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Looking at the Present with eyes on the Future

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One of the most powerful survival tools in the arsenal of the human mind is adaptation. The world is constantly changing, with new dangers as well as new opportunities around every corner. Without our ability to adapt, we would not have survived as long as we have. Modernity has not changed the importance of our adaptability, but it has shortened our sight in long run. I have blogged before about the importance of dream and fiction as variables that mold our future, but they can also enlighten us to the status of our present.

There is only one scene in the theatrical release of the film where we see Jake mourning the loss of his brother at his cremation. In the extended re-release there is speculation that we might see more of Cameron's Earth, but we will not know until it comes out later this month. Regardless, the entire movie is built around the premise of a decaying and wasted planet that we left in search of more resources. I think that this was a powerful tool used by Cameron because in our minds we did not need to see Earth in the film, because we saw it when each of us left the theater.

A friend of mine recently got the iPhone 4, and I was amazed how quickly technology had progressed in my lifetime. I remember being a young kid pretending that there were communicators and video-watches. Now we have phones that can video chat with our friends at any time. The internet went from a barely used computer application to one of the most innovative, dynamic and useful facets of our entire society. Unfortunately, even a tool as incredible as the internet is used for pointless consumerism, wasting time, perversion, and even crime.

These things may seem mundane to us, because adaptation has helped us accept the world as it is, where we spend hours on our phones texting friends we could see face to face if we just travelled but a few minutes, where we waste millions of dollars on useless things we don't need, where there is a constant bombardment of advertisements in all facets of our lives. The excessiveness of our age is beyond anything of past generations because it is intangible. We live in the Information Age, so it makes sense that our largest wasted resource would be information. Look at the kids of today's generation: they grow up without maturing, they are smarter but without any intelligence, they live entire lifetimes in cyberspace without ever really living.

On a larger scale, we have adapted to modern society but without any improvements. We live in a time of jealousy of the past because the problems of the world are only compounding upon each other because they arise faster than we can solve them. It has been said that man's reach exceeds his grasp, in that we create the future before we have a firm hold upon it, and it ends up owning us. We do not need to shorten our reach but rather increase our grasp. The future should never be a surprise to us because after all, we are the ones who make it. I am not technophobic. I merely respect that fact that history has taught us: most tools across the ages have often been turned into weapons. The stone-knife, the bow and arrow, dynamite, nuclear power. All share the same beginnings as tools to better our future, and each in turn became the bane of our existence. Do not make the Information Age repeat the mistakes of the past.

It's been some time since my last blog, but I have been increasingly busy over the last month. I am happy to be back at the keyboard. Irayo Willofeywa 17:42, August 10, 2010 (UTC)

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