A concept first put into words in Neal Stephenson
's Snow Crash
, a magnificent "cyberpunk
The human mind can process a huge amount of information
. Think to yourself on all of your memories
, how they interlock, etc. Try to fathom
the depths of your own mind. In doing so, I am sure you will be amazed in just how much stuff is thrown in there. The entire English language
(along with others in case you may be multilingual), your entire life as stored in memory, your education. These are just a few of the many things up there.
Now, while so far it seems like I may have wandered off-topic
, in truth I have not. Such a vast amount of information requires an equally fast method of transfe
r. Your synapses
, nerve endings, and other unexplored regions of the brain are amazingly fast in bringing you
the data from your brain. But, if you have such a fast transfer mechanism, shouldn't there be a transfer protocol
, something in nature to networking; in other words, a fast transfer connection between two people?
Language is one form of this transfer method, but on the whole, it is largely inefficient
. Try to describe exactly
how you feel to one of your friends. Upon deeper insight
, you're not just "happy", or "sad", or "worried". There's a lot more to it, but it cannot be expressed by these little boxes called words that we cram our feelings into.
Don't be discouraged, though. As Stephenson
proposed, there is a much faster transfer method. Think of speech as one transfer protocol. This muchalternative protocol is what Stephenson
defined as "Condensing fact from the vapor of nuance". For example, in Snow Crash
once visited her grandmother's house after having been knocked up
by her boyfriend. In the matter of seconds, her grandmother knew she was pregnant
without exchanging a word. She had obtained this information from the nuances of Juanita's behavior. While this is a fictional experience, there have been other instances of the same happening in reality. This is how for example, two people are able to walk into a room and know exactly
how the other feels without saying anything more than "Hello" or "Good Morning." In finishing, I'd just like to point out that this protocol, possibly the most efficient short of ESP
, could be improved upon by the general public, allowing for much more efficient and meaningful conversation.
In closing, I'd like to leave you with a quote from Snow Crash
"Then I remembered my grandmother and realized, my God, the human mind can absorb and process
an incredible amount of information - if it comes in the right format. The right interface. If you put the
right face on it. Want some coffee?" (p 60, Snow Crash)