Aldon Hynes's blog

In The News

MSNBC has this article about political bloggers. They mention Kim and I, as well as other members of the campaign and other campaigns.

A few side notes I want to make. First, as far as I know I am not related to Patrick Hynes. For those curious, I am only working for the Lamont campaign part time. I also continue to work Toomre Capital Markets.

All in all, I think it was a pretty good article, and I welcome anyone who visits the site as a result of the article.

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Hot Chocolate and Rockets

Hot Chocolate and Rockets
Originally uploaded by Aldon.

Upon successfully recovering the rocket from the launch, Miranda pauses to enjoy some hot chocolate.

A few clips of rockets taking off

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Emergent thoughts

A couple weeks ago, I was a guest at Colin McEnroe’s class about blogging. Yesterday, Jason Scott attended the class, and Colin wrote, “My guess is that Jason, like Aldon, will hang around with us a bit for the rest of the year.”

Well, perhaps Jason and I are two sides of the same bad penny that keeps coming back. Perhaps by looking closely at this penny we can gain some insights into what all this blogging, wiki-ing, IMing, MMORPGing, etc., is all about.

Let me go meta-meta for a moment, in part inspired by a post that Chris wrote about my visit. He suggested that my “mind seemed to work very much like the web.” I wrote a post asking if my mind has been shaped by the web, or if it was my way of thinking that has lead me to the web.

Now I have not read Jason’s writings closely, but it seems as if a key difference is that I am really into emergence, as described by Steven Johnson in his book of the same name. Emergence is messy. It is chaotic. The organization comes from the bottom up, instead of some imposed hierarchical command and control structure. Wikipedia is an emergent structure, and it is the lack of the command and control structure that seems to bother Jason.

This same conflict exists in politics. On the one hand, you have the grassroots populists with their emergent politics. On the other, you have politicians focused on maintaining an existing command and control structure. I suspect this dynamic is playing out in some of the races we are watching.

Now, I don’t want to promote the black and white thinking that is so prevalent in American discourse these days. There isn’t a simple dichotomy of bottom up emergent versus top down command and control. Instead there is a continuum. Joe Trippi understood this continuum and wrote about it in his Perfect Storm blog post.

One of the other reasons I think this has not happened before is that every political campaign I have ever been in is built on a top-down military structure - there is a general at the top of the campaign - and all orders flow down - with almost no interaction. This is a disaster. This kind of structure will suffocate the storm not fuel it. Campaigns abhor chaos - and to most campaigns built on the old top-down model - that is what the net represents - chaos..

So, I will come bank, like a bad penny, and try to get people to think in a more emergent way. Jason might stick around as well and present his views. From the dialog, I hope a clearer understanding of how we organize our thinking will emerge.

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Cancer Blogs

(Cross posted at on the One America Committee blog)

Elizabeth has touched the hearts of many of us with her wonderful book, but she is not the only person who writes wonderfully about battling cancer.

Yesterday, Katie got a wig. I found her blog through a mutual friend. What she wrote about cutting off her hair and getting a wig reminded me of when Kimberly had to cut off her hair or when Fran did.

These stories are other illustrations of when Americans show saving graces to the people around us, about Americans at the best when fighting a horrible foe.

That foe isn't just terrorists. It is poverty. It is disease. It is ignorance and injustice.

We've talked a lot about citizen journalism here and it reflects part of my dream. I want to see Edwards supporters writing not only about candidate visits, but about how each and everyone of us, are working to bring about the One America that we all hope Sen. Edwards will help lead us to, whether it be helping in soup kitchens, with Habitat for Humanity, or helping people around us through difficult times.

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Fiona and the Governor

Fiona and the Governor
Originally uploaded by Aldon.

Today, Kim and I drove Gov. Dean around Connecticut. As we dropped him off, he posed for a quick shot with Fiona.

Click on the image below to watch a brief interview I did with Gov. Dean at the same stop.

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