A modern digital computer is a general purpose machine, as opposed to say a toilet flush which is a special purpose machine. General purpose machines can be programmed to do an infinitely wide array of tasks. Humans are the ultimate general purpose machines.
Humans can be programmed to do astonishing feats of technological and scientific marvels. Take the large hadron collider (LHC) which will go online in a few days. What seemingly superhuman planning, coordination, determination, knowledge, curiosity, foresight, . . . I am running out of adjectives to properly spell out the amazement I feel at the LHC . . . is demonstrated by the LHC? I get goosebumps just looking at the pictures of the LHC.
At the other end of the spectrum of human capacity lies something that is abhorrent, something that is driven by an ideology that is ignorant, anti-human, anti-progress, anti-life, anti-inquiry, anti-knowledge, . . . A cult of death and destruction that spawns monsters. Here is the story from Mirror.co.uk of how children as young as 5-year olds being taught by the taliban to become killers.
India continues to suffer from terrorism. The terrorists are home-grown but the ideology that fuels the terrorism is imported from Arabia. Kanchan Gupta’s article “The Truth about Islamofascism” should be required reading for Dr “BT” Singh. But I suppose he is fast asleep — perhaps catching up on the sleep that he lost while worrying about the pain and suffering of terrorists.
POSTSCRIPT: Do check out the amazing blog The Big Picture “News stories in pictures.”