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What went wrong is that these systems were designed by extremely smart CS PhDs who massively overestimated the abilities of the average human.

The point about literacy to begin with offering this kind of leap is important.

But another thing about systems is that, designed by smart or by mediocre men, they have the problem that their difficulty increases much more rapidly with their size than does that of, say, a novel.

A literate world could exchange one essay for another. A computer programmer couldn't as easily write a rejoinder for a given system without writing much than is involved with the original system (that sounds clunky but you have to admit code-size growth is whole different situation than the grow of books).

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