Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Does Knowing How Imply Knowing?

I was talking to a colleague in another department yesterday when someone asked him for the code to the departmental photocopier. He said that he didn't know it, but then went over and entered it. When the person said he would really like the code himself, my colleague slowly tapped out the code and recreated the string of numerals. Years ago, my colleague was told the code and no doubt had it memorized at some point. But now, all that is used is the muscle memory. He knows that he can recreate the code at anytime, if need be, but that it takes a particular sort of effort to do so. So, before he reminds himself of the numerical string, given that he can use it but not transmit it, can it be said that he knows the copier code?