Sunday, March 05, 2006

Five Ways to Change the World

I am packing for a trip to the west coast this coming week, so this entry must needs be short.

In at least one previous blog I have lamented the demise of Whole Earth Review, which reincarnated itself briefly as Whole Earth Magazine before it finally faded away. That was a truly wonderful publication, each issue filled with fresh, challenging, and sometimes just plain profound ideas.

One of my favorites was a very short piece in the Winter 2000 issue that I enjoyed so much I copied the essence of it on to a file card for future reference. My card file is sort of like a huge, mad Tarot deck that I use as a kind of idea sifter and review of interesting thoughts. Something for another time.

The idea behind the article was "how to change the world", and the author Danny Hillis listed five ways one could go about this:
  • Impose your will upon the world
  • Discover a new truth
  • Change people's minds
  • Creat things of great beauty
  • Make new tools for change
When you put it that way, suddenly it seems much easier to change the world. And let's be candid here; being a Guerrilla Scholar is about changing the world. Every one of the things in that list are things that could easily grow out of the work of an independent scholar or amateur scientist.

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