Jeffrey Sachs counts “eight distinct contributions of ICT to sustainable development.” From Chapter 13 of his 2008 book, Common Wealth:
- Connectivity: “Regions once separated from the flow of information are now instantly connected.”
- Division of labor: “Connectivity to information means the ability to participate in finely divided production chains.”
- Scale: “Messages go out over vast networks.”
- Replication: “Standardized processes can reach distant outlets instantaneously.”
- Accountability: “A technical platform for auditing, monitoring & evaluation.”
- Matching: “Bringing together remote buyers and sellers.”
- Bringing together communities of interest: “Group activities, social activism, coalition building and peer monitoring unimaginable just a few years ago.”
- Education & training: “Distance learning is now ubiquitous in countless informal ways, and will become the standard for much formal education and training as well.”
And he hasn’t even specifically referenced the smart grid stuff here yet.
I’m typing this on my iPad with the WordPress app. This was purchased with the strong cheerleading of my brother as a possible replacement for the laptop I was planning to buy. Plus being in san francisco i got swept up in the fervor.
Since the vast majority of my planned use will be to write and research and read, and to email, I’m going to see how this works for 2 weeks and decide whether to keep it. I certainly don’t want a device that’s going to discourage me from active reading and writing–it’s tempting enough to follow link after link after link.
1. Typing is surprisingly easy, but slower than my usual and I’m sure this can’t be good for my wrists, so I’ll get a Bluetooth keyboard too.
2. The inability to multitask is actually wonderful. One out of many ways this makes me focus: I’m forced to finish or halt reading a webpage before going to another, rather than leaving it open “to come back to” and finishing my day with 20 open tabs.
3. Because I don’t have an iphone, I’m having to quickly learn both a whole new way of physically interacting with a computer, and a whole new metaphor. No desktop and no files. This is no news to iPhone owners but it is a huge shift for me. Ps i think I would like to get an iphone now and catch up with my mom!
4. Being able to move around a webpage with my fingers — not to mention sitting on my sofa with my feet up and this light and literally cool device on my lap — makes web reading a huge pleasure and faster too. I’m reminded of Evelyn Wood speed reading method that involves brushing your hands across the pages or using your finger to guide your hand.
Things i’ll try shortly: reading a few chapters of Pride and Prejudice, watching a TED talk, and testing Evernote.