Failure in using computer search mechanisms

Had a test of using the computer search systems, both on my own computer's extensive files I have saved over the decades, and using the google online search engine, and found something was not working adequately.

The task was to find an exact reference article, URL, of a news article I had read years ago and surely had saved its text at the time. But the "search terms" usage was not adequate to the task. I remembered two parts of the article.

The first part of the article described a crime case where the assaulted person absolutely identified an accused person as the assaulter on sight. The case was made against the accused; but in court, an alibi was put forth that was uncontestible as to where the accused was at the time of the assault. Yet the witness was adamant about the identity of the assaulter as being the accused. Eventually the interesting thing was found out that the accused was an actor who was on the television show being watched by the assaulted victim at the time of the assault; and had somehow mixed up the identities in memory.

(Note: I wonder if that is related to the story "Elephant Man" too; I had heard someone mention that story long ago.)

The second part of the article, which was the main point of the article, was in an experiment where people were shown a specific person and told to report if the person ever did some specific bad thing. Then an extended time later, maybe a year later, the same people were asked if that person had done the specific bad thing, and many of the people thought the person had actually done the specific bad thing, even though they had never seen the specific person in the meantime. (It worked on adults, too.)

I tried several groups of words and phrases input to the search fields both in google search and on my personal computer. My computer had a couple thousand entries come up and I looked through all their titles. Similarly, Google came up with over a hundred thousand possibilities; I looked at the leading several dozen of each group of search terms I tried; then gave up on the task.

So the question is, how does one use the great search capabilities of the computer systems to find a specific item that is remembered in the many-worded vague way described above? Groups of possible key words did not seem to work; although what exact words were used in the subject article was unknown, except for a few obvious ones, which were inadequate to do the search task by the computer search mechanisms.

Supposedly the psychological principle described in the article is well-known in law enforcement and investigative circles, per the article. Yet, I could not find the article using the search mechanisms.

Labels: , , , ,


Providing an adequate education for all Americans

Pondering the focus on education for everybody, perhaps education's purpose is to standardize the skill-knowledge base of all people so they can communicate, particularly on the job, as well with the larger community such as in making decisions for voting, and even with one's immediate family. This, for starters, is analogous to the lowest common denominator in the process of determining ratios of dissimilar things; and then including specialty arenas of skill-knowledge that fit both the aptitudes of the individual as well as the multiple type needs of the nation including family life.

Yet knowledge gained through formal education is not intrinsically the only way to acquire knowledge; there are other ways to learn and some of them are better than sitting in the classroom. An adequately skilled private tutor is one such way; learning from material prepared and distributed and interacted with on the internet on one's home computer or at work is another; and from watching dramatic movies in which the mirror cells of the viewer are copying over the learning by watching another actually experiencing doing in real life.

There is the purpose I have hypothesized in the beginning here, that of standardizing the knowledge set of all people (of the nation, anyway) so they can communicate and be able to expect competent use of a common set of knowledge in their interactions; so how is it to be determined that each individual has indeed acquired the same basic knowledge and skill set? And similarly the expanded set of some specialty, or of several specialties? Is it by each individual displaying the consistent ability to jump through the specific hoop, thus proving the achievement of the mix of native ability and repetitious practice until indeed the person can consistently jump through the hoop?

Employers depend on the educational "degree" to imply this common skill set; yet also implies the ability to learn new things, because each job involves its unique set of requirements to be fulfilled as part of doing the job, and those must be learned on the job; these include such things as finding out how to get to the workplace and on time; who to interact with and in what way; and how to do the particular tasks that are assigned to the employee at the time. So one type of the "hoops to jump through for proof" needs to be the ability to learn these types of things in a new workplace-type environment.

So I would suggest that the focus on "providing an adequate education" for all Americans, would be best provided by supplying the mix of at least the three modes of a private tutor, via the internet-connected computer as prepared for learning, and by using the mirror cells in audio-visual movie portrayal of someone doing something that is to be learned by the student; and then an adequate means to evaluate that the hoop-jumping skills have been acquired by the individual and will be available for use on a job as well as in the wider practice of life.

Beyond the basic skill-knowledge set, there would be modules of specialization as needed in some arenas of life and on the job, such as dental surgeon, integrated circuit design engineer, biochemist, lawyer, housewife, high-rise steelworker, or interstate big-rig driver.

Also there is another very important factor, that of the intrinsic temperament or Jungian typology by which the individual perceives and interacts with the world optimally; we are not all the same but we are of a fairly small group of perceiving-interacting types, researched to indicate there are four basic ways of perceiving the world and expanded to sixteen types when including the individual ways of interacting with the world. To optimize each individual student's rate of accumulation of knowledge so as to accentuate the positives in each individual (as compared to merely settling for the common knowledge-skill amount that can be acquired by any of the sixteen types) the learning mode needs to be selected for each individual's type, with side practice in communicating with the approaches that other types of people use; otherwise we would end up with a nation of uniformly low competent people, the lowest common denominator, a rather frustrating and unresponsive people. These sixteen types would also early show the aptitudes for specific arenas of endeavor, ultimately pointing to optimum areas of employment and other forms of life endeavors, thus showing the optimum learning paths for each individual that lead to the ability to consistently jump through the hoops designed for each of those skill sets.

Thus through this expanded form of educational system, hopefully optimization of the functionality of the people of the nation will be enabled, which is a major resource of any nation; and will enable optimum responsiveness to the flow of fulfilling the needs of the nation, as also existing in the larger in the world.

Labels: , , , , , , , ,


Pondering what has gone wrong in this country and why

Pondering what has gone wrong in this country, increasingly so in the past decade or so, America seems to have been carved up into territories by businesses that do not have the responsibility to fulfill all the needs of their territories, but only have the responsibility to their investors to derive the most profit from the territory. Considering the principle of products being market-driven, how can a product be utilized if it is not made available to the consumer, and adequately so? The consumer can vote for a product only by buying or not buying it; and cannot vote for a product that the business does not provide, yet is in its exclusive business territory.

This also assumes that the advertising industry has made the knowledge of the availability of the product to the potential consumer, of course.

To keep daily life manageable by businesses, there are many ways that big business can suppress technologies from being available to the consumer, as part of business games, such as patenting a process yet not utilizing the process to produce products; with the patent, nobody else can produce the related products either. And a business very likely will do that if the alternate technology would not bring as much profit as the existing product line; the consumer loses, and the principle of being market-driven fails.

There are also other ways for businesses to claim territories of various types too; each territory is merely a claim to reap profit in the territory but has no responsibility to economically make available all that is needed by consumers regarding that territory.

Corporations are of course managed, and management is about control, toward predefined goals. Those goals frequently center around some particular product widget or other resource within the business territory. The management team prepares a plan of action with an efficient path toward market; anything, including new ideas, could derail the whole management plan, and so ideas are stopped in their tracks to prevent disruption of the management plan toward the predefined goal.

Businesses, especially large powerful ones, seem to consider the business as a valuable asset to be protected including their particular technological concept base defining their products or services; and that includes fending off upcoming technologies that might provide a superior cost-effective way for the consumer base to achieve what they want; and thus control & suppression of upcoming technologies is a protective mechanism for business. Staying aware of what is upcoming among the ideas from which new technologies arise is part of the business game.

The technological folks that the businessmen hire to do the technological part of the business, often have a lifetime fascination with the technology arena and the broader potentials of what can be done; and tend to have personal interests in advancing the technological arena's capabilities. But those same technological types of people, such as scientists, engineers and technicians, need to have a job working for a business somewhere and that means they are under the control of businessmen, corporations, who have the different above-mentioned profit and control interests as their motives, instead of the pure advancement of a technological field.

Thus the need for the "employment agreement" signing with the employer, as a condition of the technical types having a job so they can pay their bills etc, which (unfortunately for the rest of the nation) enables the aggregate corporate system to control the ideas that would possibly upset the business as usual requirements of easy effective management; or worse yet for the concretized business, having a superior product available to the consumer based on the new inspiration of some maverick technical type person. The technical types naively assume the corporate employer ought to be overjoyed and grateful for the new idea that enables new products and services, at least until the first run-in with management who does not want anything to change their laboriously prepared plans of action they had created to fulfill their job, and would be terrified at the thought of some new idea for a technology that would put them out of business. Any employee with ideas about the technology arena which is quite interesting to them, who does not want to just let their ideas die due to blockage by their stubborn employers, has to go work for some other employer, which involves the resume and contacting prior employer and thus the blacklisting passes on in the career very likely preventing getting a job anymore, even in a totally different field, a daunting prospect for the technical type folks.

In other words, one way long used by big business to suppress such disruptive alternate potentially useful products even though needed by the consumer, is through the employment system, where to have a job, particularly as a technical employee such as engineer or technician, the employee must sign an "employment agreement" to get a job, and that agreement is that the employee will not produce any creative idea other than those directed by the employer to be created in fulfillment of the specific job, if any; thus if a creative idea spontaneously comes up for the employee, whether or not the idea is related in the slightest to the field of interest of the employer, it must be given over free of charge to the employer, and the employer has no responsibility to evaluate or develop the idea, but only has the power to prevent anybody else from using the idea either.

And they typically exercise that power, perhaps as a gentleman's agreement among all corporations, to prevent wild cards from happening their lush business game jobs. There may also be an elitism ego kind of thing involved, since highly paid management is boss and any techie type who claims to have a way seen as interfering with management's control of things via some new idea, needs to be disciplined to get back in line or get kicked out of work, to prove who is boss there.

The requirement to sign the "employment agreement" as a condition of employment pretends to protect the corporation from having its ideas stolen by the employees, yet the corporation is already set up to utilize any actual job-created idea to create those products, so how could an employee compete with that by going off on his own to make a competing business, in the rare case of a really new idea that the company wants to use as developed in the course of employment? The ones who are actually stealing such ideas are instead the employers in the vast majority of instances; and their robbing is not just of the innovative techie employee but also of the American consumer in general who are thus deprived of new opportunities enabled by the potential products and services. This situation has been going on for at lest the past 40 years, in my experience, and the nation's increasing lack of technical leadership reflects it.

Since most really new ideas occur to the individual almost at random times about things they have long wondered about, and rarely apply to what they are employed to produce, this has long heavily suppressed the creativity of the technical people of our country, and thus blocking the products the country sometimes so desperately needs. The "employment agreement" is not only deeply unethical but is formally illegal in many states other than applies to what they are utilizing on the job now for their business; but to free up the idea, the employee would have to have the money to hire a lawyer etc to fight the huge lawyer resources of the employer, and also likely lose their job in the process, and so it is lots easier and wiser to just let the idea die right there; thus depriving the nation of the potential products that would have been enabled by those ideas.

The electoral system that enables the American people to elect people for power & control, cannot similarly choose wiser corporate business managers who have the needs of the nation in mind as their guiding principles, instead merely of the highest dividends paid to their investors as their sole guide. The system just does not work that way, unfortunately. Even corporations who are lavishly fed by government contracts, typically see it only as a means of getting income and are not interested in advancing the field other than specifically doing exactly what they are paid to do. This effect is not limited to just aerospace, either.

Even the celebrated first moon landing that happened 40 years ago in the Apollo Project, would not have happened if it had not been perceived as part of providing for the common defense - the Cold War was ongoing and the fear was that the Russians were going to build missile bases on the Moon aimed at the US; so we had to be able to get there first to control the Moon situation. The placard was left on the lunar lander stating that "we came in peace for all mankind" but we would not have done the expensive trip if it were for that. Private business management would not have done such a project on their own, even to save the nation, since their guide is the easiest profit dollar, not the product's usefulness itself. And usually the easiest profit dollar means suppressing unasked-for innovative ideas so as to keep business-as-usual ongoing; and the "Employment Agreement" condition for employment provides the tool and justification for doing that, to the loss of everybody else.

These are huge problems that block the use of the supposed native creativity of the nation, the fabled "Yankee Ingenuity" that is needed to get things going again. So, guess how this is going to play out, most likely?

Labels: , , , , , ,


The need to directly tie the needs of the consumer to the economy's process

I wonder why no mention is being made of the need to directly tie the needs of the consumer, and more generally all American people, to the economy's process. The articles just are looking at dollar signs. The ethical principle of setting price increase to no more than the value that was added, in contrast to the gambler's "charge what the market will bear;" as well as doing no hoarding cornering the market so as to demand high prices for the same old thing - but now artificially made scarce - to demand ransom pay from those who actually need the items that were hoarded just to rip-off the actual users. Those were some cherished foundations of stock market (e.g. the soybeans hallowed story) schemes much too often; and not often enough only based on providing needs in the marketplace.

It seems almost like the real powers-that-be are just waiting until the existing cars start wearing out and the existing homes are no longer enough to provide housing, and the laid off workers are humbly allowed to beg to come back to work at much lower pay and benefits, all the more profits to the owners and investors who only see dollar signs and care nothing for the actual products nor consumer.

Also I keep coming back to the question: since money does not cease to exist, where did it go ... and why are people shunning that question? Apparently there are trillions of dollars suddenly missing and no one is asking who has got it all.

Labels: , , , ,