James Burke Interviewed by Brad Redderson for Stranova in 2006. Knowledge Web, The Brain, Web 3. Connections
James Burke The Knowledge Web.
CEO of Stranova. Innovation Catalyst, Strategic Planner, Technology Integrator; Author and Public Speaker on Technology & Innovation; Creative Wonk
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James Burkes Knowledge Web, Brain interface.
Jose Ortega Y Gassett, The Revolt Of The Masses
N my book Espana Invertebrada, published in 1922, in an article in El Sol entitled "Masas" (1926), and in two lectures given to the Association of Friends of Art in Buenos Aires (1928), I have treated the subject developed in the present essay. My purpose now is to collect and complete what I have already said, so as to produce an organic doctrine concerning the most important fact of our time.
The specialist serves as a striking concrete example of the species, making clear to us the radical nature of the novelty. For, previously, men could be divided simply into the learned and the ignorant, those more or less the one, and those more or less the other. But your specialist cannot be brought in under either of these two categories. He is not learned, for he is formally ignorant of all that does not enter into his speciality; but neither is he ignorant, because he is “a scientist,” and “knows” very well his own tiny portion of the universe. We shall have to say that he is a learned ignoramus, which is a very serious matter, as it implies that he is a person who is ignorant, not in the fashion of the ignorant man, but with a petulance of one who is learned in his own special line. And such in fact is the behaviour of the specialist. In politics, in art, in social usages, in the other sciences, he will adopt the attitude of primitive, ignorant man; but he will adopt them forcefully and with self-sufficiency, and will not admit of this is the paradox, specialists in those matters. By specialising him, civilisation has made him hermetic and self-satisfied within his limitations; but this very inner feeling of dominance and worth will induce him to wish to predominate outside his speciality. The result is that even in this case, representing a maximum of qualification in man specialisation- and therefore the thing most opposed to the mass man, the result is that he will behave in almost all spheres of life as does the unqualified, the mass-man.
What will life be like in the year 2100? James Burke predicts