About the Website (Cont'd)
Most people get lost when a logical argument requires more than a few steps. With the Hypothesis, there are far more steps than most people can absorb easily. And the steps don't follow one another in a simple linear fashion - they are interconnected in a three-dimensional web.
The challenge for the Institute is to make the website serve two masters. This website must be simple and clear enough that the casual reader can get a general sense of the concepts embodied in the Hypothesis. At the same time, it has to present enough detail and depth that a serious scientist or scholar who is willing to dig deeply will find all of the evidence he or she needs to be convinced that the Hypothesis is valid.
Each idea or concept that forms a building block of the Hypothesis is either a generally accepted fact or a conclusion that is mandated by simple logic. However, many of these component concepts will not be obvious to the reader. For example, one critical component concept is the fact that, for all animals subject to the forces of nature, including humans, frequent intense exercise is the norm, rather than the exception. It takes several paragraphs to explain why that concept is true. By the end of that explanation, most readers will have forgotten how that componenet concept relates to the Hypothesis as a whole.
A web is not linear. Thus each component idea or connection doesn’t just lead to one other idea or connection. Each is connected through both horizontal and vertical strands to other ideas. Moreover, it is a three-dimensional web, so the connections also extend into different planes. A measure of the power of the Hypothesis is that it can be approached from many different conceptual directions, but they all lead to the same conclusion. Like a spider's web, each strand may seem diaphanous, but when fully assembled, it is remarkably strong.
In an attempt to make the materials more readable, this website takes a layered approach. Rather than repeating a several paragraph explanation of each component concept in each of the entries in which the component appears, in many cases there will merely be a statement of the concept, with a link to an entry that will explain that component in greater detail. The reader may either accept the concept and continue down the main strand of the current entry, or, if the reader questions any particular concept, she can follow the link to an explanation of that concept and then follow a return link to the main strand.
In addition, where the strand of one idea ties to an adjacent concept, the reader will be provided with a link that allows the reader to pursue the adjacent concept or continue down the same strand.
These concepts may seem abstract or technical, but they are all grounded in the real world. We're all inclined to accept the inevitability of our fates. That we are going to suffer the infirmities of aging and then die. It's OK for scientists and doctors to try to delay or ameliorate that process, but we don't believe that anyone is going to do anything to change it. Studies show that many people oppose interfering with the aging process.
The Hypothesis offers a different perspective. If aging is an inevitable process, and we all have a genetically predetermined termination date, so be it. The Hypothesis has nothing to say on that issue. But the Hypothesis tells us that the infirmities of aging are a disorder. Even if we have a predetermined termination date, that date has nothing to do with the infirmities of aging. The evolutionary default mode is that there are no infirmities. This website tells the world how to eliminate those infirmities. The Institute is not trying to change the natural order; we're trying to restore it.