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technology emerge rather frequently, both in areas with long traditions of using information and information technology and in areas that are not usually seen as being technology-intensive. Perhaps the major challenge for individuals embarking on the goal of lifelong FITness involves deciding when to learn a new tool, when to change to a new technology, when to devote energy to increasing technological competency, and when to allocate time to other professional activities.
The above comments suggest that FITness is personal, graduated, and dynamic. FITness is personal in the sense that individuals evaluate, distinguish, learn, and use new information technology as appropriate to their own sustained personal and professional activities. What is appropriate for an individual depends on the particular applications, activities, and opportunities for FITness that are associated with the individual's area of interest or specialization, and what is reasonable for a FIT lawyer or a historian to know and be able to do may well differ from what is required for a FIT scientist or engineer. FITness is graduated in the sense that it is characterized by different levels of sophistication (rather than a single FIT / not-FIT judgment), and it is dynamic in that it requires lifelong learning as information technology evolves.
Put differently, FITness should not be assessed according to whether a person "has / does not have" all ten capabilities, and is not a single "pass / fail judgment." People with different needs and interests and goals will have lesser or greater stakes in the various components of FITness—they will obviously have greater stakes in those components that are most directly linked to their own individual needs. Nevertheless, the committee believes that all of the elements discussed below are necessary for individuals to exploit effectively the power of information technology across even a relatively small range of interests and needs.
2.2The Elements of FITness
FITness involves three types of knowledge. These types, described briefly below, interact to reinforce each other, leading to deeper understanding of information technology and its uses.
• Intellectual capabilities.
The intellectual capabilities of FITness refer to one's ability to apply information technology in complex and sustained situations and to understand the consequences of doing so. These capabilities transcend particular hardware or software applications. Indeed, the items listed as capabilities in Section 2.4 have general applicability to many domains other than information technology. But a great deal of research (and everyday experience as well) indicates that these capabili-