4545Re: [decentralization] Groove centralizes
- Nov 2, 2001
>>>>> "Todd" == Todd Boyle <tboyle@...> writes:[...]
> Corporations are command and control systems, of a type that have beenMethinks that you're missing the historical, corporate evolution factor
> thoroughly and completely rejected by the populations of every country on
> earth by now. Governments such as the soviet union were spectacular
> Why do corporations work completely differently from the way open
> marketplaces function, within democratic society?
> When developers understand the answer to this question, they will be more
> likely to write P2P software instead of ever-more-powerful command and
> control systems.
> Corporations operate completely differently from civil society, to
> achieve greater logistical efficiency, reliability and information
> dissemination by controlling the behaviors of members, all that stuff --
> we have networks and computers and collaboration software for these
> things today. Let's use them, to compete as freemen instead of slaves.
> Freemen are always more efficient than command systems. We'll make good
here. Historically, C&C has worked exceptionally well for the types of
corporations that existed and the context in which they operated. The
critical decision making in those corporations fit because the workers were
predominantly just cogs in a operational-execution-efficiency-maximizing
For examples, both Rockefeller and Ford quite sanely created and exploited
those efficiencies in their creation of completely vertically-integrated
That sort of Taylor-istic perspective is increasingly marginalized/subsumed
(but not eliminated!) in proportion to the shift in importance of
informational and, more critically, decision-making
distribution/decentralization through organizations.
Corporations are (slowly) adapting to this. I find it fascinating how the
entire Supply-Chain Management (SCM) world has been created to reintegrate
what was (sometimes forcibly) dis-integrated not all that long ago.
W.r.t. the free-persons vs slaves shme, a couple of points...
Most people have (to varying degrees) a strong desire/need for "stability"
(of all sorts). Markets are, by nature, volatile. Corporate jobs (and
government sinecure, sigh), for many people, usually provide a sufficient
amount of stability. I.e., they are making a decision to tradeoff some
amount of "slavery" in return for that stability.
[The scariest thing about the 9/11 stuff is the headlong rush that so many
are in to give up all of our constitutional liberties in the futile attempt
to restore some (predominantly emotional) sense of (pseudo-)security.]
Markets are not (always/usually) symmetrical. Check out the latest batch
of Nobel prize winners in economics for various takes on the asymmetry of
markets. Also, think about monopolistic power such as MS's and how that
creates a distorted/asymmetrical market.
[A problem with the US legal system is that, even worse then generals
always trying to fight the previous war, the legal system is so completely
built-upon precedent that they often calcify a specific response to a
specifc problem within a specific context into general law. Think about
patterns and refactoring.]
Combine those two with various illogical/non-rational ways that most people
actually make decisions and you end up being able to explain many of the
so-called paradoxes of classical economics. One of those Nobel guys
examined used-cars markets. Personally, I find the whole fad of
reverse-auction markets even more telling (at least w.r.t. us geeks :-).
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