PRESERVING INFORMATION

Continuous and correct training is the most efficient way to learn material, but we will always need a way to reference past material and transmit information to future generations.

This morning my son was watching an episode of Batman “Artifacts set in the future after the Batman has died.  A group of scientists search the Batcave for clues to defeat Mr Freeze.  A good archeology story, the scientists mis-interpret some of the artifacts and cannot access the data from the old mainframe because it wasn’t designed to store information that long.  There is the challenge of both the durability of the media and the form of the message.  The Batman solved for the media by using titanium plaques engraved with binary code to allow the future to program a new computer.  Voyager anyone?  Nuclear waste?  Consider the problem of warning the future about the dangers of nuclear waste >here< and >here< and >Long Communication< for example.

A quality book is one of the more durable ways to store information, evidenced by European codex and Asian scrolls.

Pankration__amphora_BM_VaseB610.jpg
Fired clay also proves perdurable

Hence my recommendation to start your own library – the internet simply hasn’t the proven durability.  Print material is not the best way to show flow, so interpretation will be a challenge.  As visible on the amphora – pictures are effective at showing discrete moments in time – like in kata, the challenge is that the moment of greatest importance are usually the actions taken in the space/time between points.  The linkages that connect, the flow patterns that effect the technique are the dynamic portions where ‘the action happens.’  Those are difficult to convey.

Aikido and the Dynamic Sphere does a good job at portraying the lines of motion and application of force to effect the throw.  The fact that the images are line drawings and not photographs improves its efficacy (high contrast and minimal visual clutter).  In addition to your primary art, I would also suggest that by building a library with material from other arts that you will begin to find similarities among them.  Look carefully at those similar techniques – there is a reason for similarities!  Marc Tedeschi Marc Tedeschi gives glimpses of universal connections in his series The Art of …”  Very well produced works – high quality photos, good explanations, very clear design sensibility – you deserve to own them all.  While it has not been updated in some time (and I would not necessarily recommend owning everything listed) my Biblography may be useful to generate suggested further reading/collecting.

Video is undeniably the best media to capture dynamic action but I remain skeptical that video will prove as durable through time (celluloid, Betamax, VHS, DVD, Blu-Ray …).  I have already had to pay to transfer some VHS to DVD and perhaps posting information on the internet will allow for easy translations, but my recommendation is to grab as much information as possible and store it in the most perdurable manner you can.

 

 

 

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