Curated by: Luigi Canali De Rossi

Tuesday, May 20, 2003

Mind Colonies: Self-Sustaining Mind Ecosystems

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An Interview With Bala Pillai

Q: What are mind colonies?

A: Think of them as parallels to ant colonies. Or as ageographical villages for shared-ethos groups.

Imagine you are looking at Planet Earth from the Moon.

Imagine nerves running all over spherical Earth.

Notice human minds like dots pulsating and sending signals between them.

Some nerve connections are bold, some are dotted.

Some minds are emitting a lot, some nothing, some in-between.

Some nerves have lots of noise/resistance/signal loss, some are flowing smoothly and rapidly like cholesterol-free arteries, some in-between.

Q: Can you dissect "mind colonies" for me?

A: Mind colonies are trust and spirit-rich, self-sustaining, cross-media networked mind cooperatives for shared-ethos groups, where full-time comperes catalyse minds in a mind grid to learn, work, play and complement each other. Where the catalysing currency is a colony equivalent of Diners Card (alternative currency).

Q: What are the most important imperatives in making mind colonies work?

A: They are basically two:


1) Shared-ethos (Common Purpose is *not* enough).

2) Spirit.

3) Passionate Catalysts.

4) Legitimacy/transparency.
5) Trust.

6) Customer Intimacy.

7) Courage.

8) Chutzpah.

9) A Complementing Mindset.

10) Commitment.

11) Strategic Change Agency Acumen.

12) Process Savvy.

13) Innovation Climate.

14) Open-Mindedness.


Grasping that 90% of the value of a person today is the sum of:

i) how sHe uses her mind *plus*

ii) how great sHe is at building actionable relationships

Notice none of these appear in the balance sheets of companies -- does that give you a clue for why the telco+hardware+software+accountants driven dot com bomb happened and can recur unless the underlying metrics are perceived and fixed?

And therefore greater opportunities for the earlier foresightful birds who can see where the value in an Acumen/Knowledge/Networked Minds era springs from?

The opportunities from organising bankable social capital valuation metrics?

You may ask what is the root cause of this gross misvaluation. It is the mislanguage thus the miscognition of resourcing. The language of resourcing, of finance, is accounting.

Accounting values ends and tangibles rather than processes, climates and values. Accounting values the end, the golden egg more than the process, the golden goose.

Accounting values the product of a mind more than that mind.

That which is under-recognised is under-measured.
That which is under-measured is under-valued.
That which is under-valued is under-resourced.

Thus, the misallocation of resources.

Retrofitting of the mislanguage, accounting, is not enough.

A fundamental shift in line with Nature's common sense is required.

Q: What's cross-media?

A: First take the mind as the pivot.

Be mind-centric and mindcosm-centric (as contrasted with being tools, medium or protocol-centric).

For example, be story-telling-centric.

Realise that *complementing* is the game that all folks are doing with the plethora of F2F (face-to-face), email, email groups, instant messaging, web, POTS phones, VOIP, mobile voice, SMS/MMS, WiFi, broadband, television, video-conferencing, radio, P2P, streaming, books, photos, newsletters, newspapers, magazines, call centres, IVR, interactive television and movies.

Get better and better at coming up with the right cocktail mix of these for given shared-ethos groups, for categories of purposes.

Always bearing foremost in mind that you are dealing with human minds that want simplicity and fun in complementing. That they put up with dissected complexity only as much as they are not aware of better alternatives in an overly-cluttered world.


I find the vision of Bala fascinating and in-tune with where we need to be going to build a more effective future.

Networks of like-minded people are the unique emerging force that can sweep and embrace complexity and strong physical pressures.

It is my desire to give exposure and support to the unique visionary voices like Bala.

Bala is also attempting to integrate an ethical business vision into this new dimension that would allow each individual entrepreneur to share and benefit from the creative initiative and diversity offered by other community members.

Bala is working hard to bring together unique capable minds that can grasp his vision and that are seriously looking into way to make the puzzle work. Bala is particularly great at networking and at bringing uniquely valuable brains to work and interact together.

Though you may find a lot of diverse interests and some peculiar topics I invite you to give a look to Bala's page on the Ryze business network or by signing up for one of his two discussion groups: Erumbugal and Mindecos.

Join Bala in his online discussion groups at
(Erumbugal = Ants in Tamil)
and at:
Mind Colonies & Ecosystems

(This message is released for use, redistribution, or modification under the OpenContent License.

In plain English, the license relieves the author of any liability or implication of warranty, grants others permission to use the Content in whole or in part, and ensures that the original author will be properly credited when the Content is used.

It also grants others permission to modify and redistribute the Content if they clearly mark what changes have been made, when they were made, and who made them. Finally, the license ensures that if someone else bases a work on OpenContent, the resultant work will be made available as OpenContent as well. Please send comments, suggestions or edits to the author, Bala Pillai at Thanks)

Readers' Comments    
2003-12-09 09:49:31


The internet is already congested with a lot of unnecessary websites
Some time I just wonder why people make things so complicated when they can be looked at with a very simple perspective.

Nothing is right or wrong.

It is a matter of how you perceive it.

posted by Robin Good on Tuesday, May 20 2003, updated on Tuesday, May 5 2015

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