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“Supermemo” for specific subset of people????

July 6, 2009

My mind struggles very much to comprehend many questions stated repeatedly in discussion groups as well as many blogs, why you don’t try to make supermemo universal. This is so, because I believe that a more universal supermemo would make possible filling  the gap of self-making each and every one of the items to memorize. I’m very lazy, I want to do the least to make the most of my time on more things, very oxymoronic as it sounds.

I finished reading reading previously commented interview. Many aspects strike me as surprise, every body in supermemo world were already aware of most of the things we constantly complain or at least talk about, even Dr Wozniak it self acknowledges simplicity, yet on a closing statement he goes on showing that for him SuperMemo is a program made for some and firmly states:

“My brand” of SuperMemo will always please only a very specific and small subset of people. However displeasing that is, I gotta live with this awareness. (Piotr Wozniak)

Source: http://www.supermemo.com/articles/interview.htm [Accessed: [2009-07-06]]

In response to you, Nattan, yes it looks like SuperMemo is made the way it is like some kind of locked door for those who don’t like the hard work, perhaps “laws of thermodinamics says that life shouldn’t be easy” but being lazy as I’m, we should try to make it easier (e.a. more effective).  Lazy as I’m. I wouldn’t stop digging  for diamonds because there is too much dirt to dig through (There’s even on the subject: Tree feet from gold), so I’ll love my supermemo for life and if ever dissapears I’ll have to perfect my programing skills are pays some one to build one again.

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8 Comments leave one →
  1. LittleFish permalink
    July 7, 2009 21:30

    Having read that interview, I more fully understand why I love Supermemo so much. Supermemo is the lone adventurer traveling through a dense and unknown jungle. As he finds his way around, he leaves behind a narrow pathway and a crude, makeshift means so we can follow. Following him will likely to lead to failure, disapointment and sadness if we do not keep up. But if you follow him long enough you will find buried treasure that possesses more value than almost any treasure known to man, and would be sought after by all in the world, had they known it existed. (end metaphor)

    If better memory = greater quality of life, and Supermemo offers better memory, then Supermemo leads to a greater quality of life. Once this is truly understood and seen as an advantageous course, then nothing can stop that person from finding the treasure that Supermemo offers. Granted, it is only a small subset of people that are willing to go through the trouble to learn to use it, but for right now this is all we have to work with.

    Other programs have been popping up that use the SM algorithm but are much more user-friendly. Although I do not understand the makeup of the different SM algorithms, I will assume that the latest SM algorithm is superior. While Supermemo and the creator behind it delve even deeper into the jungle of our minds, will it be these smaller programs (Anki, Mnemosyne, etc.) that “clean up” behind Supermemo, making navigation around this dense jungle easier? Only time will tell.

    But rather than calling the rest of the world lazy, the more important thing is this: We are living at such an exciting time in history! Not only is knowledge and communication with others accessible on an unprecedented level, but the tools for regulating the retention (Thereby the USE) of such knowledge are within our grasp! Knowledge when put to use is WISDOM, which results in a superior being. We are looking at the next step in the evolution of education as we know it! (Provided society does not collapse in some way) Education can be enhanced, our mental potential can be augmented, and humans come one step closer to self actualization, the full realization of one’s true potential. And while it is doubtful that society can ever reach its “true potential” in its present state, I find the theoretical implications of such a technology to be very, very exciting.

    • gersapa permalink*
      July 8, 2009 06:38

      I’m currently reading the book related to this article on talent, perhaps talent is what I’m searching for, but isn’t every body else so. I’ve learned trough my life that only doing more of what I’m not good at (many time to much) I’ll get better. Today I’m pursing the same with regards to my career and on the use of technologies to make learning easier.

      I wasn’t calling the rest of the world lazy. Contradictory as it sounds, I think that most of the people do like to work, they just do things inefficiently and do a lot of work, they must love it because they do more than I’d would like to. “I’m lazy” this is a way I refer to my self, because I’m always trying to do the least to get the most, this sound lazy to me. 🙂

      • LittleFish permalink
        July 8, 2009 06:44

        I wasn’t trying to say you view the world as lazy, but because I am very passionate about whatever I’m currently learning about, my words in previous comments can come across as “I use Supermemo, therefore I am better than the rest of the dumb lazy majority of the population.” I just wanted to make sure that such a thought was not conveyed.

        • gersapa permalink*
          July 8, 2009 08:42

          That’s the same reason I make the my statement clearer.

        • LittleFish permalink
          July 8, 2009 14:50

          Good, I don’t want to sound like I’m insulting you or other people. Hate makes the world sad. 😦

  2. Marcin Rybacki permalink
    July 8, 2009 01:38

    Let’s not mistake simplicity and ergonomics. It is possible (though it’s not an easy task) to write programs with clear and intuitive user interface and at the same time build a powerful solution for the advanced user. The best example of this would be Microsoft Office suite. However an effort to make a feature-rich application very intuitive for the beginner is something not trivial, requires time, money and skilled men, which SM obviously lacks. In my opinion it might be a deliberate decision to drop further development of SM (at least such that would be revolutionary) since its meaningless from a business perspective.

    • gersapa permalink*
      July 8, 2009 06:30

      That’s exactly the point, I believe every one of us be happier with a better ergonomics, if we didn’t loose features. Hence, I dislike SuperMemo UX low features. A good support is also essential as well as tutorials. Perhaps refraining from further development has to do more with economic issues, but an answer coming from Piotr W. like this would probably mean just what he says after all his a self proclamated stubborn person.

      From a business perspective also it makes no sense to make software with many functions, as most people are only concern with retain information with short time spans.

      The promise of efficiency is only really realize on long time spans, because of the time taken to make your own items, but What I really love is the possibly to accumulate knowledge in a transparent manner (albeit very ugly format, LOL) at date no other software can handle this, or am I missing something?

  3. shiyin permalink
    June 1, 2011 20:50

    There may be such a subset, but it could be broadened to all students interested in learning more efficiently. This is much broader.

    The claim that SM doesn’t appeal because they’re not willing to do the work required to learn doesn’t hold, because they do the work anyway (e.g. reading & re-reading notes & textbooks to study for exams), and SM would reduce the work involved.

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