2009-02-22 Society Economy and Metrics
When an idea is confronted over time, there is a high risk (but that's part of the game) of destruction. If the idea is coming more and more stronger over this confrontation process, there is the possibility of the something new to be created over time. The past few months, I read again André Gorz especially Écologica and L'immatériel : Connaissance, valeur et capital. Surprised by his consistency and ability to surround the important topics in the information society, there is a common recurring concept always popping up in his works : the metric and especially the lack of universal measure (called "étalon de mesure") in the information society. Gorz pointed the issue with the capital and the operation of the economy trying to capitalize on the "intangible capital". Reading his works right now is very interesting especially that he was really pointing the risks of creating economic bubble while trying to apply the capitalism techniques of tangible asset against the intangible.
Looking back, the idea of "universal metric" in the information society was somehow already hitting my mind with the following post and projects : Wiki Creativity Index, Innovation Metric (especially that the clumsy patent system is the only metric in use) and Creativity Metrics Are Needed. Project like Ohloh is already providing a specific answer to quantify the activity in the free software community. We are still far away(?) from an "universal metric" but when it will possible to link the respective activity of a human being with an exchangeable "money" (like bitcoin), we could have the possibility of growing without impacting the natural resources and funding the society with a real citizenship.