Thursday, September 2, 2010

Announcing the echo chamber app.

We live in a world where we can access the entire knowledge base of the human race within two clicks.  Why, then, do we increasingly find ourselves in an echo chamber?

The echo chamber happens when we tune in only to the cable news channels or blogs that reinforce our political points of views; when we use Twitter to hear ourselves speak but not to listen; when we only absorb topics within our comfort zone of daily water cooler chatter.  It's human nature to hunker down during a storm, and the interweb is a virtual tsunami of information.

Today, Christopher Taylor and I riffed a solution:  An app that monitors our daily intake of media, web searches, entertainment, appointments, tweets, social network interaction, etc. (which largely exist on our computer or smartphone) and provides a daily infographic illustrating whether or not we made it out of the chamber.
(My DV% to avoid the Echo Chamber.)
The app would require us to establish desired pre-sets – similar to the % Daily Value nutrition labels – that seek a balance between topics and people we know versus time spent exploring new subjects and voices.

Maybe the app could ping us at regular intervals during the day to let us know if we need to increase our intake of the new and unfamiliar.

Chris added that we could make this into a game.  Everyone loves badges, after all.  But unlike Foursquare, where you become a mayor by visiting the same place over and over (geo-echochamberism), we'd give out badges for visiting a place for the first time.

By the way, I just met Mr Taylor today for about 30 minutes, so I think I hit my DV% of New Opinions.

Now where's my badge?

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