Survival Blog Test Page
Survival, or the act of surviving, is the propensity of something to continue existing, particularly when this is done despite conditions that might kill or destroy it. The concept can be applied to humans and other living things (or, hypothetically, any sentient being), to physical object, and to abstract things such as beliefs or ideas. Living things generally have a self-preservation instinct to survive, while objects intended for use in harsh conditions are designed for survivability.
The word, “survival”, derives from the Late Latin supervivere, literally meaning “to outlive”. Most commonly, “the term ‘survival’ means physical survival — that is, a struggle to avoid physical extermination”. For example, Charles Darwin‘s theory of natural selection incorporates the concept of the survival of the fittest in the struggle for existence. Darwin defines the biological concept of fitness as reproductive success, so in Darwinian terms the phrase is best understood as survival of the form that will leave the most copies of itself in successive generations.
Historical concepts of survival
Historical references to survival cover aspects ranging from individual survival to that of empires, civilization, and of the human race as a whole. The concept is also applied to non-living and non-physical things. In engineering, the term can be used to mean “the continued ability of the system to perform the desired function”. In law, it often refers to a holder of a legal interest who outlives another with whom that interest is shared, such as a surviving spouse, or to the interest itself, such as a right of survivorship. With respect to the human consciousness, particularly when discussed in connection with the concept of a soul or spirit, survival can refer to life after death:
In much of the literature on life after death, the term survival is employed more or less interchangeably with the term immortality. And yet it is not difficult to see why the term immortality is often preferred, particularly in some religious circles. It is not simply that it is free of the associations the term survival has with merely ‘living on’, or with lucky escape. More positively, the term immortality suggests some superior quality of existence, whereas the term survival suggests mere temporal extension, a continuation of the status quo ante.
Survival analysis is a branch of statistics for analyzing the expected duration of time until one or more survival-ending events happen, such as death in biological organisms and failure in mechanical systems. One element of survival analysis is the survival rate, the percentage of people in a study or treatment group still alive for a given period of time after diagnosis. It is a method of describing prognosis in certain disease conditions. Survival rate can be used as yardstick for the assessment of standards of therapy. The survival period is usually reckoned from date of diagnosis or start of treatment. Survival rates are important for prognosis, but because the rate is based on the population as a whole, an individual prognosis may be different depending on newer treatments since the last statistical analysis as well as the overall general health of the patient.
Individuals who are concerned with surviving an anticipated catastrophic or apocalyptic event are often grouped within the practice of survivalism. Use of the term survivalist in this sense dates from the early 1960s.
In popular culture
There are various kinds of media about survival. In both fiction and nonfiction, stories about individuals surviving despite particularly dangerous circumstances are popular. There is also a wide body of educational literature, sometimes referred to as a survival guide, offering advice on survival skills in various dangerous situations such as getting lost without food or water, being attacked, or being in a natural disaster.
Putting exhibitions to one side, scarce few human experiences can be translated with ease to digital. Many companies have tried to hold digital gatherings. Generally speaking, they don’t work. Digital night clubs? Laughable. The fact is that in our current stage of technological development, there is simply no substitute for live interactions.
There is simply no excitement generated by clicking open a new tab on your browser to join a virtual exhibition. There is simply no buzz; you’re not with your colleagues, you’re not meeting real people, and you’re simply not engaged with the ‘non’ event.
It may be that in decades to come, leaving the house will become a bizarre notion, and we’d all far sooner throw on a VR headset and join our friends for some drinks at a well-established digital meeting-space (Bionic Ben’s bar and grill?).
But are we anywhere near this yet? And if the pandemic has taught us anything, surely it’s that people desperately need human interaction, and that no virtual world can ever take its place?
For most of us, the sooner we get back to live events and exhibitions the better.