Rabbit Hole – Who’s Being Naive, Kay? Also, DARPA, Ribbon Farm, and Unknown Knowns

For the past few week I’ve been meaning to write Rabbit Hole notes about, variously, Anti-metrics,

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  1. Quote from the Ribbon Farm narrative:
    “The world that we interact in is mostly imaginary, constructed by all of us out of fantasies and guesses. As we get more intelligent, we will get more imaginary.”

    For most of my life I’ve been searching for ‘certainty’. Now in my seventies I embrace uncertainty.

    Thank you Neville and Ben for articulating that so well.

  2. I worked for about five years as a Knowledge Manager. My definition of KM pretty much revolved around the notion of “unknown knowns.” Within that context, I was referring to all the things that people in the organization knew – all the knowledge that actually existed – but that too few people knew existed or how to find it. And it was the job of KM to develop the awareness, the processes, and the technology for teasing out and capturing that knowledge.

  3. Avatar for Mpm186 Mpm186 says:

    “The world that we interact in is mostly imaginary, constructed by all of us out of fantasies and guesses. As we get more intelligent, we will get more imaginary.”

    Yuval Noah Harari has an excellent discussion of imaginary reality in Sapiens:


    He calls the imaginary fantasies “shared myths” and argues persuasively that they underlie the key evolutionary advantage of humans - our ability to work together in large numbers.

    “Human Rights” - by way of example - do not exist in any form in nature. They are simply made up. Yet if we all engage in a collective delusion, a collective shared myth, and imbue them with universal cosmic significance - if we make them ‘real’ - then the world is seemingly a better place.

    Undoubtedly, shared myths are also responsible for some of the more reprehensible events of human history, and even good myths can easily be manipulated to nefarious ends. Like two sides of the same coin. It’s hard to see how the world will not become “more imaginary.” Maybe it’s impossible to escape, but as I’ve heard around here, there’s a process…

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