Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Orphans of Chaos

I've been reading John C. Wright's Orphans of Chaos (Wikipedia) series, which is an excellent philosophy training manual for a variety of reasons. Thanks, Logan, for the recommendation.

Image is Socwall again.

I'm hearing more and more often (as less hippies write books) about the idea that the brain is a muscle. The point of this is to note that intelligence isn't a predetermined attribute, but is created by constant workouts.

I wonder how many people think morality, culture, and other purely mental 'attributes' are also muscles. I think the muscle perspective itself is a hard concept to grasp, as so much of our life is based on judgments of attributes, not learned behaviors.

In grinding through my college career, in a degree program which is increasingly annoying to me, I've been helped a lot by posts like this one (Study Hacks), which remind me that retention is based on passive, constant small chunks, not cramming.

But then again, it doesn't help if I do a cost-benefit and decide that this crap isn't worth that much time.

They also don't help when there are so many other interesting things (Make Magazine) I could be spending my time learning.

After all, you need 10,000 hours to 'master' something (Genius Catalyst). So shouldn't I be starting on things I really like now, so when i'm 32 I'll rock? 10k hours is almost 10 years of full-time work.

Good thing I'm wasting so much spare time picking up the concepts!

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