When you give the answer to a question over and over again and it is not understood, perhaps not even perceived, and the question gets asked repeatedly, you know you’ve got a communication problem. I suppose the classic example is a friend, a family member or colleague who keep asking the same question repeatedly, but either can’t hear, or don’t want to hear the answer.
It’s a frustrating situation, because it raises another question that often has no answer; “How do I parse my answer or give the information in a way that will be understood?” The cliché answer to that question, and one my mother frequently gave is, “That’s something they’re just going to have to figure out for themselves; you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink.”
Over the past six months or so, I’ve been doing an experiment. I confess that I’m surprised that the first part of that experiment has worked as well as it has. What the experiment consisted of was asking a cross section of people in cryonics to whom I have personal access (correspondents, queries for information, old cryonics friends…) to take something I call “The Cryonics Intelligence Test.” My expectation was that few, if any, would participate. I was thus gratified when 10 people out of 12 agreed to take the test. Of those, 9 completed it. The results were fascinating – at least to me – and they convinced me that, as a prelude to discharging another obligation I have relating to Chronosphere, that I should offer the test to all and sundry who are willing to take it.
You needn’t be concerned about your “performance”; this is an instance where anonymity on Chronosphere is permitted. If you like, you can submit your answers using a pseudononymous name and email address. If someone out there knows how to format the test to Survey Monkey, or some similar anonymous data gathering engine, please contact me and I’ll work with you to set it up (contact me at email@example.com).
The test itself consists to of two parts: a simple introductory letter with the two test questions and a file of resource materials which must be evaluated in order to answer the two questions. The answers will necessarily be essay style and expositive.
You can submit your answers to either the Comments section of this post (here on Chronosphere), or to me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. Obviously, if you submit to the Comments section, your answers will be published. If you submit to me, they will be held in confidence, unless permission is granted from you, in writing, to post them. Privately submitted answers, and the fact that the individual participated in the Test will not be circulated, either privately or publicly, without the prior written consent of the participant, although statistical data obtained as a result will be used at my discretion.
I will be commenting on the issues raised by the answers to the test extensively in the near future.
The test is below, and should you choose to take it, I offer both my thanks and good luck.
Cryonics Intelligence Test
If you can figure out the scientific take home message for cryonics in what is to follow, you will have demonstrated extraordinary insight into “thinking in a cryonics-medical context.”
You will also have the tool to be able to understand why I believe that cryonics must, on a purely scientific-medical basis, be pursued in a fundamentally different way, both biomedically and socially.
The Test: The test resource materials are available for download at http://www.yousendit.com/download/M3BsQndOR0ZsMHhjR05Vag , you will find a number of full text peer reviewed scientific papers. In addition, you will be sent several cryopatient case Hxs. Together, these resources contain data which should give a reasonably intelligent person with a properly prepared mind a fundamentally new insight into a major, indeed overwhelming flaw in how cryonics has been, and currently is practiced.
Your task is to:
a) identify the problem(s)
b) identify one or more possible solutions
You have 5 days to complete this task. Your response should be in the form of a succinct statement of the problem, and an itemization, and if you like, a discussion of possible solutions.
Thanks for your patience and cooperation.