Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The Species of 21st Century, Not evolving and Illiterate

The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.” is a great quote by Alvin Toffler, but I learnt of it in a recent eGov seminar at Guwahati, sponsored by NASSCOM and DIT during the capacity building presentation of Ms. Deepa Sanger of NeGD, and the quote was on the last slide, and “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent; it is the one that is the most adaptable to change.” is another great quote by Charles Darwin,   which I could locate on the very first slide of the presentation. 

That left me wondering, how come the 21st century has got more than 90% of the educated guys actually illiterate, and equally strong number not fit for survival. Unfortunately, the organizers concerned who made the presentation also seemed to belong to this category of "unfit for survival" and "illiterate of 21st Century" kind; but I am thankful to Deepa Ma'm for giving me new insight.

I also learnt another word from my wife, Rachna, who is doing research on Carbon and Ecological Foot Print. The word is "Footprint". The bigger the footprint, the worse it is for society's survival. I could very easily relate it to the kind of footprint Microsoft is having in our pigmy minds that we are not able to come out of its shadow, rendering ourselves totally illiterate and unfit for survival. In all IT conferences I keep meeting members of such species in hordes, including the organizers. If the top educated echelons of the IT fraternity cannot switch over from Microsoft, and need thousand and one excuses for not using Free Software, God also probably cannot help (as He helps only those who help themselves)!!!

After having understood the meaning of each word of the two quotes mentioned above, I have come to this conclusion that if one cannot change over from Microsoft to Free software, one should count oneself as Illiterate of the 21st Century and should consider oneself a member of the species that are "Unfit for survival". 

Do you really want to get classified yourself as such, please think twice, nay ten times, nay many times. Alvin Toffler cannot be wrong, and Charles Darwin can never be wrong.  Please do not force me to say who is wrong, that would be quite impolite of me. 

Good luck, please switch over to Free Software...

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