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Old 28th August 2011, 04:25 PM   #1
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Default The largest Lost and Found department.

It occured to me that Mother Earth might be a huge lost and Found Department.
We loose knowledge over time ( Atlantis etc. ) and keep Finding (rediscovering / inventing !) lost knowledge.

However in this generation those that chance upon them "patent them" and acquire "wealth" which is what people in this age are taught to die for.
It also appears to make life miserable for most of them !
And the "wealthy" seem to have no escape from miseries either.....just different from those of the 'masses'.

So what would happen if there was no patenting and that everyone could earn a comfortable living no matter how smart they were ?
Possibility of .....peace and harmony and great mental development for each person ....no matter how small it might be for some ? Would Mankind move ahead faster ?

PS. This doesn't mean we don't gain new ground every generation but we do keep falling down and getting up again and again and loose precious time !
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Old 28th August 2011, 04:55 PM   #2
FrankWW is offline FrankWW  Canada
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Yes, but don't forget that 90% of everything is crap, or at least mediocre, so losing knowledge might not be a bad thing, altogether. Makes room for new stuff....

Patents are the result of value placed on innovation which has led to the world's remarkable increase in standard of living over the last 300 years. It used to be that innovation was not at all a respectable thing and the value now placed on it is a very recent thing.

I think it's probably better to have the usual human problems and be rich than suffer them and be poor......
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Old 29th August 2011, 12:25 AM   #3
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You do understand that for all humanity currently alive on earth to share equally in the world's wealth would require that we all lived with dirt floors don't you?
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Old 29th August 2011, 12:33 AM   #4
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From the Boston Globe, "The world's average income - total world income divided by total number of people - is about $7,000. Still, only about 19 percent of the world's population lives in countries with per capita incomes at least this high.
Countries with an average income near $7,000 include Mexico, Chile, and Latvia. They rank about 40th in the global income table.
As of 2005, people living in rich countries had an average income of about $35,000. The high incomes in these countries make the world average income four times larger than the world median income, which was $1,700 that year."

Mike
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Old 29th August 2011, 01:25 AM   #5
FrankWW is offline FrankWW  Canada
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It's not the income of any particular person that matters but the direction it's taking. Since 1800, incomes in the Western world have shot up from about $3/day to $130.

For the previous thousands of years it was $3/day, or less.

This increase in well being is now happening at an even faster pace in the rest of the world.

This sudden and remarkable recent and continued change must have to do with change in attitude since economic tools such as markets and money were always available to us.

I agree with Deirdre McCloskey about this

Deirdre McCloskey, Distinguished Professor, University of Illinois at Chicago

I think Ashok is right in that it's always a good idea to look around and rummage about in history -McCloskey's book is a good example - but I still would claim that losing a lot of the past knowledge doesn't really have a bad effect since most of it was probably rubbish or not applicable today.
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Old 29th August 2011, 02:12 AM   #6
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anyone claiming Atlantis as lost knowledge loses credibility with me straight away...
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Old 29th August 2011, 03:01 AM   #7
FrankWW is offline FrankWW  Canada
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aardvarkash10 View Post
anyone claiming Atlantis as lost knowledge loses credibility with me straight away...
Origins of those tales probably came from the explosion at Santorini. But the known origins of the tale are from Plato who was telling a parable and he tended to make stuff up for for his own ends....

But, prior to Plato's time there was some kind of catastrophe in the Mediterranean and folk tended then to tell stories for effect. They didn't see history quite the way we do.

Atlantis - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Ashok's point is an interesting one.

Edit: Plenty indeed has been lost:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Library_of_Alexandria

Last edited by FrankWW; 29th August 2011 at 03:05 AM.
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Old 29th August 2011, 03:58 AM   #8
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Great to read these posts.
I think more can join in.
I didn't use the name 'Atlantis' as a real example as we still don't know if there was a 'real' Atlantis but just to say that some old civilisations were lost who did have 'some advanced ideas'. They were advanced compared to what we knew say 200 years ago.
Frank is right, many developments should 'get lost' as they aren't any good or cause a lot of bad side effects. In a 100 years the present hydrocarbon guzzling automobile will be ( should be !) gone and replaced with something more environment friendly. What about discarding " all weapons of destruction". Might stop 80% of monetary waste globally !

Taking a back seat and looking at the Globe I'd guess that we aren't doing it right at all ! Microscopically looking all's well. Wonderful food, homes, armchairs,automobiles, TV's , medical developments etc., at least for a small percentage of humans !
But I keep wondering how it would be if we lived a different way.

Be born, have a confirmed education ( no exams etc.!) confirmed job , food to eat , roof over the head , no personal cash , only public transportation ( efficiently designed!) etc. etc. Maybe Utopia but could it be possible ? Aren't we intelligent enough to implement such a scheme ........or it's still beyond us? Of course even if it is possible it couldn't possibly happen in the next hundred or so years !

We need to remember that many 'luxuries' are that ,just because of the way we look at it. And because of the 'way' we live we make many things to attract people to buy them even if it isn't really required.....and certainly wasteful on raw materials. Maybe we really don't need over 90% of the things we make. But that's how life is at the moment.

We are most certainly a very interesting group of living beings that would interest any other sane civilisation to 'watch' and try to understand. I wouldn't be surprised if they had a tough time doing that !
AND with all the meaningless violence and ceaseless production of weapons of mass destruction , they certainly would NOT want to sit amongst us and do their 'observation'. Guess they would aslo like to preserve their lives !

Cheers.
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Old 29th August 2011, 04:56 AM   #9
FrankWW is offline FrankWW  Canada
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ashok View Post

Taking a back seat and looking at the Globe I'd guess that we aren't doing it right at all ! Microscopically looking all's well. Wonderful food, homes, armchairs,automobiles, TV's , medical developments etc., at least for a small percentage of humans !
But I keep wondering how it would be if we lived a different way.
The number of people whose lives are improving is accelerating and the number who have a good standard of living is actually quite large.

Quote:
Be born, have a confirmed education ( no exams etc.!) confirmed job , food to eat , roof over the head , no personal cash , only public transportation ( efficiently designed!) etc. etc. Maybe Utopia but could it be possible ? Aren't we intelligent enough to implement such a scheme ........or it's still beyond us? Of course even if it is possible it couldn't possibly happen in the next hundred or so years !
It sounds like a disaster if it were to be implemented because it would have to be imposed. Where such utopias have been attempted, they've ended in tears.

The vast improvement in world living standards over the last 300 years and particularly since WW2 was, for the most part, unplanned. It came about due to innovation in response to specific problems and due to the unplanned creativity of individuals.

Quote:
We need to remember that many 'luxuries' are that ,just because of the way we look at it. And because of the 'way' we live we make many things to attract people to buy them even if it isn't really required.....and certainly wasteful on raw materials. Maybe we really don't need over 90% of the things we make. But that's how life is at the moment.
That's how life has always been. Do you actually need tables and chairs, cutlery, art, heated bathrooms? Men make things and invent things and some of them become necessities because life's a lot better with them than without.
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Old 29th August 2011, 06:28 AM   #10
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Yes Frank, you are quite right about all the things you say.

However we still haven't the faintest idea about how to do it differently and still have all the comforts we want to have ( maybe in a different way ? ) without all it's negative issues.

So I was suggesting that one should try to come up with a way that it might be done. We needn't actually do it or impose it . "Imposing" such a life style would be disastrous as it would go against the concept of free will. That would certainly fail.

I will not agree that "most humans on Earth " have a comfortable life. Far from it. Some certainly do and those are mostly in financially advanced countries. Taking a peek at non Western countries and 'living' there for a month as the locals do will be very educative.
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