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Posts Tagged ‘technology’

The Post-Petroleum Survival Guide and Cookbook: Recipes for Changing Times

Wednesday, June 3rd, 2009

By Richard Heinberg

swissarmyknifeThis book is like a Swiss army knife. Sharp. Simple. Very practical. Extremely useful. From Solar Heating to Sweet Potato Soup,  water-readiness to worms, and lollies made out of flowers. You can learn how to create walkable communities and/or become a medic-in-a hurry treating accidental electrocution. There is even a glossary of Surfspeak (useful I suppose for a beach disaster) and advice on how to loaf around more creatively. This book is especially designed to stand the test of time, and points out that the stone age didn’t come to an end through a lack of stones - that instead we moved on to a better, more creative, use of new technologies.

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An Inconvenient Truth - the Crisis of Global Warming

Wednesday, June 3rd, 2009

By Al Gore

globecrackingWhat do you think about Global Warming Do you care enough about the planet to get involved? What can we do to deal with the crisis? This book shows what is happening on our planet and how it affects us. From wildfires to disappearing icecaps we learn what the scientists have been discovering. We also learn how to become part of the solution, in the decisions we make both now and in the future.

The DVD is also available.

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Material World - A Global Family Portrait

Wednesday, June 3rd, 2009

By Peter Menzel

material_photo11For the photos in this stunning book, photographers spent one week living with a “statistically average” family in each country, learning about their work, their attitudes toward their possessions, and their hopes for the future. Then a “big picture” shot of the family was taken outside the dwelling, surrounded by all their (many or few) material goods. Statistics and a brief history for each country are included as well as personal notes from the photographers about their experiences.

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Trigger Issues - Kalashnikov AK47

Thursday, May 28th, 2009

By Gideon Burrows


ak_photo“Kalashnikov” explains the arms trade, politics and culture through the lens of the world’s deadliest weapon and shows how its direct social effects have swept across whole continents. Some 90 million of these guns exist - and they do not die when their owners do. They are now made in dozens of countries and have been fired in hundreds of conflicts since their introduction. In contrast, campaigns round the world are removing guns from gangs and communities. As they are recycled and made into sculptures might the Kalashnikov one day be seen as a symbol of peace?


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A year volunteering in South Africa

Friday, June 27th, 2008

Interview by Tessa Johnstone

felicitygibsonFelicity Gibson, 22, was interested in understanding other countries — not just seeing them through a camera or tour bus window. That’s why she took a year out from her degree to volunteer in South Africa and “gain a new perspective on the world.”

Felicity spent a year volunteering through an initiative organised by New Zealand Aotearoa-based Volunteer Service Abroad (VSA) and University of Otago’s Geography Studies faculty. She worked as a Monitoring and Evaluation Coordinator, based in Students Partnership Worldwide’s (SPW) East London, South Africa office and regularly traveling to communities in the Eastern Cape to support volunteers working in the field.

SPW runs youth empowerment programmes in South Africa, primarily with the Xhosa people, in which local and international volunteers are paired up together and provide health education and awareness, training for job and life skills, help to set up clubs and activities for the community, set up resource and library centres, and facilitate peer education.

Felicity’s job was to go into the communities where the youth empowerment programmes were run, and come up with a good system to look at how the programmes were working for the community and the volunteers.

Youth is an extra bonus groupof4

Volunteering gives you a lot of work experience and job skills, which Felicity points out is invaluable for young people. Young people, as well, offer a lot to the organisations and communities they volunteer with.
“I think being young meant I had the right attitude going in to the experience. Many of the older volunteers I talked to were worried about how they were going to handle the different working environment and lack of resources.
“But because I had very little working experience, I had nothing to compare my job to and so was very adaptable to the environment and willing to give things a try.
“This lack of experience also meant that I did not go in their thinking that there was only one right way to do things and did not try and do every thing my own way. I was happy just to go with the flow and learn from others.
“I think volunteers must be open-minded to the fact that people have different sets of knowledge and be prepared to learn and share. It is very important that volunteers remember that they are there to help, not hinder an organisation.”

Daily life is an experience
Felicity feels lucky to have experienced both life in the South African office and that of her fellow international volunteers working in villages.
“I think all of us international volunteers had very rewarding experiences and each faced challenges unique to our situation. Most importantly we had a lot of fun and a lot of laughs together.”
Felicity lived in a small apartment in East London, but experienced the living conditions of volunteers working in smaller communities as well.
“Living in South Africa was certainly not easy. For example, while we lived in town, we could not leave the house after dark as we had no car and it was too dangerous to walk anywhere.
“In the rural communities, volunteers were placed in rondavels [mud huts] with a host family. Rondavels usually had one room where sleeping, eating and cleaning all occurred.”
All SPW volunteers experience very basic living conditions, often with no running water, though most have some electricity. Travel is done by shared minibus or taxi, which Felicity describes entertainingly as “long bumpy trips crammed with people”. There is no fridge, which limits volunteers to a vegetarian diet which includes a lot of local dishes.

Being the “Young White Girl”
spwvolunteersandypOne of the most difficult challenges for Felicity was adjusting to a different culture in South Africa.
“Things looked and felt like home in South Africa, but I was expected to act differently. For example, no one ever worried about running late. This was always frustrating to me when we were holding an event and I expected to arrive early to set up but everyone always arrived after the event was meant to start as they knew that all the people attending would be even later than that.”
Felicity also observed a lot of racism, which she says was very challenging.
“There is still a lot of cultural division in South Africa and I was amazed at the extremely racist comments dropped casually into a conversation by a taxi driver, waiter or my neighbour. While there are racists in New Zealand, most people hide it. In South Africa, people who were racist were very open about it.”
Some South Africans also had skewed perceptions of Felicity, as a “Young White Girl”.
“People’s perception of white people from overseas had often been formed from the movies and so I gained somewhat of a celebrity status. As there were not often young, white girls walking round where I lived or visited I got stared at and whispered about a lot. Some people thought I had a lot of money and could therefore give them my possessions.
“However, in other settings I could feel there was a lot of trepidation about a young, white girl coming into a community with a fear I was going to tell people how to live their lives.”

The biggest learning?
Felicity says the biggest learning for her was “the most obvious”.
“I learnt about how people with little money and resources live and how hard it is for people without opportunities, like I have had, to move forward in their lives.
“Take, for example, computers. You can go to a community and many people have never seen a computer. You may then go to a township where there might be ten old computers for a school of 800 pupils. Then you might find young university students who use computers as part of their school work, however because they have never had the opportunity to use them like we do, their skills are still very low. And then you get the minority at the top that a live life like we do here in New Zealand where using a computer is an everyday occurrence. This range extends to all parts of life, with the minority at the top gaining all the experience and education and more able to take advantage of opportunities than those at the other end of the scale.”

Coming home - with new perspectives and confidence

outsideworkshopFelicity got what she wanted in a travel experience, gaining insight into what South Africa was really like.
“I was very scared of travelling to South Africa because of the horror stories I’d heard. But the country I discovered was very different to those preconceptions. For the most, everyone in South Africa was so friendly and positive. I found it quite a shock to return to New Zealand which I had always thought of as being laidback to find that I now see us as quite a melancholy country. I also learnt about the many different cultures that make up South Africa, especially the Xhosa people.”
Felicity says she came back from South Africa a more mature person.
“Throughout the year I faced so many challenges that I am really quite a different person to the one I used to be. I have a very different perspective on the world and view things in different ways. I definitely am a lot more grateful for the life I live and therefore am more determined to make the most of what I have.”
Eric Levine, founder of SPW and long-time volunteer himself, says the experience also gives you a huge amount of confidence.
“Volunteers always tell me: I came thinking I was going to teach and I learned and took away much more than I taught’,” Eric says.
“They come away with confidence times 10 to a factor of 100 — to work in difficult, under-resourced, complicated situations and be successful in change — no matter what you do in your life, people constantly are like, I am capable, I have skills, I can figure out how to do stuff’.

Felicity is back at Otago completing her Geography degree in Development Studies, though she’s not sure what will happen after that.
“I definitely believe that I was very lucky to be born in New Zealand, and that gives me a sense of social responsibility to help others who were not so lucky, whether they are from developing countries or in New Zealand itself.”
spwtshirts
To find out more about Students Partnership Worldwide (SPW), who are working with Volunteer Service Abroad (VSA) to place New Zealanders aged 18 — 28 in volunteer placements for six to nine months in Southern Africa, or the VSA/Otago University Univol programme, go to www.vsa.org.nz or www.spw.org.

The top photo shows Felicity with fellow SPW volunteer Greer Lamaro carrying water up from the stream in the village. All other photos courtesy of SPW volunteer training.


TAKE ACTION!

Want to volunteer, but not sure how to go about it ethically? Download VSA’s Volunteering Overseas Guide (1.6MB) or check out the ethical volunteering site for things to think about and tips on how to find a good organisation. And you can download Dev-Zone’s magazine, Just Change Issue 11: Good Intentions - The Ethics of Volunteering.


LEARN MORE:

South Africa country profile
Xhosa entry on wikipedia
http://allafrica.com/ news from Africa.

    Stem Cells - Potential, promises and problems

    Thursday, October 4th, 2007

    Storme Sen

    Scientific and technological advances have propelled mankind into the modern era whether confronting us with new weapons of war that kill thousands or medical discoveries that save thousands. Scientists almost always start out with good intentions, but the question is what the end product will be used for, and if the end justifies the means. Alfred Nobel (patron of the celebrated Nobel Prizes) created the explosive, dynamite, which was later used in warfare and killed his brother on the battlefield. From then on he dedicated his life towards peace. Adolf Hitler’s scientists performed horrific experiments on the prisoners at concentration camps- is it morally acceptable that we use the information that they discovered? How far should we go in our quest for knowledge?

    At Youth Parliament 2007 in Wellington, New Zealand, a select committee of Youth MPs gathered to discuss whether therapeutic cloning of stem cells should be allowed in their country. There was a range of different viewpoints on this issue represented at the select committee- such as those held by the Bioethics Council, the Nathaniel Centre (a catholic bioethics centre) and the Ministry of Health.

    Stem cells
    Stem CellsThe latest biological controversy is over stem cells and the process of therapeutic cloning. Stem cells are undifferentiated cells, cells that are not specialized yet into specific types such as skin cells. They are able to transform into any type of cell given the correct stimulation. Hence, these cells have the potential to repair damaged tissue and develop treatments for diseases such as chronic heart disease, Parkinson’s, and type I diabetes. These remarkable cells are located in the early embryo, the foetus, the placenta and in some mature tissues and organs throughout the body. The most recent discovery, in February 2007, by researchers from Auckland University in New Zealand and the Sahlgrenska Academy in Sweden, revealed that stem cells can also be located in a certain area of the brain. Stem cells have the potential to revolutionize medical treatments; however, the obvious problem is that they are in hard to reach places.

    The Controversy

    Is it ethical to use embryos in scientific research?

    Stem Cell2Embryonic stem cells are the easiest cells to isolate and manipulate. Unlike adult stem cells they are able to evolve into any other type of cell whereas an adult stem cell is limited in the cells it may transform into. For example, the stem cells found in a part of the brain can only change into different types of neurons. To discover the true potential of stem cells further research is needed and this would require a steady supply of them, indeed, much of the breakthrough research we have to date was performed on aborted foetuses and surplus IVF (in vitro fertilization) embryos.

    The other issue lies around the concept of cloning. Therapeutic cloning is often mistaken for embryo cloning, when in fact embryos are not being cloned at all. Genetic material is taken from a cell in an adult’s body and fused with an empty egg cell. With the correct stimulation the new cell is able to grow into an embryo. The stem cells can then be harvested from the embryo for use in treatments or research. They do not intend to recreate life, but to create life-saving cells.

    The Cons

    Some people do not feel therapeutic stem cell cloning is ethical, and abortion itself is a controversial topic for many. There has been no therapeutic stem cell cloning in New Zealand thus far and the representatives from the Nathaniel Centre were adamant that it should stay that way. They expressed nothing but contempt for the idea of producing an embryo for the sole purpose of extracting a bunch a cells from it then destroying it, arguing that “it is a scientific fact that life begins from conception”. This in itself is a disputed argument, with a lot of disagreement about the moment an embryo is considered a human being. While those against therapeutic stem cell cloning argue for “the dignity of human life” others believe that aborted embryos or surplus IVF embryos (of which there are currently 5000-7000 and the maximum number of years they can be stored in New Zealand is ten) should be utilised instead of simply being destroyed.

    Another concern was about where this sort of research is leading us? MoRST (the Ministry of Research, Science and Technology) assured the committee that any scientific exploits were monitored under strict regulations, however, what is to stop a rogue scientist from toying with nature? Could we be heading to the point of human cloning, many people’s worst fear, where we will be selecting genes to produce perfect individuals?

    The Pros

    SurgeryEmbryonic stem cells are thought by most scientists and researchers to hold amazing potential for finding cures for spinal cord injuries, cancer, heart disease, hundreds of rare immune system and genetic disorders and much more.

    The huge advantage of the process of therapeutic stem cell cloning is that the genetic material of the stem cells and the patient are the same, so that there is no danger of rejection by the patient’s immune system. Currently, for example, when an organ is transplanted into a patient, that patient has to take strong immune suppressant drugs for the rest of their lives.

    The Future

    LabWhile stem cells hold tremendous potential, and there have been many promises made, the fact remains that this potential is far from being realised. There are many technical and ethical barriers to consider before stem cell based therapies become a reality.

    While some members of the select committee at Youth Parliament believed that this sort of research is important for our continued scientific advancement, others felt that allowing therapeutic cloning in New Zealand might taint the clean and green natural image the country has and undermine New Zealand’s reputation of taking a strong stance in controversial areas like G.E. and nuclear power.

    Currently, the therapeutic cloning of stem cells is permitted in Belgium, the UK and Sweden. Whether or not it will be permitted in New Zealand is yet to be seen, however, the select committee at Youth Parliament concluded that if stem cell research should only be allowed using surplus IVF embryos or aborted fetuses. The committee is also hopeful that soon scientists will find a way to manipulate adult stem cells to changing into any type of cell, which would nullify the use of embryonic stem cells.

    Learn More:

    Take Action

    • Get in contact with, or try and organise a class trip to, Auckland University’s Liggins Institute. This is the main place in Aotearoa New Zealand for research concerning embryos etc.
    • Interested in issues around bioethics? The RSNZ in association with Bioethics Council and the New Zealand Organisation of Rare Disorders run a yearly essay competition (with prizes!) on different ethical issues of biology
    • Organise a debate in class where you explore both sides of the issue.

    My Space: Your Space?

    Friday, July 20th, 2007

    Jayran Mansouri

    We are often unwilling to admit that racism exists in our communities. We like to believe that in New Zealand we are open, caring and accepting. However, we just have to look beneath the surface to realise that racism is much more prevalent than we think- it may not always be obvious, but it is racism nonetheless.

    White OnlyThe term racism’ is often misunderstood. When you think about racism’, you might think about African slaves working in the cotton fields of southern America or Apartheid in South Africa. It seems so distant and you think, none of that happens in New Zealand, it doesn’t have anything to do with me’. But in order to challenge racism we have to admit it is happening in New Zealand.

    Why is there racism?
    If we are to combat racism, we need to know why it is happening in the first place.

    I see racial stereotypes as both a cause and a manifestation of racism. Stereotypes narrow our perceptions of those who are not exactly like us. Unfortunately, our brains are wired to stereotype. It is all down to human nature — we have an in-built natural instinct to classify, categorise, criticise and evaluate the unfamiliar. Most people, when faced with a culture that is unfamiliar, will want to classify, compare and contrast it with their own culture. Such a train of thought leads to an us’ and them’ mentality, which in turn can lead to fear of difference, or a sense of competition.

    Imagine for a moment a New Zealand in which everyone is identical. Everyone looks the same, has the same thoughts, the same ideals, likes the same foods, the same movies, the same music, has the same personality and follows the same religion. This of course sounds like a sci-fi book; luckily, in the real world it isn’t like that — everyone is different. But do we celebrate each person’s unique identity or do we group up into cliques and fight?

    Multiculturalism
    DiversityNew Zealand society is made of many different ethnicities and cultures so could be described as multicultural’. Dictionary.com offers this definition of multicultural’: Of, pertaining to, or representing several different cultures or cultural elements: a multicultural society. I see a positive multicultural society as one that actively supports different cultures and ethnic groups, and all can have their voices freely heard.

    Before I started this article, I thought that multiculturalism was just the presence of many different ethnic groups. I never really thought about how well they were treated and represented. It is all very well and good to live in a society in which many cultures are visible, but I believe we must make a conscious effort to provide opportunities for ALL voices to be heard and respected. Multiculturalism has many benefits, but also brings new challenges and responsibilities.

    What does all this mean for young people?
    In an increasingly multicultural and globalised world, racism will be an especially important issue for our generation to tackle. We need a vision of how we want the future to be when it is our turn to lead society. We need to be informed — there will come a time when we are leading the world and setting the examples for the future generation.

    MouseThe Internet has made our world much “smaller”. On the Internet, we can connect with people on the other side of the world at the click of a mouse. Future technology is likely to bring our world even closer together. Through technology, we have an opportunity to become a more open-minded and worldly society, but it is up to us to take that opportunity.

    When will it end?
    Personally, I am not one of the there will always be racism’ people. It’s easy to say why bother? It’s too big a problem.’ And I agree racism is a big problem, but with the right attitude, we can and should take steps towards an open and accepting society, where people are treated equally and difference is celebrated.

    TAKE ACTION!

    • Join or start a cultural group in your community or school
    • Hold an “International Day” at your school— get different cultural groups to do a presentation or performance and sell traditional food
    • Learn about New Zealand history and the Treaty of Waitangi

    LEARN MORE

    The New Zealand Human Rights Commission website

    Information about the Treaty of Waitangi
    www.waitangi-tribunal.govt.nz/treaty
    www.treatyofwaitangi.govt.nz

    Statistics NZ features statistics and information about the 2006 Census

    A version of this article was originally published in JET Magazine.

    Addictd 2 da fone

    Monday, April 16th, 2007

    by Anna Wu

    Banglasdesh mobile If teeny bopping, Supre-toting girls in the city surprise you with their uber-pink phones, (what in the world do they need them for?) you may be more surprised to hear that Bangladesh has added almost 9 million cell phone users in a single year. Yet compared to other countries Bangladesh is just a small player, only ranked 8th among the top 10 Asian cell phone markets.

    Being rich or poor as a country isn’t a factor in determining the extensive use of the cell phone. The glory of communication is widely available — data confirms new cell phone customers in Asia are of the middle-to-lower income bracket. But is there a sinister industry behind this fashionable and popular accessory?

    THE GOOD

    Text DumpingCell phones let us phone Mum to tell her we’ll be out for just a bit longer. Your brother might use it to call the AA while stranded on the side of a road somewhere or to break up with his girlfriend via txt. Increasingly mobiles are also being used for saving lives.

    India was the first country to introduce a disaster warning cell phone system. In 30 seconds, the general public can be informed about natural disasters such as the Mumbai floods or epidemic outbreaks like cholera, through SMSs and voicemails. Similarly here in NZ, the Western Bay of Plenty have a free service to provide registered users with text alerts of Civil Defense emergencies in the region.

    In the wake of the murder of German backpacker Birgit Brauer, Telecom and Vodafone launched the SAFE (7233) txt service for anyone to record their travel plans within NZ. Messages are stored and (hopefully not!) retrieved later by police to find out where the missing person’s supposed to be.

    The cell phone has even emerged as a tool for fighting poverty. Last year a senior official of the United Nations World Food Programme in London received a text from a refugee in a drought-plagued camp in Kenya. It was a simple message; people are not receiving enough food “you must help.” You may wonder how someone who does not have access to enough food can afford a cell phone, but in Africa, where many nations lack public telecommunication systems, they are not a luxury but a necessity. They are cheap and are used by traders as the primary communication tool and for millions of others they are the thing that connects them to scattered communities and families. This text message was an effective way of a refugee in Kenya to access someone living in the comfort of the industralised world, where hunger is hard to imagine.

    THE BAD

    We already know cheap, affordable fast-fashion is to sweatshops what diamonds are to the notorious diamond mines. Similarly while cell phones have revolutionised communication, the materials that create them come at someone else’s expense.

    The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) contains one third of the world’s cassiterite, 64 to 80 percent of the world’s colton, 10 percent of the world’s copper and 20 to 40 percent of the world’s cobalt — all of which form the components of our cell phones. U.K.-based organisation Global Witness documented “killing, rape, torture, arbitrary arrests, intimidation, mutilation” by the Democratic Republic of Congo military and other armed groups “to gain control over either resource-rich areas or the ability to tax resources.” While below ground, according to the BBC, children as young as 8 yrs old “dig and sieve from dawn to dusk” in the Ruashi mine which employs 4000 miners.

    AND THE [cell phone] GRAVE

    The world now has over 3.5 billion cell phone users* and the environment appears to be paying a high cost.

    GorillaColton is a mineral that is used to make tiny devices that store energy in cell phones and is responsible for the phones shrinking size, but endangered animals are paying the price for this pocket-sized convenience. In a DRC national park the mountain gorilla population has plunged by half, after mining of colton devastated the gorilla’s habitat.

    The U.S. Geological Survey calculates the 500 million phones lying unused in the US contain 17 million pounds of copper, 6 million ounces of silver, 600,000 ounces of gold. 17 different metals can be reclaimed.

    Fortunately as global citizens and responsible consumers, we can reduce some of the impact by choosing what we do with our “dead phones.”

    TOP FIVE INTERESTING FACTS

    MobileThe first hand held mobile phone to become commercially available was the Motorola DynaTAC 8000X in 1983. It was 25 cms long and weighed over half a kilo!!

    MobileIn 2004 Vodafone NZ’s recycling initiative “The Old, The Broke and The Ugly” prevented more than 6780kg of mobile phone equipment going to landfill, that’s 16,826 mobile phones!

    MobileIn India the leading mobile service, has launched a new service, which allows customers to make their donations to temples via SMS.

    MobileNew Zealand has over 3 million mobile customers who on average replace handsets for a newer, flashier one every 18 to 24 months. (This indicates their are going to be a lot more forsaken Oldies, Brokes and Uglies in the cell phone grave)

    Mobile
    In December 2006 people in the UK sent 4 billion texts.

    TAKE ACTION

    • Use your old phone! Do you really need a new one?
    • If you really need a new phone, then recycle your old one.
    • - Drop by any Vodafone retail store with your unwanted mobiles and accessories like batteries and chargers. Your phone will go on to become things like traffic cones or copper pipes, or sent to a developing country instead to spread the joy of communication.
      - Organise a mobile recycling week at school, work or anyplace in your community by sending an email to recycling.nz@vodafone.com They’ll provide a bin as well as posters and leaflets to let people know all about it.

    • There are miners mining in conditions of virtual slavery in DRC to feed our demand for this technology and ironically mobile phones are being used to threaten those who try to draw attention to this. Visit www.amnesty.org.uk to read about the Congo appeal and send a letter online to the President telling him you support free speech.

    LEARN MORE

    Cell phones for civil engagement (*mobile user stat from this site)
    Recycle mobiles in your community
    The conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo
    Read the full Guardian article “You Must Help”

    Information age

    Monday, February 12th, 2007

    Information Age
    Fairy Priest

    Normality the incessant mechanical function.
    A juxtaposition of unjustified loathing
    and fear of humanity’s dysfunction.
    Compelled by flickering artificial vision
    and our own synthetic death.
    Electric automatons lacking life,
    lacking love, lacking breath.

    Robotic reaction, plastic fixation,
    technologic sensation, mechanic creation,
    cybernetic nation, metallic imitation.
    Love in mathematical equations,
    life explained in Science.
    Digitalized and coded,
    tagged and conformed;
    too weary for defiance.

    Morals and opinions injected
    like heroin into the frontal lobe
    instigating collective opinion;
    identical thoughts around the globe.
    No originality, no free will,
    no free speech, no freedom at all,
    nothing free to love;
    just another small and abused thrall.

    Lacerate your limbs
    to liberate naught but liquid binary
    the scars from depression
    and lamentation worn like finery.
    Only hollow receptivity;
    nervous system substituted by mathematics
    each choice made through experience,
    or either by automatics.

    Generating joyless falsities
    and lightless illumination;
    innocence and ignorance always
    was our greatest salvation.
    Numerically taught from a
    cybernetic mechanical sage,
    welcome to our paradigm,
    The Information Age.

    A letter to the Future

    Saturday, July 3rd, 2004

    Blaise Ramage

    To my great, great niece,

    I wish I had a bigger voice when I was 16. I would have shouted at everyone to stop and slow down and to look around at what they were killing.

    Technology got away on us. We developed too soon and at the end of it, you, our future generation, are the ones that have to pay.

    I wish you didn’t have to learn through our mistakes but now you’re stuck with our mess.

    Treasure every breath of fresh air you take, every step you walk on green grass. Make shapes out of clouds and love birds, insects and animals as if they were your family.

    Love everything around you and speak out loud!

    Be the voice that we tried to be.

    This article was written as part of the Global Focus a collaborative project of Tearaway Magazine and the Global Education Centre. It was first published in Tearaway magazine and is reprinted here with their permission