Friday, August 04, 2006

Cyber-Nostradamus?

Tomorrow marks the start of a five-day window in which we could see a dramatic escalation of the crisis in the Middle East -- if the web bots can be believed.

"Web bots" is a term used to describe a sophisticated computer program in use at a website called Half Past Human. Its advocates believe it has at least a vague ability to predict future events. What the bots do is troll the Internet, message boards, Usenet, etc. and attempt to detect subtle shifts in the use of language that offer clues to shifts in cultural awareness, and ultimately, where the world’s “collective consciousness” might be headed. (Yes, we’re getting into deep water here.) Supposedly the bots gave advance warning of 9/11 and can even foretell certain natural disasters.

Half Past Human is a pricey subscription site frequently talked up by George Ure at Urban Survival, and he’s pledged to pass along any of the bots’ major finds free of charge as a public service. So what do the next few months hold? He doesn’t spell it all out in a single convenient web page -- you have to spend a while rooting around his site to piece it together -- but it goes something like this:

  • A significant “emotional release” (i.e., big geopolitical blowup) as early as tomorrow but more likely next Tuesday or Wednesday. This could perhaps mean Syria getting dragged into the Middle East conflict, or something else entirely. But whatever it’ll be will pale in comparison to...
  • Some sort of uprising/revolution around August 31 or September 1. This could be something in the Middle East that would quickly lead to an oil embargo, but Mexico is a potential wild card. Whatever it is will lead to...
  • The equities markets sliding so badly the Dow falls to a tenth of its present value by year’s end. Then...
  • Some sort of attack in December, possibly in revenge for Israel’s bombing of Qana, Lebanon last weekend, leading to a major war involving Israel (more major than is the case now, anyway) continuing into the new year.

Granted, much of this is rather vague. There’s all manner of qualifiers to the predictions the bots spit out, which I suppose can explain away whatever predictions don’t pan out. For now, I’m following the bots’ dire predictions with the same mixture of curiosity and skepticism which which I followed the dire predictions surrounding Y2K and the dire predictions surrounding the attempted launch last March of an Iranian oil bourse trading petroleum in euros instead of dollars. (At last word, the launch is at least six months behind schedule, and many knowledgable people say if it ever does get off the ground, it's no big deal.) I figure by Labor Day I’ll know enough to cast an informed justment of whether the bots are for real. Stay tuned.

0 Comments:

Post a Comment

<< Home