Let's Talk 2000

"The heartbeat of 2000 A.D. from cyberspace"

June 15, 1996, Volume 2, Issue 11, a bi-weekly bulletin

Topics covered in this issue:

The Millennium Doctor Speaks
News from the Field: Talk from the Forum: New Millennial Sites: Contact Information

The Millennium Doctor Speaks:
"Taking the pulse of 2000 A.D."

Registrations are about to close out on the ultimate millennial tour. Those who join this dream team for a price get to travel on bicycle for the entire millennial year, visit one-fourth of the world's countries, with full road support for the entire planned adventure. Our first feature gives you the scoop on Odyssey 2000(r), the world's most ambitious bicycling event ever.

Our second feature gives a preview of the "millennium track" being held at the assembly of the World Future Society, this July 14-18 in Washington, D.C. Throughout its 30-year history, the WFS has been a seedbed for thinking about the year 2000 and how society might welcome the third millennium.

If you scratch your head when people talk about calendar reform, check out the new site listed in our web beat. It gives the run down on standing proposals, historical trivia and time puzzles. As always, I welcome your feedback on this bulletin on our daily Talk 2000 Forum. Your public responses to what you read here can be sent to Talk 2000 via e-mail at 2000ad-l@usc.edu.

News from the Field:
"Here is the latest news on year 2000 efforts."

Ever since Homer composed his Iliad and Odyssey in ancient Greece, people have been thrilled by the story of how humans can overcome their limitations to complete an epic journey.

Come the year 2000, 51-year old special events creator, Tim Kneeland, hopes to weave another epic tale to celebrate our uncommon humanity. Rather than recite poetry, Kneeland hopes to spin a parable of some 250 people, moving together in an Odyssey 2000(r) tour--a year-long "around-the-world" cycling trek. Kneeland claims that Odyssey 2000(r) will prove "that ordinary people can still do extraordinary things" at the dawn of the third millennium.

From 1966 to 1969, Kneeland learned what it takes to "go the distance" through a tour in Vietnam. In the '70s, he honed these "mastery skills" by teaching Air Force survival school and wilderness training. In 1980, Kneeland traded the school of hard knocks for the school of bent rims, and launched Tim Kneeland and Associates (TKA). Since that time Kneeland has raised the standard in long distance cycling by providing on-road support for "full service" rides. Since TKA was founded, some 12,445 cyclists have participated in a TKA bicycling event, and rolled almost five million miles.

Odyssey 2000(r) will be the ultimate trip. Think of it as the mother of all future "around-the-world" bicycling events. The complement of road support staff alone will be some 34 people in 15 vehicles, including doctors, physical trainers, counselors, bike mechanics, translators, cooks, housing coordinators and the all-essential DRGs, or daily route guides.

Departing from Los Angeles on January 1, 2000, Kneeland will take 250 cyclists through 54 countries on 6 continents. They will average 77 miles a day and take 2 rest/explore days off a week. Some scheduled stops along the way will include the British Millennial Exposition at Greenwich Park, the majestic peaks of Mt. Kilimanjaro, the World's Fair in Hannover Germany, the holy city of Bethlehem, Beijing's Tianamen Square and the Sydney 2000 Olympics.

Since unveiling the Odyssey 2000(r) tour in 1993, Kneeland claims "the interest has exceeded our wildest imaginations." Currently TKA has 270 registrations from 33 different states, Canada, Australia, Japan, Switzerland and Saudi Arabia.

Most of the registered cyclists are not hard core athletes. They range in age from 9 to 75, averaging 44 years old. The youngest is from Seattle, WA. and has registered to ride with both her parents. The oldest is a woman from Florida who will be 81 and when Odyssey 2000(r) begins. She will be accompanied by her daughter, son-in-law and two grandchildren. Forty couples have signed up to ride together. So far, over half of the riders are women.

To account for probable cancelations, Kneeland plans to register another eighty people for this epic tour, which he says will likely be achieved by this year's end. The full cost for the year-long Odyssey 2000(r), including a professional bike, meals and housing is $36,000 a person. That comes out to less than $99 per day. Payment schedules from now until 1999 are established to help people pay for the trip and provide TKA with upfront cash to design this first of a kind global cycling adventure.

For more information about Odyssey 2000(r), contact Tim Kneeland and Associates, Inc., Seattle, WA (TimTKA@aol.com), http://www.kneeland.com/timtka/
Source: Bimillennial Press, talk2000@rmii.com.

William Renfro, public policy analyst and director of the National Millennium Foundation, will chair a five session "millennium track" at the Eighth General Assembly of the World Future Society, July 14-18, 1996, at the Washington Hilton Hotel in Washington, D.C.

More than 1,500 scientists, researchers, educators and business leaders will gather during the World Future Society's assembly to focus on possible social and technological developments by the year 2000 and beyond. Out of the more than 200 plenary and concurrent sessions at this "FutureVision" assembly, the National Millennium Session will offer five workshops specifically dealing with millennium celebrations.

1. Millennial Thinking, Monday: 8:30-10:00 a.m.
Introduction to the Millennium Track, overview of the status of world wide millennium plans, governments, religion, states, cities, public, private efforts. Call for millennium ideas.

2. Model Programs and Projects, Monday: 2:00-3:30 p.m.
From federal enabling legislation to state commission to official projects. Beyond fireworks: National, state and local foresight efforts. Public, private and not-for-profit sectors.

3. Other Countries, Tuesday:10:30-noon
U.K., Canada, Germany, France, etc. Programs, Plans, funding mechanisms.

4. UNU Millennium Project, Tuesday, 8:30-10:00 a.m
Using the millennium to refine long-range forecasting techniques.

5. Millennium in Education, Wednesday, 2:00-3:30 p.m.
Curricula, ideas, exercises, demonstrations, projects and foresight for all levels.

For registration information, contact: World Future Society, 301-656-8274. Reports on the millennium track will be posted to the daily "Talk 2000" Forum via the Internet. Source: The National Millennium Foundation, renfro@tmn.com.

Talk from the Forum:
"Here is a recap of recent conversations"

While constructive discussions on the Year Zero proposal continue on Talk 2000, informational technology specialist, Masahiro Yamamoto (aka Hero) <myamam01@solix.fiu.edu> shared his view of how the Internet and other machines will bring "an exciting new information and technology era" in the year 2000 and beyond. Hero writes: "Today people are creating information programs and machines to do just about anything and daily there are new ideas and products being developed faster than most of us can count to three."

Always the personable Penelope Boston <pjb@columbine.cgd.ucar.edu> came back with a thought provoking reply:
"You raise an interesting topic, namely, the new vistas of potential (note that I do not say actualized) information available (currently to the privileged) and the world of swell new widgets, gadgets, and geegaws that awaits us from now through to the indefinite future. Will this make the future oh so wonderful, or terrifying beyond our wildest imaginings? Probably neither, I venture.

I speak as a self-confessed widgeteer married to a gadget-mongering computer guru who have an 8 year old daughter who is shaping up to be a much more facile computer jockette than I ever hope to be. Nevertheless! New and better software is not the solution to the ills of the world. In fact, I am confident in predicting that they simply add new difficulties and complexities to the behemoth that we generally refer to as human civilization.

Come now. Having more and better computer candy for the relatively small percentage of us using these devices in the developed world is having precious little effect on, say, the impending genocide in Burundi, nor is it bringing the belligerants in line in Bosnia, nor is it helping much in the eternal (and infernal) wranglings between Israel and its Arab neighbors.

The thing is, Mr. Yamamoto, that computers and all their wonderful promise is *exactly* analogous to what happened when new parts were added through the course of evolution to the vertebrate brain. You add a few bits to a fish and you get an amphibian. Later, you add more bits and eventually you get mammals. Some of those mammals have the latest bit blown up to the size of small balloons and you get hominids. But! Underneath the new bits are all the old bits. And, as all information scientists know, the trick is in the integration of the bits. Thus, we still have fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, mammals, and non-computer humanoids, Plus those of us whose latest bits are constructed largely from silicon, malleable metals and various plastics.

I find that having a significant portion of my "brain" not integrated with my good old human brain is something of a handicap. I, frankly, do not know how to manage all the new stuff....

I note that in most Techno-fix fiction (something of a sub-genre in science fiction), there is always the postulated Big Bust Up. This is necessary to clear the decks of all the annoying previous civilization so that the heros and heroines can start afresh to build their new little planet/country/ galactic civilization. I like these kinds of books. It's a big, if temporary, relief to pretend that you can get rid of the old icky stuff that you don't like, go back to the Cosmic Drawing Board, and come up with a System That Truly Works. Then when I am done with my escapist fiction, I go contend with the laundry or a quarterly report to NASA....

So, I remind all of us who tend to the Technopian mode of thought, that it is a lot of fun to plan and make a new garden, but not much fun at all to keep it weeded.
Penny Boston
-observing the diffuse knapweed as it invades her [garden] sanctuary in Boulder, CO USA

New Millennial Sites:
"Here are new sites in cyberspace"

CALENDAR REFORM: "Improving the World Calendar"
Featuring "The World Calendar," this page is dedicated to the study of calendar change. Its aims are to examine standing proposals; to collect information on past calendar reforms; and to explore puzzles and paradoxes which arise from time-keeping.

USF NEW MILLENNIUM GUIDE: "Express yourself"
An avant garde site which offers inspiration to those who want to design their own millennium. Complete with a millennial cafe, apocalypse watch and practically all things exotic. http://arts.usf.edu/art/millennium.html

Contact Information:
"Your link to the third millennium"

Talk 2000 Forum Home Page: http://hcol.humberc.on.ca/talk2000.htm
Talk 2000 Newsgroup: bit.listserv.2000ad-l

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Submissions of newsworthy items: 2000ad-l@usc.edu
Publisher & editor: talk2000@rmii.com
Jay Gary, aka The Millennium Doctor
author, The Star of 2000
(719) 636-2000 Phone
Publication keywords: groups, events, time, society millennium
LET''S TALK 2000 © 1996 Bimillennial Press, Inc. All rights reserved.
LET''S TALK 2000 is a trademark of Bimillennial Press, Inc.