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Page history last edited by Jay Cross 16 years, 8 months ago







Conversation is the most powerful learning technology ever invented. Conversations carry news, create meaning, foster cooperation, and spark innovation. Encouraging open, honest conversation through work space design, setting ground rules for conversing productively, and baking conversation into the corporate culture spread intellectual capital, improve cooperation, and strengthen personal relationships.


Jaron Lanier: We are virtuosos at spoken language. Adults speak with what seems like no effort at all, even though everyday chats might be the most complicated phenomena ever observed.



    This pointer from Bill Bruck to JOHO:



        Knowledge as conversation. There is a big difference between a relativistic world in which contrary beliefs assert themselves and a conversational world in which contrary beliefs talk with one another. In the relativistic world, we resign ourselves to the differences. In the conversational world, the differences talk. Even though neither side is going to "win" — conversation is the eternal fate of humankind — knowledge becomes the negotiation of beliefs in a shared world. What do we need to talk through? What can't we give up? What do we believe in common that seems so different? What should we just not talk about? These are the questions that now shape knowledge. Knowledge is not the body of beliefs that needs no further discussion. Knowledge is the neverending conversation. And much of that conversation is precisely about what we can disagree about and still share a world.


    Bill:It is for exactly this reason that I believe that robust discussion engines must be part of online collaboration platforms. The ability to sustain dialog is what provides the opportunity to develop a sense of the other person, to explore differences and get beyond the surface, to understand the underlying beliefs and values and find common ground. Blogs, with their "hyde park" approach to parallel publishing, are not optimized for this.


Participation Inequality

90% of participants lurk. 9% occasionally contribute. 1% make most of the posts.




Non-judgmental, free-form conversation for group exploration.



David Bohm :

Dialogue is really aimed at going into the whole thought process and changing the way the thought process occurs collectively. We haven't really paid much attention to thought as a process. We have ENGAGED in thoughts, but we have only paid attention to the content, not to the process. Why does thought require attention? Everything requires attention, really. If we ran machines without paying attention to them, they would break down. Our thought, too, is a process, and it requires attention, otherwise it's going to go wrong .



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