Kimon Valaskakis, the founder of the Groupe AssociÈ de UniversitÈs de MontrÈal et McGill pour l'etude de l'Avenir (GAMMA) think tank to which I belonged from 1970 through 1985, dates the need for a new world order from that meeting. He has founded an international think tank, The Club of Athens, to focus on global governance. The argument is that footloose corporations can use tax, pollution, employment havens around the world beyond the control of place-bound national governments. There is a need for international bodies with the power to prevent multinationals from destroying our planet. This is one of those "urgent, complex problems" (Page 10) which the tools created by Engelbart and his colleagues are designed to deal with. (Indeed, it is so urgent that other problems fade into variations of arranging the chairs on the deck of the Titanic and so complex that other problems are variations on seating people on those chairs.) |
My challenge is to give Kimon's phone number to Doug - 514 343 1456 (perhaps Thierry can call on his behalf since it's a local call) - and have him explain how his tools can solve Kimon's problem. Kimon will possibly have a deja vu to our attempt at GAMMA to help the Department of Communications of the Federal Government promote Telidon, their videotext system. Telidon, and the other variants on videotext promoted by other national governments, subsequently got swamped by the internet, of which it was an early clumsy precursor. Has Engelbart's oN-Line Systems (NLS) suffered the same fate? Or better has the NLS system now become more universally available? If that is the case, then the emphasis should shift from the machine (we've already got it) to the person.
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