open collaboration

Open, collaborative effort to improve US patents

make things better

Late last year, I wrote about the EFF’s project to leverage the Patent Office’s new Preissuance Submissions procedure to promote open 3D printing technology. Here we are, several months later, and the fight for open 3D printing continues. Now, the EFF has partnered with Ask Patents to facilitate crowdsourcing of prior art searches for various 3D printing-related patent applications.

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Can an open, collaborative approach still work when not everyone has opted in?

Over the past two weeks, I've been reading the book Power and Love by Adam Kahane (thanks to Eugene Eric Kim for the recommendation). » Read more

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Diving into open source communities: Students' need to knows

One of the talks at POSSCON's education track was John "maddog" Hall's presentation titled "FOSS Teaches You Twice or Three Times." A 42-year veteran of the computer industry, maddog has seen it all. He's since turned his attention to the field of education and the work of creating a nation of thinkers and self-directed lifelong learners. » Read more

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We work in public

My conversation with our newest MIX Maverick Andrew McAfee yielded all kinds of bracing insight when it comes to how we set strategy, structure work, unleash talent, and measure success. But I haven’t been able to shake one idea in particular he threw out at the end of our conversation as a provocation.

First, we spent a lot of time on how the job of a leader changes in a world that is increasingly open, powered by social technologies, and morphing at warp speed. Andrew calls this world Enterprise 2.0. In this world, says Andrew, “If you want good things to happen, get out of the way. Let people interact and collaborate and communicate in the ways that are most natural to them. Then your job as the leader of the organization is to simply put in place the environment that lets them do that, encourage them to do that, and then harvest the good stuff that comes from all of their interactions.” » Read more

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Coffee, designers, and U.S. education reform

Imagine for a moment you're a graphic designer working within the marketing department of a major coffee-shop brand. Over the years individuals far higher up in the organization have raised profit margins by putting increasingly lower quality coffee into the customer's cup. They've replaced  experienced coffee bean importers with untrained proxies who make the cheapest selections. They have slashed the marketing and production budgets beyond recognition.

Several years in and sales have tanked. The powers-that-be settle on the designers as the source of the problem. » Read more

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