Monday, February 22, 2016

Post-location living

You have heard the saying "Location, location, location".  I have heard that these are the three most important aspects of selecting a place to do business.  But looking those words up in Google and in YouTube, I see the meaning is extended to the selection of properties to buy.  Real estate agents focus on where the property is, I guess.

It is fashionable these days to make a title or headline about post- this or post- that.  It can be eye-catching to announce that something is over, done, that something is no longer fashionable.  The same sort of motivation can lead to announcements about the death of this or that.  We are living in the time of the death of

  • water to drink

  • silence

  • large families

  • good education

  • poor education

  • good medicine

  • poor medicine

  • privacy and a number of other 'deaths' that get announced, justifiably or not, every other da

I do think a small but important case can be made that where one is on the planet is a bit less important that it was, say, 200 or 300 years ago.

Since ancient times, the basic rule has been more opportunities but more dangers and costs in large cities and fewer opportunities but lower costs in smaller places.  Economists are always saying that when there is more of something, it is cheaper.  In a large, dense city, there isn't much space so space is more expensive.  It may take an hour to go six miles in a traffic jam.  An apartment on the edge a park will be expensive, in part because of the great location.

When I first moved from the Balto-Washington area with its millions to this town of 25,000, it was more isolated in several ways than it is now.  We are near a major intersection of highways up and down and across the state but they weren't built then.  At first, we only had one car but now we can change our location more easily.

The local university and the local public libraries had more books then than I could need or use in a whole lifetime but now borrowing is more fluid.  When I came, the library catalog was drawers of paper cards listing the books upstairs on the shelves.  Now, I can go through the catalogs of both libraries from right at this computer.  The catalog lists books all over the state and in nearby states.  Some can be viewed or "borrowed" online and the others trucked here to me.

Just this morning, I saw an item in Apple news that the postal service of India is getting a spurt of new business from the rise of online shopping.  Sure, books can be sent through the air as ebooks sent by cellphone technology but candy and other delicacies, tools, clothes, etc. need to be physically shipped.  There is a spurt of shipping everywhere as any particular location recedes in importance.  With Skype, Google Hangout, Periscope and Meerkat, it is easier to stay in one place and see and hear someone or something that is far away, in captured form or in real time.

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