Technology and Massive Dialogue

There has been much discussion on this blog about the changing nature of space; the way that we can extend the environments that we are in in order to bridge geographic boundaries.

Another theme that is related, and that I will expand further on in due course, is the idea that technology allows you to extend the range and scope of the conversations that we have. We can include more people in the conversations that we have, and to the extent that we do that, we can get to know others that are located at  distance from us, develop a consensus on how to deal with problems with these people and so on.

The following is a great example of what is happening.

THIS PROCESS IS A GREAT EXAMPLE OF HOW TECHNOLOGY CAN BE USED TO BRIDGE BOUNDARIES AND BRING TOGETHER PEOPLE FROM AROUND THE WORLD THAT HAVE A COMMON INTEREST IN ADDRESSING THE CLIMATE CHANGE ISSUE!

Okay, we finally have a venue set for the Mass Dialogue session on Dec. 10th. It will held in the IRMACS theatre (ASB 10905, from 9 to 11 am.

Here’s a spiel from Amber to get you started, and below that is my own synopsis of what I think will happen, based on the larger pdf document that I’ve attached below. The documents below put together by Amber provide a good about of background (helped me a lot!). Please send info as far and as wide as you can, and ask them to RSVP to amber.church@gov.bc.ca.

On December 10, 2008 join youth from across BC as they connect with the youth delegation at the United Nations Climate Change Meetings, COP 14, in Poznan, Poland.
Young people across the province will gather together at schools and municipal buildings to hear an update of the international negotiations from youth working on the ground in Poland, to have their questions answered, and to find out how BC youth can help make a difference to the outcomes of COP 14. Youth unable to gather at the hubs throughout BC will be able to join the live videoconference through their home computers. This event is part of the Mass Dialogues, a program that will see 35,000 young people around the world connecting with youth at COP 14 to engage on the issue of climate change and create positive change.

The format will be something like this:
9am – we make the connection with the Poznan people and establish communication.
9-9:05 am – People arrive.
9-9:30 – participants learn how the question process is going to work.
9:28 am – 2 minute warning from Poznan
9:30 am – Moderator introduces and welcomes attendees, we have a brief video of ourselves shown worldwide (It will be a few seconds).
9:35 – Moderator introduces the session and the panelists in Poznan.
9:45 – Panel discussions begin – moderator poses his/her own questions to the panel of judges. During this time, SFU participants (and people around the world) write their questions on paper and give them to the SFU moderator, who types them into the Poznan moderator, who selects questions for the next section.
10:15 – Moderator begins to ask questions selected from Mass Dialogue participants. If you question is selected, you come up to our microphone and when ask it live.
10:45 – Thanks yous and session ends.

FAQs:
Who is a youth? Someone under 30.
Do I have to be an expert on climate change? NO. You have to be a youth. Prepare if you want, or just come and learn.
Will I be on camera? The whole group will be for a few seconds at the beginning. But if your question is selected your voice will be heard.

Who Am I?

I just updated my Who Am I page and decided I might as well post it…

The question as to who I am is difficult to answer, but since I raised the question I’ll have to give it my best shot!

  • I reside in Vancouver, Canada
  • I am a prolific writer of all sorts of stuff; prose, poetry and lots of philosophy
  • I am working on completing a Master’s in philosophy
  • I am an aspiring percussionist
  • Prior to entering the Master’s program I ran a company called Catalyst Capital Partners, Inc. that provided financing and strategic advisory services for early stage technology companies.
  • Prior to that I was a stockbroker at a major Canadian investment bank.
  • I have an undergraduate degree in physics
  • I am an explorer of people, ideas, places etc.
  • I am deeply committed to the idea of community; as that which is the basis for personal identity and therefore is constitutive of who we are. There is no sense in which we can understand ourselves independently of the community within which we are situated.

How does all of this relate to this blog, you ask?

Good question… As you might be able to gather from the many twists and turns in my path, I am not someone that is motivated by easily definable societal roles. I don’t view success in terms of ‘making money’, ‘getting a good job’, ‘having a nice car’, etc. I am in search of something more fundamental – to try to understand what people really need. What is it that will satisfy us in a much deeper way.

At this point I don’t want to digress too much. I will leave the more spiritually related thoughts to another blog. Suffice it to say that along the path that I have been walking I have participated (as has anyone that is reading this blog) in the extremely rapid evolution of the internet as a social force. I have invested in technology, raised money for technology companies, advised clients to invest in technology companies, read countless research reports and so on. In doing so I have come to the conclusion that the EVOLUTION OF THE INTERNET WILL HAVE A MUCH BIGGER SOCIAL IMPACT THAN PEOPLE REALIZE!!

This seems like a strange thing to say because there is no doubt that people realize (to a large extent) the social impact that the internet is having. I, HOWEVER, FEEL THAT PEOPLE DON’T FULLY APPRECIATE THE ROLE THAT THE INTERNET PLAYS IN THE CONSTRUCTION OF IDENTITY AND COMMUNITY AND THE CONSEQUENT ROLE THAT THIS WILL PLAY FOR THE FORMATION OF NEW SORTS OF COMMUNITIES – TRULY GLOBAL COMMUNITIES!

In forming truly global communities it becomes possible to solve global problems; war, famine, poverty, climate change etc.

Don’t be dissuaded by the grand vision. Just keep reading and respond directly to what I am saying. If you think that I am wrong please be specific in telling me why this is so.

Peace and Love.

Suresh

The Beginning

Hello! That seems like a good place to start. I have commenced this blog in order to communicate ideas on a range of topics. I am currently a doing a Masters in philosophy with a concentration in philosophy of mind. This is a very broad topic area, but encompasses study of consciousness, mental states, language and many other things.

I decided to return to school after many years in the private sector because I felt that my greatest contribution to humanity would not be realized in blindly pursuing material wealth. During my latter years in the private sector I acted as an investment banker, providing financing and strategic advisory services to early stage technology companies. It is during this period that it started to become apparent to me that the world that we live in today is much different from the world that our ancestors lived in, and that the way that the world is different makes possible global change in a manner that was not even conceivable in the past.

This is so because due to advancements in the technology infrastructure, it is now possible to create a GLOBAL COMMUNITY. With the creation of global community it becomes possible to resolve LARGE SCALE GLOBAL PROBLEMS such as climate change, poverty, famine and so on.

I am attempting to synthesize all of my ideas in a book entitled FIXING THE WORLD.

Admittedly all of this sounds grand and utopian and I certainly expect you to challenge this assertion…

However, as you mount this challenge, I hope that you will attempt to understand what I am saying.

I should also like to point out that, from a more practical perspective, I am interested in specific organizations (private or not-for-profit) that are contributing to the solution. Hence, I am developing a database of such companies. You will note that the blogroll consists of links to many of these companies. If you see any that you think would be of interest, please let me know as I would love to add them to the list.

Suresh