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Guest Dr. Punya Mishra - For facts go to Google, for wisdom come to me.


Andrew

This is re posted.


Andrew Keller

Every morning Larry and I dig into a form or idea that has caught our eye. Our hope is that our chat inspires you to never stop thinking and possibly challenges you in a new way. If you'd like to help support the show, please visit patreon.com slash reposted. Thank you for stopping by. Today we're joined by the Associate Dean of scholarship innovation and professor in the Division of educational leadership and innovation Dr. Ponyo Mishra. You can follow him on twitter at Punahou Mishra or his his website, when you Mishra calm. Thank you so much for joining us today.


Unknown Speaker

Oh, thank you so much for having me, that was quite a mouthful. I wasn't expecting to throw the whole title in there.


Andrew Keller

Sometimes we swing for the fences, and sometimes it hits. But I'm excited to talk to you today we came across you one of our listeners sent us a quote from you. And it is the 23rd law of parenting. And you said, for facts go to Google for wisdom come to me, I think that's really interesting. And the way technology has changed the world today. But can you elaborate more on what you meant by that?


Unknown Speaker

So a couple of things. The first is, it's not that I have 22 other laws of parenting. So it was basically I love prime numbers. And so I was like, Okay, I need to come up with a number. So it was 23. And that was that sort of stuck. And this was in the context of sort of I gave these keynotes to educators, you know, and the the amount of information being thrown at us today, I think the critical thing for educators really is not about how to lead students to information or learners to information anymore, right? Because, and I grew up in New Delhi. And when I was growing up, I used to take a bus and go to the two good libraries. One was the US is and the other was the British Council library. I actually had multiple memberships. So I could get these bags of books and come back in the bus. So I had to go out and seek information. That's not the issue anymore. The issue is actually that of too much. There's a glut of information, some of false information, some of it fake news, and so on, so forth, right? And so how do you develop the judgment to say, Okay, this is what I should believe this is what I should not believe. And so that was sort of, when I give this keynotes, I sort of made up this law, you know, sort of creditor law. But it sort of makes the bigger point that the issue is not about access to information issues about judgment, is it about wisdom, it is about checking your sources, it is about going and asking, Why? What was the intent of this person? Did they have an axe to grind? And I think that, you know, I must have said this, I think 10 or 12 years ago, but I think that the facts and the events around the world, show to us that that is actually much more relevant today than it was maybe in the days when I first said it.


Larry

Okay, so all right, this is perfect, because I got the middle ground of this statement you just made. First of all, thank you for telling me because I probably spent 10 minutes trying to find your other 22 parenting tips. And now that you told me, it's only 23, I can stop that search. So I sit with my son at the table while he does his work. And he will always say, Hey, Dad, how do you spell? electroencephalograph? And I'm always like, Hey, why don't you just ask Google? how to spell that so that I don't have to do it. I'm wondering if we're losing something there, by him hearing it from my voice and learning it from me person to person, as opposed to him just learning how to spell from the computer.


Unknown Speaker

So I think you know, that's an interesting question, what do we gain? What do we lose? When we switch from one technology to the other? Clearly, some aspects are lost. But again, when I think about, you know, one could also argue


Andrew Keller

we had a quick drop off in our connection. And unfortunately, we lost a little bit of a Dr. Mishra said, but here we are back, speaking with Dr. Mishra.


Unknown Speaker

Yes, I think something is gained and something is lost in each of these. But again, if the joke that I was sort of making was like, you know, when print press comes along, everybody's like, Oh, you are really not understanding words, because you're not chipping them into a rock anymore. That's sort of the real way of accessing knowledge. The point is, what is it good, what is what good for? If I can Google, so be it. But that doesn't mean that I don't need to understand what the concept is. So understanding the concept and accessing the information, I think are two different things.


Andrew Keller

Do you think there's a level now with technology and trust, I think over the last year, I mean, you kind of you said this? I think it was 2012 is what I wrote, and clearly hindsight you were on the forefront of understanding this. Now I read a headline from a certain news outlet and I was like, I know which way this is gonna go. I read it from a different outlet. I know which way it's gonna go. And if it's something important to me, I'll read both the left and right side of political arguments. I mean, How do you develop trust in the news that you're getting now? When so much can be disguised? Or there's an alternate ulterior motive?


Unknown Speaker

I think those are terior motives that always been there. Right? I mean, I think that those any texts that we read had hidden histories, hidden stories, which were not apparent before, right motives are always I mean, anything I write is for an I have an axe to grind, it might be like, you know, a good axe to grind. But still, it is still there is a purpose, there's an intentionality behind it. I think what has happened, though, with the rise of social media, and the access to information, is we have gone from sort of a print based culture where we could go look up the information in a book, it was sort of static, it was there, to a culture, which is much more like an ancient culture, which is like an oral culture, where it becomes who you believe, who is saying it, that becomes more important. And so our filters for determining that need to become so because we start living in this little information bubbles. And, you know, I mean, half my time, I think is spent on, you know, on WhatsApp or whatever, just fixing things for people, right? I mean, and it doesn't matter whether it's left or right. I mean, during the COVID, you know, beginning of the COVID stuff, all this false stuff was happening. And I would be posting stuff from nature and saying, Listen, scientists have looked at it, it really is was not created in a lab, blah, blah, blah. Recently, Ted Cruz did a good thing. And somebody posted a two way back. It was a fair bit, takes 30 seconds to look it up on a few factchecking sites and say, guys, this one is, this is false. But I don't know people don't take that effort. And I find that really surprising. I think, need to be inculcating in the next generations at something educator, this is the most amazing time to be alive. Never before has the Phoenix, Arizona, or in Bangladesh, ever before in the entire history of the human civilization. That is amazing. Of course, it comes with all kinds of fake information and risks and attention, not about finding the information because the information will come and find you is able to judge and make the point of that whole code.


Larry

So you know, basically what I feel like we're doing which I'm very happy with because I all I felt like I was doing in high school was memorizing my history book, it feels like now we're just outsourcing facts to Google back to your quote. So what effect is that having on our brain? If all the facts are now out in the dark web? We don't our brain doesn't have them? Does that? How does that change our brain?


Unknown Speaker

That's a fantastic question. So firstly, I should also add that I don't have stock in Google. So you could say being in that quote, and I'd be just fine with it right? or what have you figured out of history. So that said, I think one of the important things that I think emotional research, psychological research has shown that you cannot fault some judgments without a basis, in fact, actual knowledge. And so we really cannot export all our factual knowledge out into and say that Google has, there has to be some big basic knowledge that we need to have on the basis of which we will make these judgments. So I think it is changing us. I mean, one thing for clear is attention spans are down. For sure. I know, it's true for me, I mean, I can barely stick with doing one thing for more than five minutes before I have to check my phone or fidget or do something else. You know, so it is having a difference. But again, also understand that our brains have been built over, you know, for of life of 4 billion years of evolution of human civilization, or humans of a couple of million years of evolution. So it's not a tool that can get very easily, you know, broken just because of new technologies coming along, of course, what we live in now, as an attention economy, it is always trying to find attention. And that's where it's sort of hijacking certain aspects of our brain where we get pulled into different things very, very quickly. So that I think, and I think some of these tools have been deliberately designed that way, right? I mean, Facebook does experiments to ensure that people will stay on its website and you know, and there, I was reading somewhere that at any given moment, each one of us is at least a part of 60 different experiments that Facebook is doing. You know, there's change your feeds tweak slightly, they'll change how this shows up to see how you behave. And I think those I think, are ways that these companies are hijacking certain predictions that we have certain biases that we have, you know, from the point of view of eyeballs, right.


Andrew Keller

So before we get you out of here, I got one question. Your Twitter bio, I think is really interesting. You said you make ambia grams, so I went to Google, I looked it up and ambria gram is a calligraphic calligraphy design that has several interpretations as written. So I'm turning to you now for the wisdom of why you're into that. And I think they're so cool. But oh, I


Unknown Speaker

haven't do that. Oh, wow.


Unknown Speaker

Um,


Unknown Speaker

I like looking at things through weird ways, you know, so you give me something straight, I will twist it around. That is just sort of stupid habit I have. And at one point, I started playing with words, and I saw people who had done it, there are some really awesome people who have done it, it was an angels and demons. If you remember the Dan Brown book, he had the earth fire water. You know, so john Landon was the guy who created it. And I like math. And I like visual arts. And so I just started playing and started writing these words in ways. So it would read, let's say, you can take the word science and it would read the same with rotated 180 degrees or are reflected in a mirror. So I had an exhibition about that a few years back, and it was, this is one of those fun side things I do. And you know, thank you for noticing that because not many people do it. I


Andrew Keller

mean, I had to Google it, and then I came to wisdom. Dr. Cooney Mishra, thank you so much for joining us today. You can find him on Twitter at puddi Mishra. I'm Andrew Keller for Dr. Mishra and Larry saying thanks for stopping by.



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