aTypical Joe: a gay New Yorker living in the rural South
Sunday, October 30, 2005
I want my iTV
[A]ll the elements are falling into place to deliver high-quality video from the Net directly to viewers in their living rooms. Software has been developed to ensure the quality of video distributed over the Net. And companies such as Microsoft and Cisco Systems’ Linksys home division are developing products that enable Internet video to be viewed on TV sets instead of only on PC screens.
But so far, content providers are treading lightly as they open new Net-based distribution channels. For example, Comedy Central’s new MotherLoad Web site, which launches next week, will offer only select clips of content rather than the full range of programming available on Comedy Central’s cable channel.
Meanwhile, next month The Food Network will debut its first web-only show.
A better conversation
Ben Vershbow at The Institute for the Future of the Book blog points to a discussion about how an open source model might be made to work for creating authoritative knowledge, and nicely answers Nicholas Carr’s Wikipedia critique from a couple weeks back:
Clearly, the wide-open model of Wikipedia presents some problems, but considering the advantages it presents (at least in potential)—never out of date, interconnected, universally accessible, bringing in voices from the margins—critics are wrong to dismiss the enterprise out of hand. Moreover, holding up specific passages for critique is a bit like shooting fish in a barrel. Even Wikipedia’s directors admit that most of the content right now is of middling quality, some of it downright awful. It doesn’t then follow to say that the whole project is bunk. That’s a bit like expelling an entire kindergarten for poor spelling. Wikipedia is at an early stage of development. Things take time.
If enough academics and librarians started knocking on the door saying, hey, we’d like to participate, then perhaps Wikipedia (and Wikibooks) would kick up to the next level. Inevitably, these newcomers would insist on setting up some new vetting mechanisms and a few useful hierarchies that would help ensure quality. What would these be? That’s exactly the kind of thing we should be discussing.