Michael Liu (劉興祥)
It has been several decades to know my good friends IngZin (永進) and ChunHong (春凰) since we were college students. Both IngZin and ChunHong have been working together from the bottom of their hearts to promote Taiwanese for many years far before Ministry of Education announced the first recommendation set of MinNan dialect in 2007. To overcome lack of standards, they further developed many pronouncing and writing methods. They also gave speech, taught in universities, and published to spread their beliefs. Due to short history of documentation, very few publications discuss advanced skills in Taiwanese. To my surprise, this book (“台語世界級金頭腦”) studies thinking and conceiving systematically. Such a contribution could favor people who use Taiwanese as mother tongue and form their ideas naturally and powerfully.
Thinking is a skill by nature. Kids are guided to think and to learn by asking why with curiosity. From experience, education, and many various resources, we learn to think, to justify, and to make right decision. Thinking can be quite straightforward. In front of delicious desserts, we may enjoy more and gain weight, or may take only little and maintain good body shape. In a hot room of a summer afternoon, we may open windows for little wind without cost, turn on a fan for controllable wind with more cost, or turn on an air conditioner for most comfortable temperature with most expensive cost. On the other hand, we may also escape from the room and enjoy pleasant moods in department stores. We follow social regulations to make daily lives well-organized. In the midnight, facing a red traffic light and with very low traffic, some people run the red light to save several seconds with the risk of getting traffic tickets and possible accidents, and other people wait for the green light to avoid fine and stay safe.
In many situations, it is necessary to justify inputs carefully. At shopping malls, the first priority of salespeople is to sell goods and to drag cash out of shoppers' wallets. The information provided by the salespeople can be biased. When Nuskin advertised that her machine, Pharmanex Biophotonic scanner, has magic capability of measuring health in seconds by scanning a single finger, the claim might not be realistic and was for the purpose to support the sale of nutrition food. Recent big news on U.S. beef imports to Taiwan, both Taiwan and U.S. officials insisted that U.S. bone-in beef, ground beef and offal are all safe by quoting research reports. However, is it acceptable that we have to face any risk with the meat approved by the Department of Health? Does our government have our interest in health, living environment, and food supply chain? Lots of local residents understood the potential high risk and protested nationwidely.
Occasionally, existing backgrounds are not enough to justify the truth. Give two examples. Will using a cell phone near a gas pump cause an explosion? Can paper be folded in half more than seven times? Under well-controlled experiments, Mythbusters, a popular science television program, raised and provided answers to these two and many other interesting myths. From their experiments, we learn that truth can upset intuitive.
People with similar education backgrounds may perform very differently. Thinking, skill, and insistence are all critical. Even a five-star chef can cook nothing in a kitchen without kitchenware, cooking materials, and ingredients. After all necessary tools and materials are prepared, a housewife can start to cook with experiments. With recipes, the process of cooking skills can be greatly improved. Frequent practice is often still required to master and to cook consistent and tasty dishes. We need not only knowledge but also experiments to discover unknown facts. The ideas inspired from knowledge and thinking can be more effective and efficient if we can derive in methodical ways.
This book works like a rich set of kitchenware along with techniques to use. Accumulated knowledge is cooking materials. Many genuine recipes are also provided to explain the usability of these techniques. The most valuables are to create our own recipes from skills and knowledge. With imagination, thinking, experiments, and practice, knowledge along with various techniques can make thinking into precious recipes, excellent innovations, and wonderful ideas. Furthermore, with experiments and insistence, innovations and ideas can really make difference and may even change the world.
President, GNT Corp. (全球聯通科技股份有限公司)
Michael Liu (劉興祥)