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The value of telescopic learning and curiosity in research

By: , Posted on: May 14, 2018

Once upon a time, someone looked at the night sky and saw the moon. There was not only the Sun during the day, but there was the moon by night. That someone called her the Moon and hurried to tell it and show her to others next nights. Now many people in the village new about the existence of the Moon. In the next weeks to years all the inhabitants in the many villages of the island came to know about the Moon. And so went for a long time. It was like all knowledge about the night sky had been gathered. But some curious people started to look by night at the starry sky. There was more than The Moon. There were Stars. Later on, some of those who already knew about the Stars, and were curious, continued looking at the starry sky and discovered the Planets. Others looked longer and suggested that during the day the Sun, and by night the Moon, the Stars and the Planets moved around the island sky. Every new inhabitant of the island knew now about the Sun, the Moon, the Stars and the Planets. Whether they were moving around the Earth or whether the Earth was actually turning around herself became an important point of discussion. But every child had just sucked as a sponge the knowledge of previous generations. The years that took to recognize the Moon were reduced now to milliseconds for a kid to recognize her. The same kid needs now a few hours to learn about the Stars, Planets and the major principles of the Cosmos. This is what we can call telescopic learning, it is like every new student has a larger and larger telescope than his predecessors, making it easier and easier to see new details. Centuries of knowledge are absorbed at the speed of light. The progressively increasing capacity to absorb knowledge comes from this telescopic learning which is also the basis for the progressive acceleration of the historical time. This progressive acceleration is also the cause of the progressive acceleration of knowledge. Telescopic learning is a fact about existing knowledge.  The motor to new knowledge is something else: Curiosity, scientific curiosity.

What has all this to do with this book edited by Adrian Baranchuk? This book is about electrocardiography and vectorcardiography. The ECG having been successfully used now for more than 100 years, keeps on behaving as a fabulous source of information and research. Nobody knows exactly how many millions of ECGs are recorded daily. The large majority of physicians behave like the millions of people seeing the stars. Only a few look at them. The ones looking seriously recognize which stars they are, but that is all.  Only a few have the necessary curiosity to keep on looking and search for the new. In electrocardiography these are people like Adrian and the co-authors of this superb book. Thus, the general principle of advancement in scientific knowledge is telescopic learning and curiosity. Just imagine yourself within the history from 1901 (the string galvanometer of Einthoven) to the book that you have in your hands now in 2018. From the ones that recorded the first electrical signals of the heart (Muirhead, Waller, Einthoven) who hardly could understand them to the accumulated knowledge of nowadays, the history of electrocardiography is not only fascinating but a real adventure. Adrian contributes with this book another chapter in this adventure.

I congratulate Adrian and his co-authors for this book, which, without any doubt, is born as a milestone in the history of electrocardiography. Of obligatory reading for everybody involved in Medicine, whatever the area of interest.

If you found this story stimulating, you may be interested in browsing more content within this book on ScienceDirect. We are pleased to offer you a free chapter – access this content by clicking on this link – Brugada Phenocopy: Definition, Diagnosis, and Differentiation From True Brugada Syndrome.

About the book:

Brugada Phenocopy: The Art of Recognizing the Brugada ECG Pattern details all aspects associated with alternative diagnosis to Brugada Syndrome (BrS). Coverage includes how to identify the proper ECG pattern, what to do to investigate for BrP, and how to avoid misinterpretations and the use of unnecessary and expensive treatments.

 

 

Key Features:

  • Assists in the proper recognition of the Brugada ECG patterns and how to distinguish true BrS from other conditions with identical ECG
  • Expands understanding on how to properly recognize the ECG of Brugada patterns
  • Contains access to a companion website with video to enhance understanding of proper measurement of the beta angle (Chevallier) and the base of the triangle (Serra)

Need a copy of your own? Save 30% on this book and others on elsevier.com. Enter discount code STC317 at checkout.

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Biomedicine & Biochemistry

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