“Without Knowledge of the Past, We Would Have No Knowledge At All”
Knowledge to me is knowing anything; Information, data, procedure facts that may alter a person’s life, not necessarily for his benefit. According to precise definitions knowledge is;
The State or fact of knowing
Familiarity, awareness or understanding gained through experience or study.
The sum or range of what has been perceived discovered or learned. 
I tend to evaluate the first definition as what we actually know. By this I mean, what humans can communicate to others or define to others is knowing. When somebody claims he knows how can he prove that he knows or what he claims to know?
The second definition is much more the answer of the first question. One knows by familiarity, awareness, or understanding but to prove he knows he must make someone see light in what he/she says.
The third definition can be said to be the best definition of knowledge as knowledge has no bounds except time.
With these definitions in mind we can argue both for and against the title, ‘Without knowledge of the past we would have no knowledge at all’
It is true to say that without knowledge of the past we would have no knowledge at all because most of our knowledge has evolved, been altered and renewed. What I mean to say is that man used earlier knowledge to define what they are today. All what man claim to know today has been a continuation of what man discovered earlier. For example the airships (blimps) first started way back .The first successful airship was that of a French engineer an inventor Henri Giffard in 1852. Since then the same designs and ideas were modified. After that the Germans used the same idea to make the largest air-transporter in 1937, the Hindenburg. This was successful and after making ten trans-Atlantic crossings , it was destroyed in 1937 while trying to land, 37 people were killed, though the actual reason why the Hindenburg burst into flames has been proved by National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) manager and hydrogen expert Addison Bain. He proved that the Hindenburg’s cover was actually flammable and that a discharge of atmospheric electricity caused a spark which ignited the Air-ship. The idea of the air ship was not burried but resumed research and after the World War II they used the balloons for such purposes as anti-submarine warfare, search missions and other military uses. Now the air balloons are used for advertising. Research is in process for using these balloons for civil aviation. 
Men usually tend to improve ideas and research carried out by our ancestors. Another very debatable example is the use of biochemical weapons. Those in the eclipse will say they are the weapons of today and have just been invented. The truth is they were invented in the early 19th century; they then were used in the world wars and are still in research today. Any scientist who has a brief knowledge of hybrid diseases and viruses can tell you the potential of these weapons.  Today biochemical research on food has also increased, by using the same principles they maximise outputs in farms, producing more foods (genetic engineering).Theses examples show how the knowledge expanded, not was created.
To shift from improvements, I would like to boost my question by bringing in Socrates (469-399B.C.), a Greek philosopher. Socrates believed in the superiority of argument over writing and therefore spent the greater part of his mature life in the marketplace and public places of Athens, engaging in dialogue and argument with anyone who would listen or who would submit to interrogation. Socrates was reportedly unattractive in appearance and short of stature but was also extremely hardy and self-controlled. He enjoyed life immensely and achieved social popularity because of his ready wit and a keen sense of humour that was completely devoid of satire or cynicism. Today his teachings are used as the basis of knowledge.
Indeed looking at history we not only see such cases but we also see that people who were the founders of subjects not only inspired others but somehow made others continue their work, and so today we can recognise them, for instance Socrates, the Greek philosopher whose best student Plato continued his works, Mendel, Gregor Johann, the founder of the science of genetics (he discovered the principle of inheritance of characteristics through the combination of genes) he’s successor Bateson William proved the works of Mendel and today genetics is part of the human backbone.
These examples show how knowledge evolved the way humans did and so showing without knowledge of the past we would have no knowledge at all.
Looking at the natural sciences the examples above which are also parts of history show that knowledge evolved and was polished over time. Here technology has made it possible for further and newer research to be carried out. Most of which have the same roots as the past.
Like the examples above biochemical research is now more profound, much more challenging and advanced. Production of weapons of hybrid diseases are underway much of what researchers imagined or had theories of in the past. Nuclear energy has now been implemented due to technology researchers in the past.
In the Arts I also think that without knowledge of the past there would be no knowledge at all for example: – Terrorism, an art profound in the world of today. I admire it in the sense that the true culprit is never caught and that done in the past inspires and teaches the newly recruited a better way to do the job.
But also in this section, I am truly confused at the way the world reacts to too obvious clues left behind. Any act of terrorism today directly points fingers to the Alqaida. This is a fact I most often laugh at. Today numerous amounts of clues are found, thus coming to conclusion almost immediately. To be precise any Muslim cultural artefact i.e. a Quran or a scripture in Arabic found nest to the bombing is enough for the conclusion.
I sometimes ask myself during the world war II the Japanese Suicide bombers wore a white cloth with a red dot on it thus they were identified. Bombers today we have no such clues except the ones found at the site, why then does society as a whole point fingers. Thus I say without knowledge of proper evidence in this case we have no knowledge at all.*
Another Artistic method in today’s world I admire is robbery and this in fact fully shows that without knowledge of the past these are high intellectual robberies I am referring to there is no knowledge at all. Thieves today are a basic reenergized version of the past lacked up by technology, safe cracking in knowledge passed down from generation to generation these are born thieves.
After saying all this a 6th sense in me tells me that I should deny the fact that without knowledge of the past there would be no knowledge at all.
Let me come directly to my first and solid example that proves this fact wrong. The September, 11th bombing of the world trade centre towers. Personally I don’t think this was a terrorist attack but merely a political issue that was too difficult for the Jews who ran the world centre, to solve. The terrorist attack was just a cover up to support my theory; I ask and answer a few knowledgeable questions.
Firstly, what is the melting point of steal? It is from around 1000 to 1200°C depending on its carbon to iron ratio.
Secondly what standards of construction to the Americans implement? The best money can buy their construction is superb and as far as the world centre was concerned, I think over 100 story’s is no joke and architects must have sweated their brains over for a stable firm frame for the building.
Thirdly how far do the world trade centre foundations go? A knowledgeable person like yourself will be able to estimate the height below ground to support such a huge structure. Personally I think the foundations go to at least 30 to 50 metres deep
Fourthly aren’t the foundation blocks in line with the latest vibrational technology to withstand earthquakes? Yes all American buildings to the best of my knowledge vibrational technology in its foundations. This technology is used so that buildings can withstand earthquakes measuring 8.5 on the Richter scale. Other more modern buildings have electronically controlled weights on top of the building and a rubbery frame with glass shutters to completely survive an earthquake. The world the world trade centre implemented of the vibrational technology. Fifthly why did the towers collapse vertically instead of horizontally? This was the most mind boiling question I came across. I have watched great buildings being demolished and looking at the video of the world trade centres collapsed and the buildings being demolished I found somewhat familiarity in the ways the buildings collapsed, raising another question in my mind, can actually two planes have the potential to bring such two great towers down?
Looking at the above facts I don’t see any reason why the Kenya commercial bank should survive a bomblast so powerful that its shockwaves were felt kilometres away, and the world trade centre should be reduced to dirt. I myself think that because most people did not have an idea of the political status the perceived the situation wrongly as a terrorist attack. If the people knew then maybe it would be a different story
Looking at all these facts I think in some cases we can agree that without knowledge of the past there would be no knowledge at all and disagree to it in other cases.
Microsoft Encarta 2004 (CD-ROM)
The American Heritage Talking Dictionary (CD-ROM)
The TOK guide