Tuesday, January 17, 2012
Consider fifty years of construction, starting with being an apprentice for four years while going to night school after working all day; then on to being a project manager for millions of dollars worth of new schools to cap a career. This and all the learning in between stored in a brain that still works well, but the brain case grows old and is beginning to wear out.
Over the years, I have wondered why learn at all? When we die it is lost and no one benefits. All the learning is wasted. When you are gone there is no one to teach what has been learned. The thought depressed me a little and I began trying to figure out how to leave something behind that could benefit young people as they began their careers.
My first thought was to write a book about construction. I started it many times, but the content put me to sleep. Eventually I started writing murder mysteries that basically have no social redeeming value (except maybe – don’t get murdered).
They are great for people who love to read that sort of thing, but what about the 50 years of construction experience in my brain that will be lost forever when I leave the planet?
Enter my insatiable desire to learn things scientific. I watch The Science Channel and any other channel that teaches me about science and the cosmos.
Through The Wormhole with Morgan Freeman
I have been known to Google questions about our universe and the scientists who study it with great delight…even though it seems the more I learn, the more I need to learn. Each answer poses yet more questions, but that is the nature of infinity. Everything goes on forever, including questions.
One thing I have learned that has helped me cope with the question of losing knowledge when we die is that information is never lost. Physics teaches us that all information, no matter what state it has become, can, theoretically, be remade to its original state at the molecular level. In other words, the atom can always be re-arranged back to its original configuration.
Physics also teaches us that atoms contain the information of all things past, present and future. Soon scientists using quantum physics will produce computers using atoms instead of chips to produce machines that will revolutionize our world. Just think, a machine that can store your life’s learning and can be studied by future generations. Our life’s learning gleaned from a voice command. What an exciting world it will be! Sometimes I wish I could believe in re-incarnation so I could come back as a computer student, but with my luck – I would come back as a roll of toilet paper. I know the toilet paper information would never be lost. That’s what scares me!
I’m just saying,