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“Invention occurs at the level of the individual, and we should address the factors that determine individual creativity. Individuals, however, do not live in a vacuum. What makes them implement, improve and adapt new technologies, or just devise small improvements in the way they carry out their daily work depends on the institutions and the attitudes around them.”
In all societies, there are people and groups that want to maintain the status quo because it is in their interests to do so.
Even if there are tensions, the most creative societies are those where it is still possible for the new thing to take over. If those who want to keep the status quo have too much power, a society will end up stagnating in terms of technology.
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A productivity method called ‘Inbox Zero’ by Merlin Mann, a productivity hacker and creator of many other productivity tools like 43 folders, became a rage in 2007. It was based on the fact that all email should be answered or categorized until the inbox has zero emails left.
While sounding great, this personal productivity method actually increased a person’s email, leading to a circular path of pseudo-work: replying to the endless email.