Welcome to my personal website. My passion is making valuable connections between people and ideas. I’m retained by several organizations to do exactly that and enjoy taking on special projects.
I’m based in the UK at the moment and hope you will be in touch if you think that I can help you in some way or if you think that we could work together. Please have a read about the sort of things I’m up to.
Monday 1st June 2009, 4:22pm
From time to time, I link to stuff I find interesting on Twitter. The trouble is, if you don’t happen to be tuning in at the time, or don’t have time to trawl back through someone’s account, the chances are you’ll have missed it.
So by way of a little experiment, here are a few things which for one reason or other I thought, and still think/hope are worth sharing;
2) TED talks are brilliant, and this one, by Dan Ariely is no exception. He asks ‘are we in control of our own decisions?’, and the section on the power of default options is particularly interesting, and made me think of the work I’ve been doing with Holly Shaw around organ donation. Richard Thaler’s excellent book ‘Nudge’ has a chapter devoted to the stickiness of defaults.
3) Number 10 Downing Street have launched a competition to find excellent young artists. The winners will be displayed in the waiting area of this famous house. In a month in which the winner of Britain’s Got Talent is announced, this challenge caught my eye.
4) If you win The Apprentice, you get to work for Alan Sugar. Some of the less charitable amongst you would call this a booby prize. If you want to work for Peter Jones, you’ll have to apply for this role as his executive assistant. The current occupant of that role is the wonderful Katie Prescott and I have to say, she has always seemed to have thoroughly enjoyed the job.
5) I’m a big fan of what 4ip, the new venture fund from Channel 4 is all about. Public service meets digital content. I’m also a fan of the team at MySociety. So it’s no surprise that the former has funded the latter for the brilliant Mapumental. Soon to launch, it allows you to set parameters around where you’d like to live based on the length of the commute, the price of property and even of scenic the place is! Clever stuff!
6) Lots of people moan about how neighbourhoods aren’t what they used to be. Others actually do something about it. Tim Smit is one of the most inspiring people I’ve ever met. He’s teamed up with the excellent Paul Twivy (the three of us sit together on the Council on Social Action), to launch The Big Lunch on July 19th, where the whole country are being encouraged to join a local lunch, and bring food they’ve cooked themselves. Simple!
7) What if the X-Files were right? What if the truth is out there? What if rather that rushing round starting new projects to ‘change the world’ we spent more time studying what works already. I first discovered World Changing when I bought their book last year. This month, I’ve rediscovered their great website.
A friend, the Reverend Joanna Jepson appeared on the Today Programme this week, speaking about the fight for the publication of the details of late medical abortions. Aside from the story itself, what intrigued me about the BBC’s clip (now removed) was that they had recorded the ‘radio’ interview using high quality, close up cameras. Aside from presenting challenges over how to dress, this triggered other questions in my mind around when radio isn’t radio. Another conundrum in this rapidly converging world.
9) At one point last week the most shared story on the BBC’s website was that of a family who claimed to have seen the image of Jesus (sorry Joanna) in the lid of a pot of Marmite. It often intrigues me that journalists will say to me that the reason that papers print so much ‘bad’ news and so little ‘good’ is that ‘people’ want to read the bad. By contrast, I often notice that the most shared and read stories on major news sites are the the very ’good’ stories which ‘no-one’ is reading. I challenge someone to try to prove my would-be theory. If you prove me RIGHT (majority of ‘shared’ and ‘read’ are ‘good’) over a week, I’ll give you a bottle of champagne
10) I loved seeing the launch of Firebox Inventor. Have you got a crazy idea for a gadget? If yours is the winning entry, Firebox will share a very healthy 50% of the profits with you for all time. The fact that the magnificent Shed Simove is one of the judges just makes this lovely piece of crowd-sourcing all the better.
Followers of WebMission will know that I’m a huge fan of transatlantic get-togethers, so I was delighted to hear about the Travelling Geeks, led by JD Lasica, making their way to the UK this summer. Don’t be thrown by their humble title. Amongst their number are some extremely influential, not to mention fun voyagers including writer Sarah Lacy, founder of Craigslist Craig Newmark and the ex-microsoft employee who quite literally wrote the book about blogging, Robert Scoble.
Well there ends my first Twitter recap! I hope you’ve enjoyed it, and if you’re keen to find out even quicker next time, then tune in to my Twitter feed!