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Episode 30
Featuring Tim O’Reilly
If we want to better navigate the world, and if we want to accurately anticipate and predict the future, we must start by building better maps of the present. Tim O'Reilly explains how creating a map of today can help us determine what tomorrow holds.

In this week’s episode of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas asks the question, "how can we learn how to predict the future?" According to his guest, Tim O'Reilly, learning how to predict the future starts with building better maps. 

 

Tim O'Reilly has played a seminal role in creating the framework through which an entire generation has come to know and understand the modern Internet. If you have ever used terms like “open source” or “web 2.0,” you are relying on the language cultivated by Tim O'Reilly, through his innumerable conferences, gatherings, and intimate conversations. His work has reshaped how people in the computer industry think about technology. He is the founder, CEO, and Chairman of O’Reilly Media, and his most recent book, WTF: What’s the Future and Why It’s Up to Us, forms the basis for much of this conversation. 

 

The need to explore is a fundamental driver of human progress. Without it, we would never have ventured off the plains of Africa, conquered the seas, or landed men on the moon. How has humanity managed to navigate the unknown? The process of exploration is one of mapmaking. Maps are not some relics of a bygone era. Maps are not artifacts that exist naturally in the world. Maps are products of the human mind. Mapmaking is the process through which our brains structure time and space; they help us put order around experience. Maps are the expression of human perception. If we want to navigate the world better, and if we want to learn how to predict the future, then we need to build better maps. Tim O'Reilly helps us do just that.

 

Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas

Editor & Engineer: Stylianos Nicolaou

Join the conversation at @hiddenforcespod

 

 

Tim O’Reilly is the founder and CEO of O’Reilly Media, Inc. His original business plan was simply “interesting work for interesting people,” and that’s worked out pretty well. O’Reilly Media delivers online learning, publishes books, runs conferences, urges companies to create more value than they capture, and tries to change the world by spreading and amplifying the knowledge of innovators.

Tim has a history of convening conversations that reshape the computer industry. In 1998, he organized the meeting where the term “open source software” was agreed on, and helped the business world understand its importance. In 2004, with the Web 2.0 Summit, he defined how “Web 2.0” represented not only the resurgence of the web after the dot com bust, but a new model for the computer industry, based on big data, collective intelligence, and the internet as a platform. In 2009, with his “Gov 2.0 Summit,” he framed a conversation about the modernization of government technology that has shaped policy and spawned initiatives at the Federal, State, and local level, and around the world. He has now turned his attention to implications of AI, the on-demand economy, and other technologies that are transforming the nature of work and the future shape of the business world. This is the subject of his new book from Harper Business, WTF: What’s the Future and Why It’s Up to Us.

In addition to his role at O’Reilly Media, Tim is a partner at early stage venture firm O’Reilly AlphaTech Ventures (OATV) and on the boards of Maker Media (which was spun out from O’Reilly Media in 2012), Code for America, PeerJ, Civis Analytics, and PopVox.

 

@TimOreilly

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