December 31, 2009

A Time to Reflect

2009 served as the first full year of this blog and I want to thank all of you for taking the time visit. I appreciate your comments, whether they are made publicly and privately, and your suggestions for future blog topics. Starting with the first entry posted on August 10, 2008 about creating sustainable solutions in resolving the crisis in Sudan, this blog continues to serve a resource for understanding the problems people and companies face, both manmade or naturally occurring, and formulating solutions through innovative products and services. (Photo of the Space Needle in Seattle courtesy of Jim Bates/The Seattle Times)

Over the past year, we have witnessed great advancements in information and communications technology, renewable energy, and clean technology. Mobile phones and inexpensive portable computers are bridging the digital divide in industrialized and developing nations alike. We are seeing great advancements in mobile applications in education, telemedicine, and agriculture, and the improvement of renewable energy technologies that will provide the energy needs for millions, or perhaps billions, of people.

Several events will take place in 2010 that will focus on the intrinsic value of the individual and highlight the power of collaboration. Sports often bring together individuals with start physical or ideological differences to focus on a common element. Vancouver, Canada will host the Winter Olympic Games from February 12-28, 2010 and South Africa will host the 2010 FIFA World Cup, which I hope the latter will highlight the positive attributes of the host country and the entire African continent. Furthermore, Shanghai, China will host Expo 2010 from May 1 through October 31, focusing on the theme “Better City, Better Life.”

Lastly, according to a United Nations press release dated December 21, 2009, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon "called on world leaders to attend a summit next September to boost efforts to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which seek to slash a host of social ills, ranging from extreme poverty and hunger to maternal and infant mortality to lack of access to education and health care, all by 2015." The MDG summit will take place at the UN headquarters in New York. And the world will look for tangible results at the next annual climate conference to be held in Mexico City in November 2010.

Lest we forget the ongoing conflicts in Afghanistan, Democratic Republic of Congo, Guinea, Haiti, Honduras, Iraq, Myanmar, Pakistan, Somalia, Sudan, Venezuela, and Yemen. As you read this entry, millions of innocent people continue to suffer as the result of armed conflict or environmental strife. We should remain optimistic, however, that as technology has enabled people to connect in ways unimaginable just a few years ago, we can continue to develop innovative ways to educate and empower the most vulnerable populations.

May 2010 bring peace and prosperity to all people worldwide.

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