If you have been following CLOUD for a while, you know we have a big vision for the future of the Internet. You may be asking, how do we reach this new future and get there from here? As Gary Thompson, Co-Founder and CEO, CLOUD, Inc. said in his talk at TEDxAustin in 2011, "we don't want to deliver this new Internet TO you, we want to create it WITH you." The first step in this crowd-sourced innovation paradigm is CLOUDCircles. CLOUDCircles are user-driven communities to fund CLOUD's work on the future of the Internet. Think fundraising for Wikipedia but with categories.
We've recently launched this new initiative, and our long-term plan includes allowing users to create their own circles in support of CLOUD's efforts. We've created a whole new site to support this effort at http://www.cloudcircles.org. The CLOUDCircles website not only includes Gary's talk at TEDxAustin in 2011 but three new brief videos (less than a minute each) describing "What Are CLOUDCircles," "How to Pick Your CLOUDCircle," and a short version of "What is CLOUD?" [Keep reading below the videos...]
What Are CLOUDCircles?
How to Pick Your CLOUDCircle?
What is CLOUD?
Although CLOUD has Founding Circle sponsors (like LIVESTRONG, Healthways and others to be announced soon), CLOUDCircles are an important pillar of the organization's financial support. An Internet built around people really has to be about people from its inception. Beyond the financial aspects of CLOUDCircles, seeing which circles, topics, and hashtags garner the most support is a crowd-sourced way to enable voting on which part of the future CLOUD should address first. Privacy, EHRs (electronic health records), HIEs (health information exchanges), cancer, Facebook are all circles, as well as different reasons for CLOUD's new architecture for the Internet.
What comes next? We'd love to see as many of these circles reach 100 advocates and 1000 supporters as quickly as possible.Each circle that reaches $25,000 will be classified as an Industry Circle; when a circle reaches $50,000, it will be renamed a Founding Circle, like LIVESTRONG, but in this case, a circle built by people; and finally, at $125,000 and above, a circle becomes Sustaining. Circles are the way in which the Internet can build its own future. Some examples of these designations can be seen here:
Circles aren't just about financial resources, though, each of CLOUD's supporters will be invited into our crowd innovation platform, which will be our first purchase with the funds raised through CLOUDCircles. We're investigating these platforms now. Our goal with this platform is to both solicit and model various use cases and scenarios with your involvement and support. Those uses cases will drive the future development of the CLOUD language. Since we believe that the future of the Internet is as much a strategic and paradigm issue, as it is a technology one, we’re starting with the problem, not the solution.
In addition to the various tools and platforms, each circle to reach Sustaining status will allow us to fund an ecosystem director on an annual basis. These ecosystem directors will be dedicated to health, finance, education, as well as other industries and dedicated to the industry from which the financial support is garnered. As we get closer to testing and deployment, sustaining circles will then fund technology evangelists, learning and development team members, and other resources to bring the CLOUD-enabled Internet to reality... and it all starts with just one seed from a dandelion. For more on dandelions and our CLOUD logo, read this. To join a circle, click here.