cibercultura , literatura , sociedad Miércoles, 19 marzo 2008

Arthur C. Clarke sobre las OLPC

arthurcclarke.jpgLeyendo los varios homenajes de la cholósfera al primer hombre del siglo XXI, fallecido ayer, me topé con un artículo de Clarke publicado en Forbes el 2005. (No, no es “de verdad” un texto sobre los impulsores de la OLPC -call me Caradura-, pero bien que se aplica. Nuestros ingenuos geeks locales deberían leerlo y repensar su apoyo a ese extraño proyecto del tricampeón ministro Chang.)

El artículo se llama Join The Planetary Conversation, y termina así:

There is always the danger that technological tools can distort priorities and mesmerize decision makers into believing that gadgets can fix problems. A computer in every classroom is a noble goal–provided there is a physical classroom in the first place. A multimedia computer with Internet connectivity is of little use in a school with leaking roofs–or no roof at all.

We need to ensure that information and communications technologies are not only accessible but are also affordable. I have seen how some Sri Lankan schools have the hardware and software and yet can’t connect to the Internet because they can’t pay the phone bill. About a third of transistor radios in Africa are not regularly used because their owners can’t buy new batteries. (This inspired British inventor Trevor Bailey to develop the wind-up radio.)

The information age has been driven and dominated by “technopreneurs”–a small army of “geeks” who have reshaped our world faster than any Alexander, Napoleon or Genghis Khan could.

And that was the easy part. We now have to apply communications technologies to save lives, improve livelihoods and eventually lift millions of people out of squalor, misery and suffering.

In short, we should move our focus from the geeks to the meek.

Y el artículo es del 2005, no del año pasado. Ese era Clarke.