RE: everything you know is wrong--again

From: Harvey Newstrom (
Date: Sun Feb 03 2002 - 10:25:31 MST

Damien Broderick wrote,
> Did you know that? Am I the only idiot in the room?

It's not just you, and it's not just genetics. I find that in all my
different areas of expertise, the technical details discussed on this list
are wrong most the time. I am really beginning to believe that for area of
study there is a large complex body of knowledge, and an incomplete
simplified model that is given to the public.

The two do not match up. Things simply don't work the way we think they do.
There is too much information for us to understand it all. Scientists, news
media, teachers, books all give us a simplified and incomplete view to give
us an idea about things, but so many details are left out that we really
could not make them work right if we tried.

I hope I'm not just being depressing, but there really is a difference
between common knowledge and real expertise. It takes years to get a handle
on most areas, and reading Usenet for a few years is not the same thing. I
think this is why most experts do not participate in these online
discussions. They are so far removed from their real area of study that
there is no point in getting involved.

Harvey Newstrom, CISSP <>
Principal Security Consultant, Newstaff Inc. <>
Board of Directors, Extropy Institute <>
Cofounder, Pro-Act <>

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