When knowledge expands
A recent Mel Kleiman post began as follows:
Human knowledge is now doubling every 3.7 years. This means 50 percent of what you now know will be out of date in less than four years.
Let’s focus on the second word of that post. When Kleiman says that knowledge is doubling, is his definition of “knowledge” equivalent to my own?
To clarify, I have consistently used a four-step model from Sujatha Das that discusses data, information, knowledge, and wisdom. Clearly data is always expanding, but is actual knowledge expanding?
Based upon Kleiman’s example, I suspect that we are using the same definition of knowledge.
Just to bring it home, let’s imagine you need open heart surgery. How would you like to have it performed by someone who hadn’t learned anything new about the procedure in the past 48 months?
Open heart surgery requires knowledge. (But it also requires wisdom.)
If knowledge is truly doubling that quickly, this has significant ramifications for how things are done – and, as Kleiman notes, who we get to do these things.