The Globe has turned into a computer cemetery, Internet is no longer free
An information revolution entails another problem, it is necessary to get rid of computers that have served their time. At beginning of 2002, an American non-governmental organization Basel Action Network working on toxic waste recycling published a report on investigations held in China.
The report tells about a village heaped up with old computers brought from the USA, and farmers are occupied with utilization of the old technique. Being ignorant of the danger contained in cathodic tubes of monitors, they break monitors with hammers; burn computer cases inhaling mercury vapor and soak computers in acids to take out parts containing copper, silver and gold. Children use brushes to obtain remains of toxic toner from printer cartridges. Operations that people perform on old computers saturate the land with cancerogens, dangerous substances pollute water reservoirs near the village. That is why drinking water is brought from neighbor regions.
Internet, being the basis of a technological boom experienced over the past years, is in even harder condition. A group of scientists from Massachusetts Technological University, members of a so-called Media Laboratory, think that Internet in its present-day form has exhausted its resources. Nowadays Internet is no longer a free, self-regulating structure because data flows are controlled by large telecommunication companies, that in their turn establish regulations for regular users. To bring Internet back to its original openness and availability principle, wireless access should be popularized among the users first of all. MIT Media Laboratory Director Nicolas Negroponte, speaking at a committee of the Internet Development Congress, stressed that while telecommunication companies were introducing new generation communication services, modern technologies would soon appear to allow users to create wireless local networks of their own.
Networks of this kind will be independent of tariff policies of Internet providers and telephone companies. It will be created by users on a mutually beneficial basis; capacity of such networks will be expanding with coming of new users. Each of the network members will be a provider for himself in this case. In light of it, Negroponte’s deputy, Andrew Lipman suggests that law-makers should review federal laws regulating usage of the frequency range. Andrew Lipman thinks that new regulations should resemble the legislation on the World Ocean waters usage. In a word, they should allow to surf everywhere, but with strict observation of the law only. Yegor Belous PRAVDA.Ru
Translated by Maria Gousseva
Read the original in Russian: http://pravda.ru/main/2002/07/30/44900.html