Archives For Imagination

The creative ability of the human mind to see what not what is, but what can be. All arts.

The time may come when a computer will be able to out-compute a human, but not yet. According to a recent study, adding up all the computation power in every laptop, server, mainframe, cell phone, and digital processors of all kinds, everywhere on the planet will give you approximately the ability to handle approximately 6.4 x 10^18 operations a second. About the same as a human brain.

All the worlds storage – paper, film, hard-drives, etc. would give you same amount of storage as human DNA. In other words, somewhere around 2011 the planet has enough computing power to account for 1 extra person. The vast amount of “thinking” is still done by organic chemistry. Read the article I read on ARS Technica.

Robert Gates is the Defense Secretary. He was appointed under Bush and retained by Obama. Perhaps because he is not an elected official, and does not have to worry about re-election, he can offer honest assessment of the real threat wikileaks represents – not much.

From Daniel W. Drezner:

I’ve expressed skepticism about whether WikiLeaks will actually lead to greater foreign-policy transparency. That said, l’affaire WikiLeaks has generated just a smidgen of greater candor from at least one U.S. policy principal. Here’s Defense Secretary Robert Gates on the fallout from the cable dump:

Let me just offer some perspective as somebody who’s been at this a long time. Every other government in the world knows the United States government leaks like a sieve, and it has for a long time. And I dragged this up the other day when I was looking at some of these prospective releases. And this is a quote from John Adams: “How can a government go on, publishing all of their negotiations with foreign nations, I know not. To me, it appears as dangerous and pernicious as it is novel.” …

Now, I’ve heard the impact of these releases on our foreign policy described as a meltdown, as a game-changer, and so on. I think — I think those descriptions are fairly significantly overwrought. The fact is, governments deal with the United States because it’s in their interest, not because they like us, not because they trust us, and not because they believe we can keep secrets.

Many governments — some governments deal with us because they fear us, some because they respect us, most because they need us. We are still essentially, as has been said before, the indispensable nation. So other nations will continue to deal with us. They will continue to work with us. We will continue to share sensitive information with one another. Is this embarrassing? Yes. Is it awkward? Yes. Consequences for U.S. foreign policy? I think fairly modest.

I couldn’t agree more. The United States began as the world’s modern experiment with Democracy. That means that “we the people” need information about what our representatives are doing in our name. The only leaks that are a real problem are those that never happen.

In the US we have celebrity trainers, celebrity cooks, athletes, song writers, scientists, CEOs, politicians, zoo keepers, mechanics, comedians, and ballon-boy. But where are the celebrity teachers? When a preacher is really good they build a mega-church and broadcast to millions of people. But the best 7 grade math teacher IN THE WORLD can only have 30 students. Why?

Why can’t we celebrate exceptional educators with a nationwide platform to let them reach as many students as possible? Pay them the mega-salary and give them the rockstar treatment. Why can’t the guy in first class sitting next to Vanna White be Mr. Smith – celebrity Algebra 2 teacher one his way to his next Opera appearance?

Just wondering…

The Saddleback Leather Company is the real deal. It has something the rest of the world is now trying to recreate after a century of washing it away with bureaucratic, six sigma, dehumanization – authenticity.   The problem most large organizations will have with being authentic this is identifying exactly WHO is thankful. Think about it – the first line of customer interaction at your company is probably more authentically happy when the phone STOPS ringing and they can take a break. This means of coarse that you are going to have to hire someone (ahemmm) to help you find your voice.

Study this email. I don’t recommend you copy his style (which is reminiscent of overindulgent catalog king J. Peterman on “Seinfeld”) but rather think about how honest-to-goodness thankfulness, and transparency can be incorporated into your business, regardless of its size.

Hello there Ben Shoemate

Just wanted to let you know that I sent your bag out just a little bit ago. Your tracking number is listed below along with a link to the shipping company so you can track your leather piece every couple of hours.  To care for your leather piece and read about the photo contest please see the Questions page on the website. I have all sorts of tips to keep your leather in top shape.

Oh, and by the way, I didn’t want to tell you this before you joined, but 10% of the gross amount that you gave to Saddleback went directly to one of those aid organizations on the Dave’s Links page.  If you spent $500 + $20 for shipping then $52 went out to love people.  Basically, you just contributed to drilling a well for an entire village or partially sponsored a 5 year old street kid in Rwanda to get into a loving orphanage and go to one of the best schools in the country. This is the main reason Saddleback Leather exists. Just wanted to let you know… between friends. Thanks for helping.

The way I see it, out of the thousands and thousands of companies in the world, on the Internet or down on the corner selling leather goods, you chose mine and I really do feel honored.  You are very much appreciated.. Welcome to the family.

Thank you and have a great week.

Warm regards,

Dave Munson
Saddleback Leather Co

Your order number is SBL-*********.

The tracking numbers are:
You can track your package by visiting the links below:

The following items have been shipped to you:
line items
Small Wallet Light Tobacco Brown (WA-SM-LTB)
quantity: 1
total price: $28.00
subtotal:                        $28.00
sales tax:                        $2.28
standard shipping: *             $12.98
*shipping total includes handling and insurance fees
grand total:                     $43.26

This order will be billed to:

Ben Shoemate

Orders for merchandise ship UPS and will receive a confirmation email and tracking number when your UPS order has shipped.
Orders for gift cards only ship via USPS mail with Delivery Confirmation and usually arrive in 3 to 5 business days.

This is an automatically generated email

Even down to letting you know this email was generated automatically – the message is honest and personal. Well done Dave.

The basics of communication presented in this 1953 introduction to "the era of communication" (aka the information age) are still true in 2003. Transmission, noise, redundancy, distortion… misunderstanding. Charles and Ray Eames were husband and wife, not brothers. They were not initially architects. Ray was a visual artist. This is a classic Eames film and a great introduction to their creativity that spanned many industries.