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I took this picture during our recent visit to the Kennedy Space Center, and I just have a hard time wrapping my head around the fact that a bunch of chain-smoking flight engineers landed a tin can on the moon using this equipment. My iPhone has more computing power than this entire room…

nasa control room lomo copyMy camera was too high-tech for this pic, so I had to mess with it to get it lookin’ old school. But, my point is not about technology, it’s about what technology has done to us, to our heroes, to our collective memory and to our future.

When Walter Cronkite reported this great triumph of man (not just America) landing on the moon 40 years ago on Monday; we as a planet witnessed something larger than ourselves and it drew us closer as humans, but at the same time it ushered in the quickening collapse of our shared humanity. The quickening pace of global communications and transportation over the last 40 years has created such granularity in our relationships that we are rendered incapable of recognizing our commonality.

Last night as I watched some of the remembrances of Mr Cronkite, Larry King gushed about the influence he had on us as a country and that we would never see this again because we have become too distracted by the noise of too many choices. He’s right, but more important than our method of media consumption is our lost focus on anybody or anything of substance. We no longer seem to care about any tough questions, we grasp onto our limited understanding of bigger issues because we’re too busy, too distracted, too self-absorbed to listen and learn about how we can live to not just to survive, but to thrive as humans. For all our advances we seem lost like a small capsule in a large expanse and sometimes I wonder how we’ll ever get where we need to go.

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