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Theory of Six Stages
Brainchild of Yunzhong Hou
The following Theory of Six Stages will be presented by Yunzhong Hou within the near future. The following is merely an abstract. Although it will be presented within the near future, its consequences will not become manifest until a decade or more into the future.
Through the course of human development, many qualities are variable and follow general functions that can describe them. The qualities we will consider here are:
- Communication: People generally are very well able to communicate throughout their lives, with the exception of ages 1-4 and ages => 80.
- Memory: The ability of a person to memorize new information is generally rather low at birth but climbs until puberty, after which it begins to decrease. By ages => 80, memory is particularly low.
- Flexibility: The ability of a person to flexibly work with various concepts (for example, Algebra, Calculus, Economics) is extremely high during childhood but gradually falls starting with puberty and continues to decrease through the years.
- Knowledge: The amount of knowledge possessed by one person at a particular time is referred to as knowledge. This value depends on memory and flexibility. As a rule, knowledge rises most rapidly during adolescence and early twenties, reaches a peak at age 50-60, and then declines faster and faster.
- Growth: Physical growth is most prominent at birth and decreases afterward, with a small spike during puberty.
- Wisdom: Subjectively scaled, the amount of wisdom that a person possesses gradually increases through the years and generally does not decrease.
- Creativity: Ability to come up with new ideas and concepts. Generally spikes during late childhood and becomes lower and lower afterward.
Since each of these variables peaks at a different age span, and since a human's life span is best spent by using the variable that is at a maximum during a particular time span, these peaks establish the Six Stages of human life, which generally can be viewed as how best to utilize a person's life span and his/her abilities during those years to maximize the benefit gained by society.
The Six Stages are: (Named rather arbitrarily)
- Young: Ages 0-6. During this time span the human body develops the most physically, while any knowledge learned during this time will eventually become forgotten to the point of uselessness later in life, and therefore society should promote vigorous exercise with minimal learning.
- Page: Ages 6-12. During this time children should be placed into school (in a process known as Induction) and be given a crash course in the various courses that society has to offer. Aside from the standard core curriculum, this should explore the basics of each of the branch curricula (such as the arts, economy, politics, religion, social studies, foreign languages, physics, chemistry, biology, etc). After the preliminary classes (ages 6-9) the pupil will then move on to more in-depth focus on the topics of their choice (those subject areas that are candidates for their further study because of their interest). For example, if a pupil shows interest in biology then the next areas open to him/her will be those such as medicine, bioinformatics, zoology, biology education, biotechnology, and bioengineering, to name a few.
- Squire: Ages 12-18. During this time people are best able to learn material that they will keep with them throughout life, having reached a level of developmental maturity. Courses now consist of even more specific subject areas. For example, the pupil mentioned above will now be schooled in subjects such as radiology and oncology. Generally, by age 12 the pupil will know what he/she is interested in, and therefore study in other subject areas will be a waste of time. This approach--throwing out the liberal arts education concept--will allow graduating students of age 18 to be fully active in their subject areas (maybe except for medicine, business, law, and engineering), but at the sacrifice of all other subject areas.
- Knight: Ages 18-36. By the time of Graduation students will have mastered everything vital to their subject areas and have found a job. Thereafter, the next eighteen years will be devoted to introducing new concepts to society. People in this time span will still have creativity that they can tap into, and will also have the most up-to-date information in their subject areas, having just recently Graduated. Before long they will have published their theses as part of their contribution to society.
- Master: Ages 36-72. By age 36 adults will have done all that they can to contribute new ideas to society, their body of knowledge having fallen far behind newer Graduates due to the relentless theses publication and technological advancement that their age group has made. Therefore, these adults will spend their next decades doing work that does not require as much creativity and flexibility of mind: more mundane work that no one else in society has time for according to this plan. This would include teaching other students.
- Lord: Ages 72+. By old age adults will be totally unable to teach and work for the community in their chosen subject areas because of loss of knowledge and total lack of memory and flexibility. In addition, their physical ability has also declined, making it impossible for them to contribute to general work. However, their major asset is their wisdom. Therefore, these old adults will contribute to society in that way: through the giving of their wisdom to younger ones. This would consist of jury duty and similar endeavors.
These are the Six Stages.
In the future, more people will become literate and more of them will be highly literate, though this change will be most noticeable in the less developed countries as of current.
Along with this social trend will come many others, opening a new world of possibilities and closing others. For example, fewer and fewer people will believe in false advertisements, and more and more people will begin to mistrust advertisements in general, leading to predictions by advertisement managers that the returns will gradually diminish until companies abandon advertising as an effective marketing strategy totally ineffective. Meanwhile, people will be able to delve into research and other jobs that require a high level of education increasingly early. This forms another part of society moving forward and of change increasing faster and faster, as more and more people are able to contribute effectively to progress and social advancement.
The IBO (International Baccalaureate Organization) is planning to increase at the rate of 10% per year worldwide. Within a few more years, a much larger fraction of society than there is today will see the importance of such an organization's effects on society. Scholarships and colleges will pass to those students who have survived and excelled in the most rigorous academic environments and courses--namely, the International Baccalaureate (IB) program. Sooner or later, international education organizations will standardize courses learned from elementary through high school, and their pupils will have an increasingly important fraction of the "cream" of society.
The MediaWIki Foundation, hitherto considered extremely unreliable by most scholarly experts and teachers in almost every school, currently has an exceptionally poor reputation due to the fact (as broadcast by the foundation itself) that anyone, even trolls and vandals, can edit material, and that there are only a few safeguards to such a difficulty. What can be done?
Due to pressure from this aspect, the Foundation may decide to split its main projects into the current ones that we have today and a more elite project that requires approval by experts and which will be able to therefore maintain a high quality standard. As a result, the reputation of at least this portion of the foundation's projects will improve, leading to is growing acceptance in the education community, as well as the world at large.
It is quite obvious that nuclear proliferation is a battle that cannot be won. As times come and go, more and more people and groups (such as nations and terrorist organizations) will be able to obtain nuclear weapons or the blueprints and resources necessary for their construction. No developing nation will remain satisfied with the delegation of thermonuclear weaponry to only a few nations out of the more than two hundred currently present; those "nuclear powers" that have nuclear weapons as of current will become increasingly pressured to share their technology with other nations, under the guise of nuclear power.
The consequences of a terrorist organization or state obtaining nuclear weaponry is frightening, but in practicality ineffectual. This is due to the MAD, or Mutually Assured Destruction, policy, which states that no side will use a nuclear weapon because both sides will be instantaneously annihilated. There are no risks of nuclear winter resulting from sharing nuclear weaponry with "rogue states" such as Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, and North Korea. As for terrorist groups such as Al-Qaida, nuclear bombs will prove paltry for their aims, primarily because, lacking a great number of warheads (>100), all projectiles will be shot down by defensive ballistics such as the United states Patriot Rocket.
Given these arguments, and a society increasingly rational and literate that will agree with these arguments, and the democratization of some of these "rogue states", nuclear proliferation will occur en masse, with the politicians of the current nuclear powers giving way to their opponents' arguments.
Another oil embargo
In the past, attempts by the Middle East to damage the economies of the Western nations have met with high levels of success, as the Western nations have been extremely reliant on oil prices. The most devastating was the first one back in 1973, which began the spiral in oil prices that continues today and will continue to climb in the future.
However, the effects of these embargos are self-defeating. Each time, the citizens of the Western nations become more aware of their own vulnerability to fluctuating oil prices, and seek to remedy this problem through the introduction of new oil rigs off the Gulf of Mexico and in Alaska, connections with other nations such as Venezuela, and seeking of alternate fuel. These activities are rapidly displacing the original supremacy of Middle East oil. The time will soon come for another showdown.
Recently a spite of tension in the Middle East--as can be seen in the War of Iraq, the War of Afghanistan, and the War of Lebanon, as well as questions of nuclear proliferation in Iran--are setting the stage for conditions ripe for another embargo. Traditionally, the embargo had always been a political tool used by the Middle Eastern countries to bring the Westnern nations to their heels. However, due to considerable use of their oil reserves, the Middle East provides less and less of the Western nations' oil consumption every year.
A War with Iran is likely. Should it occur--and even should it not occur--another oil embargo is very likely. Such an event would raise oil prices even more, forcing the governments of the Western nations to take the next step toward greater economical independence from the Middle East.
By 2010, with the passing of Hubbert's Peak in the Middle East, the influence of the embargo will decrease. After a year or so, the Middle Eastern rulers will realize that their tool is now out of date, relinquish the embargo, and be forced to draw even more closely together politically to form an entity capable of challenging the world powers (at this point, the United States and the European Union). This would also mark the end of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), and the end of the use of the oil embargo.
- A $1,000 personal computer can perform about a trillion calculations per second.
- Personal computers with high-resolution visual displays come in a range of sizes, from those small enough to be embedded in clothing and jewelry up to the size of a thin book.
- Cables are disappearing. Communication between components uses short-distance wireless technology. High-speed wireless communication provides access to the Web.
- The majority of text is created using continuous speech recognition. Also ubiquitous are language user interfaces (LUIS).
- Most routine business transactions (purchases, travel, reservations) take place between a human and a virtual personality. Often, the virtual personality includes an animated visual presence that looks like a human face.
- Although traditional classroom organization is still common, intelligent courseware has emerged as a common means of learning.
- Pocket-sized reading machines for the blind and visually impaired, "listening machines" (speech-to-text conversion) for the deaf, and computer-controlled orthotic devices for paraplegic individuals result in a growing perception that primary disabilities do not necessarily impart handicaps.
- Translating telephones (speech-to-speech language translation) are commonly used for many language pairs.
- Accelerating returns from the advance of computer technology have resulted in continued economic expansion. Price deflation, which had been a reality in the computer field during the twentieth century, is now occurring outside the computer field. The reason for this is that virtually all economic sectors are deeply affected by the accelerating improvement in the price performance of computing.
- Human musicians routinely jam with cybernetic musicians.
- Bioengineered treatments for cancer and heart disease have greatly reduced the mortality from these diseases.
- The neo-Luddite movement is growing.
- The Age of Spiritual Machines, Ray Kurzweil