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Virginia Postrel

Virginia Postrel is an author and speaker whose work spans a broad range of topics, from social science to fashion, concentrating on the intersection of culture, commerce, and technology. Postrel[…]

How to build our common knowledge base.

Virginia Postrel: I think one question is you know, “What do I know that other people ought to know?” And that doesn’t have to be some grand thing. That can be, you know, how to fix some annoying thing that goes on in people’s TVs or something. I don’t know. Whatever. So that’s an interesting question. “How do I spread the things that I know?” And there’s been a lot of work . . . This is what something like Wikipedia is about. Then Wikipedia has its advantages and disadvantages; but it’s about sort of tapping that dispersed knowledge in a way that you could have entries on things that it would never be worth it for the encyclopedia Britannica. They have some esoteric interest entry on some very narrow, geeky subject; but you can do it that way. So I think that’s an interesting question to ask people.

Recorded on: 7/4/07