Free as in speech . . .
Amanda Palmer on Creativity as Connecting Dots and the Terrifying Joy of Sharing Your Art Online | Brain Pickings
“the impulse to connect the dots and share what you’ve connected” is not only what makes a great artist or writer
but also, unequivocally, what makes a great scientist
In order for it to work, the door must remain unlocked. People might enter without knocking, they might crash your party and drink your wine. Let them in, and let them drink — because you might meet somebody interesting.
“Tip-of-the-Tongue Syndrome,” Transactive Memory, and How the Internet Is Making Us Smarter | Brain Pickings
“He cites Socrates’s parable of the Egyptian god Theuth and how he invented writing, offering it as a gift to the king of Egypt, Thamus, who met the present with defiant indignation:
This discovery of yours will create forgetfulness in the learners’ souls, because they will not use their memories; they will trust to the external written characters and not remember of themselves. The specific which you have discovered is an aid not to memory, but to reminiscence, and you give your disciples not truth, but only the semblance of truth; they will be hearers of many things and will have learned nothing; they will appear to be omniscient and will generally know nothing; they will be tiresome company, having the show of wisdom without the reality.”
But what Socrates failed to see was the extraordinary dot-connecting enabled by access to knowledge beyond what our own heads can hold — because, as Amanda Palmer poignantly put it, “we can only connect the dots that we collect,” and the outsourcing of memory has exponentially enlarged our dot-collections.
America’s next president had better believe in restoring liberty | Dan Gillmor | Comment is free | theguardian.com
“When people say, “You have nothing to fear if you have nothing to hide,” ask them if it’s fine to install cameras in their homes, not just in the living room but the bedroom and bathroom. Ask them if they’d mind wearing a microphone and video camera every day, so others can check on what they’ve said and done.
You are guilty of something. I guarantee it. Lawmakers have created countless new crimes and punishments, and allowed law enforcement to extend old laws in dangerous ways. Have you ever told anything short of the absolute truth when filling out an online form to use some service? We can charge you with a felony for that. And, by the way, we don’t need to convict you at trial. If you are a target, we can ruin you financially if you try to defend yourself. This is what we expect in banana republics and police states, not here. And as the surveillance state expands, it will create more targets among people like you.”
When Memorization Gets in the Way of Learning – Ben Orlin – The Atlantic
“”What’s the sine of ?/2?” I asked my first-ever trigonometry class.
“One!” they replied in unison. “We learned that last year.”
So I skipped ahead, later to realize that they didn’t really know what “sine” even meant. They’d simply memorized that fact. To them, math wasn’t a process of logical discovery and thoughtful exploration. It was a call-and-response game. Trigonometry was just a collection of non-rhyming lyrics to the lamest sing-along ever.
Some things are worth memorizing–addresses, PINs, your parents’ birthdays. The sine of ?/2 is not among them. It’s a fact that matters only insofar as it connects to other ideas. To learn it in isolation is like learning the sentence “Hamlet kills Claudius” without the faintest idea of who either gentleman is–or, for what matter, of what “kill” means. Memorization is a frontage road: It runs parallel to the best parts of learning, never intersecting. It’s a detour around all the action, a way of knowing without learning, of answering without understanding.”
Such tactics certainly work better than raw rehearsal. But they don’t solve the underlying problem: They still bypass real conceptual learning. Memorizing a list of prepositions isn’t half as useful as knowing what role a preposition plays in the language.
It’s Okay To Be Smart • To me, that’s the beauty of science: to know that…
I’d make it “learning” rather than “science” but that’s on the money.
““To me, that’s the beauty of science: to know that you will never know everything, but you never stop wanting to, that when you learn something, for a second you feel crazy smart, and then stupid all over again as new questions come tumbling in. It’s an urge that never dies, a game that never ends.””