‘Just in case’. How many times have we been told that?
‘Ever since being a kid’ would most likely be the reaction of a fair proportion of us. Thank God for mums who insisted we she should take our raincoats to school, ‘just in case’.
Seriously though, apart from physical contingencies such as a first aid kit or fire extinguisher, the ‘just in case’ scenario can be taken to extremes in the ‘case’ of hoarders. ‘I might need it one day’. Yeah, right.
We’re all guilty of this sin. Not that it was our fault. We were taught this.
Our education system has and in many ‘cases’ still is, based on the principle that learning needs to be a memorising process. Remember this, ‘just in case’ you need to know it.
This ‘walking encyclopedia’ mindset has now arrived at it’s nemesis in the form of ‘singularity’.
‘Singularity’ is the term given to the point in time when artificial intelligence equals human intelligence, of course some would argue that it happened long ago in their demographic.
The internet is our modern library of knowledge and with search engines, that knowledge is now accessible by anyone on the planet. We don’t even have to know where to find it anymore.
So what’s this got to do with the price of fish, in any ‘case’?
It is impossible to retain all the knowledge necessary for us to function in this modern world. We have become dependent on machines to the point that we are largely powerless without them. This is not necessarily a bad thing as long as we have a redundancy plan for system malfunctions.
Last weeks post on this website was ‘lost’ as the website host restored from a latest backup which was taken before the post was published. C’est la vie, one would have to have a ‘mirror’ database to avoid this sort of thing happening at some stage. Yes, it would be prudent to make separate backup copies of everything valuable, it shows how trusting we have become but also how increasingly reliant we now are due to time constraints and pressures.
Fortunately, it was just one post that went west, the rest are all there. Small losses are sustainable, it’s a different story to losing a whole website, which can happen.
The reason the Internet came into being was to provide resilience and redundancy for the armed services computer communications. If one part of the system went down, then communications would reroute themselves through other parts.
We also need this flexibility in our approach to modern problems. If on the one hand we don’t find a solution, we need to look ‘on the other hand’ and be resourceful.
QED, I rest my case.