More subtle than smacking each other

While passing USS Nimitz, one of the US's massive nuclear aircraft carriers, I had an overwhelming sense of being struck really hard in the face by a huge fist. I then commented to those with me that, while that was impressive, it was fuck all use in the "war" against terror.

While in Washington I had a conversation about the possibility of winning conflicts without having to resort to physical combat.

I then, independently, had the later conversation referred to below about the possibility of geek inventiveness being put to this sort of use.

Dave Snowden points today to a book by a friend of his from which the following line is taken:

Knowledge, rather than power, is the only weapon that can prevail in a complex and uncertain environment awash with asymmetric threats, some known, many currently unknown.

In the long term I prefer to work towards the idealistic goal of avoiding global conflict by realising that there is more than enough stuff, space and shared interest for us all to live together on this planet without making people miserable enough to start punching each other. However I am also realistic enough to realise that this will take some time and that in the meantime subtler ways of containing and managing conflict would seem a good idea.

Better IMHO than this insanity.