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  1. #11
    WALMART
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    Our role as global protectorate, for better or worse - Vietnam, Korea, Taiwan, Japan, Bosnia, the middle east and northern Africa - has just about driven as much a wedge through us and the rest of the world as it has through our very own society.


    I think we are well beyond the rubicon for anything different than this existence.

  2. #12
    Senior Member UniqueMixture's Avatar
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    Birth control and the effect it has had on society/interpersonal relationships.
    For all that we have done, as a civilization, as individuals, the universe is not stable, and nor is any single thing within it. Stars consume themselves, the universe itself rushes apart, and we ourselves are composed of matter in constant flux. Colonies of cells in temporary alliance, replicating and decaying and housed within, an incandescent cloud of electrical impulses. This is reality, this is self knowledge, and the perception of it will, of course, make you dizzy.

  3. #13
    Senior Member ThatsWhatHeSaid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by UniqueMixture View Post
    Birth control and the effect it has had on society/interpersonal relationships.
    This is the answer I usually give.

  4. #14
    Senior Member Survive & Stay Free's Avatar
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    The truth is that there probably is too many to mention, materially I think the trajectory of continuous improvement has been evidenced by the passage of time, the rising tide has lifted all boats, so to be impoverished materially today is a very different matter to being impoverished materially fifty years ago.

    There seems to have been an inverse relationship between this material prosperity or growth and development and spiritual, psychological and moral growth and development, which seems to be either stunted or erroded.

    I dont know what the story is there, its easily evidenced, consider the standard of interviewing in TV shows on youtube in which Jung or Fromm were interviewed, consider that those guys ever actually were interviewed on mainstream TV even, and then consider TV broadcasting now, interviewing now, who and what are the focus of public attention now. Pretty big change there.

  5. #15
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    I love history.

    This will sound pretty trite I bet, but the internet, extremely rapid development in computing, and widespread satellite communication have probably had the biggest impact on us.

    That would also take us from the tensest point of the Cold War to a point where the current generation has no memory of the Cold War. I believe that is significant.
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  6. #16
    Senior Member Survive & Stay Free's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    I love history.

    This will sound pretty trite I bet, but the internet, extremely rapid development in computing, and widespread satellite communication have probably had the biggest impact on us.

    That would also take us from the tensest point of the Cold War to a point where the current generation has no memory of the Cold War. I believe that is significant.
    That's massive that second point, although not even the Cold War, what's everyones memory like of the Gulf War? Kosovo? Bosnia? No that great I'd bet.

    Or Russia before Putin or the chaos after the collapse of the USSR and Yeltsin? The failed coup by the old regime?

    In relation to the internet I can say that I've noticed the change that it has made, using every internet function and application there was from the earliest days when search engines were in competition with one another and Google wasnt dominant (I used one called Dogpile repeatedly) and bulletin boards were the closest thing to forums (if anyone thinks forums are over moderated they should take a time trip back to that when if a post appeared at all it was sometimes a day later and at the discretion of the site admin/owner after they'd read it).

    Since then I've seen the internet been the engine behind all kinds of things, including rapid change in mobile phones communications, broadcasting, consumerism, name it. Mobile communications is a big one, the sorts of things which were fictional devices, like the turtle coms in TMNT or invasion earth's communication devices, are pretty much available now to anyone with a phone. The phone I have now I use for a lot of things besides talking.

  7. #17
    Senior Member ptgatsby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RaptorWizard View Post
    We have more technology and access to information. We also have shifted from a philosophical perspective to a scientific one. For reference, see how all the great philosophers came from the past!
    The "scientific one" would be a philosophy in and of itself (theory of knowledge and all that). I'd say that most philosophical problems have been "solved"; explored sufficiently to be able to draw a sufficiently strong conclusion given a certain set of premises. For that, scientific is given strong dominance in an era of unparalled technological growth. You need less devotees to the scientific philosophy in slower eras.

    Quote Originally Posted by ThatsWhatHeSaid View Post
    But it's really taken its toll in urban planning.
    I'm not sure if you meant that it's gotten worse; most of the issues we have with urban planning came from 50 years ago. Back then was truly the era of a "car", up until the oil crisis in the 70s. We've actually gotten a lot better in the last 50 years. Most urban planning has a large focus on greenspace, meeting space and flow...

    It's just too late now for many cities. No capital left to rejuvenate, urban sprawl everywhere... I find it really sad! It'll be one of the great tragedies when we look back in the future (50+ years again).

    Quote Originally Posted by highlander View Post
    50 years ago, the US economy was based on manufacturing whereas now, it's done overseas. Also, the family has changed. One wage earner to two and less traditional gender roles.
    Well, the US is still the largest manufacturer in the world... and it's contribution (% of GDP) only really shrank from about 27% to (current-ish) 18%. US employment, however, is another issue. That has dropped significantly over the last 30 years. The main issue with manufacturing is technology and robotics though, more so than outsourcing (manufacturing has grown in absolute size, IIRC). Ultimately, China can compete because of low labour, but only at the low end of manufacturing. It cannot produce better or cheaper goods - automation is automation and the peak of efficiency is essentially the same.

    Quote Originally Posted by Standuble View Post
    The biggest IMO is the situation regarding domestic oil.
    I agree with this, for sure. It's easy to forget how oil shaped the 60s-80s.

    ---

    I'll add the other major issue is the creation of derivatives in the financial market on top of the oil issues. This has changed the way financing for agriculture, business and trade work. It was also the cause of the financial revolution(s) in the 80s, similar to the changes in oil in the 70s.

    Lastly, information systems have had the single largest impact. I can think of almost nothing that was not transformed by it. It doesn't just have to be networks - anything we do now is affected by heurestic simulations that were incomprehensible 50 years ago. Packages in the mail use simulation of demand. The clothes offered are part of a minimum change algorithm ("fashion repeats"? heh). To use examples above, city planning, robotic manufacturing (on demand and expected demand), oil consumption over weekends/shipping routes... everything. We think, plan, plot, manufacture, service... whatever... entirely differently than we did 50 years ago.

  8. #18
    Senior Member wildcat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThatsWhatHeSaid View Post
    Never liked history, but got interested in knowing how we've got to where we are, and trying to predict where we're headed. The question is, what are the biggest differences between our society today and 50 years ago and why did those changes come about?
    1. They did not make sloppy products then. Quality of goods was better.
    2. Service sector was better. You could find employed people all around.
    3. The employed people could live on their wages. They did not need three jobs just to get along.
    4. Companies were stable. The owners paid taxes.

    A new economic policy brought about the changes.
    Slogans:

    1. There is no free lunch.
    2. The job of a company director is to make money to the owners.

  9. #19
    WALMART
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    Sometimes, sitting in the school library doing research, I'd go fucking mad thinking about having to find the same information in a book.

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by jontherobot View Post
    Sometimes, sitting in the school library doing research, I'd go fucking mad thinking about having to find the same information in a book.
    I know what you mean. Half the time I go to the library in town I have to struggle with the urge to go home as soon as I arrive because its easier to locate and research with Google than with a limited collection of books which never quite manage to tell you what you need to know.

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