Thursday, August 23, 2012


Convergence: The merger of previously distinct technologies into a new form; requiring new theories, new products, and new practices.

Residing on top of a never ending stream of bits, the cost/benefit impact of convergence entities driven by tech and science on nearly every aspect of civilization, looms ever larger with no end in sight as seen by this short & incomplete list of convergence tidbits courtesy of BRT.

  • Voicemail
    Benefits: Only to organizations who use it. computer companies, government, big business. 
    Costs: To everyone who has to endure it. Your call is important to us
  • Fracking
    Benefits: Quick increase in energy production.
    Costs: Environmental degradation to the extreme.
  • Banking - The WS kind
    Benefits: Convenient way for depositors to handle money.
    Costs: With no risk the norm, thanks to tech, bailouts and government collusion, corrupt investing instruments have bankrupted the world. derivatives, credit default swaps
  • The Net
    Benefits: The knowledge engine of the world and... the last bastion of freedom in the world.
    Costs: Loss of privacy.
  • Education
    Benefits: Without it, society cannot advance, period.
    Costs: Education, as it stands now, is under siege because of 1. Enormous costs and
    2. The disruptive power of the net.
  • Food Production
    Benefits: Without it, man dies and... once you have your first truly organic tomato, you will never want to eat any other kind. :)
    Costs: Frankenfoods, thanks to agribusiness, government compliance and tech, is becoming the new normal.
  • The Body Politic
    Benefits: Needed as a means to govern a group of people.
    Costs: Getting elected is the only prerequisite for any politician to govern.
  • The Press
    Benefits: Without a viable press, there is no democracy.
    Costs: News is Network writ large.
    I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take it anymore! - Howard Beale
  • The Body Politic II
    Benefits: To the power elites.
    Costs: It's all about the money no matter the cost.
  • Religion
    Benefits: A convenient way to explain the unknowable.
    Costs: Prejudice, intolerance & ignorance.
  • Tech
    Benefits: Leverages science, business & education in innumerable ways.
    Costs: Tech has no morality. It's a tool able to be wielded with skill or stupidity depending on who's doing the wielding.
  • Science
    Benefits: Designed to be disproved, it's the best way to learn how reality actually works.
    Costs: Like tech, how scientific research is used determines the kind of impact it will have
    on civilization.
  • Medicine
    Benefits: The next 10 years, thanks to biotech, AI and robotics, will change medicine in ways unable to be imagined.
    Costs: The profit motive could kill medicine. See the US Healthcare system to see why.
  • Fossil Fuels - Oil & Coal
    Benefits: Oil is an amazing energy resource without question due to it's energy density, portability and ease of handling while coal is plentiful in countries like the US and China.
    Costs: Peak Oil has arrived. There are no cheap sources of fossil fuel energy left. That plus pollution and CO2 greenhouse gases indicate the end of the road for fossil fuels is nigh.
  • Alternative Energy Production - Wind, Solar & Wave
    Benefits: The tech is getting better, especially solar.
    Costs: Generating enough of this resource to meet the world's needs will be difficult at best.
  • Finance
    Benefits: Without the mechanism of finance in some way, shape or form, civilization cannot conduct business in any way, shape or form.
    Costs: Fiat money, created from nothing and backed by nothing, is not sustainable. See Europe and the US to see why.
  • The Status Quo
    Benefits: Happy motoring had it's day with cheap fuel and bountiful resources.
    Costs: Happy motoring, with it's creation of suburbia and destruction of the environment, has created an unsustainable modality of living that doesn't auger well as society moves further into the 21st century.

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