Plumb Lines

September 2, 2009

Will They Know How to Read?

Filed under: Uncategorized — David Schaengold @ 3:16 pm


Sandia National Labs is trying to figure out how to keep people away from their Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, which houses radioactive waste materials, for the next 10,000 years. What must be communicated:

– Sending this message was important to us. We considered ourselves to be a powerful culture.

– This place is not a place of honor…no highly esteemed deed is commemorated here… nothing valued is here.

– What is here is dangerous and repulsive to us. This message is a warning about danger.

What I find particularly interesting about this project is that it represents an attempt to bring very modern technical reason to bear on an old problem, namely how to make sure that important knowledge survives your generation. The traditional solution being culture.

David Schaengold


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