"As We May Think" Notes


Biologists and medical scientists have deviated little from their paths despite their war work.

Physicists have deviated the most:
- created strange destructive gadgets
- devised new methods for unanticipated assignments
- made devices capable of turning back the enemy
- worked with allied physicists in a combined effort
- felt the stir of achievement, been part of a great team

Specialization can bog down research investigators, yet specialization is necessary for progress now.

time spent writing scholarly works vs. time spent reading them
- ratio is staggering
- Mendel's genetics work was lost for a generation because it could not reach the people who could understand it
- above tragedy is being repeated now due to mass of inconsequential vs. truly significant attainments

Signs of change
- in spite of complexity, machines are reliable
- world is in an age of cheap, complex devices of great reliability

A record must be continuously extended, stored, and consulted in order to be useful to science. Today it is done by writing, photographing, and printing. These are in the process of modification and extension.

(cont. on page 113)



Online versus hard text comparison

Ads on margins are distracting
- very "in the face"
- either big images or too much text
- easier to ignore online, not in hard text
- much like a magazine article in format

Lean more toward women? Ads represent both genders but would men read it?
- very interesting to see old ads
- some are weird though... (Ex-Lax, garters, war bonds)

Connect to past text material
- memex = non-portable steel desk, your library
- we have the technology, just not the access to everything that may needed it
- same conundrum exists now as did back then, information not the problem, indexing is
- "fire hose versus trickle" search method, internet vs. hard text
- indexing, full text searching, Google
- all done by human beings, mistake-prone process
- for specialists, academics, lawyers, and scholars; not for the average person
- if you don't have the right term, you may miss it, doesn't contain the bit you want

memex was for personal use, can share but must bring others to your memex, trails do not fade
internet is for public use, can share
same fundamental use
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