I choose to start here.
I start with the proposition that this is the basic shape of productive human thought:
And for the purposes of getting started, I’ll simplify it even further, and claim that this is the basic shape of DESIGN THINKING:
And to give a “whiff” of respectability, I’m going to quote someone else giving a summary description of Michael Polanyi’s take on this:
“Building on the general ideas from Gestalt-psychology, (Polanyi) described a difference between two kinds of awareness: subsidiary and focal awareness. In our focal awareness we are aware of a coherent whole, a Gestalt. In our subsidiary awareness we implicitly are conscious of the different impressions, memories that build this Gestalt. This Gestalt is not given, but it is an achievement, realized by interpretative skills.” (http://www.absoluteastronomy.com/topics/Tacit_knowledge#encyclopedia accessed 11Nov09)
So that would look like:
But something else can happen to the shape of our thinking when we start focussing on the world where physical things are predominant in our attention. We pretty much stop going out to a focal awareness – we become obsessed with attending to our own subsidiary awareness, and rolling out its implications.
So again I’m just going to commit myself and jump, and claim that this:
Is the basic shape of SCIENTIFIC THINKING.
And I’m going to claim that those are pretty much the two basic ways we have of creating knowledge in the world.