Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Microstory 362: Environmental Awareness

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Regional Pride

I have many passions. I’m a writer, avid TV watcher, urban hiker, rugged backpacker, camper, photographer, dancer, singer, canoer (is that a word?), skier, and probably so many more things that I can’t even remember. Please note that I’m not an expert on all of those; really only the first five. But I’m also passionate about social issues; almost all of them. If you’ve read enough of these essays, you’ve probably seen how angry I am about the lack of gay rights (a.k.a. human rights). One issue I don’t know I’ve mentioned before is the environment. It really bothers me how much paper people use. Do you really need to print that out? Is it really easier to read, or do you just like killing trees? There are so many things people can do to make the world a better place, including staying virtual. Shove electric car prices down, and build charging stations up. Tear down oil rigs, install solar panels on every house, raise wind turbines, and pull up geothermal energy. Invest in 3D printers, advanced telepresence and virtual reality, and telepathy to eliminate traffic. For when we do need to get places, build hyperloops and precisely programmed driverless cars. Nanotechnology can assist with all these changes, but you know what will really facilitate it? Artificial general intelligence. Computers can make calculations with greater efficiency than any human. We saw one do it on the final chapter of Person of Interest. Sure, it was a dangerous machine that needed to be stopped, because it was killing people, but it was doing some good. In the right hands, ASI could solve all of our problems. I imagine a world with very few, and consolidated, cities. If we constructed buildings exceptionally high and close together, we wouldn’t need cars to get around. We would only need transportation to other cities while the space in between could be left to the wilderness. Yes, I said it. Destroy the cities of old, even the “historical landmarks”. The original historical landmark was Earth itself, and we were pretty excited to destroy that one. So why don’t we just get back to it. Wouldn’t that be beautiful?

Sexual Propagation

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