Today’s Bible Verse

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Revisiting Wikipedia: Experts, Education & Evaluating Evidence

An excellent article on minds.com about the limitations and downfalls of wikipedia

 

Revisiting Wikipedia: Experts, Education & Evaluating Evidence

HAKSAYNGAUG 14, 2018, 8:03:11 AM
 

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Wikipedia was to me something like a direct knowledge pipeline. Without the intermediary of lectures, grades, or commutes (not to mention social interaction), a simple keyword search could offer an evening of discovery. 

When Wikipedia wasn’t particularly well-known, the (relatively) early adapters who made use of it suddenly became ultra-erudite flâneurs of the Interwebs (at least in their own minds), scholars of the finest grade among plebeian peers. I first experienced this in the late 2000s, though I’m pretty sure there are many of you who experienced these “powers” earlier.

Whereas “normal students” might have to visit the library for some information, Wikipedia gave resourceful students super powers in the ‘Language Arts,’ ‘Social Studies,’ or wherever else synthesizing coherent (enough) positions was demanded [1]. 

Even when the graders caught on to the fact that many students weren’t practicing research methods, but were just lazily repeating views they found on Wikipedia, cleverness found a way out:

It’s easy! Just because we aren’t allowed to cite Wikipedia doesn’t mean we can’t use Wikipedia’s citations! 

Scroll… scroll.. scroll..

Ahhh. I see! There we go, finding five ‘academic sources’ wasn’t so hard at all. Didn’t even have to go to the library. ^_^

 

 

Finding sources for school papers 

Fast-forward to the Obama years. Going through school, Millennials, both Wiki-reading and not, had by-in-large failed to acquire skills in evaluating reason in arguments and the sources of evidence.

The growth of the Internet put in front of us the temptation for limitless knowledge. Without a cost? I, for one, donated to Wikipedia a couple of times in gratitude for the convenience and eye-opening infos it had allowed me to access.

Alas, I now realize the cost for relying heavily on Wikipedia was not just a matter of shekels. Many of us had already “paid” for Wikipedia our ability to criticially filter.  Trusting the smarties to sort out what was good and true, we relied on Wikipedia…

 

Read the rest of the article here

Reflection on Proverbs 31:10-31

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Scripture

Charm is deceptive and beauty does not last,

but a woman who fears the Lord will be greatly praised.

Observation

The book of Proverbs ends with a poem celebrating the ideal wife. A virtuous and capable wife is more precious than rubies.

The ideal wife is hard working, successful in business and able to order her household. She spins thread, makes clothes and always speaks wisely. She is truly a person of talent and integrity.

Application

While many women aspire to the title of “Proverbs 31 Woman,” and many men aspire to catch one, this is clearly an idealised version of an upper class woman in a very different setting to our own.

There are several qualities that women and men should still aim for in God’s grace.

1. To be virtuous. This is about doing what is good and godly as a reflex action. We no longer need to ask “What would Jesus do?” because following the way of Jesus has become automatic. In most situations we don’t need to pray because God’s way is evident to the one who has spent years seeking His will.

2. Work hard. Like being virtuous, this is not a popular ethic in our culture. We waste so much time being entertained, preferring to watch TV rather than study God’s word, for example.

3. Sacrificial love for our family. Because we are brought up to exalt selfishness, it can be difficult to walk in the way of sacrificial self-giving.

4. Wisdom in all things. Wisdom is knowing how to make life work effectively for ourselves and the people who look up to us.

These qualities do not come easily to any of us. They are grown in us as we seek to follow the Lord each day.

Prayer

Lord, may I become like the Proverbs 31 woman. Develop these qualities in me, I pray. Amen.