Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Google Wave, Paradigm Shift and the meaning of life

We all tend to believe the world "is" the way we "understand" it. Through learning, our brain creates mental maps which help us to interpret our perceptions and act accordingly. Such maps, become what we experience as "natural", and they can be so powerfull, that they can even hide the "real truth" liying in front of your eyes.

I've read once that certain philosophers believe for instance that native americans simply couldn't see a person on top of an animal when they first saw the spanish riding horses. Their "mental map" told them to expect a feathered god-snake coming from the sea, and that's exactly what they saw when Francisco Pizarro showed up.

This natural incapacity to see the actual truth is called "Paradigm Paralysis". We are so emotionally biased that we simply don't allow ourselves to see the real (uncomfortable) truth.

Anyway, finally some enlightened person rethinks a few things and then eureka! Now we can measure the volume of irregular objects and jewlers can no longer cheat the rich. Eureka! That's exactly how paradigm shifts feel like.

Well, today when I saw the "Google Wave" demonstration, I felt I was whitnessing a paradigm shift happening right in front of my eyes. A singularity in IT history comparable to Gutemberg's print or the invention of Internet itself. Check for yourself...

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