Investigating Disruption

Days until departure: 11
Months ago, I went to an academic talk about electronic communication, and how it is affected by a long-distance move. That is, do people tend to talk more on the phone and write more emails when their friends and relatives move further away, and vice-versa? A friend pointed out that one of the aims of this sort of study is getting an understanding of how we use electronic communication these days. She said that by studying how these systems act when disrupted (as they are by a big move), we can better understand how they function normally.
I considered this, and realized that this is actually a standard method in many (hard and soft) scientific disciplines. To understand how a “healthy” or “normal” version of a system functions, we study such a system in disruption, and see how it differs from the usual. For instance, if I’m not mistaken, our first insights to the function of the different areas of the brain came from studying brain damage victims, and how their specific injuries corresponded to their altered behavior.

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