Beyond the Information Age discusses a new way of thinking about computers, knowledge and understanding. See the editorial for more information....

Understanding Engines

Understanding-engines come in millions of different forms. Our eyes understand light. Our nose understands smell. Our ears understand sound. Our cells understand diseases. There are countless different methods of understanding different knowledge. It is important to know that all these understanding-engines need energy to operate and they are all directed by procedural knowledge stored in a memory as MT, ET, ST, or TT data. The knowledge may be stored in DNA, brains, books, or disks. This knowledge directs the operation of the life-form. Living systems consists of both knowledge and understanding engines and both are necessary for life.

In addition to using energy, understanding also uses time. It takes time to understand knowledge and process information. The mechanics of understanding engines determine the efficiency of their use of time and energy.

As you read this book you are functioning as an understanding engine, step by step reading each line of this page. It may seem like you are just one living organism, but in fact you are billions organisms all working together to accomplish the task of reading this book. Your eyes understand the type SE data from the page. Your brain cells recognize the information and decode its meaning. Your memory cells store the new knowledge. You may feel like just one person reading this book but there are literally trillions of operations going on that make this understanding possible. Every cell in your body is doing its own thing, understanding knowledge, all to make it possible for you to sit and read this book.

Last Update: 2006-Dec-23