A spitball situations

Dear friend,

You are one of my 18 subscribers (incl. me).

You are reading this probably because you are interested in learning. So am I! What are the odds?

I don’t have much to say but I felt like writing to you.

At some point you realized this huge thing to increase learning productivity. Good for you! It’s not given. It’s a gift really.

Not everybody thinks “I will try to maximize my rate of learning so I can use it as a leverage to achieve great things”. You did and I’m sure it pays off.

I talked with Strat about this and I’m not sure if I conveyed the idea well. It baffles me: I am not convinced we truly understand what constitutes great learning.

I think this is a great video for many reasons. Biggest reason I like it is because it’s not about words but situations. Because that’s what the brain is all about: explaining situations with what you know and finding appropriate reactions.

“At every moment of our lives concepts are selectively triggered by encountered situations”

Situations as a whole, with gestures, words, tonality, surroundings. The most appropriate concept will light up based on that.

So my go-to heuristic is when answering flashcards is that: I’m always trying to *explain* A with B.

Do you get that?

I’m not answering to A with B. I’m trying to **make sense of the situation A with the answer side B**. Like B would be kind of a blueprint to make sense of A, instead of straight answer, like some missing piece. Does this make sense?

This flips the whole equation around I think. This is why I think “statement & analogy” is superior to “question & answer” form. I do believe that.

Life rarely gives you straight questions, rather you encounter complex situations which you need to explain somehow (in your mind) with the mental blueprints.

This is indirect, read between lines, inferred most of the time, instead of directly being tied to the corresponding piece of knowledge. (Not sure if this makes sense, i’m just rambling).

That’s why your grandma can be a bit racist here and there. She is used to explaining some situations with ethnic traits. It makes sense to her. It’s the pathway in her brain that got activated many times in her life, it got stronger.

If you argue against her racism, you are essentially telling her that this pathway in your brain — today a speedway as it’s been travelled many times — , you built it for nothing.

Lot of energy would have been for nothing, and she does not want to accept that. We don’t like wasting energy.

Anyways, the vid I linked, I love it because there’s so many “hey” situations, and they all have different meaning. There’s so many concepts being handled, yet so few words.

Here’s a puzzle for you. What if sitting in front of your PC, answering to reps is not very effective, because the outcome of the memory is tied to the situation as whole? I.e., you are in “I’m in my room in front of my PC answering to flashcard” - situation, and only small margin of that knowledge actually and by chance tranfers to real world situations (some nice coincidences in neural pathways).

What if encountering a problem (e.g. in programming) and finding a solution is so well remembered because, well, you dealt with the situation as a whole, not just abstract concept in your flashcard system, so now you have a very well tied mental blueprint for that situations (lot of correspondences in neural pathways).

Sorry for this post being so freakishly low effort. I’m just spitballing and not really thinking what to say 😀

I’ll come back some other day with juicy nuggets, thanks for being such a lovely subscriber ❤️