, SecondOpinion and NewTailBlog – Affermative Action in the Blogosphere

I see my friend, JP, over on Confused of Calcutta, has picked up on the idea of bringing some equality to the blogosphere by highlighting lesser known bloggers and tagging the post newtailblog.

This is right along the lines of what Mike and I picked up on and were discussing back in February through a conversation in our blogs that we termed at the time longtailjewel. Kent Newsome also joined the conversation and called it second opinion along with Mathew Ingram, who actually picked up on the idea of Kents and featured me and my blogs as the one he linked to.

The idea Mike and I had of ‘jewels in the longtail’ and going hunting for them was about finding the social end of the longtail and is encapsulated by the thought that we wanted to ensure ‘every voice has at least one listener‘. We also spoke about it on a couple of podcasts Mike and I did while I was laid up with a broken shoulder.

I had some discussion over the concept of equality in the blogosphere with Hugh from GapingVoid. The equality argument came out of Clay Shirky and the quoted Skirky’s law of ‘equality, fairness, opportunity-pick 2’, which says basically that in the blogosphere you can have only 2 of those 3 attributes. In a post I wrote titled ‘Pick a card, any two’, I stated that “if opportunity means something like fame, (or goggle juice) in the blogsosphere, then Mike and I pick equality and fairness as our two”.

At the time, Doc Searles picked up on this idea in a post called affirmative traction.

Its great to see someone like JP getting behind the concept of making the blogosphere a more inclusive place for people and taking some affirmative action.

“Connections happen when stories overlap” is what I say – I love this kind of story overlap. And I love the idea of more connections happenning by including more people’s stories.

Below are some links to discussions I have previously blogged about or refered to around this issue.

Equality on the blogosphere – no gaping voids.
Mike’s take on our LongTailJewels discussions
Jewels i the longtail – image
Pick a card, any two!
‘inequality kerfuffle‘ by Hugh
Doc Searles giving recognition of affermative action (traction)
Kent Newsome’s SecondOpinion Proposal
Blobcast #5 – Horizontal HQ Sessions #2.
Mike (Learndog) and Dave (Lifekludger) chat about stuff they’re thinking about. This session is about the social end of the LongTail, Ensuring every voice has at least one listener, connection, inclusion, digging for the jewels in the LongTail and how to get a discussion going in the blogosphere.
Blob 6 – Horizontal HQ Sessions #3 – Pick Two Cards.
Mike (Learndog) and Dave (Lifekludger) chat about stuff they’re thinking about. This session is a short one mostly explaining and expanding on a post of Mikes on the Learndog blog. We pick ‘equality and fairness’ as our two cards, talk about finding meaning not just traffic and what it takes for newcomers to get ‘traction in the blogosphere.
Mathew Inram’s second opinion on me
Does a Second Opinion = Affermative Traction

Youth Depression

A Mission Australia media release reports:

A national survey of around 11,300 young people, aged 11-24 (94% between 11-19), has found that ‘suicide/self harm’, ‘physical/sexual abuse’ and ‘family conflict’ are issues of growing concern……

Two in five young participants were significantly concerned about suicide, and one in three about depression.

1 in 3! Astounding.

Mission Australia Media Releases
2005 Youth Survey

Evil Genius Chronicles » The Listeners Count

Okay. I’ve been sitting on this quote from Dave Slusher for two weeks. I even had related links in delicious that I had intended to go through and try figure out what it was I wanted to say about this. But I’m tired of waiting. So I’m just gonna say it.

Is the ‘new system’ refered to on the last line a recognition based system?

I don’t know what that better way is (yet), but I know that trying to find a way to count every single time an audio file reaches a person’s ears is cold potato.

I’ll note that I’ve had sponsors for most of the last year, and I’ve never given any of them a number to better precision than an order of magnitude, and not even that for a long time. I don’t even know the numbers of downloads I get, I’ve long since abandoned trying to count and have learned not to care. What matters to me are the number of sensible comments, the other shows that quote me, the number of people that came up to me and talked to me at PME and told me they enjoyed the show. These are not simple numbers, but the simple numbers are flawed and odd and full of fraud. This reality is complex, so any simple number anyone provides you is wrong and doesn’t model that reality.

I suggest that we build a new system and ignore the old one.

Evil Genius Chronicles » Count the Listeners vs. The Listeners Count
Related delicious

Recognition by whom?

(Warning. Long post BUT WORTH IT. If you skim, skip quoted bits.)

After my long rants previously about Attention, Recognition and context you would’ve thought I’d exhausted my thought supply for a while. But it’s still been percolating around in the background. There must’ve been a bit left undone or missing. It occured to me in a half-sleep state last night what that something was.

Recognition inherently involves another person.
(save the thought ‘connectedness’ for further down)

I returned to definitions:


# Attention or favorable notice: She received recognition for her many achievements.

n 1: the state or quality of being recognized or acknowledged; “the partners were delighted with the recognition of their work”; “she seems to avoid much in the way of recognition or acknowledgement of feminist work prior to her own” [syn: acknowledgment, acknowledgement]

3: approval; “give her recognition for trying”; “he was given credit for his work”; “give her credit for trying”; “the credits were given at the end of the film” [syn: credit]

I explored the synonyms – Credit, Acknowledgement.


# An acknowledgment of work done, as in the production of a motion picture or publication. Often used in the plural: At the end of the film we stayed to watch the credits.
# 1. Official certification or recognition that a student has successfully completed a course of study: He received full credit for his studies at a previous school.


1. The act of admitting or owning to something.
2. Recognition of another’s existence, validity, authority, or right.
3. An answer or response in return for something done.
4. An expression of thanks or a token of appreciation.
5. A formal declaration made to authoritative witnesses to ensure legal validity.

Okay. So the point in all these definitions and their synonyms is that for something to be recognised someone has to recognise it. They all beg the question “recognised by WHOM?

(I figure this may have been part of the confusion behind what I was trying to get at with my “mouse vs bluetooth headset” example on blobcast #2).

Some questions:

  • Who do I really want recognition from?
  • Who’s recognition would matter to me?
  • Is recognition by peers more important than recognition by others?
  • When I was a teenager who would I want to have acknowledgement from?
  • Is there an aspect of self-recognition where I can give myself credit for something I’ve done?

These are the questions of the ‘WHO‘ is recognition coming from.

Answers to that question in this age of new media, digital, neo-community, postmodern relativism are not likely to come from, or if they are, necessarily be accepted, if coming from us oldies coming out of a seemingly comparitive pre-historic age.

This is the who.

Back in my first post about recognition, I was struck and perplexed by the biological definition. It at first seemed out of place, but it was I who was out of place, and I think it is this definition which holds a key (which is probably why it perplexed me). Back then I said “Interestingly there is the concept of recognition in biology which it seems has a lot to do with having similar characteristics … which reminds me of communities.

Here’s the definition again:

# Biology. The ability of one molecule to attach itself to another molecule having a complementary shape, as in enzyme-substrate and antibody-antigen interactions.

I think that it tells us WHO the recognition comes from. We might all like recognition to varying degrees and from a general populace. But we most like recognition from another who has a complementary shape – similar ideals, similar interests, in the same paddock. This means people we respect, our peers, those we identify with, those we somehow feel we are or would like to be connected to … those in our ‘life-community’.

Does more recognition = more connectedness = more hope = more resilient?

Nature can teach us a lot.

I’m hung up on the concept of context

Further to my previous post titled Attention, Recognition & Context, I read Scoble talking about what term to call someone who generates content, Scoble muses thus:

The problem is we don’t have good language. When I’m on Flickr I’m a photographer or a commenter. When I’m here I’m a writer or a blogger. When I’m on Craig’s List I’m a job seeker or a buyer or a seller. When I’m on MSN Search or Google I’m a searcher. When I’m on Memeorandum I’m a reader.

These different modes we operate in. This is our context and this is what is getting me hung up about attention. Attention only measures what we look at not why we are. I’m thinking this is where FOAF and XFN come in, to try and make sense of the attention by giving it context.

Perhaps I’ve just lost my own context certainly feels that way sometimes!

Attention, Recognition & Context

What can attention do for recognition?

To be recognised requires attention – def: # Attention or favorable notice: She received recognition for her many achievements.

    The amount of recognition can be tracked and measured by attention.
    Attention is being measured so recognition can be.
    The key is context.
    In what context is the object given attention?
    A recognition object is thus a measured piece of attention in a given context.
    A weight can be given to a recognition object by giving it’s attention weight.

Interestingly there is the concept of recognition in biology which it seems has a lot to do with having similar characteristics … which reminds me of communities.

def: # Biology. The ability of one molecule to attach itself to another molecule having a complementary shape, as in enzyme-substrate and antibody-antigen interactions.


LearnDog has a post that directed me to an interesting article in the New York Times about teenagers and the way they are interacting with the digital world.

Here’s some thoughts I had on it.

“These young kids are very sophisticated and phenomenally intuitive,” he said. “This is the first generation that’s been born into digital life, instead of transitioning into it.”

The fact that the kids of today are growing up in a digital world with digital tools only seems ‘wonderous’ to those of us who grew up in an analog world. Did we question record players, television, radio when growing up? Probably we just used them. But to our Grand Parents, the fact there were kids that never knew what it was like to live in a world without television seemed … well somewhat strange. It’s about context.

“Most teenagers online take their role as content creators as a given.”

“the mounting evidence that teens are not passive consumers of media content,” ….

“it helps young people fashion their own identities, on their own terms, using whatever content they choose.”

The difference I see with todays technology from that of past generations is the ability to interact with the media and not be passive receivers. Remixing is becoming a recreation. And that’s apt, especially for kids as in effect they are re-creating their environment to suit themselves. And in doing so they are reflecting, exploring and building their own identities. This is identity creation and management at its most fundamental level.

“They take content from media providers and transform it, reinterpret it, republish it, take ownership of it in ways that at least hold the potential for subverting it.”

What I find interesting about that statement is that in doing this remixing and ‘taking ownership’ they actually become media providers themselves.

“At the market level, this means old business models are in upheaval,” …. “At the legal level, this means the definition of property is up for grabs. And at the social level, it means that millions of those inspired to create have a big new platform with which they shape our culture.”

I hope by “our culture” the writer means “everyones” culture as oppossed to “our” (grownups) and “theirs” (kids) cultures.

If not, no wonder the kids feel the need to take back some ground!