Author Archives: Gideon Rosenblatt

Gideon Rosenblatt writes about the impact of technology on people, organizations and society at Alchemy of Change. He is a technologist with a background in business and social change. For nine years, Gideon ran Groundwire, a mission-driven technology consulting group, dedicated to building a more sustainable world. Prior to that, he spent ten years at Microsoft in various marketing, product development and management positions, where he developed CarPoint, one of the world's first large-scale e-commerce websites. Gideon was raised in Utah, lived and worked in Japan and China for several years, and now lives in Seattle with his wife and two boys. More details on Gideon here.

How Much Do You Trust Your Stoplight?

Readers who worry too much about The Matrix or Terminator may want to skip this post. Scientists are now envisioning a new approach to managing traffic flow by turning traffic lights into self-organizing nodes in a network. Move over SkyNet; say hello to RoadNet. The plan is to build sensors into each traffic light so that it can automatically adjust ...

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How Connections “Wrap” Our Engagement

You can think of connections as analogous to the packaging that wraps a product you buy at the store. The underlying “product” is the activity, or work, you want to coordinate with someone; the packaging is the connection between you.

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Connections are Different than Relationships

A connection, or point of contact, in a relationship can take many forms. It might be your voice in my ear, my words before you on screen, or a simple pat on the back from a loved one just when you need it the most. Connections are really important, and very ancient, tools that biological life of all types uses to stay connected with its surrounding environment in a productive and safe way.

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Networks and Autonomy

“Networks  are voluntary connections between autonomous peers.” Organizations are autonomous when they have final say over their own future. People are autonomous when they have final say over their lives. I might be autonomous at home but not at work, by the way, just as I’m free to decide who I vote for in an election or what movie to watch ...

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"I write. I’m a Writer."

Gideon Rosenblatt is now a writer. This is the post where he announces he's left Groundwire to focus his time on writing at Alchemy of Change.

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How power makes nice bosses turn nasty

The Wall Street Journal just ran an interesting piece called The Power Trip that essentially says ‘nice’ people often rise to power in organizations – and are then corrupted by their position. Contrary to what Machiavelli espoused, it turns out that in today’s society people with good empathy and interpersonal skills often rise to the top. “People give authority to ...

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Pyramid Power: 6 Levels of Civic Engagement

Finally got around to writing up my thoughts on the engagement pyramid, posted on the Groundwire website. There’s a lot more nuance here, which I hope to write about later. At least it’s a start for now.

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Platforms, Trust and Open Cloud Computing

JP Rangaswami’s post on platforms is worth reading. Rather than try to summarize it myself, I’ll just excerpt a few highlights: His definition of platforms: something that is a foundation, an enabling environment, upon which others can build things, make things something that exists for a specific purpose (or set of purposes), and which invests in capabilities related to those ...

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The Stink of Boredom

This last Wednesday and Thursday night I attended two back-to-back talks by Alex Steffen at Town Hall. The guy pulled out all the stops and rocked the house. He terrified me and inspired me – yes, he inspirified me. I tapped notes furiously on my iPhone both nights. It’s hard to pick out one thing to focus on from all ...

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Defining Social CRM: Networking Business Processes

Paul Greenberg has an interesting post in which he puts a stake in the ground in defining Social CRM (sCRM). There’s a lot to take in from that post, but here’s his relatively compact definition: “CRM is a philosophy & a business strategy, supported by a technology platform, business rules, workflow, processes & social characteristics, designed to engage the customer ...

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