Archive for the ‘Books’ Category

After e-book, e-booksellers!

June 21, 2010

Edit (June 8th, 2013) : their Website seems to have been discontinued as from 2012.

After the dematerialization of books, here comes the dematerialization of booksellers! This is the idea behind French Doucet bookshop’s libraireadomicile.fr. Looking for a book idea for a gift? Needing references for a term paper ? Or maybe you have discovered a great idea in a book  but can’t remember the author or title?

Libraireadomicile website offers a form where you can enter characteristics of the book you are looking for. You will then receive by mail a complete bibliographic record that will help you find the book of your dreams!

Intellectual technologies

July 14, 2009

Yesterday, serendipity brought me from my research on artificial intelligence to the expression “intellectual technologies”, quoted by Nicholas Carr in a recent article. Nicholas Carr explains that this expression was used by sociologist Daniel Bell to describe the tools we humans have developed to increase our mental abilities: reading, writing, calculation, to name only a few. Behaviorist approaches such as organization methods, communication and group interaction practices are other examples, I think.

These approaches have to be learnt. They may become a “second nature” but they are not instinctive, the way language is. We are not genetically designed to read, calculate or interact smoothly in groups.

Yet, it is striking to see that reading and writing have become so intricate in us that they seem quite natural, at least for those who were happy enough to get an education. (True, there is still work ahead before this applies to all people in all countries.)

What if technologies aiming at improving attitudes and social interaction were broadly taught in schools and colleges ?  Should not they be part of every graduate’s ABC ?

In my opinion, they should be a part of what everyone gets to learn at school. There is no doubt that studying books like “Getting things done” (David Allen), The Evolution of cooperation (Robert Axelrod) ou “How to win friends and influence people” (Dale Carnegie) would be as useful and beneficial as studying algebra and literature.

The Narcissism of Leaders

December 19, 2007

The Narcissism of LeadersSome time ago I was able to attend an interesting presentation of Bénédicte Haubold’s book The Narcissism of Leaders , by the author herself. She interviewed executives, managers, and heads of companies to define the role of narcissism within leadership. What emerges from it, among other things, is that the same is true for narcissism as for cholesterol: there is a good narcissism and a bad. It is a force present inside each of us, which reveals that we are interested in the image that we present to others. In this sense, it proves that we are interested in others. It is also synonymous with self-esteem, and self-esteem is indeed a strength. Where narcissism breaks down is when it cuts us off from reality, when we are only interested in the image that we project on others for our own sake. In the case of the leader, this pathological narcissism can have serious consequences for the company.
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Lawrence Lessig, like an open book

December 16, 2006

Code v2.0The new book by Lawrence Lessig, creator of Creative Commons, has been released. Code: Version 2.0 is the second edition of Code and other laws of cyberspace, where Lessig shows why and how the Web is due to be a regulated place, as opposed as what many thought. This new edition, full of up-to-date examples, includes contributions made by volunteers on a wiki in 2005. Lessig re-worked the text and the result is this new book, published under Creative Commons, and rightly so.

The whole book can be downloaded for free or bought at several online bookshops. All profits will go to the Creative Commons foundation.

Wikinomics

November 17, 2006

Wikinomics To be release in December, Wikinomics is a book focussing on the impact of mass collaboration on the economy .
“While some leaders fear the heaving growth of these massive online communities, Wikinomics proves this fear is folly. Smart firms can harness collective capability and genius to spur innovation, growth, and success.”

You can pre-order this book on Amazon.com

A WikiBook about the new power of Internet users

May 17, 2006

Le nouveau pouvoir des internautes
I would like to mention an interesting initiative taking place in France. A book called “The new power of Internet users” (or “Le nouveau pouvoir des internautes”) has been recently published. It deals with the impact of the Web and other connecting technologies on society and politics. What is most interesting is that the book was first released online before being available in bookshops. More than 2,000 people have already downloaded it for free. To top it all, the whole text is available on a wiki inviting people to modify and complement the book and even write a new chapter. This project was launched on April, 24th and will continue for 80 days. After this journey “Around the book in 80 days”, a new edition of the book will be published, provided there are enough contributions. All the benefits from the sales of the physical book will be given to various associations aiming at bridging the digital divide, including the Wikimedia Foundation.

Cooperatics is proud to be a partner of this project.

The wiki: http://www.nouveaupouvoir.org

More information (in French): http://www.cooperatique.com/?p=84