RE: The Dumbing Down of America

Subject: RE: The Dumbing Down of America
From: bryan -dot- westbrook -at- amd -dot- com
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 22 Jun 2001 12:24:24 -0500

I don't think it's a matter of dumbing down so much as it is a matter of
specialization. Those school kids in 1890's Kansas were probably a pretty
homogenized bunch. Today there is too much information for anybody to be an
expert in every thing and people have to omit more and more in their

I'm sure that I would score higher than my "little" brother (he passed me in
size years ago) on most of that test, but I can't adjust the carburetor on
my car. I can hand-code HTML, but I can't pilot a space shuttle. Does that
mean that I'm dumber than the people who do pilot the shuttle or vice-versa
if they don't know HTML? My brother, however, is a different story. <g>

("Hey, Rocky, watch me pull a rabbit out of my hat." I'm going to actually
bring this topic on-topic.) Of course, as tech writers we have to take
specializations into consideration in audience analysis.


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