Could it be… that the ability to “find knowledge” is now more important than to “know knowledge?” I can recall all-night cramming sessions in my school years, trying to memorize factoids in history, literature and science. But with Google and Wikipedia literally at your fingertips now, why bother?
My childhood library had a Dewey Decimal System and card catalog to help navigate to the knowledge you needed. You could follow it like a big tree with branches that made logical sense, and you could eventually find the leaf you needed at the end of your climb.
Now all the knowledge in the world is like a giant pile of leaves. And if you know the right keyword or phrase, you can reach right into the pile and pull out just the leaf you need at the moment you need it. Kind of magical when you think about it.
So it seems that knowledge acquisition is becoming much LESS important than good detective skills for survival. You memorizers could be more impressive at parties and trivia gameshows, but I’ll put my money on the person who can pull out an iPhone and tell you the answer with the fewest clicks any time.
Quick… is it true that more people are killed annually by donkeys than die in air crashes?