What is the learning curve and how can it be applied? Would the learning curve be appropriate for a cookie company?© BrainMass Inc. brainmass.com June 3, 2020, 11:12 pm ad1c9bdddf
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"The term learning curve refers to a graphical representation of the changing rate of learning (in the average person) for a given activity or tool. Typically, the increase in retention of information is sharpest after the initial attempts, and then gradually evens out, meaning that less and less new information is retained after each repetition.
The learning curve can also represent at a glance the initial difficulty of learning something and, to an extent, how much there is to learn after initial familiarity. For example, the Windows program Notepad is extremely simple to learn, but offers little after this. On the other extreme is the UNIX terminal editor vi, which is difficult to learn, but offers a wide array of features to master after the user has figured out how to work it. It is possible for something to be easy to learn, but difficult to master or hard to learn with little beyond this.
Learning curve in psychology and economics
The first person to describe the learning curve was Hermann Ebbinghaus in 1885. He found that the time required to memorize a nonsense syllable increased sharply as the number of syllables increased. Psychologist, Arthur Bills gave a more detailed description of learning curves in 1934. He also discussed the properties of different types of learning curves, such as negative acceleration, positive acceleration, plateaus, and ogive curves. In 1936, Theodore Paul Wright described the effect of learning on labor productivity in the aircraft industry and proposed a mathematical model of the learning curve.
The economic learning of productivity and efficiency generally follows the same kinds of experience curves and have interesting secondary effects. Efficiency and productivity improvement can be considered as whole organization or industry or economy learning processes, as well as for individuals. The general pattern is of first speeding up and then slowing down, as the practically achievable level of methodology improvement is reached. The effect of reducing local effort and resource use by learning improved methods paradoxically often has the opposite latent effect on the next larger scale system, by facilitating it's expansion, or Economic growth, as discussed in Jevon's paradox in the 1880s and updated in the Khazzoom-Brookes Postulate in the 1980s. That it means that the effect of saving energy may generally be to increase energy use has not yet been widely appreciated in the sustainability or global warming discussions.
Broader interpretations of the learning curve
Initially introduced ...
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