Category Archives: Personal Perspective

My Perspectives on Life

100 Years from Now: Part 2 – Technology

Technology will be a dominant part of life one hundred years from now. Robotics and the world of so-called computers (I suspect our traditional computers will be obsolete) and technology will have advanced far beyond all but a few Start Trek gadgets. I believe that a Holodeck like technology as seen in Start Trek will exist with some of the sensory perceptions of reality. Continue reading

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100 Years from Now: Part 1 – Considerations

In the past year I have given some thought to what the future would look like a hundred years from now given the state of science today and the effects of global warming, diminishing natural resources, and a populations of over twice times what it is today (population control will be in effect). One thing is clear, the word Sustainable will be far more than a buzzword. It will be a way of life. Continue reading

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Doctors in the Future

For the last century medical doctors have gained great respect and value in society because of their contributions to alleviating suffering, generally improving our quality of life, and prolonging human life. As a result they have commanded high salaries in relation to other professionals. However because of recent government and insurance requirements that doctors convert over to computerizing all of their records of tests, symptoms, diagnosis, and notes a database is quickly being built up that will aid networked computers in doing many of the important diagnostic services doctors used to do. So the writing is on the wall. Continue reading

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More Bicycles, Not Cars

In 2012 33,561 people lost their lives to car accidents. Most people drive their cars less than 5 miles to shop or do other tasks. Our dependance upon cars is complete almost to the exclusion of other modes of transportation such as walking, biking, or public transportation. Yet in other countries bicycles are the major mode of transportation, not only in under developed nations but also in highly developed nations such as Sweden, Denmark, the Netherlands, and other norther European countries. These nations realize the negative impact of cars in terms of safety, pollution, and dependance upon oil so they have emphasized the use of biking with supporting infrastructure. Continue reading

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New Year’s Resolution for 2015

Most years in the past I have not typically made New Years resolutions because I have never been able to keep them. Now it my waning years my New Years resolution is always the same, not to physically or mentally do worst that the previous year. But of course these are not realistic expectations as my body progressively get older and less able to repair the normal ware and tear of the former year. Continue reading

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Consequences of a Car-centric Culture

I heard it said that a 9/11 number of car related deaths occurs every month. More people are killed by cars than in all our wars and gun related shootings. Car related death is the leading cause of fatality among children. This is probably not a big surprise to anyone but why shouldn’t we be alarmed? Car deaths and injuries have great economic and emotional cost to those affected by it. It’s primarily because of our total dependency upon cars. America over the last 100 years has become a car-centric culture. Pedestrians and bikers use our roadways at their own peril. Kids no longer walk or bike to school or play in my city. They are driven everywhere by parents because our streets have become too dangerous for such activities. When I was young I used to bike and walk everywhere. Continue reading

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Thinking of Things

As I write more posts it gets harder to find topics. I try to stay away from current news items and posts those opinions under Discussions on my Home page. But sometime I feel certain news items deserving of more attention so I address them as a post but more as a general topic unto itself rather than a discuss of the specific item in the news. I have a modest readership. I am surprised at my international appeal. I have learned quite a bit about myself as well as the world around me while writing. Writing hasn’t always come easy. I have dyslexia so I’ve never seriously seen how others write. Continue reading

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Anger, An All Too Common Response

In the last few days we heard news of a mass student shooting in a school in Washington and two policemen killed in a senseless shootout in California due to anger expressed through the barrel of a guns. Every day in the U.S. an average of 289 people are shot. But gun violence is only one of the many acts of anger. Expressing anger is far too common a response when confronted with situations we have difficulty dealing with. When we can’t resolve a situation to our satisfaction we act out. It seems we need to humble ourselves and stop getting so angry both as a society with so much gun violence and as a nation of so much war. Continue reading

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Ebola: Fight-or-Flight

Survival by flight when confronting an unknown threat or overwhelming foe is one of man’s strongest survival instincts. In the current Ebola outbreak in West Africa there are many who demand that the only course of action is to contain this deadly disease by isolate the nations where it is ravaging by closing boarders and ban flights from these areas or even the entire continent of Africa. On the surface this seems reasonable. Closing the boarders to Nigeria, Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone will simply cause people in fear of contracting Ebola to cross the borders to other African nations illegally and spread it unchecked not knowing where it is coming from or going. As it rapidly spreads throughout there were be not enough world resources to contain and treat it from spreading throughout the world. Continue reading

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Taking So Much for Granted

We all do many things throughout the day without giving much thought as to how convenient they are.  Often we do them automatically without recollection of having done them.  Take a very simple act of filling a cup of drinking … Continue reading

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Much Ado about Going Nowhere

Cars are the primary mode of transportation in the U.S. even for short distances. But there are alternatives to the use of cars if we are willing to get off our seats and use some human power to move ourselves from one place to another. Ironically the U.S. has one of the greatest stores of transportation energy in the world but all we do is accumulate it to great excess. That energy is our body fat which is embarrassingly abundant and a major cause of medical complications such as diabetes, heart and coronary disease, skeletal problems, and added weight that our bodies are not designed to constantly bear. Continue reading

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The Secret to Success

When I feel I am successful it generally means that I feel I have meet or exceed my expectations for doing something major. I find intrinsic success far more rewarding because I am more in control and don’t have to depend upon others for confirmation. I can set my own bar for measuring success. In all the professional and academic successes I’ve had though life one characteristic stands our and it isn’t being smart, brilliant, or talented. It’s Perseverance. Once I start something I want to finish it and even go another step further. I wasn’t very smart but I had Perseverance in trying to exceed my personal goals and usually did. Continue reading

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Human Rights as I See It

As I see it our values and form of freedom, democracy and government will not work where religion plays a dominating role in every aspect of life. Over the centuries the Western world has developed human rights values that are less based upon religious doctrine than upon a rational right of All human beings to dignity and “…life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness”. But much of the world is not yet ready. We cannot cram our values down the throats of those unwilling to accept them without long-term consequences. It took us hundreds of years to develop the principles of freedom, democracy, and equality and it did not come without a revolution and much bloodshed. During the Dark Ages we were very much like the very people we are trying to change. Continue reading

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I believe that everyone should have the right to pursue happiness. But what do I really mean by Happiness? The obvious answer is that happiness is whatever makes one feel good. Most of us spend some if not much time finding things that we hope will bring happy into our stress dominated and often unhappy lives. We shop online or at shopping centers or go on vacations or party it up to bring us some sort of happiness. Most of these activities bring only brief periods of happiness. However when I do something good to help another, especially a strangers, I find that the feeling of accomplishment and happiness last far longer. Why is this so? We are a social animal. We are genetically programed to work cooperative together as a social community. True Happiness lies in that social essence we have lost site of through civilization so long ago. Continue reading

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It’s in the Nature of Things

Man has been civilized for only a small fraction of his existence. Our species has existed for 130,000 years, perhaps as long as 1.5 million years by some accounts. In the last 20,000 years we have changed little including brain development. 15,000 years ago when we were still living in caves we did not have the benefit of medical science or technology. Our bodies were tough and able to endure what we would consider the hardships of daily living but what they likely considered normal everyday living. However civilized man has devised clever means of getting around the natural order of things. Our species is able to survive far beyond any other. We are by far the most prolific species of mammals on earth by a very far long shot. We are also by far the most hungry and demanding living organism upon earth’s resources. Continue reading

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Quality of Life

When I was much younger I never thought about dying of aging. More than seven decades after I made my entrance on earth I can see my health waning and my ability to do things diminished. I can feel the end of life approaching closer and closer. I now focus upon the Quality of Life instead of longevity though they are somewhat intertwined. My health, which is a major factor in the quality of living is holding its own though I can see myself gradually slowing down. The key attributes I have in wanting to live are good health, feeling self worth, and being independent. But what does good health mean to me personally? I am after all in worst health than I was 10 years ago. Continue reading

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Lacking Memory

I mentioned on my Home page that I am somewhat mentally impaired. My short term memory is greatly impacted, so much so that I’m not sure if my long term memory is any good since little ever get there. I have little visual memory so cannot remember people and people’s dress accounting for why I have great difficulty picking people out in a crowd or remembering scenery I have just seen or passed by. That is not to say that I cannot remember anything. I remember concepts if I am given the opportunity to understand them. In spite of my mind being so limited in physical images I can visualize simple isolated objects that I conjure up in my mind. I think my mind gets confused with seeing so much background imagery that I cannot focus upon the image of interest. As a student at school I was always at the bottom if not the very bottom of my class. I could barley read (dyslexia) or write since I read so little. I lacked math and science skills, something that I had to later deal with as an engineering student in college. It took me 10 years to get my Masters degree as a full time student. Continue reading

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Returning to the Essence: Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness

It is unfortunate that so much about our government and legislation is about promoting self-interests. I think the founding fathers intended this nation to be based upon common interests instead of self-interests but this goes contrary to our current self-centric nature which has corrupted our interpretation of the Bill of Rights. Prime examples of such interpretive corruptions are two Supreme Court rulings in the case of Citizens United vs. FEC that ruled that corporations could make contributions to political campaigns similar to ordinary citizens and McCutcheon v. FEC that recently ruled that a single donor can give up to $3.6 million in one election cycle. These two rulings have in essence empowered very rich corporations and individuals to make enormous political contributions to influence election outcomes. I am convinced that this nation was founded on the principle of fair rights and treatment for the vast majority of citizens not primarily the nobility and royalty of the rich. Continue reading

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Change has always been uncomfortable and often quite painful requiring effort and adjustments to the way things used to be. The pain of social change has often been accompanied by violence such as the civil rights movement of the 1960’s in the U.S. But it is the shakers and makers of change whose stories are told in the history books, not those who did no change or resisted it. Change is what brought mankind from the stone ages to today. ‘If it ain’t broken, don’t fix it‘ is NOT the motto most great shapes of change use. Instead ‘If it can be done better, Chang it‘ is. So progress is change. Often we fight progress because at that instant of change we are placed outside of our comfort zone. Continue reading

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In modern day society in the U.S. and elsewhere we are constantly being barraged with a mind boggling array of choices for every aspect of life. So numerous are my choices that I tend to do that which is most familiar to me in order to reduce the uncertainties of choices I am confronted with. Perhaps this self-imposed restriction of choices is symptomatic of my autism but I think I am not alone. For example I lose much of the joy of eating when going to a new restaurant where I am confronted with a menu written in some foreign language. Continue reading

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A Spoonfull of Sugar Helps the Medicine Go Down

One would think that in the medical profession there are tons of opportunities to dispense compassion along with medical tests, treatments, and medications. However in my experience I have found the medical profession rather lacking in compassion. I do have one doctor who comes close to what I consider as compassionate but most want to keep you waiting as long as tolerable and get you out of the office as quickly as possible after ever so briefly seeing you and hardly palpating you. Today’s doctors spend less than a minute listening impatiently to what patients have to say then write orders for a battery of blood tests, X-rays, CT scans, etc. and tell you to come back in 3 weeks to discuss results. Continue reading

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Running out of Time

When I was young I feared death but never though my life clock was running out of time. Now that I am in my senior years I don’t fear death as much but I am aware that every day I am alive on earth is a day closer to death. And of greater importance how much time will I be mobile and mentally active. I now have to spend more effort taking care of myself. My objective is not to live as long as possible but to extend the time I have available to be mobile and mentally alert. Thus diet and exercise are important. But for now life seems well worth living and investing time to keep on going. Continue reading

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The Ultimate Superbug

The news sometimes reports about certain superbugs bacteria that defy all attempts to eradicate it using antibiotics and other medical wonders.  They play havoc upon the human body by endlessly destroying tissues until the organs give up and the body … Continue reading

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Autism and Life as a Senior

I must first preface this article by saying that I have never been formally diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder.  However I was unofficially diagnosed by one of my children 3 years ago who taught autistic children and received a graduate … Continue reading

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Is Playing Life Safe Really Playing Life Safe?

The other day I was talking about hiking with some friends when one of them said that he didn’t like hiking on narrow trails with a lot of brush because rattle snakes could be lurking behind a shrub or under … Continue reading

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