information does not equal knowledge

A very quick addendum to the previous posting.

I was reading and re-reading my last entry about information not being knowledge and I wondered about the accuracy of the statement. A quick google search and the first hit gave the title to this entry. Apparently, it comes from an article titled “Information Does not Equal Knowledge: Theorizing the Political Economy of Virtuality” by Marcus Breen.

Here is an excerpt from the abstract:

This paper argues that causation theory has a role in discussions about knowledge in the virtual context. Drawing on cultural studies, it suggests that the fragmentation of rational knowledge in the postmodern world has produced a focus on information that is unaware of its history. A knowledge gap has been produced that needs careful consideration by those people and institutions advocating the use of virtual technologies.

Although even this point of view is specific (as was the original one by Caleb Carr), it supports the original idea about the disconnection between information and knowledge. As Breen puts it, “the fragmentation of rational knowledge in the postmodern world has produced a focus on information that is unaware of its history.”

Excellent point! Information without history (ie, without the background, without the source or the reason) does not make knowledge. Such information is without merit, value and does not assist in the creation of new knowledge.

Ioannis

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