Archive | December 2012

Future of Education

Bored-in-class2-300x225Grow up. Go to school. Learn. Go up a year. Learn. Go up a year. Graduate. Learn how to do a job. Do the job. Retire. Die.

We shouldn’t have to keep doing this constantly for generations. It reminds me of a factory assembly line. Kids being pushed through in batches, built up for a job and then off to work. But it’s what our governments do to our children. They put them through school to learn jobs to keep up the economy. Once you finish high school, you may be one of the lucky ones to get a scholarship, or have wealthy parents to pay for the extortionate university fees. Some even join the military to get educational benefits, like myself, to help towards getting a degree.

Let’s start with the University degree. How useful is it now? Are employers looking at them as much as they used to? It seems not. Most employers are now Read More…

The Answer to World Hunger?

800px-Ueberladewagen_(jha)Food. It’s one of our basic needs for life next to clean air and water. Why has hunger been such a problem? People around the world are dying of starvation and malnutrition whilst people in rich countries are dying of over eating and obesity. How can we as a species deprive people of a basic necessity? The problems we face in the world in regards to food are droughts, flooding, disease, and overpopulation. There just doesn’t seem there will be enough food or land to grow the food on for 10 billion people in 2050 (where it is projected to plateau at). How are we going to cope?

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3D Printing, Manufacturing and Recycling

Spinning_Jenny_improved_203_MarsdenIn the 18th century in Britain, we welcomed the first Industrial Revolution with the mechanisation of the textile industry. Instead of having workers weave all the threads and clothes by hand, we had machines to do it all. The second Industrial Revolution could arguably be the use of coal steam to work the machines and led to mass production and the assembly line. Now, we are seeing the beginnings of digital manufacturing seen in 3D printing. People are able to start producing electricity at home and manufacture at home however and whenever they want. Welcome to the third industrial revolution!

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Planned Obsolescence

CarbonfilamentIn the late 1890’s, a manufacturing plant called Shelby Electric Company based in Shelby, Ohio, produced a 4 watt lightbulb with one main goal in mind. Sustainability. They wanted to make the perfect lightbulb. A lightbulb that would last forever. They wanted to share this with the world. It’s called the Centennial Light. It currently resides in a fire department in Livermore, California and the bulb is still fully functional and still shining. The irony is that it has outlasted all of the lightbulbs in the department as well as several webcams. How is this possible? Surely as technology increases we would have lightbulbs that lasted forever! Why do some only last a couple thousand hours? During the rise of the 20th century, lightbulb manufacturers were beginning to stagnate. No one was buying lightbulbs because the ones they previously bought were still working and there wasn’t a need to buy anymore. The manufacturers had to come up with something to protect their businesses and to keep selling more. In December of 1924, Philips, General Electric, Osram, and others got together and created the Phoebus cartel. It stated that lightbulbs had to have a maximum lifespan in order to ensure repeat business. Lightbulbs that were claimed to last forever were now reduced to 1,000 hours. The manufacturers had to devise a way to make their products weaker. They had to make sure they would break or die after a certain point. This was the beginning of Planned Obsolescence.

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Unemployment. Should we be worried?

lotsofworkersPfluegender Bauer 1933 / Foto - Ploughing Farmer 1933 / Photo -

Employment today is the only means we have in order to receive money so we can live a desirable life. The money we receive pays for necessities such as food, water and housing and also pays for the luxuries we desire. So if we happen to lose our jobs, we won’t have a way to pay for such things. What happens then? Should we be worried about being unemployed?

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