Connecting the last billion. But should we?

[reading time: two minutes]

Today’s article is not the typical technological article. It is rather a provocative question over which I would be happy to deal with you, the reader.

Yesterday I had the chance to “chat” a little bit with Jared Diamond (here’s the link to his first talk about migrations ) about the issue of us, western civilisation, bringing our technology and our connectivity-based view of the world to rural populations.

Here’s the turning point: rural, not poor.

The interesting thing is that us, as a more technologically advanced society, feel the need to share our “successes” with the rest of the world, be it technology, medicine, literature, political and economic infrastructures, and so on and so forth.

In a sense, we have been spreading our culture, our values for “the betterment” of the rest of the world

But do we have the right to do so?

Don’t we risk “contaminating” otherwise uncontaminated rural societies?

Specifically here we are talking about connecting the last billion to the internet, giving them the powers (and the connected responsibilities and dangers) that come from it.

Are we sure that altering the course of otherwise independent societies is the best choice?

Where are we standing in the story of the titan Prometheus bringing fire to the otherwise technologically-incapable humans?

But most importantly, could it be that we perceive ourselves as the modern equivalent of these same gods that pondered whether or not this fire should be shared?

Get the latest technological updates every thursday here on Tech Stuff or follow me on twitter @carlostoppani.

Do you need more “space”? Join our Interstellar trip with International Space Sunday.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s