The main point isn't how much information you can cram into your essay, it's how well you understand your topic. When you actually understand, tonnes of information become a matter-of-fact thing, the complex becomes simple, and you start to be able to see things from different perspectives. From there you gain additional knowledge, seeing how different systems fit together to form a big issue picture. It's really true when people say you can't learn everything from textbooks. I am complaining about my textbooks. I really wonder why didn't they include those bits of info in.

The learning process is like this pyramid. At the bottom you have data, you then move up to information, then knowledge, then wisdom. It is very easy to obtain data, rather easy to process data into information, it then gets harder to consolidate information into knowledge and finally translate knowledge into wisdom.

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