[conspire] NYLXS Press Release on the OLPC Project

Christian Einfeldt einfeldt at gmail.com
Thu May 1 22:57:17 PDT 2008

On Sat, Apr 26, 2008 at 11:13 AM, Ruben Safir <ruben at mrbrklyn.com> wrote:

> An operating system is more than a commodity.  It becomes the looking
> glass that develops how the user thinks and it literally shapes
> the mind of it's users.

I agree with this statement.  I think that the Debian pool or the RPM pool
as implemented in package managers like Synaptic teach people in concrete
ways about the viability of a code commons, and the importance of enhancing
that commons.

> A system which is at it's core designed to
> disenfranchise users from the learning experience,

Another good point.

> One interesting scholarly article on the topic which is archived at
> http://www2.mrbrklyn.com/resources/technology_changes_how_we_think.txt
> by Robin Wilson explores how the Gutenberg printing printing press causes
> an explosion of mathematical usage and development, and how a large part
> of that was developed by the standardization of mathematical symbols
> for universal communication and expression.

Knowledge and wisdom are social goods.  We, as a society, pay heavily for
armed, uneducated young men (and occasionally women) who have no stake in
the society.  We need to get young men and women socialized to expect that
they have a future.  There are a lot of nihilists with guns out there who
expect that they will be dead by age 25.  An Internet connection is not a
panacea, but it is a step in the right direction.
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