on August 14, 2012
Alan Moore is a completely revolutionary thinker, author and speaker. His book No Straight Lines will absolutely disrupt your perspective on global networks-- from social to economic to political. Disruption being key here. His explanation of the way we used to think about technology, society, interaction, business, and life-- and how we need to think about them in today's new super-networked world-- is valuable for all, not just the business-minded. No Straight Lines is robust with anecdotes and examples that hammer home Moore's arguments for the benefits of using technology collaboratively and innovatively. Technology is not killing us, but we need to use it better, together.
-Richard Ross, photographer and Professor of Art, UCSB
on July 13, 2012
This is a mammoth undertaking, epic in scope, which took Moore seven years to research and write. There is something for everyone interested in grassroots action and the emergence of non-linear, global, networks. The book considers how these patterns and connections are beginning to disrupt traditional ways of doing business, politics, media...life. There is a presumption that we are all likely to want to adopt such practices, and sometimes a non-linear flow to the structure of the book itself. Overall, Moore offers a timely, highly interesting, and very rich mulch of ideas which is sure to stimulate vigorous debate on an important topic.
on July 4, 2012
Alan Moore's No Straight Lines is inspirational. Caustic and realistic, the prose makes for a great read with anecdotes peppered throughout a text that is a journey to a better way of living. Moore's disarmingly charming demeanour when talking about No Straight Lines makes him a valuable key note speaker in almost every circumstance. He talks about the stuff we want to know, the world we live in, and makes it understandable.
on July 2, 2012
I went into reading No Straight Lines (NSL) with a sense that I would come away mildly disrupted in terms of my thinking and activity. In terms of context, I've been pursuing a life that doesn't really have a pre-sent destination, while hearing more often than not that I need to take the detour that looks like the familiar from those who are on their "straighter and safer" paths. What I found as I read NSL is that if you aren't willing to find not just your unique voice (you > world) but also your unique steps (you + world), that you will continue in the straight thinking and activities which don't push life forward, but slow down the intertia that should be preogress.
My generation is described as the first in this modern age to have a near-guarantee of a worse quality of life. But, I think that's because we've not been taught or re-visioned how to think. NSL served as another reminder of the challenge to not just discover that unique road, but also bring others along for the ride as we'll only make it to a better future when we do it together.
I read this via Kindle, kind of wishing that the Kindle service was able to share in some of the conversations which happened with the live-book version. As such, even the reading started getting me along the lines of thinking that there are some readings, or at least parts of reading which should be shared and incite the kind of creative attitudes and projects that bend what's normal. At least how I finished NSL, if you haven't found a reason to disrupt something that you've done before, or disrupt your manner of living for where you are now, life won't have the sense of completition and snowballing that should make for a better world for all.
Its been a few weeks since I've finished, but I end this review not so much talking about the review, but its effects. If you are challenged with seeing your world as realistic as it has been portrayed to you. Then read this. NSL will be a unique, challenging, and change-inducing viewpoint that either you leave from reading excited to do what makes sense for living, or you ignore what makes sense for the life that isn't fulfilling much for anyone at all.
on June 30, 2012
Alan Moore is a dynamic speaker and brilliant thinker. His book reflects the same positive attitude and stimulating connections.
I'd recommend this to everyone who is interested in original ideas and thought provoking solutions.
on May 9, 2012
No Straight Lines is the call for change, for creativity, new leadership and a change in the culture of unfairness, stagnation and inflexibility caused by linear. The author argues that it's imperative to find alternative ways to do business and manage services because, in today's society and life, there are no straight lines.
Author and entrepreneur, Alan Moore, had an early introduction to the linear thinking as a child with the `gift' of dyslexia, trying to survive in the inflexible mind-set of school systems. Moore contends: "humanity now ekes out its existence under the industrial tyrannical twins of obsession with numbers and measurement of efficiency in every walk of life, whilst ignoring its fundamental needs." Moore writes that there exists a "trilemma" of social, organizational and economic tensions caused by the fact that, although our world is becoming non-linear, the systems in place are designed for a linear world. Many of the organizations and systems were designed for less complex world and are unable to sustain the complexity of a world that is more complex and continues to become more complex with the advances in technology.
Moore further argues that the solution to accelerating economic success depends on harnessing collective intelligence that thrives on sharing of emotional investment, passion, focused networked and collaborative participation within society and business versus the linear thinking which thrives on monopolistic-intent and single-source-power driven organizations that no longer protect and serve the society and support humanity, but rather has a "corrosive" effect.
No Straight Lines offers a plethora of examples of how societies and companies around the world are using technology in a collaborative and innovative way, bringing success to their economy and a meaningful connection between the members of the community. Moore successfully demonstrates how many businesses and institutions are locked in all levels of bureaucracy in an outdated and inflexible world vision and makes a strong case about why we should and how to use the tools we have to "effect change and challenge an ideology that's proven to now be inappropriate for its time."
The in-depth chapters are well thought out, but still are difficult to read in parts due to the complex nature of some of the concepts. Moore provides extensive footnotes at the end of each chapter, and a bibliography and available resources at the end of the book.
Though the multi-faceted concepts, extensive facts and references in No Straight Lines are difficult to assimilate at times, the book's premise and arguments are fascinating and persuasive.
Reviewed by Maya Fleischmann for IndieReader.com 2012
on May 1, 2012
I've known Alan since we both presented as authors at SXSWi. We'd written books on "social media" and had secured speaking slots based on our respective works. I was really interested in what Alan had to say, and to compare his views with my own.
I was blown away.
Where my books are skills-oriented, Alan's provide foundational insight on what "social" really is, about what it means on a global scale and where we're all likely to be ten years on. (If we're lucky!) Talking with Alan and diving into No Straight Lines (I got a manuscript preview before purchasing a release copy) changed a lot of what I thought I knew. No Straight lines is an amazing look at the past, present and future as society (and the workplace!) is reshaped by social technology. Rote process replaced with collaboration, maximization of individual gain replaced by a collective that benefits all participants. Ultimately, No Straight lines is a book about the world we all wanted to live in: The best part of it is that we still can.
I highly recommend this book, and sincerely appreciate the effort that Alan put into writing this.
Thank you, Alan.
on April 29, 2012
Alan Moore's No Straight Lines will change the way you think about media, technology, business, culture and society. It combines personal experience with sharp observations to paint a vivid picture of how the world around us is changing and how we need to change with it. Whether you're considering the book for business or academic reasons, or through personal interest, it's entertaining and provocative and well worth a read.
on April 20, 2012
No Straight Lines is one of the most insightful books I've read recently. The author Alan Moore displays an understanding and insight of how our new multi-layered networked world is developing. A must-read!
on March 5, 2012
It is worth buying this book simply as a tour d'horizon of many of the innovative start-ups that are springing up all over the world as well as what leading thinkers are saying about a networked society. I had the same feeling with Alan Moore's previous book (written with Tomi Ahonen) Communities Dominate Brands. It was worth reading just to keep abreast of what was happening even before absorbing their main evangelistic message. In No Straight Lines he curates innovative examples from different ways of life into an action plan for a post-assembly line society in which initiatives spring from shared experiences below rather than being imposed by corporate hierarchies from above. There are no straight lines because the future can no longer be extrapolated from the past: Le network, c'est moi. The future is ubiquitous access, sharing and craftsmanship - foreshadowed in a prescient quote from Adam Smith - "the man whose whole life is spent (in a factory) performing a few simple operations . . . becomes as stupid and ignorant as it is possible for a human creature to become".
The book shows how the tectonic plates are changing everything from health care (like the patients-know-best revolution in Nova Scotia) and education to farming and crowd sourcing venture capital funds. And just when I am thinking that this approach is all very well but it couldn't be relevant to big industries such as motor manufacturing, he introduces us to LocalMotors where it is already happening. They are building cars using open source methods. Definitely, a must-read book.