value of knowledge in the information age, public awareness of the value of knowledge critically affects the economic growth of a nation. the schematic diagram clearly shows how the value of knowledge evolved in china in the past 50 years. the schematic diagram mainly consists of three parts. from 1950 to 1966, the curve was roughly a straight line slightly above zero, showing that china was a poorly-educated nation then. in 1966, the curve drastically dropped below zero, moving down hopelessly in the next 11 years. this period coincided with the "culture revolution". our society went mad then, books were burned, schools were closed and all kinds of academic activities were banned. knowledge inflicted its masters nothing but disasters. life was a nightmare for chinese intellectuals, including famous scholars as well as common people who received higher education or whose profession had anything to do with knowledge. it was a time when ignorance was a virtue and knowledge was a crime. people tried desperately to be away from knowledge. as a result, china lagged farther behind the rapid progressing world. this was the darkest time in the history of new china. the curve returned to its original non-zero position around 1978 and moved up but slowly. from 1984 on, it has been shooting up. the open-up policy encourages people to study and to channel their knowledge to the market economy. millions of chinese are bettering off by means of their knowledge and more chinese enjoy the fruits of knowledge and say goodbye for good to poverty that haunted them for generations. as our world is rapidly advancing towards the information age, increasing number of people realize that knowledge is power and creativity is everything. only when china becomes a better educated nation, can china be a great nation with international prestige.