Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 12th grade May 2001

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Knowledge is one of those magnificently obscure words that is all too common to the English language. Like nails to a carpenter, the word seems to be a tool of a trade for motivational speakers and the like. Knowledge has become a feel-good buzzword like power, success, justice, and equality. Everyone knows knowledge is a desirable thing to have, but its meaning is less concrete. Knowledge is defined as familiarity, awareness, or understanding gained through experience or study. (Morris, W. 1981) Knowledge is not quite the same thing as intelligence because it requires experience. The classified section of a newspaper is filled with the phrase "experience required."� Why are businesses looking for experienced workers? Workers with experience are more productive because they have more knowledge. They know how to get the job done. Knowledge has been behind every invention and discovery in the history is man. Everything from the wheel, the light bulb, splitting the atom and even the moon landing happened because knowledge was applied to get the job done.

The word knowledge may seem as positive as a bright sunny day; the pinnacle of a civilized society. Our civilized society isn't perfect, and knowledge isn't without its clouds. The quest for knowledge is not what drives us, as the motivational speakers would have their captive audiences believe. The romantic search for discovery does not lead us to knowledge. Necessity and desire for better lives drive the quest for knowledge.

The wheel makes almost all machines possible. The earliest wheels date back to ancient Mesopotamia about 3000 BC to 3500BC. The primitive people of Mesopotamia probably weren't planning on making the most significant technological development in the history of the world. Before the modern wheel was invented, large objects were rolled on a series of logs for transport. When...