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Posts tagged ‘discovery’

Introducing ‘People’

colorful crowd celebrate cheer experience

Have you ever heard the expression “people make the experience?” It’s a pretty self-explanatory idiom used to express how in certain cases what and where you are doing something is less important that who you’re doing it with.  It’s a tribute to the mindset that anything can be enjoyed –from waiting in line at the DMV or getting stuck out in a rainstorm—when you’re with the right people.

It’s a sentiment I share and I think it’s one that most people would agree with. For one, it’s something I think everyone can relate to. I think everyone has had an experience that has been improved just by being with a group of fun friends.  On a deeper level, I think it’s the people themselves that create a great community.

To illustrate this, just imagine being a part of a community that sounds really interesting, like ping pong, for example. Now think about how that community of ping pong players would be different if you didn’t get along with the rest of the people or thought they were boring. Ping pong is a ton of fun (at least to me), but with the wrong people it’s just as unexciting and undesirable as a tax auditing community (no offense to the tax auditors out there).

Worse, you might begin to see this ping pong community as nothing more than a responsibility you have to organize events you don’t want to go to and coordinate plans with people you don’t want to see.  You could lose sight of the love you had for ping pong and the reason you joined in the first place.  To create an awesome community the setting needs to be right and there’s no better way to create an awesome environment that to get great people together.

This is one of the reasons high school and college students can take trips abroad and have a fantastic time if they like the people they’re with. It’s why Rick felt so at home during his trip to Spain and why Noah and I have developed a love for Austin.  It’s people.

So over the next few months we want to celebrate and recognize the importance of great people in communities. We’re going to be taking a closer look at what makes individuals importance in the scope of communities and how people are the ones who breathe life into our world.  Stay tuned!!

What Does It Mean to Affect?

Standing in a flowing river, I find a pebble in my hand. I float along, the pebble is lost and the river changed forever.

Something given, something changed forever.
This is affect.

cloud scribble affect illustration

Credit: James Jean

My prompt this week was something new. “How OurPangea affects the culture of the Internet”, it was also daunting. Should I start with OurPangea or should I start with the culture of the Internet?  I chose neither.

To me, this prompt was asking about affect, not OurPangea and the Internet. It was asking, how does one affect another? How do You affect the Internet? How do You affect the world?         Questions all equal, all interesting.

Questions all pointed towards revealing a sacred principal of OurPangea – You affect.

In your big actions and small actions. In public actions and private actions. You affect.

This basic idea courses through the DNA of OurPangea. Our goal is to show people that every little thing they do affects; and their affects are their contribution, for better or worse, to their community and beyond.

This is affect.
Something given, something changed forever.

Browsing OurPangea, others give to you. Engage with OurPangea, you give to others and OurPangea will be changed forever.

This is how OurPangea affects the culture of the Internet.
This is how you affect your culture.
This is your affect.

Amazing Cross-Cultural Partnerships: Bringing the World Together

waffle cone brown on wax paper

The word “culture” is so strange because it can encompass so many definitions. In some contexts, it means the particular inventions, achievements, arts, beliefs, and spirit of a particular group. But in others, it means the melting pot of cultural strength gathered from centuries and millennia from peoples near and far from all over the world. In the increasingly global and connected society, both of these definitions are merging and changing to create entirely new definitions of what we call culture.

Modern technology has provided ways for this new type of culture to form and grow within groups that have arisen. No longer do we have a large, monolithic culture that people adapt to – instead, culture adapts and splits to accommodate people. In a few short decades the Western World has gone from having three television channels to having hundreds, from small amounts of newspapers and magazines to billions of websites, to a remarkable surge in the production of independent and self-produced art, literature, and music. The times are defined by hyperlocal news and hyperlocal connections, to simultaneously create tightly-knit small communities that interact with each other.

Of course, this wouldn’t be possible without the massive network of cross-cultural partnerships that have laid the foundation for the way people interact with one another. It’s a tradition that has existed for as long as travel has – people traveling from city to city to share ideas and gain knowledge, then to pass them on to more people. The concept of universities, even in their nebulous Greek beginnings, sought to bring together knowledge from all over the world and utilize these cross-cultural partnerships to further to exploration of knowledge and truth. The world’s best scientific discoveries, the best works of art and brave discovery have all resulted from cultures interacting with one another to bring the best of both worlds together. These can be great concepts and amazing discoveries that impact the future, or small everyday things that affect our lives.

The first ice cream cone was created at the World’s Fair in 1904.  Banner Creamery owner George Bang was selling ice cream, but ran out of bowls, so he borrowed some waffles from a nearby stand and rolled them up for ice cream. This simple, synergistic partnership created an entire new experience (even in something as ordinary as ice cream!) for the world. Scientific discoveries have thrived on sharing cultural knowledge, from sharing of medicine secrets since time immemorial to the international Manhattan Project to NASA to the creation of the modern Internet to the Large Hadron Collider – each of these brought together experts from varieties of fields from various cultures to create a new chapter in history. Mass immigration from India and Pakistan into post-World War 2 Britain transformed the nation, especially London, into a multicultural mecca with incredible new forms of food and music becoming fundamental parts of English culture.

With OurPangea, both the creation of cultures and their connection is easier than ever before. It is a way to experience these amazing cross-cultural partnerships firsthand, and to team up to create new ideas, new experiences, and new legacies for culture – created separately in the past and brought together in the present, for a brighter future.

The World Goes Further Than What We See

“That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”
– Neil Armstrong

greek ruins vista rainbow pretty

All around us lay undiscovered wonders, in our very own backyards. We explore outer space and far-off lands, but often forget what lies before us, behind us, within us. This is a human tradition, of sorts – missing the forest for every tree. Not that anything is wrong with this – if there is one defining aspect to the human spirit, it is the limitless capacity for wonder, belief, and hope we all share. It’s a restless spirit to change, grow, and explore. It is why people blaze their frontiers and push their limits; it is why the human race constantly seeks to grow and change, embracing technology and progress. When the first caveman discovered fire, he lit not only a spark of light, but a spark of innovation and creativity that has fueled the human race to shine brighter than any flame. For the first time, we knew that the world extends much further than what we can see, that our potential is much more than what we are, and that the future can surpass even our wildest dreams.

That spirit lived on in Erastothenes of Cyrene. He was a scholar, scientist, thinker, mathematician, and geographer – the very first geographer, in fact. Erastothenes famously measured the Earth’s circumference using only sticks, shadows, and math. He combined this with his discovery of the tilt axis and creation of the first world map with measurements of latitude and longitude. Truly, he was far ahead of his time, taking the fire of discovery past what anyone had ever imagined it to be. He discovered in a very literal sense just how far the Earth can extend past our own experience to the unknown.

The flame of discovery and progress burned through him to other great minds, discoverers, explorers, innovators, creators, thinkers, doers, and teachers across time: Christopher Columbus to Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King to Isaac Newton, Bill Gates to Leonardo da Vinci, Beethoven to Shakespeare. Each of them in their own ways dramatically changed the landscape of the world we know and the world of the future. Discovery extended the future to these great people and helped them change the world, and in turn they lit the fire for countless generations to follow.

OurPangea is fueled by that same fire every day. We can see the vast, limitless potential for change and growth for all of humanity at our fingertips, and we believe we can continue to pass this torch to the next generation with the same bright hope as it was handed to us. The spirit of OurPangea reaches back to these primal beginnings and extends into the eternal future. This is why we are undertaking this groundbreaking mission, and this is why we believe that people can help to change and improve their communities both at home and across the world. With the help of people around the world using the inspiration we have received, we here at OurPangea believe that this flame of hope can burn brighter than ever before.  In our global community, we can always continue to improve the world we can already see, and lay a foundation for the world we will discover.

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