Category Archives: communications

Will the Internet Be the Key to Defusing the Population Bomb?


Information and education are the keys to making lasting changes in human behavior, and the most powerful information tool in history is the internet.  Initially access was available to those who could afford it, leaving much of the world in the figurative dark.  Around the world, however, people are extending access to others who couldn’t previously afford it.  One interesting way this is being done is by promoting the construction of high-speed data networks using a free book on how to set up and maintain high-speed data networks  called “Wireless Networking in the Developing World“.  Efforts like this, by leveraging the power of the internet, will increase education and establish a consciousness of global  affairs that will hopefully lead people everywhere to regulate their own birth rates.  With luck that will help lower the peak of the population explosion and ease the transition to a sustainable world economy.  Much more than this needs to be done, of course, but this is a critical movement to which we all should contribute, and it should give us all hope.

Thanks for reading.  — Tim

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Will Our Dependence on the Internet Enable the Population Explosion, and the Crash?


The adoption of digital communications technology keeps accelerating, but brings risk. The crash phase of the global population explosion may not start with food shortages, global pandemic, or world war, but with a widespread shutdown of the internet.  The disruption to our shipping, energy, and food systems would be catastrophic.  But isn’t the internet too resilient from its diversity, complexity, and vast extent to be at risk of a global shutdown?  How might this come about? Continue reading

The Future of Cyber Warfare Is Here – What’s Next?


Programming computers is a skill that can be learned, and a lot can be learned about it with very little investment in hardware and software.  That enables people from almost every society on earth, including dangerous psychopaths, to build programming skills and use computers as they choose. Civilization is so dependent on the internet here in 2015 that I expect we have passed the point where a major, multi-day failure of the internet wouldn’t be accompanied by at least some people starving.  That puts a lot of power at the fingertips of internet users, but a great deal more in the hands of those who can write software.  People never stop learning, and some of them, rogue programmers, are sociopaths with bad intent for the rest of us.  So what bad deeds are they carrying out that we don’t know about yet? Can  we know? Continue reading

An Excellent Explanation of Our Climate Prospects in 2015


An excellent article recently appeared at Spiegel Online International titled “The Warming World: Is Capitalism Destroying Our Planet?” and I highly recommend reading it through to the end.  In it the authors give in-depth information on the current status of the global climate, relating it back to human activity and national and international politics.  (Millions of tons of CO2 going into the atmosphere every day has to have an impact, sooner or later.)  The politics of various key nations and the negotiations at past climate conferences are described, and a lot of the latest climate science is brought forth.  The topic is a bit frightening but of such critical importance to us that, really, every adult should have to read this article (whether they believe it or not).

Then, better informed, we need to take action, vote for politicians who are deserving, and “clean up our acts” by making many changes in our selves, our decisions, and our lifestyles in order to preserve a reasonably habitable world for our kids.  The trouble is … it might already be too late.

Thanks for reading — Tim

A Better Vision of a Likely Future


Advanced technologies will give us excellent data on future disasters.  As we plunge headlong toward a time of population-driven crises, struggling to put band-aids on climate change, pollution, and other results of the population explosion, I see rapid development of new technologies that may not slow the disasters but will provide much better information on them and may connect us each far more intimately to them.  Information technology may not save us, but it will make us much more aware of the details. Continue reading

Old Ads Give Clues to the Rise of Corporate Power and Systematic Marginalization of Women


The corporate entity is without feeling or sense of responsibility. 

cause millions of babies malnutrition as long as you can increase profits
Profits over infant health

In the 20th century advertising became increasingly important, first in newspapers, magazines, and billboards and then on radio and TV.  Near the end of the century the internet allowed an explosion of new kinds of advertising, but the print ads from the middle of the century are most striking, and illustrate a big problem in our business system:  corporations have no incentive to do anything but maximize profits. 

Memes: Powerful Enough to Make Us Hurt Ourselves


What can make smart people do dumb things in total confidence they are acting correctly?  What can make people obey laws written when Roman armies marched and messengers were the closest communication system to the internet?  The answer is: memes.  Doesn’t that make memes perhaps the most powerful single element of human culture? Continue reading