Businessweek Archives

Web 3.0: Loosening the reins


Valeria Maltoni has a nice big link-laden post on Web 3.0. (a subject that has generated a lot of conversation here.) She talks about a Web that is smaller, not larger, and targeted to our interests, friendships and needs.

This sentence caught my eye: “Artificial Intelligence (AI) agents will pull information for us on the basis of parameters we establish and control.”

It sounds reasonable. But the best way to use those tools, it seems to me, will be to relinquish much of our control. The more control we exert, the more we limit our circles of knowledge and contacts to what we already know and trust. This creates mental monoculture and social stagnation. The really good A.I. systems (like good magazine editors) will find stuff that we never dreamed would be interesting, but is. It will open our minds—if we let it.


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