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March 03, 2007



Great post, and wonderful to see the CIA contributing to public intellectual capital. I like Metcalfe's Law, it makes intuitive sense in many situations beyond the (excellent) telephone example.

In the comments on http://growthmadness.org/2007/02/28/learning-from-lester-brown/ over at Growth Is Madness! there was some discussion initiated by Magne about how and when a "tipping point" might come about in terms of general understanding of the problems of population growth, increasing consumption, and sustainability.

So I wonder how Metcalfe's Law might apply to that concern. How many blogs, news articles, scientific reports, etc. about ecology and growth problems are necessary to create the "Critial Mass" labeled on the diagram above?

Magne Karlsen


This one's cute.

John Feeney

This has been interesting reading these pieces (here and at Trinifar) on the spread of information, the use of blogs and wikis, critical mass thresholds, etc. I'm not sure I have much to add right now, but it's got me thinking about what might be the next step with regard to raising environmental awareness and then prompting action. Trinifar, in comments at his blog, has mentioned ideas whereby bloggers and others come together in groups such as at scienceblogs.com to amplify their voices. I'm not suggesting anything specific right now; just saying it's got me thinking about what it will take to really wake people up. (And Magne would probably want me to add... "if that's possible." :) )

Magne Karlsen

"Tongue-tied and twisted, just an Earth-bound misfit, I."

- Pink Floyd

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