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How to make people understand academic papers

This week I met a really interesting person on my travels in Florence named Nikoli.

Nikoli is an expert in the field of technology and was in town giving a conference. He wrote his own open source code around 16 and it was later used by Apple.

We had an interesting conversation about the world of academia. Keeping in mind neither one of us are in it.

Why we question academia

Our knowledge is expanding as a species every day, but it’s divided. I believe much of this is because of inherent beliefs, but it doesn’t help that so much of it is difficult to understand.

Of course there’s baseline knowledge and terminology that won’t translate, but Nikoli and I both agreed the language around difficult topics should be as simple as possible.

The goal in knowledge sharing should be more people knowing, not more people confused.

The answer we came up with

This blog post is different than my normal posts, and I’d like to hear what you think.

In an effort to make academic knowledge more accessible and unbiased, the answer we came up with was:

✨Every academic paper should be published at a 7th grade reading level - if it’s not at a 7th grade reading level, it should have two publications (perhaps through AI)

✨ AI generated photos related to the studies should be used to keep attention

The reason for a 7th grade level, is because this is the average reading level across the USA (The Literacy Project). People will still have to do work to read these studies but more people might get clued in and rely less on news if they believe they’ll be able to in the first place.

Let me know what you think. I’d love to hear your opinions on the world of academia.

Thanks for reading!

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