Everyone knows the future of technology lies with the individual. One of the ways this will come about is through something I’ve been thinking about for years now. I call it the Personal Daemon, or Personal Server (I’ve not put the effort into a better name). My buddy Ken and I have been talking for years about how this kind of thing will come about technology-wise.
Anyway, I just had an interesting idea about how this will intersect with another idea I read about in a book called Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom, by Cory Doctorow.
The Personal Daemon
The PD idea is simple: you have a computer with you at all times (think 5-20 years from now) that broadcasts your personal daemon at all times (opt-in, of course…err, hopefully). The daemon is wireless-based and has a limited range of about a 100 yards or so. The daemon presents a number of things to other people’s daemons that are nearby (and to the Internet as a whole through interaction with the building you’re in, as we’ll see later).
The types of things that you’ll be “pushing” are pretty standard, and will of course depend on what you want to publish:
- A picture
- Favorite foods, films, books, hangouts, music, etc.
- Organization affiliations
- Status (looking for love, work, etc.)
So it’s basically your MySpace/Facebook/Blog in terms of advertising yourself, but surrounding you at all times. Most importantly, though, the daemon works over standard protocols (XML-based) that are semantically aware and know how to interact with other daemons. This is where the magic happens.
You go into your favorite coffee shop and you hear a ding in your ear. This means someone in range has a match for top three favorite movies (you told your computer to notify you when that happens). Or maybe you’re gay, and you want it to make a sound when another gay person is in range. Or hockey fans, etc.
Imagine the adult applications. There’ll be a separate portion of the daemon that requires age verification to be read from, and this will include all sorts of social information regarding favorite positions, adult pics of oneself, etc. Again, all of that is constantly being compared to those around you, and your computer assistant (which will have a name) will have specific instructions on how and when to notify you regarding matches.
Anyway, that’s a whole post in itself. Here’s the idea I just had. Wuffie is a concept created by Cory Doctorow that roughly translates to Internet respect. On Reddit and Slashdot it’s karma. It’s basically a score that indicates what others think of you in terms of quality.
Naturally, wuffie/karma will be one of the primary things that gets broadcasted by a Personal Daemon. And once we’re able to layer virtual views on top of reality we’ll be able to see people’s karma numbers floating above their heads and such, or perhaps give them better colors based on it, etc.
Total Karma Ratings for Popular Locations
The next logical step is for restaurants and coffee shops and bookstores to pull the karma scores of everyone in their shop and send that number to the cloud, including stats like highest karma, average karma, etc.
So imagine opening up your browsing interface when choosing where to hangout. You see yourself on a map, and you overlay the karma layer on your city. Boom! Certain restaruants light up big-time with large numbers above them. 40,000 karma? Who is that? So you drill down and see that iJustine or Steve Wozniak or Randall Munroe is at the bookstore across town.
Essentially, it’ll become a metric for how popular a given place is. You’ll be able to instantly tell where the cool places are based on how cool the people are that hang out there. And of course there will be different karma ratings. Some will be teen-oriented, tech-oriented, swinger-oriented, etc. Luckily there will be many services that pull all of those and build aggregate scores for you. And you can tune your system to only look for the ones you care about.
I have so much to write about this kind of thing. If you haven’t read my Lifecasting piece you should check that out too. Anyway, any thoughts? ::