Tag Archives | Apocalypse

Are we entering a digital dark age?


This podcast explores the risks of humanity storing as much info as it is on digital formats. Of interesting note, when NASA turned off Voyager 1‘s camera to save on battery usage, no computer remained in existence which could decode the date from the satellite’s camera system.

It is possible for the cameras to be turned on, but it is not a priority for Voyager’s Interstellar Mission. After Voyager 1 took its last image (the “Solar System Family Portrait” in 1990), the cameras were turned off to save power and memory for the instruments expected to detect the new charged particle environment of interstellar space. Mission managers removed the software from both spacecraft that controls the camera. The computers on the ground that understand the software and analyze the images do not exist anymore.

From OnTheMedia’s website:

On this week’s episode of On the Media, we’re engaging in some chillingly informed speculation: what would happen if we, as a species, lost access to our electronic records?

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Researchers Plan for Global Armageddon Threats

Scared that asteroids are going to  destroy Earth? Don’t worry, people are on it, per USA Today:

It’s no ordinary meeting when a bad decision could spell global catastrophe.

For the experts assembled at a conference hall in Italy this spring, the choices were agonizing. A gigantic space rock was bearing down on Earth. If it slammed into the planet, it could damage an area the size of Ireland. But a campaign to push the rock, known as an asteroid, off course could shatter it, possibly widening the devastation, if not done correctly,

In this artist's concept, an astronaut performs a tethering maneuver at an asteroid. The Space Exploration Vehicle (SEV) is close by, with the Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle (MPCV) docked to a habitat in the background. (NASA)

In this artist’s concept, an astronaut performs a tethering maneuver at an asteroid. The Space Exploration Vehicle (SEV) is close by, with the Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle (MPCV) docked to a habitat in the background. (NASA)

 

The officials opted to shift the monster’s path, and it prevented unfathomable devastation. There was just one small problem: a chunk of the asteroid broke away and made a beeline for Bangladesh.

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End Times Canines

AIBO

Whether your think artificial intelligence is fact or fiction, the beginning of a brave new world or the end of this one, for many of Japan’s robot dog owners, doomsday has already come in the form of the end of the production of their really remarkable canine companions. Here’s the lowdown from RT Daily News

AIBO pet dogs are the world’s first home entertainment robots with artificial intelligence (AI). They can speak, sense, and express their feelings – which encourages many owners to treat the toys as real family members. The gadgets are even known for developing their own unique personalities.

Many who bought the dog robots now feel abandoned by Sony, which canceled the production of AIBOs in 2006. The last tech clinic for the toys was closed in March 2014, creating a massive shortage of spare parts.

Sony sold more than 150,000 units between 1999 – when they were created – and 2006.Read the rest

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Thoughts on the Apocalypse: Fight for What You Love

Keith Cuddeback (CC BY-ND-NC 2.0)

Keith Cuddeback (CC BY-ND-NC 2.0)

Derrick Jensen writing at Terrain.org, from 2013:

The dominant culture is murdering the planet, and there really isn’t a prayer of stopping this murder so long as so many people continue to value this culture over life on this planet, the life it is murdering. This valuing is almost universal in this culture. Even most mainstream environmentalists say explicitly that they’re attempting to save civilization, not the real world. For example, even someone as dedicated as Bill McKibben regularly states he wants to stop global warming to save civilization, and even someone equally dedicated like Peter Montague— who puts out the invaluable Rachel newsletter on toxics—said that pumping carbon underground for storage is a bad idea because if it leaked out all at once it could, to use his words, “disrupt civilization as we know it.” No, Peter, it could end life on earth.

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Theme Song For The Apocalypse

Perhaps reflecting the zeitgeist, the BBC has been searching for a song to broadcast should the end of the world, or apocalypse, be upon us:

Earlier this month we covered the revelation that Ted Turner, founder of the news channel CNN, ordered a sign-off video ready to air in case the apocalypse were nigh.

His pick? Rather pedestrian footage of a US Army band playing Nearer My God to Thee.

Convinced there were better choices out there, we asked readers what they would select as a farewell song for the BBC, which (as far as we know) doesn’t have anything cued up in case of imminent doomsday.

God-Save-Queen

Our suggestion, God Save the Queen, was one of the more popular choices, for obvious reasons, although the particular version sparked a bit of divergence. Dylan M Clayton from Kentucky prefers Brian May’s electric guitar rendition, while several other readers chose the more subversive Sex Pistols classic by the same name.

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The Video at the End of the World

CNNd of the world

Yesterday I posted about the connections between evangelical Christianity and belief in the biblical End Times. While I was flipping some new stories into our {R}emnants Flipboard mag yesterday afternoon I found another story about the end of the world involving a recently discovered video that Ted Turner had made for CNN. It was created to play when they sign off as that final trumpet blows. Here’s the scoop from Jalopnik

Thirty-four years ago, at the launch of Ted Turner’s Cable News Network, the founder made a grandiose and specific promise about his newly created round-the-clock operation. “Barring satellite problems, we won’t be signing off until the world ends,” Turner declared. And in anticipation, he prepared a final video segment for the apocalypse:

We’ll be on, and we will cover the end of the world, live, and that will be our last event. We’ll play the National Anthem only one time, on the first of June [the day CNN launched], and when the end of the world comes, we’ll play ‘Nearer My God To Thee’ before we sign off.Read the rest

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American End Times

Amerikan Apocalypse

Religion is all fun and games until someone takes their mythology too literally and then takes it to the squad car, the pulpit or the White House. It’s fun to make fun of fundamentalism, but when it comes to The Apocalypse, these playas ain’t playin’. The Daily Beast has the bad news

It’s the end of the world as they know it. So why do evangelicals worry so much?
Say “evangelical Christian,” and most people will probably think of Biblical fundamentalism, and opposition to the sexual revolution, feminism, LGBT equality, evolution, science, and secularism of all sorts. Historian Matthew Avery Sutton, however, wants you to think of something else: the End Times.

Today, fully 77 percent of U.S. evangelicals believe that we are living in the End Times, the last period before Christ returns to Earth to judge us all. That’s compared with 40 percent of Americans, and 51 percent of Protestants overall—still high numbers, when you think about it, but imagine a huge crowd at a mega-church or Christian Right political event.Read the rest

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The Short, Strange Era of Human Civilization Would Appear to Be Drawing to a Close

Arian Zwegers (CC BY 2.0)

Arian Zwegers (CC BY 2.0)

Noam Chomsky writes at In These Times:

It is not pleasant to contemplate the thoughts that must be passing through the mind of the Owl of Minerva as the dusk falls and she undertakes the task of interpreting the era of human civilization, which may now be approaching its inglorious end.

The era opened almost 10,000 years ago in the Fertile Crescent, stretching from the lands of the Tigris and Euphrates, through Phoenicia on the eastern coast of the Mediterranean to the Nile Valley, and from there to Greece and beyond. What is happening in this region provides painful lessons on the depths to which the species can descend.

The land of the Tigris and Euphrates has been the scene of unspeakable horrors in recent years. The George W. Bush-Tony Blair aggression in 2003, which many Iraqis compared to the Mongol invasions of the 13th century, was yet another lethal blow.

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“Darkness” — A Poem by Lord Byron

Hartwig HKD (CC BY-ND 2.0)

Hartwig HKD (CC BY-ND 2.0)

Darkness

Lord Byron, 
July, 1816

I had a dream, which was not all a dream.

The bright sun was extinguish’d, and the stars

Did wander darkling in the eternal space,

Rayless, and pathless, and the icy earth

Swung blind and blackening in the moonless air;

Morn came and went — and came, and brought no day,

And men forgot their passions in the dread

Of this their desolation; and all hearts

Were chill’d into a selfish prayer for light:

And they did live by watchfires — and the thrones,

The palaces of crownded kings — the huts,

The habitations of all things which dwell,

Were burnt for beacons; cities were consumed,

And men were gather’d round their blazing homes

To look once more into each other’s face;

Happy were those who dwelt within the eye

Of the volcanos, and their mountain-torch:

A fearful hope was all the world contain’d;

Forests were set on fire — but hour by hour

They fell and faded — and the crackling trunks

Extinguish’d with a crash — and all was black.… Read the rest

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The Complete Failure of Consumerism and the Advent of the Psionic Aeon

Last week I was awakened suddenly in the night by the piercing of my spirit by a singular and concise burst of living information: “The Great Awakening”. That was it. Lord, they/I’ve been showing this to me/them for a while from afar/inside. Classic procession of Aeons fare. Occultism 101. Everyone of the mystical persuasion (or otherwise, let’s face it) thinks their time is going to be the one where we all collectively blink out in unison. I’ve never seen it. I don’t even understand what an apocalypse is supposed to mean. It could be defined a billion different ways. I could see a lot of us dying for sure, but there’s no way you could snuff us all to oblivion. Everyone waking up into a divine collective epiphany? Yeah, not buying that either. I was forced to reconsider when the hypnagogic downloads started. Then the phantom voices, the choirs of beatific smoke.… Read the rest

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