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War of the Currents

July 6, 2014

I came across a book about Nikola Tesla. He was said to be the inventor of the 20th century. That caught my attention. If he was so key, how come I did not know him!

Well, he was born a European boy and he was technically inclined. He admired Thomas Edison’s inventions especially of electricity, and he proceeded to get a job in the Edison company in France. From there, he struggled to get to America, get a job at the Edison company and meet Thomas Edison in person.

Nikola had conceptualized “alternating current” and he believed it would be possible to transmit it over long distances, unlike Edison’s direct current. Edison turned down the idea and Nikola left to look for an investor.

As Nikola’s dream progressed, Edison waged a media war against him, telling America and the world that alternating current kills. Edison proceeded to demonstrate this by first killing stray dogs and then criminals condemned to death, with alternating current.

Nevertheless, alternating current won. Edison later confessed that turning Nikola down was the biggest mistake he ever made.

But then, did alternating current win? Truly, alternating current proved more efficient to transmit over long distances, but it has not eliminated the use of direct current; the world uses both. Several equipment run on alternating current, several more run on direct current. Many devices convert from one to the other.

Today, we find people and companies at war, misjudging potential collaborators as competitors. For instance, there is a community of 1,000 people with each person in need of a certain service. A businessman cashes in on the opportunity but he has the capacity to service only 250 people. After 2 years, another business man comes in with a capacity for 150 people. The two business men immediately see each other as competitors; as sworn enemies.

Out of a demand of 1,000, the sum of their individual capacities supplies 400 (40%), and they consider each other an enemy. Maybe if they collaborated, they could synergise and meet 50% of the demand or even 60%, with their profits only rising! Maybe if they worked together, they could muster funds to expand their investments, etc.

But sometimes, percieved competitors are better off as collaborators!

NB: Nikola Tesla did transmit electricity wirelessly!

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From → a better world

2 Comments
  1. Revd Bamidele Oni permalink

    If this piece is any message to go bye then i think it is a proverb to the church. Little will one wonder the unhealthy rivalry that sometimes raise its ugly head among church denominations and their leadership, especially in Nigeria that i know of. The question we would have asked is that put all the population of church goers together [not separating either saved or not] have we over taken the population of those who do not serve the Lord in this path to heaven that we are convinced of?
    I suppose the problem of the two business people painted in this your article was that truly they have not even covered 40% as you suppose. That % was just a proposition due to the capacity they both thought they have but in real sense the have not met the limit of their capacities and ugly enough they must have been competing for the same people who had established business relationship with one or the other. The two establishments if critically examined, 50% of their customers have the same identity, that is, it is the same Mr. A in this company as a customer, is the same Mr A. in the other company as a customer. This is the more reason why they will fight, practically they were not covering new grounds. I put it to the Church in our nation, like God put it to Joshua in Chapter 13:1 – “Now Joshua was old and stricken in years; and the LORD said unto him, Thou art old and stricken in years, and there remaineth yet very much land to be possessed” How could Joshua be so old and would have claimed that he has done much, but God assessment suggested he had possibly not reached 50%, because God said, THERE REMAINETH YET VERY MUCH LAND TO BE POSSESSED.
    Therefore, this day, the church had pushed mission work and outreaches – reaching the unreached to the back view of church priority. This had given way, for the miraculous/signs and wonder characterised MEGA churches in town. I believed the Lord is tired of this our unhealthy and unscriptural competitions. ” The pastor of the fastest growing church” “The largest seating church in……” “The richest pastor” “The biggest auditorium in …….”, these among many other are the laurels that the church people in our days are looking for, there is no way that there won’t be competition, yet we have not covered much ground as the Lord expected of us.
    I see this article as a way of God reaching to the kingdom minded people to propagate the gospel of no competition but that the church should come together to win more souls to the kingdom.
    IF WE FAIL IN THIS, MORE CHURCHES AND SPIRITUAL HOUSES WILL STILL BE BURNT BY THOSE WE FAIL TO REACH WITH THE GOSPEL OF THE KINGDOM. [OMO TA O BAKO NI YO GBE ILE TA KO TA – A YORUBA PROVERB] – A child you refuse to train will eventually ruin and sell out the edifice you have built.
    A FOOD FOR THOUGHT IN THE LIFE AND TIME OF OUR NATION.

    Like

  2. jjf permalink

    LANRE

    Your thesis dwells on one of the reasons why we dissipate much energy, chasing the shadow, assuming that everyone who does similar things a we do is a competitor and therefore an enemy. Nay your illustration open the eyes of many people and organizations in that belief and attitude see the light and work more with hitherto presumed competitors/enemies.

    Like

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