[plase use the BACK key to return to your previous page]


(iconosphere entry) {Knowledge is....} Knowledge/Understanding (quote by Feynman) INSERT CARTOON HERE Gleeba (musing) You know, understanding everything is really easier than i thougth. Meepo: What do you mean?!? Gleeba: I mean, well, ... Did you ever read "The Hitch HIker's Guide to the Gallaxy."? Meepo: No. I've heard about it though. There's five of them or something like that. And they made a movie I heard about. Gleeba: Well, anyway Douglas Adams. He's the author of the trilogy. Well, he says that levitation is easy: All you have to do is throw yourself at the floor and miss. The hard part is is to remember to miss. Or to look at it another way: All you have to do is to throw yourself at the floor. and then forget to hit it. Same thing; either way. Just like quantum reality or even a duck. Meepo: (blink, blink) END CARTOON Please use the BACK key to return to your previous page; we applogise for the in-convenience. --42--

Knowledge is....

How do we "relate" to knowledge

We all start with the familiar; eg, table salt, light from a lamp, trees, etc. And a lot of this is sort of "rule of thumb" or "common knowledge" kind thing - or at the very least almost useless trivia; ie, where one fact is almost totally un-related to any other. Of course, it is the *systematic* linking of one bit of information to another that IS what we usually refer to as "knowledge" as such. But, then there has been accumulated these vast bodies of knowledge. How do we realate to these? How do we move from the familiar to the new, in such a way that we "find out" things. That is, we first learn new things, and then we eventually push the boundaries further.... Of course we have the periodic chart which gives us *only* the properies of atoms. But, then we "might" be able to discover that (for example) the "halides" form diatomic molecules. Then, that leads us to think of F, Cl, Br as diatomic (and very reactive) molecules. Similarly, we might be lead to the idea that Li, Na, K and other alkaline metals are also very reactive and so, we could end up with NaCl - table salt and then applying the basic idea of the periodic table, we get a whole slew of compounds: LiF, LiCl, LiBr, ... NaF, NaCl, NaBr, ... KF, KCl, KBr, ... And "sort of" applying the periodic law backwards, we end up with: HF, HCl, HBr, ... and their possible properties The proble arises that to get to "expected" or "reasonable" properties, behaviours, and such - we have to have a lot of actual experience with the physical properties of the compounds. Regardless, we then have the beginning of HOW we relate to the knowledge itself. At least in this area. Note too, that most of science (well mainly the physical sciences) follow the "rule" of "least surprise". Thus, if X is "like" Y, then we expect X and Y to behave similarly. In reality, this usually follows from something like: I know X and it behaves in this conditions this way. I now know that Y is like X. Therefore, i expect Y to behave similarly in similar condition. Of course there will almost always be a difference. And then that leads us to: Y differs from X in this ways And "therefore" that's why it behaves differently like this: A property/behaviour. Thus, we begin to "spread out" the data into a body of knowledge. And of course, we organise that knowledge in a certain way. And of course, if we are looking at different properties or different conditions, then we organise (or at least view) the knowledge along different VIEWS. For example, we have dear old NaCl: Put salt on ice and it will help it to melt during cold weather. Salt makes foods saltier and thus taste "better". Salt helps preserve foods. Thus, salt is placed into the contexts of Coping with weather conditions Cooking Camping But, note that the chemical properties would be almost useless in the last two entries. To "calculate" the way food would taste by adding a bit of salt to it, would simply be an almost impossible undertaking. And of course in terms of food preservation, the behaviour of bacteria would have to be mapped into the chemistry of salted foods. Again, an almost impossible amount of calculation would be required. Hence the need for specialised databases. And of course they "could" be cross indexed. I recall seeing a book on healthy eating that actually quoted the chemical properties of Na and Cl (as elements) as part of the argument against using salt in foods. Hmmmm.

All Experts

curious.... http://www.allexperts.com/central/expert.htm