For the past five years, I’ve been exploring social and business models around objects. Objects - the people, places and things in our lives - each have stories. Things around us can tell us many things from informational and historical standpoints. And the hundreds of billions of online images offer an exciting new platform for discovery.
In 2006, I got fascinated about the idea of being able to “right-click” everyday objects, which would reveal their true nature — how old are they, who made them, and who takes care of them. I sat down with Adam Greenfield, formerly Nokia’s head of design direction for user interface and services, to explore the provenance of objects.
In 2008 I founded a company, Thinglink, to develop tools for social connection around objects and long-tail markets. By that point it was clear that objects are, in fact, becoming points of navigation.
Now in 2011, objects are clickable. The first stage of this “object navigation” is interactive images. In-image tagging technology is being used to link objects in your images to anywhere on the Internet. The second stage of object navigation focuses on physical objects as channels for information. With the emergence of object navigation, the ways we use the Internet will radically change for the better.
10 Nov 2010
"I believe that consciousness is, essentially, the way information feels when being processed. Since matter can be arranged to process information in numerous ways of vastly varying complexity, this implies a rich variety of levels and types of consciousness. The particular type of consciousness that we subjectively know is then a phenomenon that arises in certain highly complex physical systems that input, process, store and output information. Clearly, if atoms can be assembled to make humans, the laws of physics also permit the construction of vastly more advanced forms of sentient life. Yet such advanced beings can probably only come about in a two-step process: first intelligent beings evolve through natural selection, then they choose to pass on the torch of life by building more advanced consciousness that can further improve itself."