Education World

Motivate Me, I’m Yours!

Have you lamented recently about how work for its own sake was once its own reward but wonder what happened to that way of thinking?
Was your childhood like mine in that you were expected to learn and enjoy the marvelous experience of gaining knowledge? Why is it that we have more ways to obtain information today than ever before, yet our students are far less knowledgeable than their counterparts of twenty five years or thirty years ago?
Where did the thirst for general knowledge go? It used to be so enjoyable to talk with someone who had a good general knowledge, as we used to say. We tried hard to know a little bit about a lot of things. If you did you could be counted upon to be scintillating at parties and could mix with any social class without embarrassing yourself.
Is information overload responsible for the lack of interest in our world and other cultures, food, and a myriad of other topics or do we just not care because we see little chance to use these nuggets of knowledge in today’s world?
Where did the study of etiquette go? To see some diners wrestle their food into submission using primitive table manners seems such a waste of grace and élan. It is so sad to see many who have never tasted some vegetables, indeed, they can not even recognize most of them unless they have seen them on a burger or a pizza. The proud turnip or beet is looked at with suspicion, as is anything that fries are not made out of.
Weren’t family dinners around the table wonderful? All the family chatting as we enjoyed our meat and two veg dinners, with a small dessert for “afters”. Do you remember roast potatoes that were hand prepared from scratch, yorkshire pudding and rick beef gravy on a Sunday. Somehow, a pizza with everything doesn’t cut the mustard. When our lives were so interwoven with good food, our relationships seemed to be tastier too.
When TV dinners first came in, we worried about the decline of the family and our health. What would we have thought if we had foreseen the microwave and pot noodles as being our source of nutrition after a hard day at school or the office. They don’t seem to supply that satisfied, pleasantly full feeling of not that long ago.
As well as exams on knowledge that we need to obtain the best employment in this world, perhaps exams should also be set on the types and growing seasons of root vegetables. As well as setting time aside to work out at the gym, perhaps we need to set aside 30 minutes to eat at the table as a family and discuss our day. Rather than fall out of bed at the last moment, perhaps it would benefit us to wake twenty minutes earlier and have a short devotional to our higher power, or meditation to dwell on the beauties of this world and all the good things in our life.
We have so many things to be thankful for as we stand around the water cooler…sorry, the microwave. Where did our motivation to hold onto some of the old ways of doing things go? June Steed

Education World

Can Science Explain Everything? Why Do We Need Philosophy, Religion, and Art?

Science cannot explain what belongs to the abstract dimension of our reality. Science can verify what belongs to our material reality, and explain the origin of phenomena that are part of our material life. A scientist is a realistic researcher.
Philosophy is a rational speculation and meditation. A philosopher is constantly looking for answers. A philosopher analyzes the material and the spiritual reality, and makes conclusions after observing many factors.
Religion is the purification of the human spirit from the sins of the materialistic world, and from the sins of the human conscience. A religious person has faith in God and respects specific moral principals, which act like protective laws.
Art is the free expression of our thoughts and feelings in a beautiful form. It reflects our psychological system and the psychological condition of the world. An artist loves his/her art more than his own life.
Each discipline gives us different knowledge. We need all disciplines in order to have a global vision of our reality. Science alone cannot explain the meaning of wisdom. Wisdom is more than just knowledge.
Wisdom depends on philosophy. You must understand the meaning of life if you want to be wise. If you ignore the meaning of life, you don’t know if anything else has any meaning.
The way you interpret your reality is your personal philosophy of life.
When you think about your life, you understand that it is a complex system composed by many elements. You need many things in order to be happy. You need peace, but there is no peace in the absurd world. You need material conditions in order to survive, but your world is ruled by violence and greed. You need a social life, but making friends is problematic.
Everything is difficult. Living well is complicated.
Your personal philosophy of life helps you interpret your reality. However, you are ignorant, and there are many dangers everywhere. You need superior guidance.
The unconscious mind that produces your dreams is your natural protector. The unconscious mind is God’s mind and knows everything.
By following dream therapy you will understand how to stop being influenced by your wild nature, and how to stop being influenced by the violence of the world.
The unconscious mind transforms you into an artist because your art helps you understand that only perfection is beautiful. You must desire to be perfect like your artistic creations.
You need art in order to understand the meaning of beauty. Beauty gives you joy. This knowledge cannot be given by science or philosophy.
You must love what is beautiful, and never generate catastrophes. The unconscious wisdom helps you pay attention to the beauty of nature by helping you develop your artistic inclinations. This knowledge helps you become more sensitive.
You must be sensitive if you want to be able to understand how other people feel and read their minds. Your sensitivity is more important than your cold rationalism. Sensitivity gives you balance and prevents mental illnesses. Sensitivity makes you pay attention to human pain.
The psychotherapy of the unconscious mind transforms you into a wise human being who pays attention to all aspects. You need this psychotherapy even if you have never had psychological problems.
The unconscious treatment is mind empowerment and spiritual purification. This psychological treatment helps you evaluate the importance of goodness, especially in the hardest moments of life.
This treatment helps you understand your religion.
Your religion shows you the difference between what is good or bad. Your religion also helps you understand that you must follow a path to self-improvement.
You discover why you must cultivate love in your heart and why you have to be generous with everyone. Everyone needs compassion. Everyone is suffering for some reason.
The unconscious mind also helps you understand the scientific aspect of your treatment, so that you may have objective knowledge. You learn how your brain works and what determines your behavior. You become a psychologist yourself.
Science is a discipline that helps you understand why everything happens the way it does. It is quite similar to philosophy. However, science is based on objective scientific discoveries and not on ideas, like philosophy.
Everything is important. Everything helps you become more intelligent. You must pay attention to everything at the same time if you want to make wise decisions, and prepare positive life conditions for yourself in the future. You also have to be sensitive. You should always remember that your sensitivity gives you balance; not your reasoning.

Education World

Technical Documentation for Effective Knowledge Transfer

What drives us to produce technical documentation, who produces them and what types are commonly in use? When we think of something as being technical we usually think of something in a technological, mechanical or scientific arena that is characterised by an area of specialization. Technical documentation can refer to any document that describes the construction, handling, specifications, maintenance, installation, design, disposal and/or functionality of a product at any stage of development. The documentation is usually supplied by the manufacturer of the product and examples include operating and maintenance manuals, user guides, configuration and installation guides and training manuals.
Technical documentation must be clear, consistent, unambiguous, user-centred, comprehensive and accurate and to produce them technical writers must have expert subject matter knowledge besides good writing and research skills, trade experience and an understanding of the terminology and jargon used in a particular area. Consistency of technical documentation is what inspires that subliminal sense of trustworthiness, reliability and confidence in the users. Inconsistent technical documentation with missing or non-sequential page numbers, chapter headings printed in different fonts and sizes or figure legends that do not match the illustration would certainly not inspire any confidence in the product or item purchased.
Planning for technical papers needs to be considered from the outset so that the document management life-cycle can form part of the product development process and be concluded on time and within budget. When documentation is carefully planned and well written by trained technical communication professionals, they can add significant value. The benefit of well written technical documentation is increased sales, cost saving, decreased product returns and the maintenance of good relationships with customers. Technical documentation can allow the end-user to perform a process more efficiently and also to understand and use a product effectively while conveying a professional and trustworthy image.
Producing effective technical papers is not a simplistic task because the writing is for people and all people have their unique set of preferences and learning styles. Some will prefer more text and fewer illustrations and some would prefer the reverse. Others would like the amount of detail to me limited while some will expect as much detail as possible. Finding a balance is difficult and testing documentation on focus groups of users can sometimes help to find common ground. Queries and feedback should also be considered as well as technical updates to documentation. Whatever the format decided upon, good quality documentation facilitates information dissemination and knowledge transfer.

Education World

Redefining Our Limits

It hasn’t been so long ago that I have been first introduced to this world of Brain Fitness. Back then, my knowledge of this area could be described as nonexistent. It may still be the case to some extent, as the developments on the brain knowledge and in the ability to develop its capacity are so quickly changing everyday, becoming a sort of moving target.
I am not writing about my experience with brain fitness though, but rather about how the introduction and understanding of all the work being done everywhere in the world around cognitive improvement has changed my perception of what’s ahead.
One very good way to predict in some sort the future is to look at the past. The History and past experiences send a sign of what to expect ahead. The introduction of brain fitness, and overall the development of neuroscience and increased capacity of the human brain, challenges this understanding of the relationship between the past and the future. In fact, brain fitness can be considered as a disruption factor when adopted by a majority of the population.
When looking at the way we as human beings live in a society, it is a very hard objective to keep improving on and on every day. A country needs to grow its economy in order to remain at least healthy. A company needs to grow its sales in order to stay alive. An employee expects to grow his wages over time, but also expects the prices to grow.
The notion of a never-ending growth is in every thing we do. But theoretically, this notion is nonsense, as there is a limit to everything. There is a limit to the natural resources we can use, to the consumption, and also to the sum of the capacity of the human brains. One day, this limit would be reached and a further growth would need to be based on an increase of the resources.
This is where brain fitness, or in a larger sense, the increase of the cognitive abilities of a whole population, play a role in redefining the limits we live with. Redefining as well the notion of the theoretical nonsense for a continuous growth.
The concept that a better and active brain plays a role in the success of the individual, and on an aggregate level in the success of a whole group (being it a company, a club, a nation) is one of the most important learnings to come. The pioneers and visionary in this field will be rewarded.