Ming the Mechanic:
Convergent or Divergent

The NewsLog of Flemming Funch
 Convergent or Divergent2009-10-29 14:03
8 comments
picture by Flemming Funch

I've written about it before, but it is important enough to bear repeating.

Different settings, tools, or approaches might be convergent or divergent. Meaning, some of them tend to converge on a particular result, and some of them tend to send you off into different directions, i.e. they have a diverging effect.

These terms are also used to describe weather, which makes for some interesting metaphors.

If you maintain the illusion that you're going to get something done, you should know that most of what goes on on the Internet is divergent. There are zillions of ways of being distracted. Lots of tidbits of information are drifting by, lots of people are rotating in your periphery. A lot of this is interesting and gives you new ideas about what else you could do, or what you could study, or what you could talk about, or how you could be entertained.

Some people make the hasty conclusion that this kind of connectivity per definition is a time waster. They might still use it, but might limit it as a drug. "OK, I'll just do an hour on the Net after dinner, and I'll just check my e-mail in the morning, for 10 minutes".

Divergence isn't bad. It is great for many things. The only problem is if you only have divergence tools, and nothing else.

Somehow, tools for convergence got left out, mostly. I'd like to invent some more. Hopefully I get around to that soon.

If you're very focused, the Net is a great tool. I.e. if you ensure the convergence yourself, and you resist all the invitations to diverge, it can indeed provide what you need, very quicly. If you have a specific question or quest, like finding the best and cheapest lawn mower, the Net can help you. Actually the Net doesn't help you very actively with that, but it provides everything you need to decide it on your own.

Most tools on the net will offer you a smorgasbord at every step, even if you have something specific in mind. Like, if I spend 1/2 hour on locating that lawn mower. In that time I'd have been offered 1000s of other possibilities for products, for other activities, for reading the news, etc. If I'm weak, I'll be looking at LOL cats at the end of that 1/2 hour, and I'd have bought a couple of books about medieval mysticism at Amazon. If I'm strong, I'd have my answer, and I'd have avoided the other temptations.

It is like a repetitive game of Find Waldo. I get presented with one scenario after each other, and if I'm sharp and I locate Waldo each time, and thus refine my search, I might arrive at the target. And, sure, Waldo is always there, but so are 100s of other strange things.

So, just imagine for a moment how it would be if your tools were primarily convergent. In my lawn mower search, I'd maybe start with a broad view of everything that's available on lawn mowers on the net. Then I'd be offered sorts by satisfaction level and price and availability in my area. I'll get a cross section of these, and some table of features for the best matches, and I can make my choice. All of it without being offered all these other things, and all of it without fake information and hype.

Maybe that's the semantic web. It can certainly be hard to provide such a search tool without a consistent coding of all information on the net.

But it is also simply a decision to make tools that lead towards specific results for the user, rather than off into new directions.

E-mail, wikis, blogs, twitter, facebook, they all function more to surprise you with something new than they do to get done what you know you want to do. Yes, they could all be used for that purpose, but it requires a mind of steel.

An example of a tool would be software for running a meeting of people who need to make some decisions together. You maybe won't be able to start using it before the purpose of the meeting has been placed in the proper slot, and it will be visible during the meeting. Maybe there are different phases set up, which all are designed to lead, as a funnel, towards the desired outcome. So, maybe a visioning phase, maybe a brainstorming phase. Maybe making a list of possibilities, then having a mechanism for examining them, listing pros and cons, voting, or whatever. Finally weeding things down to the very short list of what has been decided, and then some way of making sure that everybody's very clear on what that was.

Anyway, since I only wrote this posting as a way of distracting myself from what I have to do today, let me get back to work...


[< Back] [Ming the Mechanic]

Category:  

8 comments

29 Oct 2009 @ 16:31 by swanny @70.65.16.119 : Thanks
Thanks good insights
Covergent tools hmm interesting

swanny  



29 Oct 2009 @ 22:39 by Ariane @188.36.103.199 : The best convergence tool
"Divergence isn't bad. It is great for many things. The only problem is if you only have divergence tools, and nothing else."

Very good point! It made me conscious of my disagreements and agreements on this matter. Yes, divergence can be productive, inspiring - synchronistic and miraculous! :)

So, what is the best convergence tool we all possess?

That is simply a clear-cut purpose. When you know exactly and precisely what you really intend to accomplish. The intent to reach a certain goal or target. That is the best natural convergence tool.

So you are better clear on it, really clear, where you are heading.

Being clear on a purpose, reaching full agreement on it, aligning it with everything else, including oneself, is not always simple or easy, because one's purposes and intentions can get also very numerous and divergent...

So a congergence tool is needed to get one's purposes in line.
And such a tool actually exists. It is called Activity Alignment (also known as Admin Scale). Working it out with the assistance of someone who has an exterior view to the situation makes it much easier, and more convergent - I know this from experience.  



16 Nov 2009 @ 03:44 by axcho @97.126.116.244 : What a convergence tool looks like
"So a congergence tool is needed to get one's purposes in line."

Wow. An excellent point! I love mental shifts like this. So a convergence tool isn't something you use to directly reduce distractions, it should be something to help you establish and reinforce a "clear-cut purpose". I wonder whether this would be best accomplished in software or somewhere else.

I will read up on Activity Alignment and ponder further. Thanks for sharing!  



30 Nov 2009 @ 01:58 by Seb @216.99.42.161 : Deliberating & making decisions together
It so happens that a group of us in Montreal are in the early stages of a project around those lines. By now you know French, right? The initial intended context of use is Quebec but the tool is obviously of general applicability. Have a look: [link]  


31 May 2010 @ 02:07 by Glisten @122.148.66.17 : Mind of steel!
Thanks Flemming for making all this explicit, I know exactly what you mean, to the degree that I am helping to convene a team to address this issue at the semantic web level...wish us luck! For more insight refer to George Por :-)
Blessings brother, thank you for all your hard work.  



31 May 2010 @ 03:00 by Arif Imam Suroso @202.124.205.21 : wow... convergence tools?
my rector at bogor agrivultural university frequently use the term national convergency to raise the important issues our nation deal with. But we never realize that there will be convergence tools... thank you for the idea...  


28 Aug 2015 @ 16:37 by Marco @103.43.151.178 : Nice Info
I'm glad to have found this post as its such an interesting one I am always on the watch out for quality posts [link] and articles so i suppose I'm lucky to have found this I hope you will be adding more in the futureā€¦ [link]  


29 Aug 2015 @ 06:36 by wq @106.185.26.172 : http://ming.tv
My moncler solution will probably cheap nfl jerseys be oakley sunglasses outlet to swarovski crystal make it more self-evident jordan release in NCN toms shoes outlet which newslogs christian louboutin are very public oakley sunglasses cheap and louboutin shoes which ones burberry are only local, kate spade handbags and then on the public levis outlet face of newslogs, making flat iron it easier rayban and more www.lululemon.com seamless northface to cheap michael kors post uggs outlet comments to them. tommy hilfiger canada Maybe eyeglasses frames with converse sneakers an easy baseball bats one-time NCN registration, and then north face outlet being uggs canada recognized the woolrich usa next abercrombie kids time you come by. hermes bags See, I have somewhat cheap clothes bad experiences wedding dress with completely converse outlet open north face jackets commenting, baseball bat where tory burch shoes people can bride dresses just coach outlet store type louis vuitton outlet stores in a toms shoes outlet phoney abercrombie and fitch name gucci handbags and moncler women jackets e-mail toms outlet and run away. lululemon australia Most serious thomas sabo uk official site posters wouldn't mind michael kors outlet online sale a ray ban wayfarer quick burberry registration, I think.My solution will probably be to cheap shoes for women make nike outlet store it more self-evident in gucci handbags NCN which oakley outlet newslogs are very public cheap true religion and michael kors outlet online sale which louis vuitton australia ones are only local, coach outlet store online and polo ralph lauren outlet then on p90x workout sheets the abercrombie and fitch public face jordan retro 11 of swarovski newslogs, making mcm backpack it knockoff handbags easier and michael kors outlet more giuseppe's seamless to post comments to prada shoes them. Maybe cheap nfl jerseys with cheap michael kors an easy nike air max one-time NCN registration, gucci handbags and air jordan shoes then being cheap michael kors recognized hollister.com the next time you ugg boots clearance come by. iphone 6 case See, I have somewhat bad cheap true religion jeans experiences tiffany canada with completely open north face outlet commenting, where people can cheap basketball shoes just christian louboutin type in a louboutin shoes phoney name and oakley sunglasses outlet e-mail and run away. michael kors handbags clearance Most serious ray ban sunglasses posters wouldn't nike huaraches mind north face canada a quick polo ralph lauren outlet online registration, louis vuitton I ray bans think.My cheap vans solution will probably be to abercrombie and fitch make it more longchamp handbags self-evident in NCN prada bags which newslogs are marc by marc jacobs very burberry.com public hermes birkin bag and supra footwear which ones lululemon canada are only bcbg max azria local, tory burch sandals and mont blanc then louis vuitton outlet stores on the ferragamo shoes public face of newslogs, swarovski australia making it easier rolex replica and true religion jeans more seamless new balance to post comments to them. oakley outlet Maybe ray ban outlet with gucci handbags an easy oakley vault one-time NCN dre headphones registration, and then being north face uk recognized the nike air max next time you come by. nike shoes for men See, I have somewhat custom roshe runs bad experiences michael kors australia with completely lulu lemon open commenting, toms shoes outlet where chanel outlet people cheap nfl jerseys can louboutins just type in coach bags a phoney ralph lauren sale name and e-mail michael kors outlet online and burberry run burberry.com away. coach factory Most serious michael kors canada posters wouldn't new balance canada mind a quick louis vuitton outlet online registration, burberry outlet online I cheap michael kors thinkMy uggs outlet solution will air max 90 probably nike free run 5.0 be to omega watches make michael kors it more self-evident tommy hilfiger outlet in NCN which gucci handbags newslogs are very ralph lauren outlet online public and which coach outlet ones are only louis vuitton outlet stores local, and then on christian louboutin the public face of timberland boots for men newslogs, bcbg max making it easier and more seamless to dre headphones post bags outlet comments to them. north face outlet Maybe ugg boots clearance with an swarovski uk easy kate spade outlet one-time NCN christian louboutin shoes registration, and dre headphones then being recognized instyler buy one get one free the next jordans time you adidas come salvatore ferragamo by. See, pandora rings I cheap eyeglasses online have somewhat ralph lauren canada bad experiences michael kors outlet online sale with completely nike factory store open commenting, where people insanity calendar can just bags outlet type in a phoney name longchamp handbags and chanel handbags e-mail air max 90 and prada sneakers run away. watches for men Most serious posters ed hardy clothing wouldn't mind a quick maccosmetics.com registration, I thinkMy longchamp outlet solution michael kors outlet online sale will gucci outlet probably be nike running shoes to make gucci uk it uggs outlet more michael kors outlet online sale self-evident in NCN which newslogs oakley outlet are very polo ralph lauren public and which rolex watch ones are swarovski crystals only juicy couture handbags local, and then on the public face of newslogs, making ralph lauren outlet it easier and tommy hilfiger outlet stores more seamless mcm backpack to post hollisterco comments to them. air max 2015 Maybe air jordan retro with an easy one-time polo ralph lauren outlet online NCN registration, coach usa and louis vuitton handbags then coach factory online being recognized the ray ban sunglasses outlet next ralph lauren time barbour sale you come michael kors outlet online sale by. ralph lauren australia See, hair straighteners I have somewhat ray bans bad experiences celine bag with oakley sunglasses completely open burberry commenting, where rolex replica people cheap barbour jackets can harrods london just indoor soccer shoes type tommy hilfiger outlet stores in abercrombie and fitch a nike roshe run phoney dre headphones name and coach outlet store e-mail and run nike mercurial superfly away. Most serious louis vuitton outlet posters lululemon outlet wouldn't mind ferragamo shoes a prada bags quick registration, I pandora think.My michael kors outlet solution will chanel purses probably be rolex watches for sale to cheap jordan make it more self-evident ugg boots in NCN tiffany and co jewelry which newslogs are north face outlet very public pandora bracelet and burberry canada which timberland pro ones nike store are only tiffany and co australia local, air jordans and michael kors outlet then free running on hollister the public face new balance of oakley sunglasses newslogs, making it hermes bags easier and more seamless to post bebe outlet comments to juicy couture handbags them. true religion outlet stores Maybe with tiffany and co outlet an easy tory burch shoes one-time NCN tory burch shoes registration, and then being recognized the next coachfactory.com time you ugg australia come by. babyliss pro See, pandora jewellery australia I have ralph lauren polo outlet somewhat nike roshe bad experiences longchamp outlet with completely open commenting, rayban where people can just michael kors outlet online type louboutin outlet in a phoney name bottega veneta and e-mail ugg australia and run away. Most serious posters hollister canada wouldn't michael kors handbags clearance mind a kate spade outlet quick registration, I think. mizuno wave jimmy choo outlet . calvin klein outlet . louis vuitton canada louis vuitton outlet stores ralph lauren outlet online  


Your Name:
Your URL: (or email)
Subject:       
Comment:
For verification, please type the word you see on the left:


Other stories in
2014-11-07 23:12: Welcome to the 5th dimension
2011-11-07 17:22: Notice the incidental
2010-07-14 13:35: Consciousness of Pattern
2010-06-28 00:03: Pump up the synchronicity
2007-08-05 23:45: Perverse incentives
2007-06-22 22:18: Elementary magic
2007-03-21 14:20: Cymatics and group formation
2007-03-15 01:06: Structural holes
2007-02-27 23:50: Leverage
2007-02-24 14:13: Wikipatterns



[< Back] [Ming the Mechanic] [PermaLink]? 


Link to this article as: http://ming.tv/flemming2.php/__show_article/_a000010-001954.htm
Main Page: ming.tv