How To Learn New Things

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In this day and age, learning skills are very valuable.  The ability to build on what you know is the essence of professional power. We’ve always had books and apprenticeships but now we have the internet with its blogs and tutorials and PDFs of books.  It’s great!

So the material we need to onboard our selves to something completely new is at our finger tips; but how do we harness all that potentiality into something tangible?

So how do you learn new things?  Well, I like to employ a sort of Divide and Conquer Exploratory strategy.  Its a sort of hacking, reverse engineering, top-down, bottom-up, all at once mash up that seem sto be pretty effective at covering the points of a topic in a way that sticks pretty well for me.

First, take stock of what it is to learn.  What does that mean?  Is it a basic understanding and familiarity?  Is it the ability to recall?  Is it the ability to figure out new concepts in a domain based on a priori knowledge? Is it, as some say, the ability to explain a concept simply while understanding it complexly? I take a bit of an artistic approach to the science of all of this.  I believe in a sort of inspired plasticity, that if I can reach a certain level of inspiration and interaction, I can form the new mental pathways necessary to learn.

I start by setting the stage to learn. To begin, I must set the domain of what it is I’m trying to learn hack the system.  Lay out a road map for yourself and get acquainted with the lay of the land.  Sometimes this means a sort of meta-study to determine what exactly it is you need to learn to learn the whole topic.  Sometimes that means learning prerequisites, sometimes it means determining why something is important to the specific domain you are targeting.  The physics of this process is that you don’t just determine, ‘hey, I want to learn Javascript!’, then go out, get a book on JS and find a site with some tutorials and do them.  You determine, what is Javascript?  Where is Javascript used?  What else do you need to know about the world Javascript exists in?  This might seem like overkill, but I guarantee you’ll have to look it up later when you get confused about something.  This is the top-down approach: figure out what Javascript, in this case, looks like from a birds-eye view. The physics of it, as I alluded, is that you approach the topic, and then you back out, and fan out your attention, slowly climbing back towards the initial topic.

Connecting disparate parts to find larger patterns.

How do I learn new things?
Hack the s
Pedagogy
dialectic
curriculum

 

Listing, categorizing(nodes), relating categories (transforms)
mind mapping everything
Borrowing Context
Simile, metaphor, creativity

It is all one big story, and you have a lens on what you are looking into, the story nature of reality means its all connected and all discoverable

Category & Graph Theory


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