Sunday, July 19, 2009

2nd Life, 2nd World

I was yakking with a smart cookie professor the other day, global studies type, about the origins of "3rd world", originally Nehru's idea for "non-aligned" i.e. "not playing stupid cold war games" (hot even stupider) so more neutral, like the Swiss.

So Switzerland is, technically speaking, 3rd world. But that sounds wrong cuzza all the bastardization that went on, in the hands of economists mostly, as they needed to red line various slum zones in the Global U, talk about where our student body is especially under-served.

So "3rd world" came to mean something else i.e. "developing", fostering the bogus idea of being "developed already" like at the end of some road. I'm glad I don't think that way, it'd make me real stupid. I thank Princeton U for some smart Woody Woo types, who helped keep me on my toes.  My dad was also a smart cookie.

In the middle of all this, you had "2nd world" (like if you have a 1st, e.g the US, and a 3rd, e.g. India, then you've gotta have a 2nd one, right? e.g. the USSR) but all that started crumbling with the withering of those states sharing a workingman's Marxism, to where hardly anyone talks about "2nd world" any more.

Vilnius is clearly 1st whereas Tashkent is more iffy, being in the Stans, ergo more like Florida i.e. undeveloped, with pockets of colonists from the colder North e.g. Michigan and the UK e.g. Orlando (lotsa timeshare), so 3rd.

I think an elegant solution is to repurpose "2nd world" to go with "2nd life" (as in "avatars") i.e. make it mean "Cyberia", our spanking new cyberspatial world. That keeps our "from Russia with love" overtones, plus jibes with a lot of our chachkas (= swag), our aesthetic motifs.

"World domination" means mastery over server farms, i.e. keeping our data, our blogosphere, or photostreams, backed up and secure, another way of "saving the world" (ala Google Earth and like that).

This all makes a lot of sense eh? I'll run it by my Esozone peers for inclusion / injection into our Portland-sourced viral marketing campaigns.

Python Nation is 2nd world, as is Uru.

See Red?