Read write web – 2way summit

I have long been a fan of Read Write Web and their flagship event the Read Write Web 2way summit on June 13-14//Columbia University//New York City looks like an event worth attending. We will be supporting this event and recommend it highly. Check out the great speaker list at the Read write web – 2way summit

The Royal wedding ..

For us in the UK, it’s a day of celebration for the Royal wedding .. It looks to be a great day of celebration ..


The Lost Tribe Of Palau – Is the Singularity nearer than we think?

I am a big fan of documentaries and the Lost Tribe of Palau is indeed one of the most interesting documentaries in recent times.

In a nutshell, Palau is very isolated group of islands in the Pacific ocean some 500 miles (800 km) east of the Philippines and 2,000 miles (3,200 km) south of Tokyo.

The Lost Tribes of Palau are the fossilised remains of a miniature, island dwelling people found on Palau. Initially, it was thought that because the people will miniature, the remains were those of ancient man. However, carbon dating revealed that the fossils were relatively young i.e. between 3000 years old and 1400 years old.

Since the last fossils were 1400 years old, the theory is: people of normal stature arrived on the island 3000 years ago and within around 1600 years, they became miniaturised due to limited resources on the island

Why is this significant?

The rate of evolution is the unique factor here i.e. nowhere do we see such a rapid rate of evolution in human beings from people of normal height to dwarfism within 1600 years (and not over millions of years as we normally see)

Now, let’s co-relate this to the idea of singularity.

The simplest description of Singularity I can find is: The singularity is the point in mankind’s future when we will transcend current intellectual and biological limitations and initiate an intelligence and information explosion beyond imagining.

This is interesting enough, but the concept of the Singularity has gained momentum due to Ray Kurzweil indicating a specific timeline for singularity, much of which within our own lifetime.

When I first read this, I was a bit sceptical since it’s one thing to say that the singularity is near but another to say that its happening in a matter of decades ..

But Palau may change that view ..

If human evolution can be so rapid, unaided, then .. maybe we could achieve super human intelligence augmented by technology and networks ..

That’s an interesting thought .. Is the Singularity nearer than we think?

The social genome: Could the Real time web do for Retail as advertising did for Search?

Could the Real time web do for Retail as advertising did for Search?

This blog arises from two recent conversations:

-          Earlier this week, I was in Brussels and discussed the future of the Web in a number of conversations with MEPs  which was based on the significance of the Real Time Web and

-          I blogged about the significance of the Real time Web in conversation with @tonia_ries;  organizer of The Real Time Report conference in New York, which I am attending in June.

Tonia came up with a succinct equation: value (for content) = time + place + shared interest

Coming from a background of mobile and social media, for a long time, Telecom Operators have drooled at the idea of the proverbial ‘starbucks model’. While Starbucks never launched any such service as far as I know, the model went like this: When a customer passed near a Starbucks, they would get an SMS offering them 10% off the price of coffee. Telecoms, with it’s relatively closed mindset could never launch such a service but assuming you had a permission based relationship with the retailer, the model is viable.

It needs:

a)      Customers to trust you

b)      Access to real time data and historical data

c)       Awareness of context

d)      An open ecosystem (else you have small silos of data and customers which make it unviable)

e)      Real time interactions

The prevailing thinking was:

Google could be the store of all this data and that we, as customers, will give up all our data to Google


The Telecom Operator would know who you are and where you are. They would be the providers of this and provide that information real time via SMS (and be paid by the retailer ofcourse)

But customers were not that stupid and maybe not the  Retailers as well!

Retailers may finally have woken up from their apathy and decided that they need not simply abdicate the relationship they share with the customer to either Telecoms or to Google. The real time web may provide an alternative to play on their existing strengths but still leverage the open ethos of the Web

It appears that customers are not choosing a single web brand for various services but rather that they are choosing different brands for distinct services – ex Twitter for real time web, facebook for social, foursquare for check-ins and Google for search. Today, Google is far from dominating at least three incarnations of the Web post Google – The Real time Web, the Social web and the ‘Location Web’ (check-ins) (which explains Google’s recent emphasis on winning  the social web)

Looking at it from a customer standpoint, How do we define value?

Value could be either

a)      The customer pays for something that they find useful (traditional definition of value)

b)      The customer gets  something useful for free in return for advertisements + relinquishing some control of their data(Google)

c)       The customer gets information that is actionanble in real time in return for data

The Web provided one form of indirect monetization through the advertising model. But the advertising model does not suit all providers (although it always suits Google). The real time web could provide an alternative for retail as advertising did for search.

There is increasing evidence for this:

Wal-Mart may have paid $300M+ for Kosmix . Kosmix appears to be a mixture of three things: TweetBeat, RightHealth and a web service to explore the web by topic. But the premium for kosmix may be for the underlying ‘social genome’ technology.

In the announcement blog post, the founder,  Anand Rajaraman says it’s the “social genome” technology underlying the company’s products:

Conversations in social media revolve around “social elements” such as people, places, topics, products, and events. For example, when I tweet “Loved Angelina Jolie in Salt,” the tweet connects me (a user) to Angelia Jolie (an actress) and SALT (a movie). By analyzing the huge volume of data produced every day on social media, the Social Genome builds rich profiles of users, topics, products, places, and events.

Wal-Mart wants to bring this technology to shoppers, offering them “integrated experiences that leverage the store, the web, and mobile, with social identity being the glue that binds the experience,” Rajaraman says.

If this is accurate, then it is indeed possible that the Real time web do for retail as advertising did for search.

Note: In this blog, I use the terms ‘Real time web’ and the ‘Real time internet’ loosely and interchangibly. The objective is simply to focus on real time interactions and I use both terms to signify the same.

If you are attending the Realtime report NY 2011 event on June 6 at BB King’s in Times Square NY, say Hi!

NSTIC’s Effect on Privacy Tomorrow – Analysis white paper from Identity Finder

The Department of Commerce released the final draft of the National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace (NSTIC) National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace last week

Attached is a white paper from Identity Finder, LLC that examines possible impacts of the (NSTIC) on Privacy.

Identity Finder has found that to successfully implement its visions of privacy, security, and secure identities, NSTIC must call for Federal regulation that will:

· Hold all Identity Ecosystem Participants to legal and technical standards which implement Fair Information Practice Principles (FIPPs) and baseline privacy and security protocols

· Create incentives for businesses to not commoditize human identity

· Compensate for an individual’s unequal bargaining power when establishing privacy policies

· Subject Identity Providers to similar requirements to the Fair Credit Reporting Act

· Train individuals on how to properly safeguard their Identity Medium to avoid identity theft

· Ensure that consumers and advocates have a meaningful voice in the development of NSTIC policy

Identity Finder’s Chief Privacy Officer, Aaron Titus, warns, “We all have social security cards and it took decades to realize that we shouldn’t carry them around in our wallets. Now we will have a much more powerful identity credential that lets us carry it in our wallets, phones, laptops, tablets and other computing devices. Although NSTIC aspires to improve privacy, it stops short of recommending regulations to protect privacy. The stakes are high, and if implemented improperly, an unregulated Identity Ecosystem could have a devastating impact on individual privacy.”

If NSTIC fails to implement the necessary regulations, the resulting Identity Ecosystem could turn into a free-for-all Identity marketplace, and create the following risks:

· Powerful identity credentials which, if lost or stolen will enable hyper-identity theft

· A false sense of control, privacy, and security among Users

· New ways to covertly collect Users’ personal information

· New markets in which to commoditize human identity

· Few consumer protections against abuse or sharing personal information with third parties

· No default legal recourse against participants who abuse personal information without consent

A free copy of the whitepaper can be downloaded at: Identity finder NSTIC white paper

See the NIST video to get the context

Looking for a venue in the Bay area for a workshop

I am looking for a venue in the Bay area for a workshop seating 100 – 150 people

Any recommendations/suggestions?

US administration to unveil Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace today

This should be a very interesting event. I am tracking this and any comments insights welcome.


webcast link HERE

U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke and Senior White House Officials to Unveil Administration’s National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace

Strategy lays out vision for a more secure online environment, led by private-sector technology innovations

WASHINGTON – Tomorrow, U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke will be joined by Chair of the National Economic Council Gene Sperling and White House Cybersecurity Coordinator Howard A. Schmidt to release the administration’s National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace (NSTIC) – a White House initiative to improve online security, increase privacy and foster economic growth and innovation online. Hosted by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the event will include a panel discussion with industry leaders and privacy advocates, as well as demonstrations of innovative smart technologies being developed to improve online authentication.

NSTIC is a key building block in the national effort to secure cyberspace. According to industry surveys, as many as 8 million Americans are victims of online fraud and identity theft each year and lose an average of $631 out-of-pocket per incident. Through a private sector-led effort facilitated by the government, NSTIC aims to make online transactions more trustworthy and enhance consumers’ privacy, thereby giving businesses and consumers more confidence to conduct business online.

To learn more about the National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace, visit the NSTIC website at:

WHO: Gary Locke, U.S. Secretary of Commerce
Gene B. Sperling, Assistant to the President for Economic Policy and

Director of the National Economic Council

Jane Holl Lute, Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security

Howard A. Schmidt, White House Cybersecurity Coordinator

Ann Beauchesne, Vice President National Security and Emergency Preparedness, U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Barbara Mikulski, U.S. Senator, Maryland

Dan Lungren, U.S. Representative, California


Leslie Harris, President and CEO, Center for Democracy & Technology

Susan Landau, Fellow, Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University

Eric Sachs, Senior Product Manager, Internet Identity, Google

WHAT: Release of the Administration’s National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace

WHEN: Friday, April 15th, 11:30 a.m. – 1:15 p.m. EST

*Door opens at 11:00 a.m. for viewing of technology demonstrations

*Program starts at 11:30 a.m.

WHERE: U.S. Chamber of Commerce

1615 H Street, NW

Washington, DC 20062

RSVP: Credentialed members of the media are invited to attend. To register, e-mail [email protected] or call 202-463-5682.

A quote that had a profound impact on my life – Ayn Rand – fountainhead

I still remember reading this statement around age 19 in India. It had a profound impact on my life ..

“But you see,” said Roark quietly, “I have, let’s say, sixty years to live. Most of that time will be spent working. I’ve chosen the work I want to do. If I find no joy in it, then I’m only condemning myself to sixty years of torture. And I can find the joy only if I do my work in the best way possible to me. But the best is a matter of standards—and I set my own standards. I inherit nothing. I stand at the end of no tradition. I may, perhaps, stand at the beginning of one.”

Ayn Rand (The Fountainhead)

Celebrating 50th anniversary of Yuri Gagarin’s flight into space

When I was a child in India, Yuri Gagarin was an inspiration.

So, very happy to be celebrating 50th anniversary of Yuri Gagarin’s flight into space

Discount code for the realtime report conference

I blogged about the The Realtime report conference before and I am looking forward to attending the The Realtime Report conference in New York

You can get a 20% discount on the registration by using the code ‘FUTURE’.
If you are at this event, please email me at ajit.jaokar at and I hope we can catch up