The Acceleration of Information being accumulated and stored in this world is happening faster than it’s ever been done before. It’s insane. It’s unprecedented. It’s never been done before — because nobody’s ever had the capability of doing it before, knowing how to do it, or knowing how to store it, nor where. Until Now, with modern Information Technology (IT).
Before 1900, human knowledge only doubled about once every hundred years. During the 40’s, knowledge was doubling every twenty-five years. In the 80’s, knowledge started doubling every twelve to thirteen months. And now, according to IBM predictions, by 2020, the collective world information base will be doubling in size Every 11 Hours. That’s so Massive, it’s Staggering.
The problem is that analysts are confusing “Knowledge” with “Information”.
Information itself isn’t necessarily knowledge. Information is either data processed, stored, transmitted, or received — like a computer program. Or information is a thing — like a book or facts. That little dictionary on your shelf (if you even still have a hardcopy) is information, but knowledge is in the ability to read, comprehend, and understand the knowledge (information) provided within it. Information can sit on your shelf and collect dust. And information can be data stored in your computer’s hard drive, that you never retrieve.
Knowledge involves action, perception, and the understanding of things.
Information isn’t necessarily knowledge, because knowledge involves acquiring information and skills through education or experience. Knowledge involves the awareness, perception, and understanding of the facts, situation, or subject that you are observing or studying. Knowledge involves ability and comprehension. And knowledge involves memory and retention.
The Acceleration of Information being accumulated in this world is the accumulation of DATA— not necessarily the accumulation of facts, knowledge, or truth — because information can be wrong. Information can be disinformation — false information and propaganda designed to mislead people. Information can be misinformation — false or inaccurate information designed to deceive people. Information can be unintentionally inaccurate. Information can be opinion. Information can be theory. Information can be art, drama, fantasy, or fiction. Information can be audio or visual. Information can be anything recorded, processed, stored, transmitted, or received — regardless of whether or not any of it is actually real or true — which means that information isn’t necessarily fact, knowledge, truth, or wisdom.
It’s all the Accumulation of Data (Information) — not necessarily Knowledge or Wisdom.
The Acceleration of Information is that Information Technology (IT) is accumulating information faster than anyone can analyze it, comprehend it, retain it, or know what to do with it — which is what determines whether or not information can ever actually be translated into becoming knowledge or wisdom in the first place. Funny, eh? Or, is that sad? And who would want to?
And Where is All This Information Coming From?
People. People are creating data. Individuals, consumers, businesses, corporations, institutions, organizations, and governments — human beings — are all creating data (information) — not necessarily knowledge, understanding, or wisdom. They are creating digital file size.
Every email you write, every text message you send, every audio, photo, or video you make is data — information. Not to mention the massive amount of the business, corporate, industrial, institutional, organizational, and governmental files being created everyday. Every credit card you swipe, every transaction made, every document written, every product designed, every phone call made, every x-ray taken, every lab experiment recorded, every time you check in for an airline flight, every time you walk through security and customs, and every security camera recording All Of It— is the creation of data — information.
Every camera, every CCTV, every smartphone, every cellphone tower, every tablet, every laptop, every desktop, every GPS device, every satnav in every car, SUV, or truck, every internal server, and every web server — they are all recording, processing, storing, transmitting, and receiving data — information. It’s the Accumulation of Information (Data).
The Question is Whether or Not Any of It is Useful Information?
I’m sorry, but people posting 200 selfies, digital photos of what they had for lunch, or what shoes they’re wearing on Facebook is data (information), but it isn’t necessarily knowledge or wisdom (skill or understanding). It doesn’t necessarily contribute anything to the quality of a person’s consciousness, knowledge, or understanding. It reveals the Vanity of Humanity.
Some of those things are fine for entertainment and sharing experiences and memories with your family and friends, and there’s nothing wrong with that, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that human knowledge is doubling.
You can’t really say that human knowledge is doubling, if it’s just inconsequential and trivial information (data) taking up space on a hard drive — especially if it’s confined to a small group of people. And that’s another illusion about things like Facebook — when people think that the entire world is reading or watching their social media posts about what they’ve had for lunch, where they are on vacation, or the fact that they love calico kittens.
You can’t really say that human knowledge is doubling — just because data (information) is doubling — because ignorance and irrelevant information (data) can be recorded and take up just as much space on a hard drive as knowledge (information) can. Do you see?
The problem with the Acceleration of Information accumulating is Storage and Retrieval. The more information (data) that you create — the more hard drive space you need. It costs money, not only in the hardware itself, but in the electricity and square footage of the building that it requires and the people required to maintain it. The more information (data) you have stored — the harder it is to find, which is why people can’t find that email or file they need. It all gets lost in cyberspace. Information doesn’t mean anything, if you can’t retrieve it.
Not to mention whether or not the files even work, because digital files can become corrupt, and hard drives can stop working, which is why we have back up drives. It’s not uncommon for industries to have a series of redundant back up drives. The data (information) doubles, triples, or quadruples — not necessarily knowledge. It’s just the power of duplication. If a person has five copies of the exact same book on their shelf — has their knowledge doubled? No.
Before the 1900’s, knowledge was doubling because of academic experiments and research in acquiring facts and information — to gain experience, skill, and practical understanding. That is knowledge. The experience, skill, and practical understanding of how to use information.
Today, human beings are creating information (data) — regardless of whether or not any of it is fact or knowledge (information) — and regardless of whether or not any of it involves acquiring the experience, skill, or practical understanding of how to attain it or how to use it wisely.
Toddlers are handed digital equipment. Any four or five-year-old with their iPod, iPad, or their mommy’s iPhone can snap digital photos of their own toes. It’s cute — but you can’t really say that it’s doubling human knowledge. It’s just doubling data — file size and megabytes.
The Evolutionary Path of Ego, the Rigid Human Intellect, and Technology is very proud of itself, relishing in the achievement of Information Technology and Social Media, but to Proclaim that Collective Human Knowledge is Doubling is a Massive Overstatement.
The world is high on information (data) — not necessarily knowledge or wisdom. If anything, knowledge and wisdom are plummeting — because computer programs and smart technology are doing things for people — diminishing their awareness and perception — diminishing their experience, skill, and practical understanding of things. It’s the opposite of knowledge.
The Acceleration of Information is definitely here. The question is whether or not people are responsible enough to know how to use it. Because information is not knowledge or wisdom. How you use and what you do with information is what determines knowledge and wisdom. Experience and perception are what determine knowledge and wisdom. The quality of what you do is what determines knowledge and wisdom. Not the size of your hard drive.
© 2018 – Khris Krepcik
The Hooded Sage. All Rights Reserved
Originally Published October 29, 2018 in the Hidden Writings