While thinking over collaborability I am confronted with the subject of “human nature and human abilities” again and again. I do not try to steer away from it – not at all – as this is a corner stone on which my theory/model is being build. Over time I have posted numerous items on Red Planet Dust on aspects related to our nature and abilities. I have been shying away from putting it – in all its width and complexity – centre stage though.

Until now I have had 3 reasons to be reticent:

“Who am I to suggest this all?”
Being human myself, the limitations of our abilities are applicable to me too. This invokes a recursive loop, which sometimes can paralyse me and makes me hesitant to be to outspoken about it. NB This quote of Einstein is comforting me to go forward:

“The most incomprehensible thing about the world is that it is comprehensible.”

“I have to focus on my own contribution”
My endeavour is about collaborability being a large topic by itself, not about the mega trends that have an impact on our ability to collaborate, or about human nature and our abilities. For these secondary subjects I want to build on the work and knowledge of others (collaborability!). For the mega trends I happily refer to Al Gore’s The Future . I have not found an equivalent source of knowledge for human nature and our abilities covering the way I am looking at it and using it in my work on collaborability yet.

“Not to many people (are able to) follow my drift…”
Where collaborability is in the end (only) a shift of perspective the way I define/assess “human nature and human abilities” is not a simple shift of perspective. It is complicated and is not matching the experience and perceptions people have. Sometimes I am afraid that I am confronting my counterparts with potentially uncomfortable insights.

The last couple of days I have been challenged in multiple discussions to assess specific cases based on the knowledge and insights from my work on collaborability. Every time I noticed that I needed to elaborate on human nature and our abilities before I could give my analysis in the given case.

Preparing for my guest lecture next week I have tried to d-tour the subject deliberately, but this morning I realised that I at least need to address the notion that the perception of the students of themselves and the world around them is only a very convincing illusion, but not adequate to oversee the implications of collaborability.


An illusion is a distortion of the senses, revealing how the brain normally organizes and interprets sensory stimulation. While illusions distort reality, they are generally shared by most people.

a disillusion.008

I need to get my audience out of their comfort zone next week!

My take from the last couple of days: I will have to put more emphasis on describing “human nature and human abilities” as I lean on these subjects heavily for collaborability. Human nature and our abilities are so intertwined with collaborability that I have to promote the subject to be a primary topic. Fasten your seat-belts…