You don’t know what you don’t know till you don’t know it. – By @Mr_Shankly

By Alex Morris


You don’t know what you don’t know till you don’t know it. 


[DISCLAIMER: The below may shake your foundations of knowledge more than hotboxing your way through an Adam Curtis Documentary (see: v=dTg4qnyUGxg).] 

TIL (Today I Learned for the non-Redditors amongst you) that Magenta isn’t a colour. 

It’s not part of the visible light spectrum. So it’s not a colour. 

But it’s not unique in this. 

The human eye only has three types of colour sensitive cones, which detect red, blue and green. 

Your brain is making up every other colour you receive. 

Essentially, you grey matter is a badly designed, hot-mess of bootstrapped chemistry that will tell you that all kind of shit is happening which has no correlation to physical reality. Including time travel. 

It makes things up. 

Your brain is guessing about what’s happening when your eyes saccade, what’s happening in your blind spot, and what the majority of the visible light spectrum looks like, and you don’t known it’s happening because it doesn’t aid your survival to become aware that a lot of what you see is fake. 

TIAL (Today I Also Learned, obvs) that we still don’t even really understand how smell works. 

It involves receptors and codes. And then it all gets a bit complicated. Your brain says ‘is it a nice or nasty smell?’, then you identify what it is it, then you may remember something about it (interestingly, it triggers memories in a way only smell can). 

Naturally, scientists must first learn what they already know before they can start their own research. 

But they also tend to concentrate on explaining the things we already know, and rarely explain the things we don’t. 

Donald Rumsfeld famously described things as being a matrix (@Uri) of ‘Known and Unknowns’ ( 

As advertisers it is our job to use language (metaphors and the like [hang on, is that a simile about metaphors, I think my mind has melted, move on… QUICK]) to explain the unknown in terms of the known. 

Here’s a known unknown. 

The universe is expanding at an increasing rate due to dark energy, which makes up 70% of the universe and is largely unknown. 

So how do we go about making sense of all that? 

We start with the weird questions, of course. 

A curiously-coiffed chap called Albert once asked ‘what would happen if a clock travels at the speed of light?’. 

This formed the basis for the theory of relativity, which influences the very being of our 2020 existences, smartphones, through its GPS system. 

So keep asking weird questions. 

Taking nothing as a given. 

And if, it ain’t R, G or B? 

Then trust. No. Colour. 

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