Mark Zuckerberg, zillionaire boy genius of technology and the Internet, recently visited Panama and de rigueur the Panama Canal and shared his vision for Panama … and the world. And it’s a great vision! Writing on Facebook Zuckerberg says …
A century ago, the Panama Canal connected the world through commerce. For the first time, ships could sail from the Atlantic to the Pacific without going all the way through the arctic.
For hundreds of years, this canal was just a dream. Connecting the oceans meant inventing new technologies and solving the hardest engineering challenges in the world — moving billions of gallons of water and designing one of the first mechanical computers to control it. Many people said it was impossible.
Today, the internet is connecting everyone in even more ways. Engineers and scientists are once again trying to do something many say is impossible — to connect the whole world.
We are carving new paths through all the obstacles that keep us from being close to the people we care about. In the next decade, the internet will connect the entire world — and this canal is inspiration and proof that we can do it.
And, Zuckerberg, with Panamanian President Juan Carlos Varela at his side, announced that “limited” free Internet is coming to Panama. [God forbid it would be unlimited, upsetting all the “powers that be” in Panama who control most everything, including Internet access and availability.]
“We are very pleased because in the coming weeks or months we will be launching Internet.org in Panama together with the government,” Zuckerberg said.
Zuckerberg explained that Internet.org will give Panamanians free access to “information related to health, safety, transportation and education”.
He said the initiative takes two or three years to get working, but that it is already operational in Colombia, Guatemala, Zambia, Kenya and Tanzania.
Varela thanked Zuckerberg for making Internet.org available for the Panamanian government to use as an aid to development. Here’s the idea …
You laugh, but who says a kid with a grand idea can’t change the world! I’ll never forget walking into the new, gigantic reading room of the New Library of Alexandria weeks after the Mubarak regime had been overthrown and seeing row upon row of beautiful new computer carrels with state-of-the art computers and connectivity. [The New Library of Alexandria is one of the repositories for everything that has ever appeared on line!] 95% of the people were on Facebook! How’s that for a revolutionary idea?