[Tl;Dr summary: This article is an opinion article about the major revolutions of tech and ties it in with modern protest revolutions and civil unrest around the world]
Thursday, August 15, 2019
First revolution: Printing press
Information is moving at a faster pace it seems in the last century with many inventions. Johannes Gutenberg helped to introduce the printing press to Europe in the 1400.
Some of the more noteworthy introductions included movable type that started the printing revolution which led to the massive flow of information to people of all classes and social structures. It was essential to the flow of information and brought in the Renaissance and Enlightenment period. His main contribution was a basic Bible that was one of the first know mass distributed mechanical press works. It was seen as artistic at the time with very easily readable characters and highly efficient. Until then many people had not owned a complete translation of the Bible and it allowed anyone to have a “pocket” version in a sense. According to Wikipedia it took about three years to produce a copy but was the first of its kind.
Without the printing press to herald in the age of information we would have not been able to get knowledge and build upon society’s knowledge and advance as a species and increase our culture and technological prowess and become the smarter evolved animal. Think of all the generations that went before us and why many people say to respect our elders.
While many that have come to break away from our origins and some of the old ideas such as when America left Britain’s rule to form its own colonies and eventual country we take the best of what we have and form and shape it into something better taking the cream and throwing away the chaff. The most important thing is that man in his nature is somewhat skeptical and rebellious and that’s great. We are meant to question and be curious and ask and be suspicious so we don’t get taken as a fool. There will always be counter culture and rebels and people that don’t conform and that’s how you get innovation.
While we do need to respect elders who have raised us and given us opportunities and chances and new information when we were young and had no foundations, once we are fully formed adults we need to continue to take the best of what we have and get rid of our old outdated beliefs and the belief of fairy tales and ideas that are not useful to us becoming higher smarter evolved beings.
Second revolution: Computers
The invention of the computer and massive spread of personal computers through luminaries such as Bill Gates and Steve Jobs has ushered in a second revolution of ideas with everyone being able to to control their data and be their own printing press and Gutenberg and disseminate information via PDF’s and Word documents and books. And without them granted we on this site wouldn’t even exist. Most people wouldn’t have a job and most of the modern technological infrastructure and even banking and accounting wouldn’t exist. So hats off to the people at Microsoft and Apple and IBM’s and all those early computer computers like Xerox etc. Without them we would not have the Androids and the Linux and FreeBSD flavors we have today.
Third revolution: Software explosion
Now the third revolution has come with not just hardware but it’s started going into software. People are no longer really constrained by hardware. At first it was printing presses and mechanical type and newspapers like the Wright Brother’s had in their little print shop. Yes they too were into aviation but did you know they were also into other technologies? And now open source was another revolution that made people realize that with the speed of hardware and microchips doubling every few years according to Moore’s Law that soon hardware was no longer an issue. Now it was up to the developers to catch up with Open Source software to allow sharing of “thought products” and mind puzzles to solve what was a hardware problem before. And no longer was it telegraph, telegram, typewriter. And no longer was 512kb enough. The invention of C++ and compilers and sharing of code became indispensable for humans to continue the revolution and so you saw technologies like Distrowatch and Github and collaborative tools to share code.
Fourth revolution: Social media
The next revolution has been social media for better or worse in sickness and health. We can no longer say we have really private moments except in our house and how much information that YOU ALLOW to be exposed. Tools like Facebook, Google Plus (now defunct), Instagram, Snapchat, Tumblr, Flickr, WeChat, Twitter and all kinds of social media platforms have allowed us to do instant evaluation of ourselves and be constant show-men. We’re putting on a charade, a circus of sorts and Kardashianing our society to get instant feedback of things from food to cat pics, to politics, to clothing. Cameras are everywhere on your phone and laptops and tablets. There is no privacy and now we have Alexa devices and Echo devices and Google Home devices. As the move starring Woody Harrelson says, “It used to be that someone became famous because they were special. Now people are considered special just for being famous.”
As we enter a new world where decisions are made by tweets, and whatever things used to require phone calls are now executed by chat and phone calls have become virtually obsolete we have to ask ourselves what information is real or not. Have we entered an age were we have too much information and too much to consume? We can no longer separate fact from fiction and whatever one person sees or perceives as reality becomes reality. The was a phrase often used call “reality distortion field” and we may have gotten to a point where it is very hard to separate truth from fiction because we still look to major news media to “tell us truth” and what is happening in the world. We still hope to rely on newspapers and radio and news to tell us what is going on. However as with all media again you are being filtered through bias and a cross section a sound bite of what you want to hear and hope to see. And that’s the subject of this article.
Unconscious bias in news reporting
We at SWMedia have no fantasies about what’s going on in the news. Every outlet has bias and skews the news to a certain perspective. There are even infographics to tell you how “biased” the news is. And it’s just human nature and we aren’t robots and even if news could be done by robot it would be biased on who programmed the robot to give the information so no matter what news is always filtered by content and time and what words or censorable magic 7 words are allowed as comic genius George Carlin says. Everyone has conditioned programming and unconscious bias and you can’t completely eliminate but be aware of it and how you and others have to the world.
With recent reporting on the news you saw some outlets quick to show one side of the news without an opposing view and questioning why is this happening or is there another explanation. For example if there is a car crash was it one sided, or the other party at fault? Or neither or maybe it was a manufacturer’s defect or maybe there wasn’t really a crash. Or maybe someone put the cars there and made it look like a crash.
Deepfakes, agendas and rush to publish
Without us going into conspiracy theories, although that’s also a “view”. We need to be vigilant as consumers of technology of deep fakes, one sided or biased or views with one agenda and reporting one person’s views because there is NEVER just one view of a story. And we also have to be aware that what may be seen as rude might be just misunderstanding. Many a time I’ve seen circumstances were someone might have been seen as “rude” but just didn’t know better or didn’t have the proper knowledge or weren’t raised a certain way. Some people also have deficiencies in learning abilities that we should at least be aware and partially tolerant of and not be so quick to quantify as intentionally maligned or with ill intent. For example, a person forgetting to pay a fine might have needed the money for medical reasons and not intending to miss payment and just had health issues impacting judgment.
Censorship and filtering
The recent events if you are a protestor from overseas coming to our site you will see small articles here and there. Our site may be here many years or it might disappear off the Internet before it ever gets archived on some online time machine. So if you’re in France visiting or China or other countries as examples know that we know you are checking us out. Be smart. Know that you might not always have access to our information but you have your information and your views and you are going to have to “USE your brain” and “Think for yourself” as people are coming to realize and becoming awake. Our site may be blocked by entities or we may also moderate as per our content policies but you have to look for truth and stay woke for yourself and own knowledge and fight for information. Because information is at war and censorship impedes on the freedom to understand the world.
Revol 5: Social media + blockchain(?) + decentralization = uncensorable news
The fifth or so revolution is YOU. That’s why we have sites like YOUtube and Snapchat and now Facebook Video and Instagram. You are becoming your own content providers. YOU are becoming your own journalists and media providers. YOU are becoming your own Gutenbergs with all your tweets and snaps and Instagrams.
While many sites out there filter out content and sites can be blocked or tweets or news etc. News and information is decentralized. People can use messengers and any other radio transmissions etc to get information out and you all must keep tweeting, posting on Facebook and getting out the information even if one platform disappears another comes. And that’s what we want you to know.
Our site is not going anywhere intentionally but there are always site filters and bad actors not just for us but tweets, and news that’s censored in certain countries that don’t make “certain people” look good. And that’s why YOU must keep reading, making your own judgments, being smart and keep learning. You ARE the news. You are the events in the world. We cannot guarantee you live somewhere where someone will not agree with your views or even ours. And certainly we also have certain things we moderate as well so you cannot rely on any one source of news just like you can not rely on any one back up for you computer. If you do it’s like that funny commercial where you are putting a whole lot of faith in one deoderant to last your through a whole day.
TV broadcasts that only show 20 minutes of news, 6 minutes of commercials and 4 minutes of happy human interest stories is just one view of the world. Growing up many of us ate TV dinners and sat down in front of the TV and got scared and heard of bombs dropping, duck and cover drills and indoctrination and heard about foreign invaders when now we have 24/7 streaming weather and stock quotes and access to world news and markets. We have world radios. We have cable and internet. Do not live in a bubble and do not think that your content is the only truth. Ours is just one view also. DYOR. Do your own research folks.
And lastly. We found a quote somewhere which was probably a tweet saying that something to the effect that ‘when most of the news is misinformation and propaganda then they’ve done their job’. There are operations out there to confuse and misinform by “anti-news” organizations to keep you dumbed down and confused: uninformed and unintelligent. If anyone ever tells you there is only way to think, act or behave then you’re not free and awoke, you’re chained and anesthetized and might as well be sleeping through life because what you don’t know you’re still responsible for. You’re an adult right? Ignorance isn’t bliss any more and you can’t rely on being spoon-fed any more, not even the news. No one is going to think for you if you don’t start using your brain folks.
Read, learn, discern.