Notes for John Seely Brown and Paul Duguid Social Life of Information
Key concepts: agent, bots, brokering, clustering, code of code, collaboration, community of practice, explicit and tacit knowledge, improvisation, information fetishism, knowledge management, narration, network of practice, nontechnological innovations, productivity paradox, reengineering, RFC, stolen knowledge, tunnel design.
Point out 'nontechnological innovations' like using publicly moderated request for comments to democratize technological change, such as the development of communications protocols: building blocks for a digital humanities course. Discusses agents (bots). Lack of technological transparency of agential intention an issue concealed by ease of use. Better bots require better understanding of how humans negotiate in society. Bleak outcome separating autonomy and accountability if agency is not better modeled. Look to reliability of machines in the institutions and organizations they represent rather than the technological artifact itself. Gives a sustained critique of the electronic workplace and telecommuting, revealing the important of the social fabric. Classic designer view versus user-centric, task-oriented. Attacks process reengineering, which miss value of local networks in knowledge creation, in which collaboration, narration, and improvisation are key. Innovations often hidden due to processes and forms; much can be learned from improvisations. Division into broad networks of practice and close communities of practice detail does not seem present in Castells' network concept. Suggest most important uses of information technology are helping people interact in the physical world. Concludes with Lessig code of code without making leap to affordances of free, open source software.
Related theorists: Manuel Castells, Paul Gee, Lave, Lawrence Lessig, Catherine Malabou, Orr, Polanyi, Ryle, Clay Spinuzzi, Wenger.
(x) Social life, social needs, and social aspirations remain critical influences. To ignore these is simply foolish. The Social Life of Information emphasizes how easily, nonetheless, these social contributions are overshadowed by the dazzling claims about new technology and the new economy, and it seeks to draw attention back towards them.
Recent hype at THATCamp of the next version of Apple electronic book software for transforming reading in education, for example.
(xii) The complementarity of bots and humans emphasizes a more
general point about technological innovation. Pundits often talk in
terms of replacement, but as often as not new technologies augment or
enhance existing tools and practices rather than replace them.
(xiii) As digital production and storage grow ever cheaper, a reading of the information study suggests that a critical task ahead will be to stop volume from simply overwhelming value.
As it is now taken for granted that the elections are most heavily influenced by advertisement spending.
(xvi) This book is particularly concerned with the superficially
plausible idea illustrated in this story that information and its
technologies can unproblematically replace the nuanced relations
between people. We think of this as “information fetishism.”
(xvii) But in celebrating access to information, pundits may undervalue the power of the technology to create and deploy social networks.
Absence of GNU in positive account of free, open source software as exemplifying a robust and epistemologically transparent social life of information.
(xvii-xviii) The project started in 1991 when a young programmer,
Linus Torvalds, set out to design a computer operating system – the
software that runs a computer – which he called “Linux.” . . .
Linux has used the Internet not simply as a network of bits, but as
the resource for a network of practioners to work collaboratively. .
. . As we argue throughout the book, designs that ignore social
issues lead to fragile, opaque technologies. By contrast, Linux,
drawing as it does on social resources, has produced technologies
that are remarkably robust and, at least for the network of
practitioners developing it, transparent.
(xx) Rather, we believe that documents, like other old technologies, probably will not be replaced (when they should be) or augmented (when they could be), if their richness and scope are underappreciated.
Importance of nontechnological innovations like using publicly moderated request for comments RFCs to democratize technological change, such as the development of communications protocols, although RFCs in particular were electronically disseminated.
(xx-xxi) The printing revolution, in short, involved social organization, legal innovation, and the institutional creativity to develop what appears now as the simple book and the self-evident information it contains. Contrary to assumptions that all it takes is technological innovation, a digital revolution too will need similar nontechnological innovations to fulfill its potential.
Tie RFCs to learning about digital communications.
(xxi) While the Internet has undoubtedly transformed many aspects of communication, RFCs testify to the enduring but often overlooked potential of documents not merely to contain information, but to sort and present it, to organize discussions, and to unite people around ideas and into communities and networks.
(2) In the tight restrictions of the information channel, without the corroboration that broader context offers (or refuses), the powerful detective skills that everyone relies on have little room to work.
(2-3) Ignoring the clues that lie beyond information doesn't only lead to a narrow world of deception. It leads to a world of what we think of as tunnel design—a kind of purblind design of which, in the end, we are all victims. . . . Tunnel design, we suspect, produces technologies that, in Edward Tenner's phrase, “bit back.” These are technologies that create as many problems as they solve.
(4) So it's to plead for design that takes into account resources that people care about. . . . (Take a quick look over the computer applications you have bought, borrowed, or downloaded over the past five years and see how many you would actually fight for.)
(4) We are all, to some extent, designers now. Many questions about design are thus becoming questions for us all. It is important, then, to understand our own limitations as designers, too, and to know where to look for resources.
FIGHT TO THE FINISH
(5) Despite our metaphor of tunnel vision, our sense of the neglected periphery is not limited to the visual periphery of physical objects. It also embraces what we think of as the social periphery, the communities, organizations, and institutions that frame human activities. . . . Attending too closely to information overlooks the social context that helps people understand what that information might mean and why it matters.
(8) The essays that follow attempt to address the social context of information from a variety of different perspectives.
(8) These threads allow us to talk from a single standpoint about the limits of infopunditry (chapter 1), the challenges of software agents (chapter 2), the social character of work and learning—and the limits of management theory (chapters 3-5), resources for innovation (chapter 6), unnoticed aspects of the document and their implications for design more generally (chapter 7), and the future of institutions, in particular the university (chapter 8).
Limits to Information
COULD LESS BE MORE?
(14-15) But while the law is insightful, Moore's Law solutions are usually less so. They take it on faith that more power will somehow solve the very problems that they have helped to create. . . . Instead of thinking hard, we are encouraged simply to “embrace dumb power.”
DROWNING AND DIDN'T KNOW IT
(17) But it's one thing to argue that many “second wave” tools, institutions, and organizations will not survive the onset of the “third wave.” It's another to argue that in the “third wave” there is no need for social institutions and organizations at all.
(17) The strong claim seems to be that in the new world individuals can hack it alone with only information by their side. Everyone will return to frontier life, living in the undifferentiated global village.
(20) So if Morse were to ask his question again today, he would no doubt be offered an answer beginning “http://www. . . . “
Microsoft rhetoric echoes ancient call to take on the complexion of the dead.
(20) Further, Microsoft's pictures of people sitting eagerly at computers also suggest that, whatever the question, the answer lies in digital, computer-ready information. . . . Atoms are not expected to move, only bits. . . . Information offers to satisfy your wanderlust without the need to wander from the keyboard.
REFINING, OR MERELY REDEFINING?
(21) Nevertheless, some of the attempts to squeeze everything into an information perspective recall the work of the Greek mythological bandit Procrustes.
(22) The D in our 6-D notion stands for the de- or dis- in such futurist-favored words as demassification, decentralization, denationalization, despacialization, disintermediation, disaggregation.
Dimensions of the Ds
(23) Much talk about disaggregation and demassification readily assumes that the new economy will be a place of ever-smaller firms, light, agile, and unencumbered.
(26) Given that information technologies are particularly good at taking advantage of large networks, the information economy in certain circumstances actually favors the aggregated, massified firm.
Compare to dimensions of 6 Ds of network age to analysis by Castells.
(27) Finally, firms are not merely taking power from one another. They are accumulating power that once lay elsewhere. The political scientist Saskia Sassen traces the decline of the nation-state not to the sweeping effects of demassification and disaggregation, but to the rise of powerful, concentrated transnational corporations.
MYTH OF INFORMATION
(31) First, it isolates information and the informational aspects of life and discounts all else. That makes it blind to other forces at work in society Second, as our colleague Geoffrey Nunberg has argued, such predications tend to take the most rapid point of change and to extrapolate from there into the future, without noticing other forces that may be regrouping.
Agents and Angels
(39) Agents are victims of the sort of procrustean redefinition we mentioned in chapter 1. The personal names—Sherlock, Jeeves, Bog, or Red—though they are surely harmless enough on their own, hint that the gap between digital and human is narrow and narrowing.
Ranks of agents: information brokering, product brokering, merchant brokering, negotiating; enter Turkle Alone Together.
(39) Redefinition comes from the other direction, too. That is, some accounts don't so much make bots sound like humans as make humans sound like bots.
(41) To understand the strengths and limits of agents, let us look primarily at personal assistants and some of the tasks planned for them.
(44) Our results primarily serve to remind us that the Web is a vast, disorderly, and very fast-changing information repository with enormous quantities of overlapping and duplicate information and that all its catalogs are incomplete and out of date.
(45) Innocence was lost, and faith in good agents on “our” side had to face the specter of bad agents purporting to represent “our” interests but in fact secretly representing someone else's.
Lack of technological transparency of agential intention an issue concealed by ease of use.
(45) Both examples raise questions of technological transparency. We might all be able to use agents, but how many are able to understand their biases among the complex mathematics of dynamic preference matching?
(46) The buzz is all about
personalization, product diversity, the demassification of production
and consumption, and niche markets. Merchant brokering, however,
heavily favors standardization.
(46) A second problem is that, as part of the process of price competition and standardization, subjective issues such as quality and service disappear.
(48-49) Usually, humans negotiate behavior. They continually accommodate themselves to one another, and in the process construct and adjust the social fabric.
Bot negotiation has become the model of human negotiation mediated by technology, but it is clumsy; tie in Malabou.
(50) This sort of explicit, rule-governed negotiation is clumsy, but
necessary when the social fabric will not bear implicit negotiation.
It looks more like the sort of thing developers have in mind when
they talk of bots negotiating, but it is only a small portion of what
human negotiation involves.
(51) People don't only abandon goals. They abandon rules, too. . . . Immediate goals, longer-term relationships, and creation and preservation of the social fabric are always in balance in this way.
(52) Better bots, then, will require a better understanding of human negotiation, the contribution of the social fabric, and the role of human restraint in the functioning of the invisible hand.
(53-54) Behind the stock traders' difficulties and labor tactics lies the simple truth that giving orders that have to take account of all possibilities is impossible in all but the simplest tasks. Consequently, rules, contracts, delegation, and the like rely on unspecifiable discretion and judgment on the part of the person following those orders. These return us once again to the differences between bots and people. Judgment and discretion are not features of software.
Bleak outcome separating autonomy and accountability if agency is not better modeled.
(55) If human agents are confused with digital ones, if human action
is taken as mere information processing, and if the social complexion
of negotiation, delegation, and representation are reduced to “when
x, do y,” bots will end up with autonomy without accountability.
Their owners, by contrast, may have accountability without
(56) The question “Do you know what your agent is doing tonight and with whom?” and the worry that their agent is no angel may loom increasingly large in the already overburdened late-night worries of executives.
(56) Once you worry about bots that represent, you also have to worry about bots that misrepresent.
WAR IN HEAVEN
(61) Consequently, interactions over the 'Net, financial or social, will be as secure not as its digital encryption, which is a relatively cheap fix, but as the infrastructure—social as well as technological—encompassing that interaction.
Look to reliability of machines in the institutions and organizations they represent rather than the technological artifact itself.
(62) Indeed, for most people a particular ATM isn't transparent enough for us to judge whether it is instrumentally reliable or not. Instead, we look for reliability, both instrumental and moral, in the organizations represented by the ATM and by the institutions regulating those organizations.
(65) The idea that the individualized technology of the information revolution will undo the massification produced by the technology of the industrial revolution underlies most such scenarios of disaggregation.
TO BREATHE FREE
(66) In the view of some futurists, information technology will help rediscover gemeinschaft, the sort of small, local, community-based way of life broken down, according to some sociologists, by industrialization.
JUST A CLICK AWAY?
(69) First, many of the difficulties reflect a misunderstanding of office work, which is too easily painted as information handling. . . . The idea of managers working remotely with information inevitably ignores the much more difficult, intangible, but inevitably face-to-face side of management, the management not of things or of information, but of people
(69) Second, bold predictions about the spread of hot desking and electronic cottages may also ignore the frailty of technological systems.
(70) [Third] The desire to show that with a computer one person and do everything may look not forward, but back to the stage in social evolution before anyone noticed the advantages of the division of labor.
NO ROOM OF ONE'S OWN
(72) Having to rebuild your conventional or your digital desktop every morning is a highly disruptive chore that ignores the needs of work and the nature of technology.
(75) More generally, new technology often threatens not to help find a new equilibrium but rather to unsettle equilibria whenever they are found.
(76) Battered by such hype, it's easy to believe that everyone except you knows how to use this stuff without a problem.
(77) The office social system plays a major part in keeping tools (and people) up and running.
Office life reveals combination of technological frailty and social resourcefulness; a different explanation of why telecommuting has not supplanted the traditional office setting than Castells.
Most systems, amalgams of software and hardware from different
vendors, rely on social amalgams of this sort keep everything
running. . . . In this way, the
facts of office life reveal a combination of technological frailty
and social resourcefulness. Infoenthusiasts,
however, tend to think of these the other way around, missing the
role of the social fabric and assuming that individuals in isolation
can do it all.
(77-78) Home office workers usually lack this sort of cash. More significantly, they lack necessary peer support. Consequently, with current technology, money-losing futzing, late at night and early in the morning, is endemic to the home office.
(79) These cumulative problems may lead to the curious paradox that information technology, by ignoring the role played invisibly by the social system, is keeping people out of the home and in the conventional office, and not the other way around.
(79) In attempting to replace outmoded ways of doing things, new technologies also displace work tasks that were once successfully shared across a group. These are now concentrated on an individual.
(80) Inevitably, much of this sort of concentration takes place on the assumption that the task involved, typesetting for example, is purely “mechanical” so the experience is of no interest once the mechanisms change.
(80) Putting this all on the desktop, while supporting the individual in some ways, ignores the support and knowledge latent in systems that distribute work. The apparent “ease” offered by these technologies hides much of the extra work they involve.
FOR NEXT TO NOTHING?
(81) Odlyzko estimates that capital costs are only about 20 percent of total costs for a networked environment; as Strassmann argues, many of the true costs are often hidden “stealth” fashion, in budgest.
(83) Economists refer to this surprising decline in productivity growth despite massive investment in computers as the “productivity paradox.”
Classic designer view versus user-centric, task-oriented bases argument for failure of technology driven designs and productivity paradox.
(85) Our argument, in the course of this chapter, by contrast, is
that technology design has not taken adequate account of work and its
demands but instead has aimed at an idealized image of individuals
(86) But this was a matter not of society “catching up” with technology, but of society adjusting technology to its needs.
(87) Too often, information technology design is poor because problems have been redefined in ways that ignore the social resources that are an integral part of this socialization process.
(88-89) Though the telephone was a transforming technology, Bell nonetheless worked with the social context of his day, not against it or in isolation from it. In the collective understanding of groups, Bell found the resources for individuals. Similarly, e-mail and collaborative games have had profound socializing effects on some fairly antisocial technologies.
(89) these examples continue to suggest that, in order for people to be able to work alone, technology may have to reinforce their access to social networks.
Practice Makes Process
Importance of knowledge in organizations, which no doubt has social characteristics, must be considered with process reengineering.
(93) Did the focus on process, perhaps, overlook the increasing demand for knowledge in modern organizations? We suspect it did. Consequently, looking at reengineering in the light of knowledge, as we do here, may help reveal both the strengths (often hidden between catcalls) and the weaknesses (equally hidden behind cheerleading) or reengineering.
MEANING AND ENDS
(96) [Etienne] Wenger's work reminds us that, while process is clearly important to the overall coherence of an organization, in the end it is the practice of the people who work in the organization that brings process to life, and, indeed, life to process.
LOOKING THE OTHER WAY
(97) First, business process reengineering tends to be somewhat monotheistic. . . . The process view is expected to explain all.
(97) Second, despite talk of rebuilding from the bottom up and empowerment, business process reengineering tends to be relentlessly top down.
(98) Third, the top-down view tends to give a bloodless account of businesses.
Local workplace cultures, chatting, discouraged by process reengineers because they do not see the value of their linkages. Toptech guilty of this.
(98) And fourth, business process reengineers tend to discourage exactly the sort of lateral links that people pursue to help make meaning. . . . Encouraging cross-functional links between occupations, business process reengineering tends to see the contrasting links within occupational groups as non-value adding.
WHEN THE GOING GETS TOUGH
(103) Chat continuously but almost imperceptibly adjusts a group's collective knowledge and individual members' awareness of each other.
THE PRACTICE IN THE PROCESS
(104) We can understand this journey better by approaching it in terms of collaboration, narration, and improvisation.
(106) Thus we tend to think of knowledge less like an assembly of discrete parts and more like a watercolor painting. As each new color is added, it blends with the others to produce the final effect, in which the contributing parts become indivisible.
(106) Stories are good at presenting things sequentially (this happened, then that). They are also good for presenting them causally (this happened because of that).
(107) More generally, people tell stories to try to make diverse information cohere.
(107) The value of stories, however, lies not just in their telling, but in their retelling. Stories pass on to newcomers what old timers already know.
(107) For it is not shared stories or shared information so much as shared interpretation that binds people together.
Function of forms in an organization.
(108) This adaptation is aptly reflected in the wonder (and the problems) of forms. Forms are the crucial means by which an organization brings the heterogeneous world into line with its processes.
(109) Employees negotiate the gap between their actual practice and recognized routines and process by making the former appear to be the latter.
Innovations often hidden due to processes and forms; much can be learned from improvisations.
(110) So, by subordinating practice to process, an organization paradoxically encourages its employees to mislead it. Valuing and analyzing their improvisations, by contrast, can be highly informative.
(111) Lateral ties, ties that do not follow the lines of process, are readily dismissed as “non-value adding.”
(111) Yet research into work groups, like research into the difficulties of home working, suggests that people rely heavily on lateral, occupational ties to overcome the limits of process-based information.
(113) The virtual connections among reps provided by the database suggest that virtual groups—the fabled virtual teams of the cyberworkplace—tend to mirror conventional groups, not transcend them.
Learning—in Theory and in Practice
(118) In the process, knowledge has gained sufficient momentum to push aside not only concepts like reengineering but also information, whose rule had previously looked so secure.
(119) First, knowledge usually entails a knower.
(120) Second, given this personal attachment, knowledge appears harder to detach than information.
(120) Third, one reason knowledge may be so hard to give and receive is that knowledge seems to require more by way of assimilation.
IS THE KNOWER LOST IN THE INFORMATION?
(121) The importance of people as creators and carriers of knowledge is forcing organizations to realize that knowledge lies less in its databases then in its people.
Loss of collective memory from downsizing because organizational knowledge more in people than databases.
(122) Similarly, the sort of blind downsizing produced by business process reengineering has caused organizations to lose “collective memory.”
IN DEFENSE OF
(124) While knowledge is often not all that hard to search, it can be difficult to retrieve, if by retrieve people mean detach from one knower and attach to another.
(124) So learning, the acquisition of knowledge, presents knowledge management with its central challenge.
(124) The definitions of knowledge management beginning this chapter perform a familiar two-step. First, they define the core problem in terms of information, so that, second they can put solutions in the province of information technology.
Gee also emphasizes community of practice for situated learning.
(126) Learning a
practice, they [Lave and Wegner] argue, involves becoming a member of
a “community of practice” and thereby understanding its
work and its talk from the inside. Learning, from this point of view,
is not simply a matter of acquiring information; it requires
developing the disposition, demeanor, and outlook of the
(127) In particular, it notes now, in getting the job done, the people involved ignored divisions of rank and role to forge a single group around their shared task, with overlapping knowledge, relatively blurred boundaries, and a common working identity.
TO BE OR NOT TO
(128) Learning to be requires more than just information. It requires the ability to engage in the practice in question.
(128) Learning about does not, however, produce the ability to put “know that” into use. This, Ryle argues, calls for “know how.” And “know how” does not come through accumulating information. . . . “We learn how,” Ryle argues, “by practice.” And, similarly, through practice, we learn to be.
(129) Practice shapes assimilation.
LEARNING IN PRACTICE
Limits to Going by the Book
Practical Value of Phone Cords
(133) Both examples, the classroom and the workplace, indicate how the resources for learning like not simply in information, but in the practice that allows people to make sense of and use that information and the practitioners who know how to use that information.
Polanyi explicit and tacit dimensions reinforce need for practice within community of practitioners to produce actionable knowledge in people.
The explicit dimension is like the strategy book. But it is
relatively useless without the tacit dimension. This, Polanyi
allows people to see when to apply the explicit part.
(135) Information, all these arguments suggest, is on its own not enough to produce actionable knowledge. Practice too is required. And for practice, it's best to look to a community of practitioners.
(136) This [stolen] knowledge, Tagore reveals, he picked up by watching and listening to the musician when the latter played for his own and others' entertainment. Only then, when what was evident was the practice of musicianship and not dismembered teaching exercises, was Tagore able to see and appreciate the real practice at issue.
(136) A demand-side view of this sort of knowledge theft suggests how important it is not to force-feed learning, but to encourage it, both provoking the need and making the resources available for people to “steal.”
Identity Shape One Another
(138) Information theory portrays information as a change registered in an otherwise steady state.
(138) The importance of disturbance or change makes it almost inevitable that we focus on these. We notice the ripple and take the lake for granted. Yet clearly the lake shapes the ripple more than the ripple shapes the lake.
(139) The background has to be in place for the information to register. The forces that shape the background are, rather, the tectonic social forces, always at work, within which and against which individuals configure their identity.
A Brief Note on the “Social”
(141) It is not the different information they have that divides them. Indeed, they might have a lot of information in common. Rather, it is their different attitudes or dispositions toward that information—attitudes and dispositions shaped by practice and identity—that divide.
(141) We see two types of work-related networks that, with the boundaries they inevitably create, are critical for understanding learning, work, and the movement of knowledge.
(141-142) People in such networks have practice and knowledge in common. Nevertheless, most of the members are unknown to one another.
(142) Networks of this sort are notable for their reach—a reach now extended and fortified by information technology. . . . When reach dominates reciprocity like this, it produces very loosely coupled systems. Collectively, such social systems don't take action and produce little knowledge. They can, though, share information relating to the members' common practices quite efficiently.
(143) While part of the network, groups like this cultivate their own style, their own sense of taste, judgment, and appropriateness, their own slang and in-terms.
Division into broad networks of practice and close communities of practice detail does not seem present in Castells network concept; check Spinuzzi.
(143) You can only work closely with so many people. On the other hand, reciprocity is strong. . . . These groups allow for highly productive and creative work to develop collaboratively.
(144) While the whole may ultimately be global, within it there are networks of practice with lines of reach that are extensive but nonetheless bounded by practice. And there are communities of practice, with dense connections of both reach and reciprocity, which again put limits on extent.
(144) It has been fashionable of late to talk of workplace culture or organizational culture as if these made organizations internally uniform. But divisions created by practice produce significant variation here as well.
(144) Business process reengineering, in particular, ignores divisions created by different practices.
(145) Failure to read the topography may be at its most damaging as people try to predict the effects of new information technologies on organizations.
Suggest most important uses of information technology are helping people interact in the physical world, atoms to bits to atoms.
(146) Indeed, one of the most powerful uses of information technology seems to be to support people who do work together directly and to allow them to schedule efficient face-to-face encounters. Looking too closely at the progression from atoms to bits may miss the role the bits play in allowing us to reinforce the valuable aspects of the world of atoms. Critical movements in the knowledge economy may go not just from atoms to bits, but from atoms to bits and back again.
Innovating Organization, Husbanding Knowledge
(172) In a discussion of knowledge and the firm, the organizational theorist J-C. Spender talks of the “husbanding” role of the firm. This farming image helps illustrate our notion of the relationship between an organization and ecology.
Reading the Background
Connect to reading the background to Clark extended mind.
(205) Efficient communication relies not on how much can be said, but on how much can be left unsaid—and even unread—in the background. And a certain amount of fixity, both in material documents and in social conventions of interpretation, contributes a great deal to this sort of efficiency.
Code of Code
(249) What the material resources of paper once constrained is now constrained by the software code inherent in digital objects.
(249) This development of the constraints of software has led Larry Lessig of Harvard Law School to talk of “the code of code.” The legal code, instead of emerging from the resourcefulness of physical objects, now reflects software code.
(249) Software code represents the quid (protection of property) without yielding the quo (the public interest). Code now makes it possible to decide in fine degrees of detail not only who can or cannot use a certain digital text, but also how it can be used.
Free, open source movement counters swing back toward corporate control of intellectual products built into software code recognized by Lessig.
(250) It took more than a century and a half to wrest control over intellectual property from the hands of publishers in the Stationer's Register and place it in the hands of individual authors. Now, despite the talk of the 'Net's disintermediation, it may be swinging back toward publishers and corporate ownership.
Beyond the Ecology
(251) For those who do acknowledge the importance of regions and their institutions, it becomes important to ask what happens when people or organizations have to operate between regions, in particular between regions with distinct institutions. Institutions that might be a resource for organizations within the region can become a constraint when dealing with people outside.
(251) Europeans in general are more suspicious of business than of government. North Americans in general are more suspicious of government than business.
(252) To play with boundaries—of firms, networks, communities, regions, and institutions—as innovation increasingly seems to demand, requires first acknowledging them.
(252) These issues about resources and constraints, structure and spontaneity, reach and reciprocity, and about dominant, residual, and emergent institutions are ones that affect design—from the design of digital appliances to the design of transnational organizations and institutions.
Brown, John Seely, and Paul Duguid. The Social Life of Information. Boston: Harvard Business School Press, 2000. Print.