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Mingkun Wan

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Why some knowledge cannot be accumulated like scientific knowledge?

Scientific knowledge has been accumulated and developed for hundreds of years by universities or other scientific community. This is why technology can be developed so quickly and efficient. However, some knowledge seems to be non-accumulateable. For example, for thousands of years, people still face the problem of corruption and meaning of life like our ancestors do. Moreover, the kind of knowledge that do not accumulate seems to be mostly philosophical knowledge and social knowledge.It seems that we simply do not learn from past about these kind of knowledge, and this is why we face the same problems again and again for thousands of years. However, I firmly believe that these kinds of knowledge are as important as scientific knowledge in order to make the society a better society.Will there be a way for us to accumulate these kind of knowledge like scientific knowledge? Will we have a way to develop those knowledge like scientific knowledge to avoid commiting the same problems again and again, or to avoid the "repeat of history"?


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  • Dec 31 2013: Its accumulated just fine, the problem is it tends to get stuck inside dusty old books (and lately equally dusty, not so old servers and hard drives) instead of in people's heads.

    The vast majority of people, including those on all levels of government, military, or corporate positions of power don't know much in the way of history; the best you can usually hopeful is the incredibly simplified and biased version taught in school.
    And even the ones that do know history on a more satisfactory level often fail to apply it properly in situations where the lessons of the past are applicable.
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      Dec 31 2013: I agree with you Nadav! However, I am still curious about how do you think about why people cannot "apply it properly in situations where the lessons of the past are applicable". Is it the problem of our education system?
      • Dec 31 2013: Its partially a problem with the educational system, and partially a failing of the people themselves.
        The truth is, half the people on this planet are in possession of less then average intelligence (very sad, I know). Applicability requires a great deal of pattern recognition, as well as an uncommon understanding, which many people aren't capable of even when the knowledge is available. There is simply more demand for intelligent people then the supply can keep up with.

        It doesn't help that making high office in practically anything often has more to do with charisma and connections then intelligence and competency. This is as true in a dictatorship as it is in a democracy.

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