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SciTech Daily Review

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Science to the Rescue

It was heart-warming to read of the efforts of people in New Zealand and Argentina to look after one lost bird [Albe -- a royal wanderer, April]. Environmental stewardship should be a personal thing for everyone, whether it's providing advice halfway around the world or picking up rubbish on your own street. And it was nice to see a positive example of how the often-villainized Internet can do good.

I read the other day that the Net is serving to make personal communities wider. This particular article was looking at how people were using the Net to meet each other, not only people far away, but also within their local community. It suggested that it provided a safe way of broadening one's circle of acquaintances (safer than going to single's bars at any rate!).

It's not just people looking for would-be mates that can benefit from this though. As your story demonstrates, science and environmental understanding can gain too from people finding others with the information they need. Education resources are being developed that promote this concept too, not just as a means for Telecom to get more money but with the overt intention of exposing children to other cultures and other ideas through direct contact.

The school connections seem fairly well developed. Does anyone know if there are any structural efforts under way to promote this sort of exchange on a more regular or managed basis in the science area? It would seem the logical thing to do, particularly with a science minister who seems permanently attached to a computer!

K. Kerr