Sunday, April 24, 2011

Response to Clay Shirky TED Talk

This specific TED talk was packed with many intense ideas, but was also very interesting. Although some parts were hard to understand, it still brought up new ideas when listened to. Some of the ideas that really stood out to me in this are the Kenya story, design for generosity, and the daycare example. First was the Kenya story. I thought that it was so amazing what this woman had done, and how she was able to inform the world about what was going on in that country. These pieces of information that this  woman gave were obviously very important to what was going on, and allowed other parts of the world to tune in and see what they could do. For example, the Ushahidi idea. Since these people were able to tune into the problems of this country, they were also able to see what was happening for the woman creating it all, and they were able to massively help her. They created a site that made getting the information out so much easier, which helped everyone overall. So, what I took from this is that it is so amazing that two random guys reading her blog were able to listen to her problems and help her drastically. Maybe there are people out there that could fix many other of societies problems. Maybe they just need to get and idea to start the growing of their idea. Is there a way to accomplish so much more that we have been missing? Anyway, the second thing that stood out to me was the design for generosity. This has to do with people doing things because they want to , and not because they are forced to. An example of this is something open-source. The people controlling that open source idea are doing something or giving their time because they want to. If someone pays you to do something or just even tells you to do something. It makes sense too, why would you spend so much time and effort on something that you do not even like? Ideas are made great when someone wants to make them flourish and gives them enough time to succeed. This topic also brings up questions. Like, why is everything that we do not like this? If the turnout is better when something is for a person's enjoyment, why are people still forced to do specific things? Also, why is it that the turnout is so much better? Which leads me to my next idea, the daycare example. I thought that the day care example was a great way to show exactly what he was talking about. It made everything much more clear, and it showed me what he meant be the design for generosity. When he talked about and showed how when a fine was put into place, the amount of late parents doubled and almost tripled, it showed me that this idea was not fake, it really existed and happened all over. It showed how feelings are much more important, and as soon as money is involved, everyone takes it for granted. A good example of this is like what we talked about in class. If a fine is there, the parents become more careless and say, "Oh, since it is only a small fine, it is alright if I'm late," and even as the fine is removed, the parents have already crossed the line, so they are fine with crossing it again. But, what would happen if feelings were involved? Would the parents have realized what an inconvenience they were putting on the workers? Or that their lateness may have taken away someone else's time with their own children? Would the number of late parents have dropped? Probably.

Clay Shirky had a very distinctive but also very good speaking and presentation style. He talked with precision, very straight forward, and was able to get to the point. Although every other talk I have listened to had a little bit of comedy and this one did not, I still think that this talk had the same affect, and the point was still received. I really liked how Shirky was very straight forward. Although he talked in a very sophisticated and was very vocabularious, it still worked and I got what he was trying to say. I also partially liked his presentation style. I think that he did a good job with the pictures he had and the way he used them. For example, he did not have a picture for every point that he made, nor do I think that he should have, and he only had ones for the points that he thought were the most relevant, and I agree.

What I think really matters from this video are the ideas that Shirky makes between economic and social success. Although he makes many other good points, I saw this point as the one that stood out. Our society should not be using money or force to make decisions dealing with this succeed. They need to work with the feeling of it more to show people what really matters. For me, I can see this point standing out very clear in an experience that I had in my eighth grade year. In my math class, close to the end of the year we chose a project out of about ten. Now, the project that I chose could have been done in a few hours and still looked alright, but I wanted to make the project good. I had gotten really close to my teacher that year, and so I did not want her to think that I did not give it my all. So, I did and it turned out incredible and she loved it. How this relates to this topic is that if I did not know my teacher well, I would have just followed the requirements just enough that I would get a good grade. I would not have cared what my teacher thought, I would have just wanted to get the project done and over with. So, that story shows how important feelings are to life. To education this is important because of the idea I just gave. If teaching it used on more of a feeling approach, the results will be much better, and students will try much harder. Also, this does not have to apply to just schools or daycare, why can it not apply to the whole world? The world needs to stop using techniques such as rewards or punishments, because in the long run they really do not do that much damage. The world needs to feel what everyone is going through, and if it can do this, life will be much more complete.

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