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When Technology Fails Us All

Sometimes we are gifted with amazing technologies that can change our lives for the better. Sometimes these new technologies are so advanced and different to what we are accustomed to, we can not fully benefit from them. We try to use these new tools in the same way we used their predecessors. We cling to methods that are rooted in inferior, antiquated channels.

 

Here is a true story that illustrates this. Only the names have been changed to protect the innocent.

 

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For as long as anyone could remember the inhabitants of two villages, we?ll call them A and B, had been quarreling with each other. This feud had gone on so long that nobody even remembered the cause of it. Some said it was about stolen livestock, others attributed it to the abduction of a wife, or perhaps a daughter. The old and wise of both villages said that at bottom it was all about territory, property and wealth like everything else.

 

In any case, the animosity between the two villages never abated, the arguments, which no one was clear about, could never be resolved, and the opponents remained constantly at war which each other.

 

These were poor communities who certainly couldn?t afford the burden of constant warfare, and over time a convention had evolved: a truce was observed throughout the year with the exception of one appointed day when the men of each village would meet at a field designated for the purpose and fight tooth and nail from dawn to dusk.

 

And tooth and nail is not a far from anaccurate description of how these belligerents enacted their battle. They had no more sophisticated weapons than clubs made from the roots of the acacia trees that grew abundantly in the area. They would begin, after the appropriate insults were shouted out from both sides, by bashing each other over head and body until the fighters were too tired to lift their arms, at which time they would fall upon each other with the aforesaid mentioned tooth and nail, plus fist, elbow, knee, boot and whatever.

 

Considering the fierceness of these annual battles it is a wonder that no more than a few of the combatants perished, and though limbs were maimed or lost, bones bruised and broken, and much blood spilled, neither side ever came out of the fray with a decisive victory. And so it had been through all the years. Many of the women in these villages thought it all a waste of time, energy and workforce, but this opinion carried little weight, for at the time, women?s opinion was not, as it is today, taken as valuable.

 

God was in the habit of looking down on this senseless struggle now and then and, to tell the truth, it irritated him to no end. What fools I have inhabited this earth with, he would say to any angel that happened to be within earshot. But since there was a lot of other stuff going on in the universe, God would occupy himself elsewhere and forget (allegorically speaking, as God could never really forget anything) about the two waring villages.

 

But then it happened on one of the annual war days when God was observing a particularly hopeless muddle of bashing, clouting, clubbing and slamming that he decided to put anend to this silliness once and for all.

 

God had no favorite amongst the two villages, they were both equally imbecilic in his eyes and he asked an angel to flip a coin to randomly pick (This was technically necessary, as God, with all his glorious powers is, of course, incapable of doing anything at random) one of the tribes to be blessed with an advantage. A decisive winner is what God wanted,regardless of which village it would be.

 

The angels complied and village A was chosen to be the beneficiaries of a heretofore unheard of technological wonder, the AK-47 assault rifle, and a whole container load of these Kalashnikovs were airlifted into village A shortly before the annual battle was due to take place. This will put an end to this tomfoolery, God had told his angels.

 

On the day of the meeting of the two village?s warriors in the traditional field of battle, God and the angles checked in to see the results. You can imagine their dismay when, instead of a decisive clear cut victory for Village A armed with their AK-47s, what they saw was the same bashing, clouting, clubbing and slamming that had been going on all through the years, the only difference being that village A were using their AK-47s as clubs instead of the acacia roots. This had had little effect on the course of the battle and when sundown came, the results were the same as always ? a senseless draw.

 

From then on God let these people carry on as always and diverted his attention elsewhere.

 

 

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