BBC2 Programme - The Virtual Revolution

I guess the name speaks for its self.

Re: BBC2 Programme - The Virtual Revolution

Postby Teiana on Sat Feb 20, 2010 1:32 pm

i remember reading science fiction based ideas years ago about there being communal kitchens rather than individual houses/apartments having their own. At the time it seemed insane (and i still think it could be a horrible idea if it went wrong) but if, for example, everyone in my street was sharing a kitchen i bet there'd be loads less waste than for each house to go shopping etc..there'd always be someone there to share stuff out with... and we'd not be tempted into overeating by excess food sitting around..

but that kind of system would take a centralised organization rather than the individual shoppers we have now..

of course, a centralized system that took no account of the needs of the individual households would be bad too, i mean not every adult needs the same amount of food, etc.. and it would be awful if it was a dinner you didn't like all week..

if you tried to set up a community kitchen without some overarching compulsory element and control it would be utter chaos in days. there'd always be people who thought they knew what was best for everyone else, or thought they could make a profit on the side.. or people who deliberately took more than they needed because it felt like a win to them..or people who just wanted the best of everything and would never eat leftovers or take second pick.. we're stuck with the wasteful economic based system until someone invents another way..
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Re: BBC2 Programme - The Virtual Revolution

Postby jim_lewis1 on Sat Feb 20, 2010 3:48 pm

I can see how 'grass-roots' community movements can end up looking a lot like communism, (in a literal sense).

I went to a presentaiton the other day by Alaistair McIntosh, (if you get the chance he's worth listening to), and the thought went through my mind that there might well be a number of communists in the audience as there seems to be a clear cross-over between such green ideas and the origins of communism.

I think the ideology issue can become important when a movement reaches a critical mass of participants as inevitably individual people have different ideas and are inclined to form cliques of people with similar ideas.
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Re: BBC2 Programme - The Virtual Revolution

Postby llamagirl on Sun Feb 21, 2010 11:07 pm

Teiana wrote:if you tried to set up a community kitchen without some overarching compulsory element and control it would be utter chaos in days. there'd always be people who thought they knew what was best for everyone else, or thought they could make a profit on the side.. or people who deliberately took more than they needed because it felt like a win to them..or people who just wanted the best of everything and would never eat leftovers or take second pick.. we're stuck with the wasteful economic based system until someone invents another way..


My experience of communal kitchens in halls of residence and student houses was exactly this! It always ended up being very territorial because not everyone had the same views on hygiene or sharing of food, I remember in one house it got so bad that there were actual lines drawn on the worktops because some of the people were incapable of sharing the same space! There were some pretty serious fallings out.
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Re: BBC2 Programme - The Virtual Revolution

Postby jim_lewis1 on Mon Feb 22, 2010 10:12 am

...but we are supposed to have grown up a bit since then!

I remember one of the Grand Design shows a few years ago being about a bunch of Architects, (4 couples I think), who'd met at uni and were such good friends that they decided to create a place where they could live together to benefit from such economies of scale in food preparation and kids creching, but that still provided privacy for the couples when they needed it.

Not everyone's idea of a perfect home, but it does bring advantages. I guess a lot of the supposed 'benefits' of living alone as family units has been sold to us by people wanting us to join in the great mortgage swindle.
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Re: BBC2 Programme - The Virtual Revolution

Postby Dave H on Mon Feb 22, 2010 11:40 am

Going back to Jim's Saturday post I am having some problems with his ideas.

The centralised top down command and control system appears to be very much like communism, the old feudal system and slavery. Also some mammals and some types of insect seem to use this system .

The decentralised free market is a bottom up approach and apart from the current society there does not seem to be any other examples.

However there are a range of other different systems in the living world and it is difficult to make them fit into this framework. However taking the macro level of ecosystems it seems that these are best considered as networks and I wonder if this would be an appropriate model for economic system . Today in the context of wireless technology I have seen a reference to docitive networks where one node teaches another node so as to reduce the complexity in the system and I wonder if this approach could be aplied to economic systems.
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Re: BBC2 Programme - The Virtual Revolution

Postby Andrea on Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:16 am

Although I totally agree with Dave's main point, I think there are loads of examples of decentralised systems in operation in nature. Ecosystems in general are a great example, but even down to single species, such as social insects, we have fantastic examples of complex adaptive behaviour without centralised control:
hive mind.jpg
hive mind.jpg (163.75 KiB) Viewed 701 times
esse sequitur operari
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Re: BBC2 Programme - The Virtual Revolution

Postby llamagirl on Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:19 pm

jim_lewis1 wrote:...but we are supposed to have grown up a bit since then!

I remember one of the Grand Design shows a few years ago being about a bunch of Architects, (4 couples I think), who'd met at uni and were such good friends that they decided to create a place where they could live together to benefit from such economies of scale in food preparation and kids creching, but that still provided privacy for the couples when they needed it.

Not everyone's idea of a perfect home, but it does bring advantages. I guess a lot of the supposed 'benefits' of living alone as family units has been sold to us by people wanting us to join in the great mortgage swindle.


Thats exactly what me and my family do, but with my parents instead of friends! We do have separate kitchens and bathrooms, as we all agreed that they are spaces that are just too personal to be communal. It would just take too much effort and negotiation to share a kitchen space, we like different types of food, have different budgets and have different 'kitchen routines'. Even in simple day to day things like cooking, order does not come naturally, it has to be arranged in some way. It also helps that we choose to live together. Students do not choose to live together, which I believe was the main cause of the problems.
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Re: BBC2 Programme - The Virtual Revolution

Postby Andrea on Thu Jun 10, 2010 11:12 am

Interesting take on web-based social media as heralding a new revolutionary age of 'communism'.......http://www.wired.com/culture/culturerev ... wsocialism

The type of communism with which Gates hoped to tar the creators of Linux was born in an era of enforced borders, centralized communications, and top-heavy industrial processes. Those constraints gave rise to a type of collective ownership that replaced the brilliant chaos of a free market with scientific five-year plans devised by an all-powerful politburo. This political operating system failed, to put it mildly. However, unlike those older strains of red-flag socialism, the new socialism runs over a borderless Internet, through a tightly integrated global economy. It is designed to heighten individual autonomy and thwart centralization. It is decentralization extreme.

Instead of gathering on collective farms, we gather in collective worlds. Instead of state factories, we have desktop factories connected to virtual co-ops. Instead of sharing drill bits, picks, and shovels, we share apps, scripts, and APIs. Instead of faceless politburos, we have faceless meritocracies, where the only thing that matters is getting things done. Instead of national production, we have peer production. Instead of government rations and subsidies, we have a bounty of free goods.

.........

When masses of people who own the means of production work toward a common goal and share their products in common, when they contribute labor without wages and enjoy the fruits free of charge, it's not unreasonable to call that socialism.

esse sequitur operari
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