Social Question

Hobbes's avatar

If you could absorb all the information on Wikipedia into your brain in an instant, would you?

Asked by Hobbes (7368points) December 1st, 2011


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46 Answers

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

Will the rest of my brain remain intact, in terms of information? Then, yes

nikipedia's avatar

Fuck yeah!

Tropical_Willie's avatar

That would be a “Brain Fart”.

Aethelflaed's avatar

Meaning, transfered in a second and staying forever? Yes. Meaning, transfered but not staying for more than an instant? No.

zensky's avatar

Do I want all of my knowledge based on learning and experience replaced by random trivia edited by twelve year olds? No thanks,

jerv's avatar

If it were all actually true, yes.

But given that Wikipedia is “truth by consensus” as opposed to actual fact, I think I will pass.

marinelife's avatar

I would take the equivalent of all the knowledge in Wikipedia, but I would want it from better sources.

cockswain's avatar


babybadger's avatar

Would we be able to sort the information and know it is from wikipedia? Then yes. If it is integrated into our knowledge without a distinct memory of it being from wikipedia, then no.

WestRiverrat's avatar

I agree with jerv, since there is no way to prove the veracity of the facts, I would not want to absorb everything in wikipedia. Now if you had said Encyclopedia Britannica, I would say yes in a heart beat.

bob_'s avatar

I agree with @nikipedia.

Fuck yeah!

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

Why have it in my brain when I already have it at my fingertips? No.

Bellatrix's avatar

No. There is good info on Wikipedia. There is also crap. I would rather be a bit more discerning about the garbage I actually file in my brain.

rpm_pseud0name's avatar

Nope. I love that feeling of when I learn something new through my own investigation & discovery. I’d be bored as hell if there was nothing new to find.

@Tropical_Willie, you can crush up & snort a Beano to prevent that, no?

Earthgirl's avatar

Hmmm…with al that info, all those citations, all those links, my brain would be pretty crowded. Would I be able to tell wheather or not the info was accurate? Or would I always be saying to people, “I read this somewhere, and I don’t know if it’s true, but for what it’s worth…”
I was about to utter an unqualified yes, because, hell, you never really know how much of what you remember learning is true, or if you indeed ,remember it correctly. After all, if you aren’t sure if it’s true, you could always dig deeper and find out. To have the recall of all that info would be incredibly liberating. Think of all the connections you could make and all the inspiration you could have!

The point that rpm pseud0name makes is a good one though. It sort of puts a stop to that sense of discovery. And to me, that sense of discovery is intoxicating! It’s a hard call. I’ll get back to you.

cockswain's avatar

You know, sure there’s a lot of misinformation on Wikipedia. But does anyone think it is more than the misinformation we already have in our heads? I’m betting it would be a far superior situation to have all of Wiki’s knowledge and sometimes be wrong rather than be wrong as often as we all already are.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

If I knew it all, then I couldn’t learn anything.

Life is learning… It’s about the journey… not the destination.

cockswain's avatar

Wikipedia is far from knowing it all. It would just give you a huge step forward on your journey.

mazingerz88's avatar

As long as Kung Fu is included. Do I think it’s air I’m breathing? Do I???

Coloma's avatar

No. Waaay too much chaf in the wiki wheat. lol

Blondesjon's avatar


Wikipedia might be 99% of the most delicious bacon double cheeseburger in the world but the little pieces of poop in it that make up the other 1% are a deal breaker.

I try to avoid eating poop whenever possible no matter what the dose.

Tizoxic's avatar

Without a doubt. But then I would be spammed with false facts and misleading information… and yes I’m disliking wikipedia.

Berserker's avatar

If I could do that, then I assume that I could also absorb knowledge that was stored/shared/presented/documented from other sources and people. I’d greatly consider my options before turning to Wiki’s.

digitalimpression's avatar

Absolutely! What reason would I have not to?

wundayatta's avatar

I wouldn’t want my brain filled with all that. It’s not information and facts that is so important to me. It’s understanding how things work. I don’t really need a lot of information if I can predict how things will come out based on the models that exist in my mind of how things work.

I think if I had all of wikipedia in there, I could hardly think. Thinking is more important than facts.

perspicacious's avatar

Why would I want to absorb so much incorrect information?

WestRiverrat's avatar

@bkcunningham not according to my GFs college instructors. Her term paper must have 2 sources for information, neither of which can be Wiki. If she chooses to use wikipedia as a source she must have 4 other independant sources that confirm the data.

bob_'s avatar

@WestRiverrat Wikipedia should not be used as a source, but as a source of sources. Reliable articles will have references.

whitetigress's avatar

Nope. Junk is junk, you are what you eat, absorb or whatever.

punkrockworld's avatar

No, Wikipedia can be altered by anyone in this world at any time. I find it a waste of brain space to be retaining information that is inaccurate or completely made up. I do find Wikipedia to be a good source at times,when you need a quick recap of something but that’s really all it’s good for.

LostInParadise's avatar

I will alter the question to suppose that the information in Wikipedia is accurate. How would the information be stored? We don’t store information like computers. Our brains are not just fact warehouses. There are pathways from one memory to the next. We have emotional reactions to much of it. The constructivist theory of learning says that we actively build knowledge based on experience and prior knowledge. In other words, you can’t just stuff information into the brain.

Aethelwine's avatar

We could easily replace Wikipedia in this question with Fox News. You fools (for those who said yes).~

cockswain's avatar

You think? I don’t know, I tend to believe articles like these, and think it would be cool to know these things, even if I was wrong sometimes. I wouldn’t be more wrong than I already am.

I’d love to know all these sorts of little things. I’d kick ass on Jeopardy.

Aethelwine's avatar

@cockswain A nightly game of Trivial Pursuit would help you kick ass on Jeopardy too. =)

cockswain's avatar

@jonsblond Either way, I’d love to be able to recall everything I’ve ever seen quickly and easily. I’d be the man!

Paradox25's avatar

No, sometimes the funnest part of the journey is getting there.

bluejay's avatar

No Wikipedia has a lot of b.s to say in the very least.

cockswain's avatar

@bluejay Ah, but if you read @Aethelflaed‘s link several posts earlier, perhaps you’ll feel differently! Or anyone for that matter.

LostInParadise's avatar

Somehow my post got truncated. What I wanted to point out is that we do not store information the same way that computers do. Even if we assume that Wikipedia is completely accurate, how would the information be placed in our brains? There is a theory of learning called constructivism, which makes a lot of sense to me. It says that we take an active role in learning, that we establish connections between various pieces of knowledge and sometimes develop an emotional response to them. I can picture having a chip in our heads that contains the Wikipedia and which we could access similarly to how we currently access Wikipedia, but that is not the same thing as truly assimilating all that information.

bkcunningham's avatar

@WestRiverrat, I linked a wiki article verifying how reliable wiki is as a source.

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