World Wide 3dWeb

I was checking out the Crystal Space 3D site (the engine behind Planeshift, an MMORPG) and projects using the Crystal Space engine. I came across a project named Festonia which aims at creating a world wide 3d web. The project has released the first 0.01 alpha version of the 3d browser, and as per the site is supposed to be in testing (didn’t find it for download though). The project seems to be aimed towards providing ways to setup 3D web servers for 3D websites. This probably makes it somewhat different from Secondlife, though a 3D web could very well take the form of Secondlife which has facility for content creation, ownership and its own economy.

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Information overload and Adhocracy

I was checking out the page on “information overload” on wikipedia, which is one of the major hindrances to quick decision making and quite common in the current information age. The term was apparently coined by Alvin Toffler in his book “Future Shock“. So, I also looked up the page on this book and found another interesting term “Adhocracy” which was also popularized by Alvin Toffler. As per the page, adhocracy is the opposite of bureaucracy and the seems to be quite relevant for innovative organizations. The basic idea is behind adhocracy is to have a dynamism and flexibility to tackling different situations which is absent from bureaucracy.

The 7 habits and the 6 hats

I purchased the book “How to have a beautiful mind” by Edward de Bono last weekend. I have covered about half the book so far. It talks about the different angles to discussions in general and the thoughts behind them along with ways to make interactions more meaningful for all the parties concerned. It also had a chapter on de Bono’s six thinking hats (it is also supposed to be covered in the “Start Thinking” course on Learning@IBM). The concepts are quite interesting, and does give some tips to make make you think.

I also found many of the concepts discussed about the thinking hats in particular to be quite similar to the 7 habits discussed by Stephen Covey in his book “The 7 habits of highly effective people” (I have not read this particular book, but the one by his son Sean Covey for teenagers about 6-7 years back). In particular, the concept of the six hats is quite similar to habits 4 (think win/win) and 5 (seek first to understand, then to be understood). So, in effect, both de Bono and Stephen Covey’s concepts aim at making interactions between people more productive and trying to look at things from different angles rather than just putting forward one’s thoughts and trying to get the better of an interaction.

I also think that these concepts are quite relevant in today’s world where social collaboration, networking (which would also be in some ways bring in “the wisdom of the crowds“) and innovation are the buzzwords. It is important to see things form various angles and seek different opinions, especially given the degree of connectivity available to us. So, although both the concepts are close to 2 decades old, they still retain their values in today’s environment.

Pangrams & Golygons

I was browsing wikipedia where I came across self-enumerating pangrams which are sentences that describe exactly the number of letters in itself. As per the wikipedia page on pangrams, Lee Sallows came up with one of the first self-enumerating pangrams, in 1984. In fact, he constructed a machine for this task when solving the problem through software alone failed.

As for pangrams, they are sentences using every letter of the alphabet atleast once, with perfect pangrams being sentences in which each alphabet appears exactly once. A well known English pangram is The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.

I also found some information on another interesting piece – golygons – when I was looking for more information on Lee Sallows, who invented them. Golygons are polygons with side lengths as consecutive integers and all right angles.