vrijdag, augustus 05, 2005

Food for thought

Dear reader,

Did you know that if you want to buy a ticket for the train in Holland, then you can either buy that ticket @ a touch-screen ticket machine or go to the counter & buy it there. Since last year though, if you go to the counter, they do not only print you your train ticket but also an extra one for which you have to pay an additional 0,50 euro. They call it 'administrational costs' but the underlying thought is to force your inefficient ass to the machine next time you wanna catch a train - so they don't have to keep those expensive human beings on their payroll forever. So instead of 'administrational costs' I like to call it 'Inefficiency Fine'; They print you an extra ticket! One that specifically says 0,50 Euro. I mean: if you have the guts to bug a poor human being with something as futile as the purchase of a ticket, to whatever service for that matter, well then that's your call, but don't expect us to not say anything about it, you Inefficient System! 0,50 Euro, woohaha!! You should be happy we don't charge you 5,00 Euro's for this. Any idea what human beings cost to maintain? ... ... ...

Did you know that between 1995 and 2002 the U.S.A. lost 2 million industrial jobs, mostly to China? Did you also know that China, in that period, lost 15 million such jobs, mostly to machines?

Dìd you know that automation of farming pushed people into factories and that automation of factories is pushing people into service and that automation of service is pushing people into information tech and that automation of information tech will push people into symbiont groups and that automation of symbiont groups will push people beyong biology and that we will then be transhuman, whatever that means?

Am I confusing everybody again? Well, I can imagine! But anyways, the moral of the story is that I think ultimately, everything is about efficiency. I mean: when we discovered fire, why did we keep it? Not JUST because it was cool, I'd say. I'd say that it helped keeping us warm more efficiently and it helped us catch our food more efficiently, by allowing us to scare each & every animal's pants off by chasing them off a cliff with the fire on a stick. So if you ask me (who does? But that's the great thing about this virtual world, what do I care! :), every choice we have ever made, was essentially a choice towards greater efficiency...

... I mean, @ the 'beginning of days' each & every individual was surviving for him/her self. Then we figured out the concept of 'division of labor', so some people went hunting and others went searching for food. then we discovered that we could actually stay 'home' all day and simply grow the food from the ground up. Then we decided to extrapolate on that concept by doing the exact same thing, but by the millions; welcome to the age of empires! Ratata! The Greec, the Romans etcetera. Then we discovered things like alchemy and before we knew it we got scientific, which was handy cause now we could invent something called 'machines'. Food organization by the millions, but why do the hard labour ourselves? And so we build ever bigger and more efficient machines. But in order to operate the machines you need to pull all kinds of levers & stuff. Whaa, we don't wanna pull levers! So let's invent another machine that can operate the machines; we'll call it 'a computer'. But for computers to be useful we have to make them faster. And faster and faster. But then computers got so fast that it became difficult for the humans to operate them. All this typing & clicking! Whaa, we don't wanna type & click! So let's invent a way that we don't have to. And so the age of symbioses began. And from 'talking to' and 'being with' it went to 'merging with'. Cause this way things were more efficient.

The end.

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