power = work / time is where this cartoon went wrong. firstly, power =/= distance. looking past that, ‘work over time’ should not be expressed literally, but as work * time, resulting in a significantly less comical conclusion that knowledge multiplies earnings power. but nice try. better off sticking to proving girls are evil.
This equation does not describe the amount someone will make, but rather the amount of work someone can do with a given amount of money. If Knowledge = Work / Money (eqn 1), this means that a smart individual (Knowledge) can do more of the things he/she wishes in his/her life (Work), with less Money than a dumb person could. This leads us to the conclusion that a smart/knowledgeable person is more efficient than a less smart one. If we are to assume that smart&dumb people are given the same upbringing and presented with the same opportunities, eqn 1 tells us that, on average, the smarter person will be more successful, which in this world means that he/she will make more money (on average again) than the dumber one.
So this equation doesn’t tell us that ‘the less you know, the more you’ll make'; it tells us the opposite.
In my opinion there is a problem with your theorem, and that is that knowledge = power.
Knowledge by it’s self does not equal power, only when knowledge is combined with action does it have any power. Conversly action with out knowledge has no power.
Still thought it was humorous though.
I don’t know if you really meant something by this, but it implies that the less you know the more you make. That homeless guy down the street is probably a genius…
And postulate 1 is false. Knowledge is not power. Money is power. The world’s knowledgeable scientists can’t convince the world to be green, but throw in Leonardo DiCaprio and they make progress.
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Power = Work / Time is a reference to the physical quantity power, which is the rate at which work is performed (hence: work/time, or work per time). This is the same “power” that you hear about when talking about cars (horespower) or lightbulbs (watts). Its inclusion here is sort of a nerdy inside joke that those who have studied science would get. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Power_(physics).
An easy and interesting way to think about power is the origin of the term “horsepower”. In order to figure out how good their steam engines were compared to horses, engineers needed to quantify the power horses could put out. So, looking at horses working in coal mines, they measured how high a horse could lift a given load of coal (height x weight = work) and measured the time it took. Dividing work/time gave power, and by establishing standard values for the height, weight, and time they arrived at a standardized power for a horse; horsepower.
Clearly they are mixing definitions of “power” here, since the “power” in the saying “Knowledge is power” is more like power in the political sense.
The reason why businessmen, politicians, salesmen, actors etc. so “easily” earn money lies within our perception, not their abilities. In short it’s like a lottery – there are so many businessmen etc. trying to earn money that by the laws of probability it is reasonable to expect that some will succeed big time. It’s in human nature to notice the best and forget all those who failed.
Also, scientists are not so into earning money in the first place. If they were then I am sure that they would have more or less the same percentage of success. Except perhaps mathematicians. I believe they would have above average success. If I remember correctly, some of the best investors of all times were two mathematicians. I don’t remember their names.
@liz: time is money, even for a bum. Say you’re a bum and your job is to collect cans. It takes time to collect those cans, and by doing that you’re turning that time into money. Their time is just worth a LOT less than other peoples’ time.
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