Review (Guest): Intelligence for Earth – Clarity, Diversity, Integrity & Sustainability

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5.0 out of 5.0 Stars One visionary’s way out of the Corporate Feudalism/International Conflict trap

By Herbert L Calhoun on April 1, 2014

In this book, the author, drawing extensively on his intelligence and military background, has cleanly written an easy to follow book, that outlines a careful course of action for developing a new kind of global information sharing infrastructure. To be headquartered at the UN, this new infrastructure would make it possible for every organization (and through them, everyone) on the globe to share open-source intelligence equally as a free public resource. If it is successful, this new global brain could transform our world from its current insecurity-driven and corrupt corporate dominated lose-lose, economic and conflict trap, into a much revived win-win strategy for bottom-up collective survival in a peaceful and sustainable world economy.

At least that is the theoretical hope and vision. On paper, and in principle, it is a stunningly sexy and attractive vision, one that, should it prove operationally testable and feasible, could indeed have the important side benefit and advantage of creating new bottom-up wealth, energizing the world economy and easing world tensions by reducing mistrust and fear back down to the noise level.

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Apr 21

Review: Seven Complex Lessons for the Future


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Edgar Morin

5.0 out of 5 stars 6 Star Spectacular,July 12, 2012

This is one of a handful of books I will not donate to the library as has been my custom. I first learned of this author through his work Homeland Earth : A Manifesto for the New Millennium (Advances in Systems Theory, Complexity and the Human Sciences). I was hugely drawn into the author’s brilliant web of thinking, and delighted to learn that he is still alive and active in France.

This book can serve in so many ways. For myself, it is an independent confirmation of all that I have been exploring through the minds of others–the 1,800 plus authors whose works I have reviewed here at Amazon. It is a spectacular indictment of the existing educational, intelligence, and research systems that have become so fragmented and wasteful as to be an impediment to progress.

Since Look Inside the Book is not available, I will just list the main chapter heading–each chapter has three sub-chapters. This is an elegant cathedral of a book, the equivalent for the author’s huge body of work that Will and Ariel Durant’s Lessons of History 1ST Edition was for their own multi volume The Story of Civilization (11 Volume Set).

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Jul 12

Review (Guest): The Open Source Everything Manifesto – Transparency, Truth & Trust


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Robert David Steele

5.0 out of 5 stars PREPARE TO HAVE YOUR MIND BLOWN!,June 24, 2012

B. Tweed DeLions “B.T.”

If there’s a single Founding Father of the Open Source movement, Robert D. Steele is it. Everyone else has been playing catchup. And if you don’t know what the Open Source revolution is, you need to read this book. You don’t even need to know why! You need to buy it, read it, and then you’ll *know* why. No other book on Open Source can open your eyes the way this one can. That’s because there’s no potential use of Open Source intelligence that Steele hasn’t anticipated. Collective Intelligence is coming! It’s an unstoppable force. And it will change everything. So if you like to know about things like that in advance, you need to buy this book.

The information age that was created by personal computers was just a kiddie car with a squeaky horn. By comparison, the open source revolution is a freight train. Its potential to change your world is orders of magnitude greater. This is not hyperbole. In fact superlatives can’t begin to express the ground-shaking potential of this next wave of human evolution.

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Jun 24

Review: How People Harness Their Collective Wisdom and Power to Construct the Future

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Alexander Christakis, Kenneth Bausch

5.0 out of 5 stars 5 for Original, 4 For Density, October 25, 2011

The primary author of this book was closely associated with Dr. Jan Warfield, one of the giants of reflexive practice and cybernetic coherence, along with Dr. Russell Ackoff, and that alone makes this book a special read for me.

Warfield never got the recognition he merited, and George Mason University blew a decade long lead in this area, and today they are still failing to create the integrative and pro-active inter-disciplinary programs that reflect the the wisdom of Buckminster Fuller, Jan Warfield, and Russell Ackoff, among others. I know from personal experience that GMU refused to consider the World Brain Institute and EarthGame, both of which would have made them unique in the world, so I can appreciate to a personal degree how lonely Jan Warfield must have felt there.

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Oct 25

Review: Big Man on Campus – A University President Speaks Out on Higher Education

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Stephen Joel Trachtenberg

5.0 out of 5 stars 2008 Sequel to 2006 Reflections,August 27, 2011

Dr. Trachtenberg is a very active but post-presidential presence at George Washington University and in global educational circles. I first read Reflections on Higher Education. Completely different from that first book, which was a well-edited compilation of non-replicative speeches and articles, this book follows his departure from the long-held position as President of George Washington University, and provides seventeen chapters. Uses “Inside the Book” feature to see those in detail.

Along with these two books I recommend at a minimum four others I have also reviewed:

The Uses of the University: Fifth Edition (Godkin Lectures on the Essentials of Free Government and the)
Universities in the Marketplace: The Commercialization of Higher Education
The World Is Open: How Web Technology Is Revolutionizing Education (Wiley Desktop Editions)

and also a number of books that have the common theme of reinventing education, such as

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Aug 27

Worth a Look: Books on Reinventing Education Updated July 2012

Phi Beta Iota:  There are other books but these are the ones that have caught our attention.

Now You See It, by Cathy N. Davidson

A New Culture of Learning by Douglas Thomas and John Seely Brown

21st Century Skills by James Bellanca and Ron Brandt

Making Learning Whole: How Seven Principles of Teaching Can Transform Education David N. Perkins

Reinventing Higher Education: The Promise of Innovation by Ben Wildavsky, Andrew Kelly, Kevin Carey

Rethinking Education in the Age of Technology by Allan Collins and Richard Halverson

Teaching Digital Natives by Marc Prensky

The Leader’s Guide to 21st Century Education: 7 Steps for Schools and Districts by Ken Kay and Valerie Greenhill

The Innovative University by Clayton Christensen and Henry Eyring

The Open Source Everything Manifesto by Robert Steele

The Seven Futures of American Education: Improving Learning & Teaching in a Screen-Captured World by John Sener

The World Is Open: How Web Technology Is Revolutionizing Education by Curtis J. Bonk

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Aug 14

Review: Reflections on Higher Education

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Stephen Joel Trachtenberg

5.0 out of 5 stars Relevant Today–Perhaps Still Not Appreciated Today, August 10, 2011

There is nothing in this book that I could disagree with, which instantly marks it as iconoclastic rather than traditional or elitist. This long-serving president spent close to three decades managing two universities, the longest The George Washington University which can legitimately lay claim to being intended by Founding Father George Washington to be a “national” university.

Prior books against which I compare this one include

The Uses of the University by Clark Kerr
Universities in the Marketplace by Derek Bok

The book consists of three parts that meld 11 speeches and 2 articles from the 1998-2001 timeframe. This particular book was distributed by the GW Board of Trustees to parents of the incoming GW Class of 2006.

QUOTE (19): “The entire planet is in the process of turning itself into an educational institution, the faculty of which consists of the entire human species.”

QUOTE (21): “The problem boils down to this: How do you get the *universe* of all things into the classroom?”
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Aug 10