If Africa is 'third world' what does that mean ? What is the actual definition
of third world. My understanding is that it conforms neither to the New World
or the Ancient or old World . In other words it's that great mysterious part of
the world that does not share the same values, ideas and practices as the
first world. If that's the case then where does the second world fit into the
picture, does it have some of the third and some of the first ? Trying to
explain the 'third world' is a waste of bandwidth, it really just implies
backwardness in facilities, resources, amenities and technologies. Don't
ever presume to think that because one is an African , one cannot be an
expert, that is quite preposterous to say the least. An to be honest,
reinventing the wheel is a typically African way of doing things and quite
unnecessary , it's one of the reasons third world  environments don't go
forward.  If the phrase third world is encapsulated in quotes all it is saying
is that this is not a fairly generally applicable statement. Africa in it's
entirety is certainly not third world and Switzerland in it's entirety is
certainly also not first world. Generally though both of them fit comfortably
into their world label.

As to the issue of Ethiopian Art, well it's all very nice I am sure, but I am not
interested. That's a subject for an Art or Culture forum not an African-IT
forum. IT may play a part but it is not the focus of that 'project'.

All that said, what is the focus of this list ? I have been on it for as long
time, it's one of the FEW truly African lists, and by that I mean gathered
from all parts of Africa and those with an interest in Africa and IT. A good
thrash about whether Y2K is a business or and IT issue is for example
good one. If I am a retired person with a PC that contains software that
doesn't have millennium coping structures then I might well differ on the
opinion about whether Y2k is IT or business as my focus would probably be
recreation.  Finally i think we need to accept that we all are at different
levels of expertise and at different stages in careers. The list is forum for
sharing and should stay that way, we're all literate and big boys and girls,
we can agree to disagree amicably and a flame or to now and then merely
displays irritations that some have about certain issues. Establish what the
cause of the irritation is - off the list; before giving a pounding rebuttal.

Clinton Jones AMIAP
PO Box 12292, Centrahil, 6006
South Africa
Tel/Fax +27.(041).532067

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Technologies for the New Millenium"