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Date: 2021-01-15 Page is: DBtxt003.php L070-KN-KNOWLEDGE
KNOWLEDGE
THE FOUNDATION FOR PROGRESS AND IMPROVED PERFORMANCE ... BUT TO WHAT PURPOSE?

Albert Einstein ... an icon of thoughtfulness
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SEARCH FOR KNOWLEDGE
Some argue that it is mankind's ability to gain knowledge that differentiates mankind from the other animals. Knowledge has grown at an amazing pace for the past 200 years, and continues to accelerate. The technical limit to knowledge capital is the ability of the human brain to process information and understand. There is a prevailing system constraint associated with money not being available to deploy and pay for the available brains.
There are other issues with knowledge. One is that some knowledge is hidden and/or controlled by knowledge ownership otherwise referred to as intellectual property (IP) which is used or not used depending on the profit potential of the owner's option. Another issue is that knowledge has the potential to be used for bad rather than good. In many cases the use of knowledge results in change with some being winners and others being losers.

A MASSIVE AMOUNT OF KNOWLEDGE
The good news is that there is more 'knowledge' now than at any time in history. The bad news is that the existence of knowledge does not mean that the knowledge will be used wisely, or that it will be used at all.
Every day that passes there is more new knowledge ... and the amount of new knowledge every day is more and more every day!
What this means is that no individual can ever hope to get a complete grasp of all the knowledge, or even much of the available knowledge.
Another way of thinking about this is that every individual can find a lot of knowledge about something of interest ... but few will have the chance to understand how what they know fits into the bigger context of all the information.
This probably means that more and more expertise will reside in sector silos, and big multi-sector problems will never be solved.

The Value of Knowledge ... Knowledge Capital
The amount of knowledge has been growing exponentially for the past few hundred years. The present state of knowledge is amazing, and more amazing as time goes by. Knowledge also gets better and better while it gets to be also more and more.
There is a big difference between the potential value of knowledge and the realized value or accessible value of knowledge.
The value of knowledge is reflected in the KNOWLEDGE CAPITAL dimension of STATE

Correlation between Knowledge and Understanding
It would be good if there was a strong correlation between the aggregate amount of knowledge and the aggregate amount of understanding, but this does not seem to be the case. The relationship is much more complex, both in terms of neurological science and other aspects of human behavior.
Initiatives to help make a better world should be respectful of complexity especially in terms of the complex glohal system and its myriads of complex linkages and a;; sorts of different histories.
The issues are made even more complex and difficult because of the role that bad actors and misinformation campaigns can have on the perception of people, facilitated in large part by amazing modern communications technology including social media.

HISTORY
It seems that people are hard-wired to learn ... clearly some more than others ... but everyone seems to understand that acquiring knowledge is a good thing, though what people choose to learn may be different from one person to another.
This has been true throughout history and the accumulation of knowledge has enabled people to have easier lives in present times compared to our ancestors.
People use knowledge in all sorts of different ways ... some uses are beneficial for humankind in general and other uses are more beneficial to a specific individual or group. Competition is another natural trait of humankind, and not always a good trait!
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