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We consist of five students from the Philippine Science High School.
Through publishing this blog, we aim to inform the public about globalization and the flat world.

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3.07.2007

Stepping into the Flat World: China

The 21st century has opened up a lot of opportunities for China - and its 1.3 billion citizens - to develop. The nation’s dreams of an economy big enough to support more than a billion citizens, improved government, advanced science and education, social harmony, and a better lifestyle for the Chinese people are finally being fulfilled.



With more than 50,000 companies found in the country, China’s economy is predicted to outgrow the Unites States’ in a few years.



China has been an influential culture ever since the beginning of time. The country, which is the birthplace of the Sinic Civilization, boasts three famous philosophies: Confucianism, which is the basis of China’s present education and determines one's position in their social heirarchy, Legalism which influenced and whose views provide the basis for the country’s laws, and Daoism which is founded on an ancient Chinese concept and . Other foundations of Chinese culture, such as art and literature, shaped many important aspects of Chinese traditions.

When European exploration began in Asia during the 1500’s the global context of China changed. New innovations were created to meet the of the competing for territories and resources, and this all occurred when China began to get accustomed to its way of living, believing that they had reached the highest state of development. They had, in fact, seen these new innovations in use when they were forced to defend their territory from the emerging imperialists colonizing Asian countries during the 1800’s
By the early 1900’s the imperialist countries had seized territories that belonged to the once-proud Chinese citizens. The European powers, Japan, and the United States, upon realizing the wealth that could be found in the Chinese market, had begun to establish trading relations with China. As time passed, the foreign powers demanded that they be given concessions and rights to trade within the country, and whenever China refused, it was forced to comply through military force inflicted by the foreign powers.

Due to the chaos, turmoil and utter shame the Chinese felt from the lost wars, the enforced treaties and foreign invasions, citizens began to form revolutionary groups. These groups aimed to overthrow all forms of foreign influence the country, but brought about instead, indemnities that left the country economically crippled.

Dynastic rule was finally overthrown during the 20th century and was replaced by socialist rule under. The Republic of China was finally established in 1912 Yuan Shikai. However, it was only a republic in name; in truth, the country was plagued with internal wars and political confusion. In spite of this, intellectuals all over the country made themselves known, relaying Western ideas and concern for China’s future.
The first and second World Wars provided relief to the strained society and allowed the country to develop; industries expanded and several cities became industrial centers. After Yuan’s death in 1916, government power in Beijing was continuously lost and transferred to warlords. It was during this period that Sun Yat Sen formed the Kuomintang, a nationalist party bent on improving and bringing China into the modern world. The group found itself head to head with the Chinese Communist Party which had more or less the same goals but had other ways of achieving them. After Sun’s death in 1925, Chiang Kai-Shek, a young general at the time, took over. Hostility intensified between the two groups until a civil war between the Kuomintang and the Chinese Communist Party ensued.
The Chinese Communist Party, under Mao Zedong emerged victorious and began his leadership of China. Mao introduced several campaigns that were founded on Communist ideas and were meant to promote development and prosperity among the Chinese citizens, but instead had created backward development and severe economic handicaps.
After Mao’s death in 1976, the Chinese Communist Party placed Deng Xiaoping in control of China. Deng allowed China to develop in a way that the Chinese never expected. He created agrarian reforms and eliminated poverty, imported foreign technology to help modernize China’s industry, reinstated examinations for selecting college students that would be sent overseas for advanced education. These are only some of Deng’s programs that helped create the comfortable lives that the Chinese citizens enjoy today.

After Deng’s brilliant leadership of the Chinese nation, a new political figure emerged in the form of Jiang Zemin. Jiang continued the steady rising of China’s economy and development, allowing it places in the world’s biggest industries.
Once Jiang retired from the Chinese Communist Party in 2002, Hu Jintao was chosen to succeed him and later became President of China in 2003. Hu launched a space program that had been the focus of accelerated development two years back. China revealed to the world just how much it had advanced by sending into space a piloted spacecraft in October of 2003.
In January of 2006, China reported to the world that its economy had risen by 9.9%. This has made China’s economy the fourth largest in the world
Nowadays, China plans to follow the west’s path and hopes to become a country of innovation. It plans to become a nation advanced not only in its technology but also in its thinking and customs. In fact, it has taken its first steps into the modern world by creating plans for the scientific technologies which they predict they can complete within the next 15 years. China is now promoting the construction of its national innovation system and is speeding up the pace of commercialization of research funding. China hopes to increase its proportion of funds for scientific research from 1.44% to 2.5%.




With the brilliance of the Chinese citizens and the leaders that put the people first, there is no other way but forward.


Flattened You at
1:42 AM


3.06.2007

Let's Get SQUISHED

Globalization was made possible by two things: computers and the Internet. Computers serve to create the ideas and knowledge which we use in our industries today, and the Internet serves as the medium with which we can communicate these ideas. When Microsoft was released in May of 1990, walls were torn down, and along with it, a global interface which people could manipulate to suit their needs emerged in the form of the Microsoft Windows 3.0 operating system.

Five years later, on August 9, Netscape made itself known to the world. It brought with it the Netscape Navigator browser, which allowed users to see images and data stored on websites, and software that allowed companies to create intranets which aided in the management of company databases, website building and electronic commerce over the Internet. The creation of the Netscape Navigator led to a series of events that triggered the immense overinvestment in fiber-optic technology. This overinvestment in fiber-optic cables resulted in the creation of a global fiber-optic network which crisscrosses the seafloor and traverses the underground network of telecommunications wires. It has made the sending of data such as images, recordings and data extremely cheap. In addition, it has eradicated the issue of geography being a hindrance to communication between countries; all of a sudden, Australia and Chile are next-door neighbors.







Microsoft, in essence, drove the technological revolution that has taken over our world today and the Internet, brought alive by Netscape, facilitated globalization.




Other factors which furthered globalization, such as software and outsourcing were simply results of these two main factors. There are eight other factors which continue to squish our world into smaller proportions and further globalization each day.

Here they are:

1. Software that integrates software
- Consists of all the software applications and electronic transmissions that connect computers to fiber-optic cables around the world. It allows people from all over the globe to communicate with one another so that they can manipulate, create and send data to each another.

2. Outsourcing
- The process of breaking down work into smaller units which are sent to different companies all over the globe that specialize in the particular portion of the work and where it is [often] done at cheaper prices.

3. Offshoring
- The moving of operations in a company or factory to a different area in any part of the globe. For example, if your factory was originally found in Manila in the Philippines, you could have it moved to Brussels in Belgium if it makes production more efficient.

4. Freeware and Uploading
- Allows individuals to create their own data such as music, videos and literature. It also allows people to modify programs to suit their needs.

5. Insourcing
- This process involves the employment of another company or factory to manage a certain department or some of the departments in the company or factory.

6. Supply-Chaining
- The process of creating a worldwide chain of plants which are extremely efficient. Stocks, for example, are determined each day through the products bought by the consumers; when I sell a product in one of my plants, a new one is made in Sri Lanka to replace the one sold. An example of a company that utilizes supply-chaining is Wal-Mart.

7. Data-Mining
- The individuals to gain unlimited access to knowledge and information.


8. Quanta (packets of energy)
- Speeds up the means of communication and collaboration such that you can communicate with partners or people anytime, anywhere. An example is wireless internet access.


When all these factors came together during the 21st century, we all got squished. You, me, everybody in the planet got flattened, along with the world we lived in.


And it doesn't end here. In fact, we haven't even begun.
Let's get SQUISHED.



Flattened You at
8:17 PM


3.05.2007

A Brief History of Globalization

Globalization can be summed up in a few words:



“If the world was a computer and the planet is the hardware, globalization is the operating system that makes everything run.”
- Thomas Friedman






This system has had three versions, each version better than its predecessor, allowing the hardware to work faster, more efficiently and at inexpensive rates.

The first version, Globalization 1.0, lasted from 1492 to the 1800s. The driving force in this epoch was countries competing for resources, territories and the prestige that came with it. Dominion over the planet was in the hands of the competing nations and states. The dominating countries in this epoch were mostly found in the European continent, so globalization can be said to have been centralized in Europe.

The second version, Globalization 2.0, lasted from the 19th to 21st centuries, urged by a slew of European and American companies competing for markets and labor worldwide. During this epoch, new nations are formed from colonies which also wanted to compete in the global economy.
Here, power is distributed into three branches, determined by the many organizations which attempt to control globalization. The first branch is called the Interstate which is composed of organizations that manage interests between nations. Examples of Interstate organizations are the OPEC, NATO and the ASEAN.
The second branch is the Suprastate which is composed of organizations that behave like nations. They have their own government, laws and interests. Examples of Suprastate organizations are the IMF, WTO and UN.

The last version, Globalization 3.0, began at the start of the 21st century and continues to date. What makes this version unique is that dominance no longer lies in large organizations or powerful nations; power lies in the hands of the individual. Now even persons and small groups can compete in the global market.



Flattened You at
12:32 AM


3.03.2007

Planing Mountains



Plateaus are formed when flat land is lifted up by tectonic activity and later eroded by wind or water or when erosion wears away the side of a terrestial region.

Plateaus that are completely flat on the top are formed when a section of the lifted land has a layer of resistant rock. Others are formed when parts of the crust collide with one another. These are due to lava flows that form the land surface; these are known as Lava or Basalt Plateaus.






But did you know that elevated lands can be made to become plateaus through planing?





This is what is happening to our world today.






Through the process of globalization, which is the continuous development of an integrated global economy, we are slowly eliminating the physical barriers which used to limit our access to technology and knowledge. Socities which were formerly on the brink of extinction are now alive, thriving and able to compete in the global market, making the world powers quake in their shoes in fear.
Companies focused on the advancement of technology are sprouting up everywhere, bringing innovations to all parts of the world. One example of such an organization is Infosys Technologies. Infosys is one of the leading software and outsourcing companies in India, having thousands of outlets worldwide. A typical day consists of coordinating with software writers, designers and manufacturers all over the globe, providing business solutions that prioritize the use of technology.
Bridges between countries are being forged, allowing ideas to spread at a catastrophic rate. People who have developed their own designs and novelties are communicating them in the worldwide network where concepts are born each second: The Internet.
All these things shape our society, revolutionizing the way we live. It has taken over our lives and will determine the future milestones we make. There is no other way but forward.



And we have just begun.



Do you dare to plane mountains?



Flattened You at
4:12 PM