What makes one person an Expert? And does every area of human knowledge have one?
I was watching a video by Veritassium touching on this subject and I decided to take some notes on it.
There are roughly 4 things it takes to have someone be an expert in their field. Let's go one by one.
1 - Valid Environment (also could be thought of as Valid Field).
Not every field is conducive to creating experts in it. So we need to be very careful not to be Fooled by Randomness in these fields.
So when you think of a valid environment, think Chess and not Roulette Wheel (or predicting future markets).
The environment itself must have patterns to be grasped by the proposed expert, and NOT random chance.
2 - Many Repetitions
To be an expert like a chess grandmaster one needs to learn through continuous deliberate practice. That takes repetitions with the 3rd and 4th points below.
3 - Timely Feedback
Think someone shooting an arrow vs recruiting someone and only seeing how they do months after.
Or driving a race car instead of diagnosing rare diseases at their early stages (which tends to be very luck based rather than factual decision-making by doctors).
One needs to have feedback on what they do as close as possible to their actions, that way the brain is capable of recognizing what is right and wrong and adapting their form for the next iteration.
When the feedback comes very months ahead, the brain has already forgotten the details someone took to achieve that result, and learning suffers from it.
Feedback also comes in forms, not only in time. There's hardly any use for feedback telling you what you're doing right, but there are a lot of uses for feedback telling you what you're doing wrong.
4 - Deliberate Practice
We touched on this a bit on point 2, but let's get to the nuts and bolts of it.
Instead of doing what is comfortable, think of doing just a little bit more than what's in your sphere of comfort.
Deliberate practice is what makes you actually pay attention to what you're doing (I have yet to meet someone that won't learn something whilst under voluntary discomfort).
That is it, those were my notes on the video, let me know what you think and I will see you in the next post. 😉☕
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