Sorry for not posting for over 2 years, I've been a little preoccupied. Lets pretend like I never stopped. It was probably two years ago that I bought this book called "Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain." Drawing, a never present talent of mine, is something I have been meaning to cultivate for years. So on Thursday night, sitting in the Barrister's Den, I finally picked up the book and started reading.
New books prompt new ideas, they prompt what I like to label beach storming. Random, rampant, and generally unproductive speculation becomes the norm. At these moments, nothing fascinates me more then exploring the limits of my own mind and the connections it can make.
A few pages in, the author, Betty Edwards, begins talking about the different brain hemispheres, you know the "right side" of your brain and the "left side". It was the work of Robert Sperry which taught us that the left side of the brain controls analytical thinking and the right side controls big picture thinking. However, this wasn't what caught my attention.
Apparently our brains have 100 billion neurons and those neurons have a 1000 trillion connections between them. Our brain can recall a connection or information in a fraction of a second. It can recognize patterns just as quickly. However, its ability to make calculations is quite limited, only 200 calculations per second. So while a computer can beat us in math or in calculating sequential relationships, it doesn't stand a chance in terms of pattern seeking.
Here's my "brilliant" idea which has no practical use. We have amazing recall power but little calculation power. I think it would be an entertaining and maybe even rewarding exercise to compile a database of that knowledge which we can simply recall from their brains. Something free of googling or research. Something along the lines of a massive crossword puzzle. Everyday or every hour, or every minute, we put up a person, an idea, a historical event, whatever, and people respond with whatever they know about it. I don't know how this is any better then wikipedia, but it strikes me that we might get at some of the knowledge which is stuck in our heads. And it might be fun too.