The Stupidification of America

Methods and means of supporting critical thinking in education
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:10 pm

No butter is a good alternative. After a health kick some years ago, I still feel "decadent" when adding butter or VOO to any food. Heh.....salt is even making a comeback in my kitchen and I've been reading msg should also be used. Everything old is new again. I want to roast brussel sprouts too. I do like the cancerous crispiness that steaming just doesn't provide. ////////Dang, I wanted to confirm what I say next but first 3 hits are behind pay walls. I need to set google up to delete those, its getting stupid.

so...years ago reading msg had that fifth taste "imagi" that was also present in mushrooms and soy sauce, I started cooking with those two ingredients. I like that taste. But if msg is no longer verbotin, why not use it directly? I think I will...........
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by Gord » Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:17 pm

landrew wrote:
Sun Apr 07, 2019 2:28 pm
...is the point I'm making very wrong?...
I certainly hope so.
"Knowledge grows through infinite timelessness" -- the random fictional Deepak Chopra quote site
"Imagine an ennobling of what could be" -- the New Age BS Generator site
"You are also taking my words out of context." -- Justin
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:24 pm

A calculator should be like a DICTIONARY: used when you want to assure accuracy.

.........which does not negate having sufficient skills "in your head" for daily activities.

Most people accept their limitations in math, somehow the real world makes such deficiencies clear, but the same respect/understanding does not extend to vocabulary. People think their malapropisms and ignorance are making the language "grow."

We think with words................
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by landrew » Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:27 pm

Gord wrote:
Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:17 pm
landrew wrote:
Sun Apr 07, 2019 2:28 pm
...is the point I'm making very wrong?...
I certainly hope so.
Really? Who besides some very old people still do division on paper?
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by Wordbird » Sun Apr 07, 2019 10:22 pm

landrew wrote:
Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:27 pm
Really? Who besides some very old people still do division on paper?
Origami folders.

Image

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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Sun Apr 07, 2019 10:29 pm

Ha, ha.....................well done.
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by landrew » Mon Apr 08, 2019 3:08 pm

Are we talking about the same thing?
LongHandDivision.jpg
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by Gord » Mon Apr 08, 2019 8:42 pm

landrew wrote:
Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:27 pm
Gord wrote:
Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:17 pm
landrew wrote:
Sun Apr 07, 2019 2:28 pm
...is the point I'm making very wrong?...
I certainly hope so.
Really? Who besides some very old people still do division on paper?
:pardon: Everyone? Everyone who wants to know the answer to a maths question involving division beyond two significant digits?
"Knowledge grows through infinite timelessness" -- the random fictional Deepak Chopra quote site
"Imagine an ennobling of what could be" -- the New Age BS Generator site
"You are also taking my words out of context." -- Justin
"Nullius in verba" -- The Royal Society ["take nobody's word for it"]
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by TJrandom » Mon Apr 08, 2019 10:33 pm

Long division, short division, fat division, thin division... the mind boggles. :roll:

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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by landrew » Mon Apr 08, 2019 10:38 pm

Gord wrote:
Mon Apr 08, 2019 8:42 pm
landrew wrote:
Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:27 pm
Gord wrote:
Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:17 pm
landrew wrote:
Sun Apr 07, 2019 2:28 pm
...is the point I'm making very wrong?...
I certainly hope so.
Really? Who besides some very old people still do division on paper?
:pardon: Everyone? Everyone who wants to know the answer to a maths question involving division beyond two significant digits?
I think you're pulling our legs here, but I'll bite. You do know that calculators and math programs can do that better than humans?
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Mon Apr 08, 2019 10:43 pm

landrew: what is a person to do if they have no calculator?
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by landrew » Mon Apr 08, 2019 10:53 pm

bobbo_the_Pragmatist wrote:
Mon Apr 08, 2019 10:43 pm
landrew: what is a person to do if they have no calculator?
I use my cellphone, or I do it in my head.
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Mon Apr 08, 2019 10:57 pm

HAH!!!!!!! I KNEW you would say that............as if the cellphone is not a calculator.

Yes.......in your head...........and if you want more than the first digit........you go to paper.

You have to "be able" to do paper and pencil "if" you want to understand the tech you are using........and have alternatives in its absence.

BASIC SKILLS: should never be shortchanged. We need more of them and a greater emphasis on them. Learn to fish...
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by landrew » Tue Apr 09, 2019 12:09 am

You know, from the hypothetical standpoint of an ET visitor to the earth, they might think using a pencil and paper when calculators are ubiquitous, might seem a bit stupid.
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Tue Apr 09, 2019 12:48 am

Not if Star Fleet required such skills.
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by mack_10 » Tue Apr 09, 2019 2:56 pm

When kids in highschool started using calculators they stopped trying to work it out in their head, the mistakes they make beggar belief.

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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by landrew » Tue Apr 09, 2019 3:24 pm

Star Trek:
"Computer, what's the square root of 2?"
Computer: "Accessing... [10 seconds later] 1.141."

Today:
"Google, what's the square root of 2?"
[instantly] "The first 10 million digits are: 1.41421356237309504880168872420969807856967187537694807317667973799073247846210703885038753432764157273501384623091229702492483605585073721264412149709993583141322266592750559275579995050115278206057147010955997160597027453459686201472851741864088919860955232923048430871432145083976260362799525140798968725339654633180882964062061525835239505474575028775996172983557522033753185701135437460340849884716038689997069900481503054402779031645424782306849293691862158057846311159666..."
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by Gord » Wed Apr 10, 2019 1:38 am

landrew wrote:
Mon Apr 08, 2019 10:38 pm
Gord wrote:
Mon Apr 08, 2019 8:42 pm
landrew wrote:
Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:27 pm
Gord wrote:
Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:17 pm
landrew wrote:
Sun Apr 07, 2019 2:28 pm
...is the point I'm making very wrong?...
I certainly hope so.
Really? Who besides some very old people still do division on paper?
:pardon: Everyone? Everyone who wants to know the answer to a maths question involving division beyond two significant digits?
I think you're pulling our legs here, but I'll bite. You do know that calculators and math programs can do that better than humans?
Well, that sounds like you're basing the premise on a foregone conclusion -- what do you mean by "better"? I would suggest that by definition the human does it "better" than the machine because it's the human who gets the benefit of the calculation by working it out.

Are you seriously saying that people around you do not do their own maths? I'm looking right at someone this very moment who is working out a maths problem with pen and paper (which quite frankly is insane -- who uses pen to do maths problems?!). Okay, I had to look away to check my spelling and then correct it, but the sentiment remains the same.

I was grocery shopping today with my two sisters, and we all worked out our bills (more or less) in our heads before taking our items to the checkout line. Is this not a thing others do? Are others seriously incapable of doing this? How do others manage to pay for their items when they can never be sure if they're carrying enough money to cover their costs?

I also used my debit account to pay for my purchases at six different stores today, keeping a running account of how much was remaining in my account so that I wouldn't exceed my purchasing limit. During lunch at Timmy's I jotted down my numbers on the back of a receipt to make sure I was maintaining sufficient accuracy (I was, but that's not always the case, which is why I like to check my head-maths with paper-and-pencil maths during our lunch breaks). Is this not something others are capable of doing?

If not: How do you people function in this society without basic maths skills?!
"Knowledge grows through infinite timelessness" -- the random fictional Deepak Chopra quote site
"Imagine an ennobling of what could be" -- the New Age BS Generator site
"You are also taking my words out of context." -- Justin
"Nullius in verba" -- The Royal Society ["take nobody's word for it"]
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by Gord » Wed Apr 10, 2019 2:03 am

mack_10 wrote:
Tue Apr 09, 2019 2:56 pm
When kids in highschool started using calculators they stopped trying to work it out in their head, the mistakes they make beggar belief.
Exactly! They have all the cognitive social realisation of a lump of mould. Their mistakes are as outlandishly hilarious as computer mistakes used to seem. I remember one day, years ago, when I asked my nephew to work out a quick maths problem so I could check my own work (I can't remember it anymore, but for the sake of argument let's pretend it was "what is 17.92 times 15.51?"). Expecting an answer in the hundreds, I was shocked to hear him give me one in the millions instead. I repeated my question to see if he would recognise his breathtaking error, but he just looked at me blank-faced and repeated his *cough cough* "answer".

For your amusement, I hereby present the following re-enactment. The names have been changed to protect the guilty.

Gord: I'm trying to work out the area of this board. It's 17.92 inches long by 15.51 inches across. What's that work out to?

Dum-Dum: Hang on, I'll get my calculator....

Gord: It's gotta be somewhere between, let's see...well 20 times 15 would be 300, and 15 times 15 would be 225, so I'm guessing it's around 275 or so. I get something like 278 square inches when I work it out in my head.

Dum-Dum: It's two million and something.

Gord: What??

Dum-Dum: Two million, seven hundred and seventy-nine thousand, three hundred and ninety-two.

Gord: Square inches???

Dum-Dum: See? (shows Gord the screen on the calculator, which goes blank as soon as its photovoltaic solar cell is taken out of direct sunlight).

Gord: This board is not three million square inches in area!

Dum-Dum: (looks at calculator again; as soon as sunlight hits the photovoltaic cell again, the number reappears on the screen before him) Yup. Says so here.

Gord: Did you forget the decimal points?

Dum-Dum: Nuh-uh.

Gord: Try it again: 17.92 times 15.51.

Dum-Dum: *tap tap tap*... Same number. Two seven seven nine three nine two.

Gord: Try it again.

Dum-Dum: You try it. (hands Gord the calculator)

Gord: *tap tap tap*... Yeah, your decimal button isn't working. You multiplied 1,792 times 1,551.

Dum-Dum: Huh?

Gord: What did you score on your last maths test?

Dum-Dum: 37.

Gord: Percent?

Dum-Dum: No, out of a hundred.

Dum-Dum's Mum: Ba-doom, tish!
"Knowledge grows through infinite timelessness" -- the random fictional Deepak Chopra quote site
"Imagine an ennobling of what could be" -- the New Age BS Generator site
"You are also taking my words out of context." -- Justin
"Nullius in verba" -- The Royal Society ["take nobody's word for it"]
#ANDAMOVIE
Is Trump in jail yet?

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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Wed Apr 10, 2019 2:33 am

"Out of a hundred." =====>he never said that. You made a funny!

Well done.
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by Gord » Wed Apr 10, 2019 3:36 am

bobbo_the_Pragmatist wrote:
Wed Apr 10, 2019 2:33 am
"Out of a hundred." =====>he never said that. You made a funny!

Well done.
Somebody said it. I can't promise it was him, or that it was on that occasion, but someone said it to me at some point. I had to explain to them what "percent" meant.
"Knowledge grows through infinite timelessness" -- the random fictional Deepak Chopra quote site
"Imagine an ennobling of what could be" -- the New Age BS Generator site
"You are also taking my words out of context." -- Justin
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Is Trump in jail yet?

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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by landrew » Wed Apr 10, 2019 3:05 pm

I learned how to use a slide rule in 1975, and they stopped making them in 1976.
I'm sure dozens of slide-rule makers were thrown out of work.
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by Lance Kennedy » Wed Apr 10, 2019 10:55 pm

I had to look it up on line. Literacy is well documented. In the USA from 1850 to the present, it has increased from 80% to over 99%. I do not think you can call Americans stupid. Lots of other things for sure. But not stupid.

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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by landrew » Wed Apr 10, 2019 11:07 pm

Lance Kennedy wrote:
Wed Apr 10, 2019 10:55 pm
I had to look it up on line. Literacy is well documented. In the USA from 1850 to the present, it has increased from 80% to over 99%. I do not think you can call Americans stupid. Lots of other things for sure. But not stupid.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions ... story.html
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by Lance Kennedy » Wed Apr 10, 2019 11:16 pm

Well, landrew, the fact that I said Americans are not stupid does not mean none of them are. After all, they voted for Trump.

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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by landrew » Wed Apr 10, 2019 11:21 pm

Lance Kennedy wrote:
Wed Apr 10, 2019 11:16 pm
Well, landrew, the fact that I said Americans are not stupid does not mean none of them are. After all, they voted for Trump.
All it takes is for the majority to vote "stupid."
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Wed Apr 10, 2019 11:21 pm

Sliderule: hmmmm.....old tech, like pencil and paper, that everyone should know? Its the SLIDERULE that makes me wish I were smarter: I learned to use it too and I spent some time just staring at it marveling at its simplicity and underlying math. I used it often enough that sometime I could visualize a problem on a sliderule and get a ballpark calculation. I'm sure if I were just x% smarter, I could have then and now "fully realized" a sliderule in my mind and be a math wiz?................but I can't. Is that failure one of intelligence, or of abstract visualization....to whatever degree or nature those are separate issues?

Later in life, I did use this visualization skill to basically memorize the weight/fuel/distance/time charts we used to plan aircraft flights. I got really good at it and could just look at base numbers, visualize the charts in my mind, and confirm a very close ballpark. I didn't even have to memorize the charts.......after a year or so of using the charts repetitively it just came naturally. I never met anyone that did it like I could. Of course, every pilot knows you can't fly a fully loaded airplane for 8 hours on half a tank of fuel........but could they get to the closest 10K pounds of fuel required??? I could. .............and I put it all down to my sliderule experience.....and the problems being very much the same.

Brag time/memory time .........over. Ha, ha..........and now: I can't remember a new phone number for more than five minutes. Brag time over: big time.
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Wed Apr 10, 2019 11:24 pm

Literacy, a measure of the ability to read comic books, doesn't address intelligence which doesn't address voter behavior.
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by Gord » Thu Apr 11, 2019 9:47 am

landrew wrote:
Wed Apr 10, 2019 3:05 pm
I learned how to use a slide rule in 1975, and they stopped making them in 1976.
Whaaaaaat? I bought mine in the mid-80s!

Oh for {!#%@}'s sakes...:
The last slide rule manufactured in the United States was produced on July 11, 1976.
"Knowledge grows through infinite timelessness" -- the random fictional Deepak Chopra quote site
"Imagine an ennobling of what could be" -- the New Age BS Generator site
"You are also taking my words out of context." -- Justin
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by OlegTheBatty » Thu Apr 11, 2019 2:13 pm

Gord wrote:
Thu Apr 11, 2019 9:47 am
landrew wrote:
Wed Apr 10, 2019 3:05 pm
I learned how to use a slide rule in 1975, and they stopped making them in 1976.
Whaaaaaat? I bought mine in the mid-80s!

Oh for {!#%@}'s sakes...:
The last slide rule manufactured in the United States was produced on July 11, 1976.
In 1976 I was using a multifunction calculator because my physics classes required accuracy to more decimal places than a slide rule could provide.

The only reason for buying a slide rule in the mid-80's would be to preserve one for a museum.
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Re: The Stupidification of America

Post by landrew » Thu Apr 11, 2019 2:53 pm

Gord wrote:
Thu Apr 11, 2019 9:47 am
landrew wrote:
Wed Apr 10, 2019 3:05 pm
I learned how to use a slide rule in 1975, and they stopped making them in 1976.
Whaaaaaat? I bought mine in the mid-80s!

Oh for {!#%@}'s sakes...:
The last slide rule manufactured in the United States was produced on July 11, 1976.
Someone's always making them.
I'm making one right now.
The job of a skeptic is to investigate the unexplained; not to explain the uninvestigated.