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Supercomputer Earth
 The Future of Civilization
     (& Africa's part in it)




     December 4th 2008, Goethe-Zentrum Windhoek, Namibia
     Christian Heller ( http://www.plomlompom.de )
The last 500,000 years
   speech, language (500,000-50,000 years)
   graphical symbols, writing (35,000-5,000 years)
   abacus, library (5,000-2,500 years)
   printing (1,500-500 years)
   digital computing machines (350-150 years)
   real-time telecommunication (150 years)
   computer networks (40 years)
   world wide web (15 years)
“Internet map”
Source: Wikimedia Commons / Matt Britt ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Matt_Britt )
( http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Image:Internet_map_1024.jpg )
License: Creative Commons Attribution Generic 2.5
( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.5/ )
Evolution of the Web / Web 2.0
   participation made easier, standardized
    −   usability standards, friendly design
    −   standards for data formats & interconnections
   more ways and new scales of participation
    −   anyone can publish, comment on, edit, rate, name,
        tag, sort, link anything anywhere anytime
   wiring massive user input into intelligence
    −   “people who bought x also bought ...”
    −   new intelligence methods as business models
Sections from
                                      “LOGO 2.0”
                                by Ludwig Gatzke
         ( http://flickr.com/photos/stabilo-boss/ )

 Licensed under Creative-Commons-BY-NC-SA
http://flickr.com/photos/stabilo-boss/93136022/
http://flickr.com/photos/stabilo-boss/101793493/
Some techniques & examples
   uploading media ....... YouTube.com, Flickr.com
   open source design ................ SourceForge.net
   wiki .............................................. Wikipedia.org
   feeds ................... Blogspot.com, Bloglines.com
   social networks .......................... Facebook.com
   social bookmarking & tagging ........... del.icio.us
   crowdsourcing ................................. MTurk.com
   anything ......................................... Google.com
Twitter.com
Growth of the global supercomputer
   thinking brain matter
    −   more humans, more intelligent brain matter
    −   growing % flows into global intellectual enterprises
   artificial information storage & computing
    −   Moore's law
    −   improving problem-solving algorithms
   synthesis
    −   wiring up growing intelligences of brain & machine
    −   extend intelligence network to other matter
“nabaztag”
Source: Flickr / David Haberthür ( http://habi.gna.ch/ )
( http://www.flickr.com/photos/habi/288065866/ )
License: Creative Commons Attribution Generic 2.0
( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/deed.en )
Everything interfacing everything
   new user interfaces
    −   from keyboards to touchscreens
    −   from joysticks to accelerometers
    −   from mouses to direct neural interfaces

   the internet of things
    −   mobile devices
    −   GPS (Global Positioning System)
    −   RFID (Radio Frequency Identification)
“Reigh's Brain rlwat2b”
Source: Flickr / Reigh LeBlanc ( http://www.flickr.com/photos/reighleblanc/ )
( http://www.flickr.com/photos/reighleblanc/1372175973/ )
License: Creative Commons Attribution Generic 2.0
( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/deed.en )
Supercomputer Earth at work
   physical production
    −   open source 3D printing; RepRap.org
    −   extend to future nano assemblers
   energy
    −   intelligently self-organizing energy grids
    −   centralization vs. decentralization
   biotechnology
    −   crowdsourcing science; InnoCentive.com
    −   Freeman Dyson: bio-engineering kits for every child
“'Paradigm Shifts for 15 Lists of Key Events”
Source: Wikimedia Commons / Ray Kurzweil ( http://www.kurzweilai.net/ )
( http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Image:ParadigmShiftsFrr15Events.svg )
License: Creative Commons Attribution 1.0 Generic
( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/1.0/ )
Development models
   Teilhard de Chardin
    −   Noosphere, Omega Point
   Ray Kurzweil
    −   Accelerating Change
   Vernor Vinge
    −   Technological Singularity
Africa's part?
“leapfrogging”
   jumping directly into newest technology
    −   by-passing older forms
    −   avoiding certain intermediary problems
    −   avoiding the burden of old infrastructure

   examples & opportunities for Africa
    −   internet adress space: IPv6
    −   decentralized, alternative energy
    −   wireless telecommunication
“'SMS till you drop' -- mobile phone ad on van in Kampala, Uganda”
Source: Flickr / FutureAtlas.com ( http://futureatlas.com/blog/ )
( http://www.flickr.com/photos/87913776@N00/305425495/ )
License: Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic
( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/deed.en )
Mobile telecommunication in Africa
   explosive growth
   original, unexpected uses

   examples for use
    −   collective use of devices & pre-paid credits
    −   information & help services via SMS
    −   micro finance / banking via SMS
Africa's Supercomputer support
   acceleration through leapfrogging
   technological ideas through special situations
   unexpected contacts
   crowdsourcing potential?
   solar energy?
Links
   Wikipedia.org on “Web 2.0”, “Technological
    Singularity” and just about anything else
   InternetWorldStats.com
   “The Impact of Mobile Phones in Africa”
    −   http://commissionforafrica.org/english/report/background/scott_et_al_background.pdf

   JanChipchase.com
   Ubuntu.com

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Supercomputer Earth: The Future of Civilization (& Africa\'s part in it)

  • 1. Supercomputer Earth The Future of Civilization (& Africa's part in it) December 4th 2008, Goethe-Zentrum Windhoek, Namibia Christian Heller ( http://www.plomlompom.de )
  • 2.
  • 3. The last 500,000 years  speech, language (500,000-50,000 years)  graphical symbols, writing (35,000-5,000 years)  abacus, library (5,000-2,500 years)  printing (1,500-500 years)  digital computing machines (350-150 years)  real-time telecommunication (150 years)  computer networks (40 years)  world wide web (15 years)
  • 4. “Internet map” Source: Wikimedia Commons / Matt Britt ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Matt_Britt ) ( http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Image:Internet_map_1024.jpg ) License: Creative Commons Attribution Generic 2.5 ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.5/ )
  • 5. Evolution of the Web / Web 2.0  participation made easier, standardized − usability standards, friendly design − standards for data formats & interconnections  more ways and new scales of participation − anyone can publish, comment on, edit, rate, name, tag, sort, link anything anywhere anytime  wiring massive user input into intelligence − “people who bought x also bought ...” − new intelligence methods as business models
  • 6. Sections from “LOGO 2.0” by Ludwig Gatzke ( http://flickr.com/photos/stabilo-boss/ ) Licensed under Creative-Commons-BY-NC-SA http://flickr.com/photos/stabilo-boss/93136022/ http://flickr.com/photos/stabilo-boss/101793493/
  • 7. Some techniques & examples  uploading media ....... YouTube.com, Flickr.com  open source design ................ SourceForge.net  wiki .............................................. Wikipedia.org  feeds ................... Blogspot.com, Bloglines.com  social networks .......................... Facebook.com  social bookmarking & tagging ........... del.icio.us  crowdsourcing ................................. MTurk.com  anything ......................................... Google.com
  • 9. Growth of the global supercomputer  thinking brain matter − more humans, more intelligent brain matter − growing % flows into global intellectual enterprises  artificial information storage & computing − Moore's law − improving problem-solving algorithms  synthesis − wiring up growing intelligences of brain & machine − extend intelligence network to other matter
  • 10. “nabaztag” Source: Flickr / David Haberthür ( http://habi.gna.ch/ ) ( http://www.flickr.com/photos/habi/288065866/ ) License: Creative Commons Attribution Generic 2.0 ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/deed.en )
  • 11. Everything interfacing everything  new user interfaces − from keyboards to touchscreens − from joysticks to accelerometers − from mouses to direct neural interfaces  the internet of things − mobile devices − GPS (Global Positioning System) − RFID (Radio Frequency Identification)
  • 12. “Reigh's Brain rlwat2b” Source: Flickr / Reigh LeBlanc ( http://www.flickr.com/photos/reighleblanc/ ) ( http://www.flickr.com/photos/reighleblanc/1372175973/ ) License: Creative Commons Attribution Generic 2.0 ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/deed.en )
  • 13. Supercomputer Earth at work  physical production − open source 3D printing; RepRap.org − extend to future nano assemblers  energy − intelligently self-organizing energy grids − centralization vs. decentralization  biotechnology − crowdsourcing science; InnoCentive.com − Freeman Dyson: bio-engineering kits for every child
  • 14. “'Paradigm Shifts for 15 Lists of Key Events” Source: Wikimedia Commons / Ray Kurzweil ( http://www.kurzweilai.net/ ) ( http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Image:ParadigmShiftsFrr15Events.svg ) License: Creative Commons Attribution 1.0 Generic ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/1.0/ )
  • 15. Development models  Teilhard de Chardin − Noosphere, Omega Point  Ray Kurzweil − Accelerating Change  Vernor Vinge − Technological Singularity
  • 17.
  • 18. “leapfrogging”  jumping directly into newest technology − by-passing older forms − avoiding certain intermediary problems − avoiding the burden of old infrastructure  examples & opportunities for Africa − internet adress space: IPv6 − decentralized, alternative energy − wireless telecommunication
  • 19. “'SMS till you drop' -- mobile phone ad on van in Kampala, Uganda” Source: Flickr / FutureAtlas.com ( http://futureatlas.com/blog/ ) ( http://www.flickr.com/photos/87913776@N00/305425495/ ) License: Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/deed.en )
  • 20. Mobile telecommunication in Africa  explosive growth  original, unexpected uses  examples for use − collective use of devices & pre-paid credits − information & help services via SMS − micro finance / banking via SMS
  • 21.
  • 22. Africa's Supercomputer support  acceleration through leapfrogging  technological ideas through special situations  unexpected contacts  crowdsourcing potential?  solar energy?
  • 23. Links  Wikipedia.org on “Web 2.0”, “Technological Singularity” and just about anything else  InternetWorldStats.com  “The Impact of Mobile Phones in Africa” − http://commissionforafrica.org/english/report/background/scott_et_al_background.pdf  JanChipchase.com  Ubuntu.com