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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:22 
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Kovacs Caprios wrote:
we develop Mil R&D between wars, but they then get tested in a very very harsh environment sometimes to destructions.

We would probably end up with the same net product but it could take longer as there is not a need for it.

For example - passenger planes don't need to break the sound barrier, as the speed is not such an issue. Concorde was the only one and it was never replaced, but teh military war engine, produces fighters that can fly further and faster

You are completely missing the point.


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:23 
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What point am i missing?

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:25 
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markg wrote:
myoptika wrote:
As Zardoz alludes to, I don't think most of the slaughtered were the Einsteins of this world. :(
Um, I think it might have been a rare moment of sincerity. Or maybe not, I'm not sure.


It was actually.

You don't think there was a handful of clever chaps in all those millions Myps?

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:25 
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myoptika wrote:
As Zardoz alludes to, I don't think most of the slaughtered were the Einsteins of this world. :(

No - but out of the many millions that were killed, there could have been just one or two guys there that could have seriously changed the shape of the world.

Dammnit Hitler, we could have had flying cars by now!

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:27 
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Very true. Think of all the great innovations of weaponry that were invented by soldiers. Now, imagine if there hadn't been a war and they could have used that creativity for peaceful purposes.


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:30 
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I agree that the technology would likely have been invented at some point anyway, but in a war* there is such pressure to get the upper hand technologically speaking that the inventions/discoveries are made so much sooner - especially things that give a big advantage to the only side that possesses them - because there is a such a huge impetus to develop advanced tech, and a large price to pay for falling behind.

And the knock-on is that eventually these things are adapted and peace-time uses found for them.

*And the space-race too.

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:31 
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MetalAngel wrote:
Very true. Think of all the great innovations of weaponry that were invented by soldiers. Now, imagine if there hadn't been a war and they could have used that creativity for peaceful purposes.
Mmm, perhaps. Or perhaps they'd be working at Gillette trying to cram nine blades onto a razor, because that's what sells.

Does anyone have any proper citations for this "war spurs innovation" theory? I've seen it bandied around, and can see how it might be possible, but I've never read any serious books about it.


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:31 
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Kovacs Caprios wrote:
What point am i missing?

Well you are talking only about military technology and completely ignoring what other advances might have been made were it not for the wars. I was just challenging this blanket assumption that I often hear repeated which states basically that due to two world wars and despite the widespread death and destruction that took place we are definitely further ahead with technology than we otherwise would have been. At best I think it's completely unfounded, but still possibly true however I more strongly suspect that it's absolute bollocks.


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:32 
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Making their dreams become reality? Tch, have you seen what the youth get up to today? A spell in the army would do them the world of good! *Foams at mouth*
:hat:

Anyway.

I manged to finish my first storytime just in time for the two minutes silence. Cue a lot of mums and me sitting silently while kids run amok, and the autistic lad who comes in asking for a big bag of felt-tips. Not easy.

All Quiet on the Western Front is an amazing film. Paths of Glory is also a must see, and will make you genuinely angry when you see it.

Apparently the bloodiest warfare in WWI was before the trenches got dug, the fastest slaughters being armies just running at each other in big fields and gunning each other down. The French lost 6,000 dead in a day to that, wearing their bright blue uniforms with jaunty red felt caps. Took them a year or so to finally get round to replacing them. Seeing the photos of the French generals was chilling too, all of them crusty old near-senile men. The French system rewarding those with the 'correct' political views, and actually hampering anyone with talent and connections to the troops. Good job they learnt their lessons in time for WWII, though, eh?

Nearly one in five French soldiers died in WWI. One in two were injured. A terrifying ratio.

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:33 
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The Space Race! If the Cold War hadn't existed, would we have been clamouring so hard to reach the moon? Whether you think it's a worthwhile endeavour or not, landing on the moon was a fucking astonishing achievement.

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:35 
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Oh no, I think it's awesome but I'm only challenging the blanket assumption, not every spurious example that's used to support it.


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:36 
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I'ma greeing with KC on this one, war does promote the massive injection of resources into new technologies, as they are suddenly in great demand and needed ore then, then if they were in peaceful times.

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:37 
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markg wrote:
Kovacs Caprios wrote:
What point am i missing?

Well you are talking only about military technology and completely ignoring what other advances might have been made were it not for the wars. I was just challenging this blanket assumption that I often hear repeated which states basically that due to two world wars and despite the widespread death and destruction that took place we are definitely further ahead with technology than we otherwise would have been. At best I think it's completely unfounded, but still possibly true however I more strongly suspect that it's absolute bollocks.


I did get the point, not miss it.

A lot of civilian tech has been increased because there was a need for it in military life.

The www was utilised with military, before it is the thing we know today.
Mobile technology, sat phones, gps all required with military use, which pushed on the civilialn use.
4x4 the humble landrover and jeep all needed for rought terrian and such the military adoped and avanced.
Radar for civilian jets....
the jet engine, the prop engine.

al because the military have a more disposable income than the civilain counter parts

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:39 
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markg wrote:
Oh no, I think it's awesome but I'm only challenging the blanket assumption, not every spurious example that's used to support it.


A massive amount of civilian applications of technology come from initial military investment, that's definitely true (teflon is an oft-quoted example). Whether we would be more or less advanced right now without the military expenditure of the 20th century? Well, I suspect any answer would be sheer speculation.

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:39 
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markg wrote:
Oh no, I think it's awesome but I'm only challenging the blanket assumption, not every spurious example that's used to support it.


Fair enough. I think we could go round in circles on this one, as we'll never really know.

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:40 
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nervouspete wrote:
Apparently the bloodiest warfare in WWI was before the trenches got dug, the fastest slaughters being armies just running at each other in big fields and gunning each other down. The French lost 6,000 dead in a day to that, wearing their bright blue uniforms with jaunty red felt caps.


The Eastern Front never really settled into trench warfare, and the losses there were huge for that reason - 100,000 joint killed and wounded in a couple of days in the Battle of Kraśnik.


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:42 
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War has led many technologies to bare fruit far quicker than it would during peacetime. Yes.

BUT LIKE MARKG KEEPS SAYING WE WOULD HAVE OTHER ZOMGY TECH IF WE HAD LESS WAR AND MORE INTELLIGENT PEOPLE ALIVE WORKING ON AWESOME STUFF.

Right?

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:42 
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myoptika wrote:
The Space Race! If the Cold War hadn't existed, would we have been clamouring so hard to reach the moon? Whether you think it's a worthwhile endeavour or not, landing on the moon was a fucking astonishing achievement.


It was. And you're right, it probably wouldn't have happened, at least not for a long time, without the second world war rocket tech and the cold war incentive.

But personally, I'd rather be living in the 80s, tech-wise, and not have had the 2nd world war and the cold war - and maybe still have the moon landings to look forward to. Perhaps we'd have poured the resources used for the Manhattan project and the moon race and all the military spending into developing energy sources which don't destroy the planet, and stuff like that.

That would kind of imply humans not being humans though.


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:44 
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I'm completely in agreement, kalmar.

I wouldn't want those horrible suits with shoulderpads, though.

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:45 
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They'd certainly be restrictive for your chubby little arms Myps.

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:45 
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Zardoz wrote:
War has led many technologies to bare fruit far quicker than it would during peacetime. Yes.

BUT LIKE MARKG KEEPS SAYING WE WOULD HAVE OTHER ZOMGY TECH IF WE HAD LESS WAR AND MORE INTELLIGENT PEOPLE ALIVE WORKING ON AWESOME STUFF.

Right?


your right of course..... but who would fund it?

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:45 
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Kovacs Caprios wrote:
markg wrote:
Kovacs Caprios wrote:
What point am i missing?

Well you are talking only about military technology and completely ignoring what other advances might have been made were it not for the wars. I was just challenging this blanket assumption that I often hear repeated which states basically that due to two world wars and despite the widespread death and destruction that took place we are definitely further ahead with technology than we otherwise would have been. At best I think it's completely unfounded, but still possibly true however I more strongly suspect that it's absolute bollocks.


I did get the point, not miss it.

A lot of civilian tech has been increased because there was a need for it in military life.

The www was utilised with military, before it is the thing we know today.
Mobile technology, sat phones, gps all required with military use, which pushed on the civilialn use.
4x4 the humble landrover and jeep all needed for rought terrian and such the military adoped and avanced.
Radar for civilian jets....
the jet engine, the prop engine.

al because the military have a more disposable income than the civilain counter parts

But anyone would struggle to say either that progress is stalled right now or that the progress that is taking place is being driven mostly by the military. Technology is currently moving at a rate quite unlike anything ever seen before. Perhaps this age might have come sooner and perhaps more people would embrace it rather than just viewing it with weary caution were it not for all the wars.


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:46 
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Kovacs Caprios wrote:
Zardoz wrote:
War has led many technologies to bare fruit far quicker than it would during peacetime. Yes.

BUT LIKE MARKG KEEPS SAYING WE WOULD HAVE OTHER ZOMGY TECH IF WE HAD LESS WAR AND MORE INTELLIGENT PEOPLE ALIVE WORKING ON AWESOME STUFF.

Right?


your right of course..... but who would fund it?

Who is funding it right now?


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:46 
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rolled up sleeves.... duh, it is the 80's

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:47 
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myoptika wrote:
I wouldn't want those horrible Amstrads, though.


FTFY


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:48 
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So markg's stance has changed from 'I don't believe that war has accelerated technological advance' to 'Think about what we could've accomplished if there weren't any wars?!?!?'

Just checking. ;)

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:51 
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You're going to have to explain the inconsistency there. I believe both that war has impeded progress and that we would have achieved more were it not for two world wars that wrought death and destruction on a hugely significant scale.


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:54 
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markg wrote:
Kovacs Caprios wrote:
Zardoz wrote:
War has led many technologies to bare fruit far quicker than it would during peacetime. Yes.

BUT LIKE MARKG KEEPS SAYING WE WOULD HAVE OTHER ZOMGY TECH IF WE HAD LESS WAR AND MORE INTELLIGENT PEOPLE ALIVE WORKING ON AWESOME STUFF.

Right?


your right of course..... but who would fund it?

Who is funding it right now?


Normally government and private, but there is not a need to step up tech yet, as the military do not need it.

Do we know what the military are R&D ing now as i am sure as hell it is secret... :)

We will just have to see what comes out of the latest sets of wars :)

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:56 
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At Glasgow Queen St. Station there's an old soldier who sells poppies. Great guy, I've nearly missed my train a few times talking to him.
He hasn't been around anytime I've been up this year, I hope he's alright :(

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 14:57 
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markg wrote:
You're going to have to explain the inconsistency there. I believe both that war has impeded progress and that we would have achieved more were it not for two world wars that wrought death and destruction on a hugely significant scale.


No, it's just the fact you've gone from saying that it's complete speculation that wartime accelerates tech, then when we've come up with examples you've come up with your own spurious theories.

It's quite amusing as we're not going to agree on this, and as there's no way of proving it one way or another we should probably give it up.

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 15:01 
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Craster wrote:
A massive amount of civilian applications of technology come from initial military investment, that's definitely true (teflon is an oft-quoted example).
Uhh, PTFE was discovered by accident. The guy was trying to make a new CFC coolant and the stuff polymerised inside the pressurised containers into PTFE, ruining the equipment. He then tried all kinds of solvents to get it out, and couldn't, and remarked to his colleague "man, this stupid stuff is impervious to all the reagents I can... hey, wait a minute!"

Quote:
Whether we would be more or less advanced right now without the military expenditure of the 20th century? Well, I suspect any answer would be sheer speculation.
What we need is a time machine so we can alter history and then we'll know. It's a genius plan, nothing can go wrong. "Time will tell! Sooner or later, time will tell!"


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 15:02 
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Heavy Metal Tough Guy

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I think it's reasonable to say that wartime can hugely skew the direction that research is taking. No one would have spent tens of billions on rocketry and nukes without WWII and then the Cold War, but more might have been spent on more civilian research.


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 15:05 
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guns were 'cool' before wars. People still built bombs before they had a reason to blow anything up. Give a kid a stick and they'll hit something/someone with it. Humans are violent animals. I'm not in a good mood


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 15:05 
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Kovacs Caprios wrote:
Normally government and private, but there is not a need to step up tech yet, as the military do not need it.

What? There's not a need to "step up tech"?! What the hell planet are you living on? One that isn't melting under your feet I assume.


Quote:

Do we know what the military are R&D ing now as i am sure as hell it is secret... :)

I'm sure it'll be extremely bad for you, whatever it is.

Quote:
We will just have to see what comes out of the latest sets of wars :)


What good technology came out of the Vietnam war? Or the Falklands?


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 15:06 
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AceAceBaby wrote:
I think that wearing the poppy and having the silence is important. You can argue that rat faced mouth breathers of today or ten year's time won't understand the reason for them, but if, in 100 years time, enough people are asking, "Why are we wearing these poppies and having this silence?" then the reasons will be remembered.

If you take the line that these things are just meaningless gestures, and insist on removing them, then there won't be something to remind people, except a determination to keep the memory alive. We can't tell if that works too well- for every event that it didn't, we don't remember it.

I'm guessing that most young children don't know why we have Bonfire Night. I think everyone comes to learn the part of history it commemorates, though. Who would care about a handful of Catholic terrorists hundreds of years later? You can argue that we shouldn't remember the 5th of November, but the success, in terms of the national memory, of Guy Fawkes Night, is something to bear in mind for the potential success of the poppy and silence of remembrance.


Very much :this:


Also, I see where markg is coming from. I think that with the loss of so much life and with scientific research being bent in one direction, there's bound to be stuff we miss out on. The question of whether we gain more from having the scientific advancements that come through a heavily invested military ethos is one that just won't have a simple answer.

Apart from in human terms, coz killing millions of eople is A Bad Thing.

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 15:06 
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vietnam really pushed the helicopter into the future. Falklands.... penguin repellent?


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 15:07 
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myoptika wrote:
markg wrote:
You're going to have to explain the inconsistency there. I believe both that war has impeded progress and that we would have achieved more were it not for two world wars that wrought death and destruction on a hugely significant scale.


No, it's just the fact you've gone from saying that it's complete speculation that wartime accelerates tech, then when we've come up with examples you've come up with your own spurious theories.

It's quite amusing as we're not going to agree on this, and as there's no way of proving it one way or another we should probably give it up.

Ah ok fair enough, it's just I so often hear it stated as fact that last two world wars advanced technology. My hunch is that the opposite is true, except for some very specific areas. My evidence for this is what is going on with technology right now and what was going on before WWI kicked off.


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 15:09 
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What? There's not a need to "step up tech"?! What the hell planet are you living on? One that isn't melting under your feet I assume.


Oh what do you mean...

Of course our tech will improve in time as an evolution as it normally does.


I am sure the falklands allowed GPS advancement.. i could be wrong

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 15:10 
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baron of techno

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markg wrote:
My evidence for this is what is going on with technology right now and what was going on before WWI kicked off.


They had airships and electric cars and steam trains back then. Now we don't.


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 15:25 

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davpaz wrote:
vietnam really pushed the helicopter into the future. Falklands.... penguin repellent?


The Falklands taught us that we were going to need a better long-term conventional-payload delivery system than the Vulcan, given our hit-rate on port Stanley airfield. We also learned a thing or two about Thatcher, and that if sovereign territory is ever agian occupuied, we need only take the local telcom exchange and phone round everyone's houses, asking them how many of the occupying forces can be seen outside their homes :)

As for the weekday silence - I think it is a recipie for disaster, a bloody-minded car crash of a pointless microcosm of the sort of attitudes that cause wars in the first place. You've the people who don't care (and whose right not to care people died for in the first place) and the ones who really, really do... and the poor fuckers caught in the middle who just want to observe or get on with their jobs according to whichever is the path of least resistance. If you want to observe it in a shop, lock the doors and stop pretending that people read signs. They don't. Unplug the phone or take a break in the callcentre. I used to avoid this issue every year working in banks and so on by going for a shit at two minutes to eleven. There was always some degree of problem somewhere in the office. And in call centres, you can be twenty minutes into a call with an irate customer - and can ask them to shut up for however many minutes it is this year, or keep going and piss off your colleagues! Lose/lose - and so I lose interst in the whole affair. If everyone was going to observe it, fine - but not nearly everyone is, so let's not cause strife with it, eh?

And yes, they have the Remembrance Sunday thing specifically to avoid this problem. Personally I have a great deal of feeling about the whole war business, which I consider in my own way and in my own time. Mass observances of anything exist to display one's feelings to others and to get the feeling that others are with you in what you feel. I require neither in my life. Nor will I make a noise or do anyhting to interrupt a silence if I'm caught by one.

Poppy fascism is an incredibly damaging thing as well - listen to this Vine episode from last frinday - 33-34 minutes in - there's two teachers debating whether poppies should be compulsory in schools - the poppy fascist probably just scared a hundred parents off enrolling their kids in his school.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b0 ... _07112008/

Seriously, this guy is scary!


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 15:28 
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I'm going to risk weighing in on the technology debate. I think ultimately that war has advanced technology. I am not convinced that batallions of physics geniuses died in trenches- this seems to forget that our society was (is) obnoxiously snobbish. The average Tommy never had any hope of a university education, no matter what his inate potential for science and engineering. The boffins were put to work for the military, and the desperate rush to crack codes brought us colossus. ENIAC, the world's first programmable electronic computer, was commissioned by the US Army in the middle of WW2 for the purpose of calculating artillery firing tables.

What you may want to think about is the situation today- put aside hypothesising how many potential Nobels died under artillery fire 60 or 90 years ago, and think about how many are doomed to a life of petty crime, drug abuse, or low wage labour, purely because they don't have the advantage in life to waft into higher education. Shouldn't we be doing more to promote science and engineering in schools, offering more support for children in deprived areas? Making higher education better, and more accessible for everyone?

We're not exactly inundated with global slaughter right now, so why aren't we doing these things?

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 15:41 
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AceAceBaby wrote:
think about how many are doomed to a life of petty crime, drug abuse, or low wage labour, purely because they don't have the advantage in life to waft into higher education. Shouldn't we be doing more to promote science and engineering in schools, offering more support for children in deprived areas? Making higher education better, and more accessible for everyone?

We're not exactly inundated with global slaughter right now, so why aren't we doing these things?[/color]


It's a good point but not really related to whether we're currently in a war or not. And you could also argue that we certainly are doing those things, a lot more so than we were in the 30s and 40s.

During WW2, was there a big education push at school level? Quite the reverse happened, what with evacuations and the need for troops and factory and farm workers and everything else.

The Bletchley Park stuff went on with the best boffins we had at the time. But the fact that we had them in the first place I don't think was anything to do with the war. Perhaps they were in fact a product of the elitist academic world that we had back then, and don't have now?


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 15:45 
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Goatboy wrote:
Poppy fascism is an incredibly damaging thing as well - listen to this Vine episode from last frinday - 33-34 minutes in - there's two teachers debating whether poppies should be compulsory in schools - the poppy fascist probably just scared a hundred parents off enrolling their kids in his school.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b0 ... _07112008/

Seriously, this guy is scary!


Kids nowadays have no respect! Let's make them wear a small paper flower, that'll fix them!

I wear a poppy, but making young kids wear them without them knowing why is a total waste of everyone's time.

Also, that guy has an incredible irritating voice.


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 16:30 
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Basically the Beeb and the UK film industry need to invest cash and talent into making the ultimate WWI movie / TV series with a big release. With really good actors, script and a long gestation period. Nothing chocolatte box, nothing trite and no obvious ticking of "Ho ho! I'm a patriot and slightly effete officer. GURGLE SQUB!" - "Don't worree sir, I'm cheery working class cocknee, I am, and I'll pull you out of this hole in this 'ere shrapnel blizzard, showing war as the great leveller an' all that. GURGLE SQUB SPLUTCH SPLUTCH MERCY!"

How can we deliver a picture of what it was like without a decent portrayal to show them? The last time I blubbed over fiction based on WWI was that Doc Who 'Family of Blood/Human Nature'.

Also, they should read 'Charley's War'.

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 16:37 
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nervouspete wrote:
Basically the Beeb and the UK film industry need to invest cash and talent into making the ultimate WWI movie / TV series with a big release. With really good actors, script and a long gestation period. Nothing chocolatte box, nothing trite and no obvious ticking of "Ho ho! I'm a patriot and slightly effete officer. GURGLE SQUB!" - "Don't worree sir, I'm cheery working class cocknee, I am, and I'll pull you out of this hole in this 'ere shrapnel blizzard, showing war as the great leveller an' all that. GURGLE SQUB SPLUTCH SPLUTCH MERCY!".


:this:

If all you knew about WWI came from TV / Films, you'd tink it all took place in one boggy corner of a field in France, apart from a couple of short interludes when we sent some Aussies to die in Gallipoli and then one man rode a camel around the desert. WWII films are being constantly made still, and there are huge chunks of WWI that have barely been touched by mainstream English speaking popular culture as far as I can see. The Eastern Front, the Italian and Balkan campaigns, Palestine, Mesopotamia, Africa, all the various Naval scraps. It could be awesome, if done with the budget of something like Band of Brothers.


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 16:39 
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kalmar wrote:
The Bletchley Park stuff went on with the best boffins we had at the time. But the fact that we had them in the first place I don't think was anything to do with the war. Perhaps they were in fact a product of the elitist academic world that we had back then, and don't have now?

That's my point. All this wondering about where we would be technologically, if not for war, seems to assume we didn't/don't have a hatefully elitist academic system. And again, any geniuses blown up in trenches, from the fact that they ended up enlisted men, means they almost certainly would never have had any opportunity for research or study even if there were no war. They would have been contracting lung disease in coal mines instead.

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 16:42 
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My point is that it isn't just the geniuses who are needed in order to make progress. Put it this way I'm sat here typing into this computer because millions and millions of other people were willing to buy such a device. If half of those people had been killed in a war a couple of decades ago things might have been different.


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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 16:44 
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markg wrote:
My point is that it isn't just the geniuses who are needed in order to make progress. Put it this way I'm sat here typing into this computer because millions and millions of other people were willing to buy such a device. If half of those people had been killed in a war a couple of decades ago things might have been different.


Those words wouldn't be reaching any of us if it wasn't for the military-funded ARPANET though, so it's swings and roundabouts.

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 16:44 
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Or the first "proper" computer being designed purely for artillery control.

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 Post subject: Re: 11.11.11
PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 16:48 
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markg wrote:
My point is that it isn't just the geniuses who are needed in order to make progress. Put it this way I'm sat here typing into this computer because millions and millions of other people were willing to buy such a device. If half of those people had been killed in a war a couple of decades ago things might have been different.


Yes but the western world changed how it did things... manual labour stopped and every thing office based.

The advancement of the mainframe then the PC changed how people interacted with each other.

The WWW, internet and office automation pushed that progession too. But the computer is only one sort of advancement. Could it be the comms were advanced to allow writen orders and reports to get to the front line... etc

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