In the past, the person who knows the facts is the most successful. Now, the person who knows how to "find" the facts is going to be the most successful!
We have limited space in our brain for memory. The memory is filled with two things: facts and a retrieval system to find the facts. In ancient times, there were few facts that needed a minimal retrieval system. Over time, facts became so numerous, libraries were built and a complex retrieval system was needed.
Our memory is the same, we need a retrieval system to find facts. That's why companies whose advertisements associate an easy retrieval system with the product sell more product. There are two memory components of advertising – remember the product name and remember the retrieval system. If you want students to remember a healthy food slogan, associate the slogan with a cafeteria food tray, which will act as a retrieval system.
The internet search engines do a much better job of retrieval than our memory. If you want French food, your memory may have a list of two or three in your area, but the internet has hundreds and includes non-French restaurant names that serve French food.
We live in a wonderful digital age - we don't need to fill our memory space with facts. They're infinitely available to us on the internet. Memorizing and learning facts takes up memory space.
We have freed up our entire memory space to use for finding facts. Use it to find the right facts to apply in the right way for success.
Gary Epler in Boston