What can we do with the memory of Funes?
When I am browsing on many websites and social media, I often forgot how many hours I keep doing that. It is already around 2~3am when I am aware of that I wasted so much time on it. It is certain that I read more than a couple of thousand words. But if someone ask me to represent a line from what I saw on the web, I couldn’t do that. Because, I’m not thinking about what I encounter in order to make it my own knowledge. That’s why we call if as an internet ‘surfing.’ There are incredible amounts of information on the internet like a tsunami, and its massive volume makes me just float on it, not reaching deeply.
The same thing happens in Jorge Luis Borges
‘s short story “Funes, the Memorious,” As regards narration, Funes becomes to possess a speciality of unlimited memory after an unexpected fall accident. “Without effort, he had learned English, French, Portu- guese, Latin. I suspect, nevertheless, that he was not very capable of thought. To think is to forget a difference, to generalize, to abstract. In the overly replete world of Funes there were nothing but details, almost contiguous details.” The only common thing between the internet and Ireneo is that most of things in memory is just a series of words without meaning.
Recently, we can frequently hear the term, ‘Big Data’. As the next issue in technical business, many IT companies are carefully reaching their arms in order to get priority. It somewhat reminds me the Gold Rush. Meantime, Some experts and journalists alerts that big data itself is not a big deal, but how to pick out the useful information among garbage data. If Funes knows this way to deal with his memory, he would not have to live hiding in the dark. Maybe, he could be the best contributor all over the world. Borges seems, through this story, to give us the question what can we do with big data rather than internet surfing in the close future.