Is there an Information Tsunami on the horizon?

A few thoughts on the go. Before the internet there was print, and media publications gave us most of the content we consumed. There were distinct producers and consumers of information, the latter most of us. And then a revolution occurred: the user became a generator of information. Through blogs, forums, mailing lists, comments and websites. Add to the above – organisations becoming producers of loads of information. Digital made it cheap. It made it available to anyone with access or connection. So we had an information overload. Which means limits of how much can be produced and consumed in the time available. Now the natural processes of adjustments obviously kick in. So we get three things: Creative content that stands out, greater user selection for limited time, and much greater obsolescence. The more the quantity, the greater the junk. There is obviously no recycling of information here. Everyday we can have new content created, and the unused info sinks into the digital trash pile of search...
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Will technology turn us all into slaves?

The internet, or more accurately, the world wide web, celebrates its 25th anniversary today. Some rambling thoughts on the rise of ‘the machine’, invented to do log tables and census work, on the likes of patterns or threads woven by looms. My first encounter with computers and software was when my father brought home a book on learning BASIC. So I learnt the basic coding loops, and got to know about COBOL and FORTRAN. That was in 1989. A trip to a Soviet exhibition in the city was where I first saw the machine – the IBM PC, and some guys keying in a program. They made me type a few lines of code. And then at school in 1990, where we had a science festival, I had a glimpse of the mouse… though its use and functions were unfathomable. Today the advances in this space look mind boggling. We are talking about technology and its influence, the good and the bad...
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India celebrates freedom, returns to war with itself

Pic source: thebollywoodgallery.com India is such a vast country, a country of countries in the past, that it would be impossible to say anything definite. Its traditions go down ages past. Its multicultural structure makes a genetic treatment slippery, especially today, when we find ourselves in the middle of a fast changing world. Still, below I make a half-baked attempt, a casual, free shot, on the eve of the Republic Day. India has progressed, because of, or despite itself We have heard the ‘India story’ of the last decade – its GDP growth, its prowess in IT and outsourcing, its migrating professionals, the purchasing power, and the markets flooded with electronic goods. We are also not behind on the cultural-technology front. We have adopted, rather selectively, every new technology, fashion, manners of language and lifestyle that have sprung up in the last decade. Yet many people display a sense of chagrin. As was always the case, we decry many aspects of modernity (fast paced life, no...
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Odyssey

Tribal Odyssey – Yawalapiti – YouTube. We are the children of civilization. Pursuing our dreams, living with ambition, observing the world go round… Our eyes carry a history, and we breathe ourselves to self-awareness everyday. We spend the day working for others, and make a living for ourselves. Could things be different from what they are today? Were they any different in the ‘beginning’? What would it be like to live among the tribes in the rain forests of the Amazon? What would life be life in 3012? 4012? It’s not given to us to know these things. And that’s the greatest thing about life and living. It means no one can conquer or destroy the spring from which mankind has emerged. Was man better off when naked than he is today? Our clothes seem to have made a big difference. Our writing made us more human. The tribes had to actually live out their culture. We can do with mere recordings. So...
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Terminator 1, 2, 3 – review

A package of action, science fiction and thriller, the three Terminator series films develop a story whose central idea is now well known to all movie lovers. Two killing machines (they call them ‘cyborg’) are sent back in time, one to kill and the other to save the leader of a war that erupts several decades later between humans and self-aware software controlled machines. The first Terminator had the feel of a ‘B’ grade film, mindless violence with poor synthesized background music that sounded disconnected from the visuals. It was Terminator 2,. the same  plot reworked, with its special effects winning Oscars, that made the series, and the name of Arnold Schwarzenneger, famous around the world. The third version, sans James Cameron, the writer of the original story, runs the same plot around quite unsuccessfully. This time the chasing terminator is a female, although it beats us how and why a machine could or should be so! The common underlying theme of...
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