At night when I make dinner I follow recipe directions. These directions are listed in a specific order. Because of this, I can easily follow the steps and end up with a successful meal. If the steps were listed in random order my task would be much more difficult. My dinner would probably taste terrible. It is difficult to follow directions that are told backwards or randomly. We take for granted that the steps on the back of a macaroni and cheese box are listed in the correct numerical order.
The book makes a good point about the classifying system. I am very thankful when teachers in lecture classes use this system. Notes are much easier to understand and write down when they are listed systematically. I once had an art history class in which the teacher jumped around from subject to subject. When it came time for the exam I had to spend hours trying to decipher my notes.
While reading the chapter on comparing, I came across a paragraph about the Milky Way. It was told in scientific terms. In my classical mythology class I also learned the origin of the Milky Way. It was interesting to mentally compare the two versions. I am sure that I unconsciously compare hundreds of items each day, but because I was reading the chapter I was aware of the action.
I think comparing and classifying are closely related. Comparing is made easier if the items are classified first. If I was to compare the United States with Sweden it would be useful to have each country broken down into classifications first. These classifications might include average temperature, area, religions, and agriculture. These classifications would give me something to compare. My comparison would also be organized.
I am actually glad I read these three chapters. They gave me things to think about in my writing and everyday life. I don't know if I will consciously employ any technique more now. At least I will be conscious when I do use one of them.
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