A friend sent this on to me…
“Develop a methodology that “automates” the ability to decisively task and re-task kinetic and non-kinetic weapons and sensing “platforms” to achieve commander’s intent in time and space. Design a capability for real-time agile command and control in a high tempo, dynamic environment.”
Remind me to send this to Glenn Allmendinger at Harbor Research (www.harborresearch.com), who sent me a new white paper yesterday called
Designing the Future of Information: The Internet Beyond the Web
Current computer science operates with models of information, networking, and databasing that were conceived in the mainframe era and cannot serve the needs of a truly connected world.
Two unique initiatives—the “Information Commons” of MAYA Design and “Internet Zero” from MIT’s Center for Bits and Atoms—offer simple, proven foundations for the intense complexity of a global information economy.
The Myths and Realities of Information Technology
When it comes to preparing for the global information economy of the 21st century, most people assume that “the technologists are taking care of it.” They take it on faith that the best possible designs for the future of information will emerge from large corporations and centralized authorities.
But those are big, unfounded assumptions. In fact, most entrenched entities are showing little appetite for radical departures from current practice. Yet current practice will not serve the needs of a genuinely connected world.
Present-day information technology rests on various unexamined myths, large and small. It’s somewhat understandable, for example, that most business people believe that the Internet and the World Wide Web are the same thing. It is not at all understandable, however, that most technology professionals appear to believe this as well. Two present-day IT myths are particularly damaging to the vision of the Pervasive Internet:
Myth #1: The non-scalable, non-liquid information-architectures of the client-server World Wide Web will somehow give us a true global information economy.
Myth #2: The Tower of Babel created by numerous, incompatible device-networking “standards” will somehow give us a true global information-device ecology.
The Pervasive Internet must be “designed,” but it cannot be designed “top-down.” Its realization will involve billions upon billions of protean network nodes that ultimately “take on a life of their own” in a system comparable to the global financial economy. Our present-day conception of “intelligent devices” and global data networking does not allow for that. Rather, we have a situation today where devices and information cannot connect effortlessly and interoperate seamlessly. Until we change that, we will not achieve the emergent magic implied by the phrase “the network is the computer.”
Harbor’s new white paper, “Designing the Future of Information: The Internet Beyond the Web,” examines two real-world initiatives based upon new thinking about information management and networking. They demonstrate that it is possible to migrate gracefully to scalable architectures designed for the era of pervasive computing.
Do we have any idea what the world of ubiquitous computing and inescapable data will look like? No. Will it come to pass? Yes.