Linear vs. Global

Linear-sequential means like a mathematical proof. We know “A”. So “B”. Then “C”. Which demonstrates “D”. Linear-sequential can be manipulated to prove “E” if it behoves you to ignore “D.” Exercise: Create a Venn Diagram.

I mean that a perfectly logical progression can take you to an incorrect conclusion if you ignore some of the facts. If you over-simplify. That happens a lot in the White House. And in our criminal justice system.

Combine that with the “A” – “not A”, black and white thinking of a lawyer. Manipulate the grey areas so that they seem to support your point of view.

Global thinking is different. We know “A”. We also know “5”. Plus we know “banana.” These are related by some non-obvious factor, like a fruit stand at 5th and A. Something else only has two of the factors, maybe a fruit stand at 7th and A. But maybe the question we want to answer might be “What color is the roof?”

LOL!!! Are you confused yet? When the global thinker comes up with the correct answer, the linear-sequential people ask if it was intuition. Intuition???? I don’t fucking think so! You call it intuitive because you can’t see the connections. By the same token, if you tried to take me through a linear proof, I’d be frustrated to tears when you wouldn’t tell me additional information that isn’t in the path you took. Especially if it’s quite clear that you haven’t considered an important factor that will rule out your carefully manipulated primrose path. As a child I learned to hate the words, “Don’t get ahead of yourself. Do you understand that *X*?” Another one was, “We’ll discuss that next week.”

Of course, once you have a usable answer, you can go back and Prove it in a linear-sequential manner. In fact, scientists often unconsciously influence the outcome of their experiments, then devise a linear-sequential justification. You expect that from lawyers and fundys, but not from folks who claim to be objective.

Inductive vs. deductive… means theoretical vs. empirical. Using theory to predict the specifics vs. generalizing based on observation. Not quite the same axis as linear vs global.

Linear-sequential is necessary during new tasks. When you’ve learned several procedures pertaining the the task, you start to see how to solve problems that aren’t handled in your procedures. That’s global thinking.

School was just fun. I often took classes out of sequence to keep from being bored. I’d go back and take the more basic courses on “down” semesters.

“It is intuitively obvious that…” That is how math and physics teachers skip a few steps to fit the info into an hour. It means you go to the library and find someplace where they tell you the whole thing because you *know* it will be on the test.

I had a calculus textbook at GWU that had me howling with laughter. At one point the author wrote, “The proof is left as an exercise for the astute reader.” The author was referring to a theorem that required diff-eq to prove, so publishing the proof would have been irrelevant.

I guess you had to be there.

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