E O Wilson and EoL

Oh wonderful new world of the web, that has such people like E. O. Wilson in it!


E O Wilson got his wish. “As E.O. Wilson accepts his 2007 TED Prize, he makes a plea on behalf of his constituents, the insects and small creatures, to learn more about our biosphere. We know so little about nature, he says, that we’re still discovering tiny organisms indispensable to life; yet we’re still steadily destroying nature. Wilson identifies five grave threats to biodiversity (a term he coined), using the acronym HIPPO, and makes his TED wish: that we will work together on the Encyclopedia of Life, a web-based compendium of data from scientists and amateurs on every aspect of the biosphere.”

“Comprehensive, collaborative, ever-growing, and personalized, the Encyclopedia of Life is an ecosystem of websites that makes all key information about life on Earth accessible to anyone, anywhere in the world. Our goal is to create a constantly evolving encyclopedia that lives on the Internet, with contributions from scientists and amateurs alike. To transform the science of biology, and inspire a new generation of scientists, by aggregating all known data about every living species. And ultimately, to increase our collective understanding of life on Earth, and safeguard the richest possible spectrum of biodiversity.”

Watching that video makes me appreciate how lucky I am that I can glimpse the world vicariously through the eyes of such a gentle human being.

Author: Atanu Dey


One thought on “E O Wilson and EoL”

  1. Thank you for bringing up such an important issue. I would like to add that “learning about biosphere” be actually by going out into the biosphere, into any natural place, and experiencing it with the whole body, instead of collecting facts in the mind ?

    I believe the root cause of environmental destruction taking place is that we urbanites have completely, i really mean completely, lost touch with the natural world. If one questions – When was the last time i saw a fully star spewed sky ? what do i know about complexity of growing food, knowing not facts about seeds etc, but really holding the soil in hands and actually watching something grow ? What do i know about water coming out from the tap ? What other species other than humans, have i seen and thought about recently ? When was the last time i camped in a forest ? When was the last time i hiked ? Iam afraid most of the urbanites would never have done these things. If so, How can we expect people to care for the planet ?

    Most of the urbanites live in a make-believe world of economic competition, stock markets, real estate investments, politics, some movies, indian idol, latest gadgets, and putting some money in hundi for comfort and security. Unless we reconnect ourselves with earth, EoL will stand for “End of Life” not “Encyclopedia of Life”.

    If anyone is interested in developing ecological awareness, i’d recommend the book “Developing Ecological Consciousness” by Christopher Uhl. The book is very practical and has plenty of exercises.


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