Thursday, April 18, 2013

Symbols And Images

We store a lot of what we know in the form of symbols and images, and we transfer a lot of the information we transfer to others in the form of symbols and images. Think of the phrase "Go up Menaul and turn left on Carlisle."

Doing that involves a lot of things that aren't communicated, such as, going outside, getting into a car, starting a car and driving it, just for starters.

A couple of weeks ago I sat in the office of a woman at the New Mexico Public Regulation Commission for several hours. I heard her take several phone calls about a 15 page application you have to fill out to get your authority to operate a commercial vehicle in the state of New Mexico. She quickly transferred information to the callers, basically in the reverse order in which it was stored in her brain. She'd transferred it to me, over the phone, in the same way, which was why I made a trip to Santa Fe to talk to her in person.

What she said to the callers made a lot of sense sense if you knew what a car was, knew how to drive one, and knew where outside was.

This is not to say she is not a very hard working, very helpful person, which she is.

The various ways we transfer information, and all the things that are involved in it, by the way, is one of the things that makes teaching a profession and one that should be highly valued.


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