The Nuremberg Funnel and Can You Fly That Helicopter?

| Posted in Books, Design |


What is the Nuremberg Funnel?
Imagine this. You own a device through which you can easily and effortlessly pour into your mind all the wisdom and knowledge you require regarding any subject. That is the Nuremberg Funnel. It is put across with poignant satire in these illustrations.

Apparently, wherever the good people of Nuremberg go, they are asked if they have brought the Nuremberg funnel with them! This joke is based on the fairytale where a young boy learns from one of the blacksmith masters about the existence of a mythical Funnel of Knowledge and sets out on a quest to acquire it. He finds out that the Funnel of Wisdom is in the possession of the King of Utopia. He undergoes a series of adventures, but is unable to acquire it. The fable ends on a wise note. The boy’s adventures make him so wise that he no longer needs the Funnel!

This fable of the Nuremberg Funnel reminded me of this scene in the Matrix movie.

I was pleasantly surprised by the term appearing in the title of this book on Designing Minimalist Instruction for Practical Computer Skill.

Comments (2)


Believe it or not I just now used the same video to illustrate the idea of quickly and easily downloading ideas into people.

Talk about co-incidence! heh

Nuremberg funnel. A very interesting thought indeed. Possibly stemming from the frustrations of the inadequacies of the mediums of communication we use.

– Jai

In school there was this saying that, if we put our text book under the pillow over night and wished really hard, then all the contents of the book would be absorbed by our brain :)

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