'The Perpetual Beta'

Linden Lab releases new builds every week. Flickr releases them up to every half hour. Writer and publisher Tim O’Reilly writes that “the open source dictum, ‘release early and release often’ in fact has morphed into an even more radical position, ‘the perpetual beta,’ in which the product is developed in the open, with new features slipstreamed in on a monthly, weekly, or even daily basis” (O’Reilly). Considering that it is a component of long-term success in Web 2.0, ‘the perpetual beta’ can remind us that iterative short-term thinking is nested within thinking that is longer-term.

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The Long Now Foundation is a nonprofit established in 01996 to foster long-term thinking. Our work encourages imagination at the timescale of civilization — the next and last 10,000 years — a timespan we call the long now.

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