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Showing posts from February, 2013

The limits of Virtuality

The management edict to ban telecommuting a Yahoo has stirred up quite a controversy. It seems a bit ironic for an Internet company to admit that telecommuting isn't working for them. Kind of like an oil company saying that the industrial revolution was all a big mistake and we should go back to animal & slave power. But on second thought maybe things are not as black and white. I have spent quite a few years working on systems to make communication and collaboration easier and more frictionless, often collaborating with people 6-12 timezones away. And my social network is equally spread-out across the world. One should think that I should have figured out remote interaction by now. The reality is that despite high-speed networks, cloud-based collaboration tools and high-quality video-conferencing, remote collaboration still is surprisingly hard and (co-)location still matters. Without any obvious reason, the workers of the post-industrial knowledge economy, seem to phys