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Will PF.com change the world?

  1. Aug 2, 2003 #1

    Ivan Seeking

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    The evolution of the internet now makes forums for discussion like this possible - for the average person - for the first time in history. Every time I begin to read these threads, I am struck by the “one world” aspect of our little community. It is so exciting to have discussions with people not only from all over the US, but also from China and other Asian countries, Great Britain, Holland, some ex-Soviet countries, Canada, Israel, some European and South American countries, Australia, New Zealand and many others.

    How, if at all, do you think this these new lines of nearly instantaneous communication will change human consciousness? Will it eventually make a difference in international politics? Are we as likely to war with each other? Is our concept of “neighbor” already changing? Could the internet [he asks whimsically] make us all one big happy family?

    I have long argued that the internet could make dictators impossible, war unacceptable, and that it could eventually lead to a true world community; where the nation state will finally serve no purpose. Isn’t a basis of any community communication? I would think this must change our perceptions of each other. I don't mean to ignore the economics, but with the advent of the international corporation, and then the multi-national conglomerates, the economics would also seem to be changing.

    Do forums like this qualify as a basis for a new world super-culture?

    I won’t push the point, but I feel that we are all participating in a fantastic experiment: The new community of Terra. I feel that this rates as a significant event in human history.
     
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2003
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 2, 2003 #2
    Who said we'd call the new world community Terra?
     
  4. Aug 2, 2003 #3
    Sorry, but the number one use of the internet today is religion (yes, it even beat pornography.) Physics does not even register in such surveys and in surveys of the american public it seems they support the sciences for pragmatic reasons but still refuse to believe in evolution or any number of other basic scientific theories and well established facts. Unless you can change the face of religion, forums like this will have relatively little impact on changing the world.

    What they are impacting is the nature of mass media. It used to be people looked to printed media, radio, and television to tell them about the world and then they could integrate this knowledge with their own worldviews. The internet has made all of this interactive. Now you can access the internet on your tv, without two thousand dollars of ham radio equipment and a license you can access any radio station in the world. For those of us who are touch typists, we can talk to people from around the globe for a pitance.

    These devolopments have both an up and down side as you might expect. As has been occuring for the last hundred and fifty years now, the world is changing fast. However, sometimes such rapid changes are to the detriment of humanity. As this process accelerates it is moving beyond the realms of what anybody can predict.
     
  5. Aug 2, 2003 #4

    Ivan Seeking

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    Whoops. I didn't mean this to be strictly within the confines of science. I really meant the entirety of communications technology.

    But what an exciting ride!
     
  6. Aug 2, 2003 #5
    Every advance in communication in history is generally a good thing once it's properly used. It's seems very unlikely even if there are a great number of "crazy people" but then I have fun here trying to plant ideas and weed out the bad ones from my own farm and personally could care less about the possibility of changing the common thought but if it's going to happen odds are in favour of free communication places like this or educational institutions with a variety of people(not skin tones) who like to think for themselves.
     
  7. Aug 2, 2003 #6

    Ivan Seeking

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    Terra

    \Ter"ra\, n. [It. & L. See Terrace.] The earth; earth.

    :wink:
     
  8. Aug 2, 2003 #7

    Ivan Seeking

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    Really this is funny. The two leading contenders for internet supremacy are good and evil!

    Edit: Would you happen to know, by how much is good defeating evil?
    The internet would have been a handy reference for Lot to have at Saddam and Gomorrah. It would have saved Lot a lot of trouble.


    Of course this technology should become common to all people. If nothing else, the voice translation software is getting better and better. I have even seen a device that does real-time translation between different languages; all by speech. I don't know how well it actually works.

    I have the impression at least when two cultures first meet we tend to expect war. Then, as the lines of communication are established, and as the two cultures become interdependent, eventually war leads to trade and commerce. I think many examples can be given where communication can be shown as the key to peaceful coexistence. Also, as an example, how can I wish to do harm against China when my good friend KL Kam live there?
     
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2003
  9. Aug 2, 2003 #8
    The idea that most problems are simply due to communications errors or a lack of intimacy is erronious. Habits are the end of honesty and compassion, the beginning of confusion to quote Lao Tzu. Such habits can be profoundly entrenched in a culture and require hundreds or thousands of years to excise. The internet may help to overcome any number of problems, but many of the more profound ones will have to wait until nature runs its course or technology catches up with them.
     
  10. Aug 4, 2003 #9
    Does PF.com change the world?

    Don't think so, but it is definately sure that the world changes PF.com!
     
  11. Aug 4, 2003 #10
    Will the internet (and PF.com) change the world? Well as I sit here banging out my lines that soon people from Malaysia,UK,Scotland,Sweden,Finland,holland, and who knows where else, will soon be reading, I say it already has.

    We all speak differnt languages, but the NET is the worldwide language. Wait, I think I just violated some copyright laws. Or at least made some money for long distance and greeting card companies:wink:
     
  12. Aug 5, 2003 #11

    megashawn

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    Not doubting you wuli, but it seems that the number of online gamers would out do both of these.

    They probably didn't even consider online gaming communities, but I'd be mistaken.

    Or did they consider online gaming a religion? That would definetly tip the scale. And to get good at say, Quake 3, you have to be devoted like its a religion.

    Anyhow, I agree with Ivan in many ways. I was so pissed when Mettalica started bashing napster, because Napster setup an online communtity around the world, and allowed people who never heard mettalica to hear the.

    Small example and somewhat off topic, but the point is that we are quickly becoming neighbors. With further tech advances, such as tele-immersion, which will allow seemingly real contact between individuals at most points on the globe, I think we will quickly become more united.

    I said something about this in the religion forum. This is one of the few places you can actually come and discuss things of the nature we discuss here. For example, it is impossible to have a decent conversation about religious in person with someone who is religous. Here, we can disagree, but we all get to make our points, sometimes step on toes, and still hopefully bandage the wounds.

    so yes, I think slowly, but surely, this site and others like it will change the world, to some degree.
     
  13. Aug 6, 2003 #12

    Another God

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    Well, this site has changed me, and I plan on changing the world, so my vote is with yes. pf.com will change the world :smile:

    A thought which occured to me the other day though: Imagine if they had the net around in the days of Socrates. I mean, if we could get an actual copy of all of the conversations that he had with all of his students etc, how good would that be? Just think, unless something happens which destroys several severs, and all of those CD's of PF1 and PF2 floating around the world (there are at least 2 copies of it here in Australia) then copies of these conversations will last long into the future. People will be able to look back on what we are saying, and they will be able to get an intimate look into exactly what it is that the average net nerd of the 21st century thought!

    :smile:

    I actually thought that that would be a really neat idea actually, if every 5 or 10 years or something, they get to two most well recognised representatives of every 2 opposing views in the world (ie: Idealism vs materialism, euthenasia vs not euthanasia, God vs No God, Evolution vs Creation, ...whatever, any major topic of contention) and these two representatives go to a website with a forum like setup, and each representative has turns to say what he wants, and reply to his opponent.

    We need to create a website www.WorldIssueForum.com or something a little more appropriate, and every 5 years, the foremost representatives of each field can battle it out, however they want, until they decide they can say no more. No one else can participate, but everyone in the world can watch. Every previous argument is stored in a database, on file for everyone and anyone to look at. And perhaps the public can even vote on who they think won the debate, and perhaps there is a forum connected to the 'Main Arena' where the public can comment and discuss what the "Professional" said.

    I really think this is one of the Best Possible uses of the internet (shortly followed by things like Blast search and Genbank, Hugo and the likes...)

    Does anyone think they could form a collaboration to create this website? I think it will work.
     
  14. Aug 6, 2003 #13

    Ivan Seeking

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    I was just discussing this idea with Zantra. I want to start an international forum much as you describe here. I was thinking of a little snappier [maybe cheesier] title, but I'm there. So is Zantra. The time has come. The technology exists right here; right now.

    Edit: I see an international forum open to all discussions about international relations and problems. Perhaps we could institute the first international democratic vote - an international will of the people on issues of war, peace, and prosperity.
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2003
  15. Aug 6, 2003 #14

    Another God

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    That won't work. The internet is still only available to a very limited range of people, in certain countries, with certain amounts of money etc...

    It's still an elitist situation.

    The idea I have expressed is simply an attempt to make a composium on long standing points of contention every...decade or so, and record the discussions in a way for everyone to see. Give the discussions complete freedom, and let them go wherever they want to.

    IN this way, not only is there a chance that some issues may find a degree of resolution, but in the future, the development of the debate can be looked back upon, and we can learn from the changes in Points of View.
     
  16. Aug 6, 2003 #15

    Ivan Seeking

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    Well, I support any idea that seeks to make the world smaller. However, considering the number of countries represented in this forum, I think we already have the ability to at least start an international discussion. This very discussion is an example of a beginning...oh ye across the sea. :wink:

    I say do it! Do many things! Let's change the world.
     
  17. Aug 6, 2003 #16
    The forums ARE changing the world. Just like everything else.
     
  18. Aug 6, 2003 #17
    Yeah, I've thought the same Ivan. And the cultures don't necessarily have to be all alike when we communicate well.

    As a sig, quoting myself, in another forum: With contraceptives against STDs and overpopulation, internet to communicate between the people all around the globe, maybe our world will turn out all right after all

    I am optimistic about the future, even tho I'm sure we'll gonna have our share of tragedies still.


    Discussions don't always have to be vs either though.
    Often I enjoy as much learning about a subject through equally searching with one another, questioning eachother and suplement eachother, instead of discussioning pro and contra.
    As in so many other way of dividing philosophy, that's one way.
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2003
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