7 steps to the Open Web Mind

Mark Jeffery
by Mark Jeffery
founder of the Open Web Mind

How to get started on a project as enormous as the Open Web Mind?

Take the first step. Then take the next step. Keep going until you’re taking steps you could never have anticipated. That’s how.

Here are the 7 steps that I anticipate will take me to the Open Web Mind.

Step 1 – Think

Most of the information on the web is in the form of documents or databases. The Open Web Mind will change that. It’ll capture human knowledge in the form of connections between concepts. Just like the human mind.

The first step is to create an API to allow software developers to manipulate concepts and connections in web minds.

Step 2 – Learn

Happily, most people wouldn’t know an API if it slapped them across both cheeks with a pair of fine gloves.

If you’re not a software developer, you’ll want your web mind to learn not through an API, but in the same way as humans: by reading articles and scanning spreadsheets.

(You do spend your spare time scanning spreadsheets, right? No? Not to worry, your web mind can do that for you.)

The second step is to hook up the Open Web Mind to Wikipedia (or any other web site) and the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Employment and Wages bulletins (or any other source of data) so that it can learn everything we humans know.

Step 3 – Visualize

It’s all very well getting human knowledge into the Open Web Mind, but that’s not much use unless you can get it out again.

For the non-API-savvy among us, that means visualizing the concepts and connections in our web minds, whether as interactive lists on our small screen devices, dynamic charts on our large screen devices, or immersive experiences in virtual reality.

That’s the third step.

Step 4 – Build

If the Open Web Mind is to reinvent the web, it’s essential that people are able to build on it.

Anyone who publishes anything on the web – tweeters, bloggers, journalists, academics, businesses – will be able to embed insights from their web minds into their web sites and social media feeds.

Software developers will be able to make money from products built on the Open Web Mind.

Supporting this ecosystem is the fourth step.

Step 5 – Meld

Every web mind will be distinct in the same way that every human mind is distinct: you can’t tell what I’m thinking any more than I can tell what you’re thinking.

But web minds will be able to share intelligence in the same way that human minds are able to share intelligence: if I choose to tell you what I’m thinking and you choose to tell me what you’re thinking, we’ll learn from each other.

The fifth step is to allow individual web minds to join forces into shared web minds that are more than the sum of their intelligences.

Step 6 – Flow

You’ll be able to choose who can flow through your mind: everyone if you’re an influencer; only your closest friends if you’re a private person; no one if you’re a secret agent.

(Are you a secret agent? I guess you wouldn’t tell me if you were. Or you’d tell me then shoot me. On second thoughts, don’t tell me whether you’re a secret agent.)

And you’ll be able to choose whose web minds you flow through: imagine combining the minds of The Economist for reliable global reporting, the Acquired Podcast for tech industry analysis, Joe Rogan for entertainment and your friends because, well, they’re your friends.

It’s a bit like following all those people on social media, except that you’re not getting mindless tweets or self-glorifying selfies, interspersed with endless ads. Instead, you’re getting intelligence.

This is the sixth step, where the Open Web Mind kills Facebook.

Step 7 – Explore

The tech giants who currently control our access to information have their own agendas. They don’t tell us what we want to know, they tell us what their advertisers want us to know.

Once you can discover everything you ever wanted from the web – facts, ideas, products, news – directly from the minds of the people you trust, you’ll never use a search engine again.

This is the seventh step, where the Open Web Mind kills Google.

That’s it: 7 steps to the Open Web Mind.

By the way, don’t tell Facebook or Google about any of this.

Secret agents like us need to stick together.

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