on the surpassing of the real by the virtual

The New York Times reports on a McKinsey & Co report that the greenhouse gases emitted to power data centers are becoming a major source of global warming. By 2020, McKinsey suggests, data centers will surpass the airline industry in that respect. 

Meanwhile, scientist James Lovelock, the inventor of the Gaia hypothesis, suggests that ethical consumerism and current green industry practices will do nothing to delay the inevitable world-changing climate and that this will occur by 2020 if we’re lucky. 

And so, the real may yet be surpassed by the virtual, only not in the way that we always thought…


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the man who saved the world

Outside of our usual sphere of coverage, but nevertheless worth thinking about. In 1983 the world nearly came to an end. At the Russian equivalent of NORAD, alarms sounded indicating that the United States had launch a missile strike against the Soviet Union. In fact, it was faulty technology. But the effect would have been the same, if not for Stanislav Petrov’s intuition and refusal to follow orders blindly.

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