Hold on ...let's think LO11634

Thu, 2 Jan 97 14:15:22 -0800

Replying to LO11559 --

>Why aren't we pursuing alternative, self-contained sources of energy
>such as solar power? Why are we so dependent on a network of power
>grids to live? My wife's grandfather is an inventor, and he built his
>home to be "self-contained" back in the 1970's when the oil crises was
>going strong. He has solar power, a wind mill, his own well, and a wood
>burning stove for heat (he also built an electric car; I remember when
>I was a kid I was home from school and my wife's grandmother stopped by
>to "plug in" her car so she would have enough energy to make it home).
>When he built the house the city refused to give him a permit because
>he wasn't connecting to the power lines and the natural gas lines. He
>argued he didn't need them, but the city forced him to at least make
>the proper "connections" even if he capped the connections. For over 20
>years the sun has been his power source. His well is still going

>In this instance, technology has given him greater independence. Since
>he moved into his house he has never lost power during a power outage,
>and never been without heat when the natural gas lines freeze. There's
>something to be said for that.

>Ben Compton

Anyone who wants to pursue these ideas might want to read E.F. Schumacher's
classic, _Small is Beautiful: Economics as if People Mattered_. It comes
from a time of more obvious turmoil in society than we appear to have now,
but I think that its messages are as apropos to client-server versus host
computing architectures as they are to electric power grids and

Joe Podolsky




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