Only a tiny bit of newness

Frequently bumping into "walls" in efforts to get people going on what I believe are important projects for mankind, a thought keeps coming up. Something like, "people can cope with only a tiny bit of newness at any given time; all else is rote."

It has been a very long time since I encountered someone else's idea that really got me to be hungrily pouring through everything the person described about their concept. And things that are not of that category, I can cope with only a small bit of new data, fitting it into my ongoing world picture.

I too have that same problem that I "accuse" other people of having when I can't get them to comprehend my KESTS to GEO concept, for example. If they would even make some statement about why they think it would not work, at least I would know they heard the concept; but they don't give such "reasons" either. A few comments that they do give to me, indicate they confuse it with some pre-existing concept they already know something about; the anchored earth tether space elevator is one such thing people confuse with KESTS to GEO, shown when they say "where would you get material strong enough", which is a tether main question, but is precisely the first advantage of KESTS to GEO over the tether concept, in that instead of extreme strength of materials, it uses centrifugally expressing stored kinetic energy within itself to support its weight in the Earth's gravitational field. Such a technique has its own unique set of questions to be answered, implied in its description.

So, perhaps designing information transfer systems to provide only "tiny bits of newness", might enable maximizing data transfer such as in educational systems. (Note that electronic systems, such as computer hard disks' sectors write and verify read, and internet packets send and verify back before sending a new packet of data, already do this kind of thing.) Some feedback loop that would verify that the previous "tiny bit of newness" had been functionally integrated into the recipient's world comprehension model, then would offer another "tiny bit of newness"for assimilation.

There have long been schooling techniques like this, but don't seem to be used much. Even when I was in college mid-1950's, there were paper versions of "teaching machines" where data was presented, then a question to be answered indicating integration of the key concepts of that data, and loop repeated until the correct answer was given; then a next statement was provided, and so on.

With computer assisted techniques available to the everyday person nowadays, there may be ways to integrate this. A pair of windows on screen, one with a detailed flow of data, linked to a lateral window which does the feedback loop process to enable the reader to have fully comprehended all that is in the compact version of the data. Grinding away at it. After going the long way through the process, one could later just look at the summary detailed data version to refresh memory.

So, the "tiny bit of newness" of this blog entry might be stated as "If a person can assimilate only a tiny bit of newness at any given moment, then life needs to be designed to accomodate that."

by Jim Cline on 20060810.


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