How the Internet Can Benefit the Planet

The Internet functions like an ecosystem living in balance with the people on the planet. When people are engaged and create, the Internet evolves along with their work. More content becomes available and through branching and separation, growth continues at the edge of the network. The more fertile the environment, the faster it grows.

Contrary to what one might think, Internet access does not require a great deal of industrialization. For example, a local recycling center here in the Valley powers it's whole operation off of solar energy. You can return cans and bottles, and when you get a receipt, it is printed not by a full size register but by a web-connected Palm, linked to a tiny printer appliance connected with a wire to a solar cell on the roof. A couple of small batteries serve as back-ups for cloudy days. When the sun comes out again, the batteries recharge.

It may be possible on the one hand, to become more advanced in our access and use of information, with global networks of contacts and new services, and on the other, to simplify existence so that we are in a more sustainable balance with the planet.

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