Hawaii Today

Making Life Better, Part 2: Hawaii in the Information Age

Consider how history has impacted us here in Hawai’i:

Around 1000 AD, people were sailing back and forth to Hawaii. At the same time, the Crusades were taking place. Around the time Captain Cook arrives, in 1778, the Declaration of Independence has just been written.

By 1860, the Pony Express was delivering mail from New York to San Francisco in 10 days.

In 1908, Ikua Purdy, Archie Kaaua and Ben Low take the top award at the Cheyenne Rodeo – the pinnacle of rodeo competitions in the world.

In 1952, KGMB was the first TV station in Hawaii.

In 1989, Sir Tim Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web.

In 2010, the “like” button was added to Facebook.

This timeline gives us a hint of how much Hawai‘i and its people have assimilated into the world around us.

This is not a bad thing. This country elected someone who grew up here as President of the United States. We enjoy our iPhones.

Our young folks under the age of 20 or so don’t remember a time before we pressed electronic buttons.

The Information Age

We are in an information age; an electronic one. It’s an age of learning by doing, which is what Hawaiian have done for eons. And it’s exactly what our group PUEO (it’s short for Perpetuating Unique Educational Opportunities) is reaching for.

When my friend Rick Blangiardi, general manager of Hawaii News Now (HNN), spoke at the Hawai‘i Island Economic Development Board’s annual meeting he gave an impressive talk about the history, as well as the future, of HNN under his leadership.

He said the most impactful thing to happen to the news industry was, “This.” He reached into his pocket and pulled out his iPhone.

Shortly after that, there was a stand-off on Maunakea about building the Thirty Meter Telescope. Movie stars and sports heroes jumped on board and the story went viral.

Welcome to the world of real time news and to the Information Age. There’s no backing away now. We cannot pick and choose in which areas we interact with the world, or hide as though there are no outside forces affecting our lives here in Hawaii’i.

We’re all still adjusting, but this is a good thing. We aren’t only taking in information. We have something that is unique to the core of Hawai‘i, our aloha, that we can share instantaneously as well.

photo: Calerusnak at English Wikipedia

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