Thursday, 29 September 2011

Through A Glass Darkly...

I can't believe I'm quoting the Bible again but hey, you know I'll be out doing the Satanic shit later and as a title it seems apt for what I want to say.

I'm struggling to get to grips with XML or Extensible Markup Language, a set of rules for encoding documents in machine-readable form. I have grappled with HTML before and back in the day even fiddled around with Basic. At a certain point yesterday I was struck by a thought - what is the Internet? I tend to think of it as a kind of mesh linking computers but I suddenly realised that this wasn't good enough. What is an IP address? Why does it matter?

From there it was a downward spiral really. Last night I went for a cycle after the kids were in bed. It felt Summery but by the time I was out there it was pretty much dark already. I looked at the blinking stars. Aaaargh! The Universe is vast and I know next to nothing about it!

Then there's the world of finance. I don't understand that either. What seems straightforward to me (tax the Rich - spend money on Teachers and Nurses) is nonsense according to economists.

How do the tides work? It's not the water moving you know, it's the Earth spinning inside a watery layer that is constantly bulging around the middle. And they say the world isn't flat - bloody looks like it though eh?

Now they are saying the theory of Relativity may be wrong. Neutrinos! You were my friends.

I suppose we don't need to know a lot of this stuff. Just take the Apple Mac or the Windows operating system. You can use a computer without knowing much about it. But then what are we missing? Maybe if we did know a bit more about these things and didn't have to rely on other people to interpret the world for us so that we can understand it we could dispense with economists and other high priests altogether.

No comments:

Post a Comment