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The Implications of Instant Access to Information Santa Cruz Future Salon November 18, 2007 Andy Rondeau, Jeff Jones.

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Presentation on theme: "The Implications of Instant Access to Information Santa Cruz Future Salon November 18, 2007 Andy Rondeau, Jeff Jones."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Implications of Instant Access to Information Santa Cruz Future Salon November 18, 2007 Andy Rondeau, Jeff Jones

2 Overview We are moving to a world where access to information is perceivably free and accessed instantly 20th Century consumerist economic models of generating information are failing What kind of a world will exist when any item of publicly-known information can be quickly accessed for free?

3 Structure We will discuss: Past Recent Present Future In each period, we will ask: How does one read the latest literature? How does one hear the latest composer? How does one learn facts? Who owns inventions? Who controls genetic information?

4 Past (Before the Printing Press, Records, and DVDs) Monks copied the Bible in scriptoriums*, each Bible worth $150,000 to $200,000** Either storytellers or Scribes Limited education; few people could read to learn facts Music could only be performed, to hear the latest music one had to be in the right place at the right time There was more information then copying capacity

5 Past (Continued) Copyright wasnt invented The Library of Alexandria encouraged copying: A story concerns how its collection grew so large: by decree of Ptolemy III of Egypt, all visitors to the city were required to surrender all books, scrolls as well as any form of written media in any language in their possession which, according to Galen, were listed under the heading "books of the ships"; these writings were then swiftly copied by official scribes. Sometimes the copies were so precise that the originals were put into the Library, and the copies were delivered to the unsuspecting previous owners.[7]Ptolemy III of EgyptscrollsGalen[7] Piracy not economically viable Even during a period of a prospering book trade, during the Roman Empire, the occurrence of piracy was unlikely. This is because books were, typically, copied by literate slaves, who were expensive to buy and maintain. Because of this fact, any pirate would have had to pay much the same expense as the original publisher, effectively destroying any economic incentive for piracy.Roman Empire

6 Past (Continued) "If nature has made any one thing less susceptible than all others of exclusive property, it is the action of the thinking power called an idea, which an individual may exclusively possess as long as he keeps it to himself; but the moment it is divulged, it forces itself into the possession of everyone, and the receiver cannot dispossess himself of it. Its peculiar character, too, is that no one possesses the less, because every other possesses the whole of it. He who receives an idea from me, receives instruction himself without lessening mine; as he who lights his taper at mine, receives light without darkening me. That ideas should freely spread from one to another over the globe, for the moral and mutual instruction of man, and improvement of his condition, seems to have been peculiarly and benevolently designed by nature, when she made them, like fire, expansible over all space, without lessening their density at any point, and like the air in which we breathe, move, and have our physical being, incapable of confinement or exclusive appropriation. Inventions then can not, in nature, be a subject of property." - Thomas Jefferson, 1918

7 Recent Present (Consumable Information) Books are accessible to, and later affordable by, a person of ordinary means Libraries are convenient Recorded music and movies also accessible and affordable to a person of ordinary means Copying capacity constrained: –A person can not always afford all the books, CDs, and DVDs that are desired –It may be difficult or impossible to locate a copy within a reasonable search effort

8 Patents & Copyrights Frivolous patents (Amazon) Length of time outdated, especially for copyrights The nature of things being patented and copyrighted has changed (books versus software, virtual technologies)

9 Copyright Drove the era of Consumable Information Copyright is literally a right to copy Copyright is a technique that evenly distributes copying capacity among information The printing press brought the possibility of compensation for literary labor. Very speedily, however, the unrestricted rivalry of printers brought into existence competing and unauthorized editions of various works, which diminished prospects of any payment, or even entailed loss, for the authors, editors, and printers of the original issue, and thus discouraged further undertaking.printing press Consumable information is any information generated for profit by sale to the general public Examples: Books DVDs CDs Encyclopedias

10 Non-consumable information Information that is generated in a manner where profit, compensation, ROI, ect, is NOT realized through purchases by the general public Examples: Private reports owned by a corporation Academic papers Broadcast television (that isnt sold as DVDs.)

11 The Future… Whats coming down the pipe? Smart Google: Itll be able to answer critical questions iPods pre-packaged with all 20th century music Instant access to media; everything will be on- demand IPhone will become wearable, which will yield to computing implanted in our consciousness Sending IMs within our consciousness yields to telepathy? Present economic models of consumable information will fail

12 So Lets answer the Questions One can read the latest literature by having ones wearable instantly project it into the eyeball One hears the latest composer by having ones wearable instantly play the composition directly into the ears One knows all facts by simply asking the wearable There will be more copying capacity then creative information

13 Its time for a short diversion: Public information Verses Private information? Public information: The creator can not choose who are the recipients Free –Library –Web site Purchased –Book –CD Public Performance Private information: The creator chooses the recipients who voluntarily keep the information secret Accessible by only a small group of known and trusted individuals Not for use by the general public It is impossible to pretend that public information is private

14 How to hack any private information to make it public Stick a video camera in front of a TV Stick a microphone in front of a speaker Copy a book by hiring a typist Break an encryption key Write a computer program that emulates a trusted program Simply put: If it can be seen, heard, or read, it can be copied Likewise, bits are bits, and its only a matter of sweat and labor to figure out how to assemble bits into the desired information Remember, Shakespeare was pirated!*

15 Thus, What are the Implications? New Economic models will need to be created for Consumable Information –Donation / Tipping (Radiohead) –Sponsorship (Like older composers) –Psuedo-private (Treated as private for a short time to allow patrons to gain first access) –Expensive bits (web sites operate like the old numbers) Old Economic models may work in fringe cases –Souvenirs –Special printings for fans

16 Continued… Wearable computers grant access any piece of public information by simply thinking AI will be able to comprehend and summarize Possible threats to private attention as SPAM projected into consciousness Wearable computers might incorporate video/sound recording that capture continuously

17 Beyond copyrights Strategies for encouraging software innovation (other than copyrights) –Academic model (reputation) –Cosource –Server-side applications –Bundling software with the hardware –Donations (radiohead, shareware, etc.)

18 Future of genetic information Ownership of genes –Viruses, GM food and plants –Attempt to patent humanzee –Drug-gene distinction disappearing –Patient rights (DNA sampling, privacy, etc.) –Gattaca-style genetic screening

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