I have a habit of collecting strange facts. Be it reading through news articles, listening to the radio, or watching TV, I seem to pick up on the smallest points.
It wasn’t until last year that I realized how critical that can be.
Last year (yep, you guessed it, it is story time!), I was working on a brief for space-based solar power; the idea that we should launch solar panels into space and have them beam down electricity via a microwave beam.
After finding the obvious “IT’$ GONNA CO$T U$ TOO MUCH!!” cards, I spontaneously remembered something I had heard on a news report over a decade ago. Yes, I was around six years old at the time I heard this report. I heard the report that geosynchronous orbit was filling up. Basically, we had too many satellites in orbit, and couldn’t possibly have enough room to launch a huge constellation of solar panels that would be necessary to generate a substantial amount of electricity.
Eventually, I found multiple cards speaking directly to this, and the finished product was a successful brief.
The moral here is this: Read and learn. You’ve probably heard this echoed throughout several other blog posts, but I’d like to also encourage you to learn about other things; things that you may believe are seemingly unrelated. A well-rounded education is key.
One of these upcoming weeks after Ethos is published, I’ll be taking a week at a library for exactly that purpose– just to learn. I’m not looking to learn everything on a certain subject– more looking for a well-rounded education. A little bit of law, a little philosophy, maybe some science/technology and some comparative religion thrown in for good measure. Maybe I’ll watch a few documentaries on my laptop. Probably read a pile of books that I’ve had recommended to me over the summer. In any case, I’ll be learning.
Knowledge, even seemingly unrelated knowledge, can be extremely valuable in debate. Who knows when I’ll need to know what traditional idealism means in the context of international relations. Who knows when I’ll need to know what James Ussher’s contribution to history was. But if I ever do need it, I’ll know it.