Yuval Noah Harari
Scientists generally agree that no theory is 100 percent correct. Thus, the real test of knowledge is not truth, but utility.

YUVAL NOAH HARARI

@averyb33

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Problem Solving

MORE IDEAS FROM THE ARTICLE

You don't need to master every detail of every subject to become a world-class thinker.

If you can master the fundamentals of each discipline, then you can develop a remarkably accurate and useful picture of life.

Mental Models: Out of Box Thinking

Mental models are the various thinking frameworks that are used to understand life, make decisions, and solve problems.

Just raw intelligence is not enough to solve problems. A different or a broader set of mental models can provide a different view of the problem, leading to an unconventional, new solution not thought of before.

Mental Models: Examples

A mental model is an explanation of how something works. They are beliefs, worldviews or frameworks of thinking. You carry a certain kind of thinking in you to arrive at a solution to a problem.

Some examples:

  • Demand and Supply: to understand the economy
  • Game Theory: to understand trust and relationships
  • Entropy: to understand disorder and decay
Different perspectives

Each individual mental model is just one view of reality. The challenges and situations we face in life cannot be entirely explained by one field or industry.

All perspectives hold some truth. None of them contain the complete truth.

Charlie Munger
“All the wisdom of the world is not to be found in one little academic department.
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Instead of separating knowledge into different sections, isolating it, we are better off expanding, merging and liquefying the knowledge.

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RELATED IDEAS

Daniel Kahneman believes there are two systems for organizing and filtering knowledge: 

  • System one is real-time. This system makes judgments and decisions before our mental apparatus can consciously catch up. 
  • System two, on the other hand, is a slow process of thinking based on critical examination of evidence. Konnikova refers to these as System Watson and System Holmes.

To move from a System Watson- to a System Holmes-governed thinking takes mindfulness plus motivation.

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IDEAS

When polarizing topics are discussed in meetings, it can turn into a fight. In these conflicts, where passions run high, people tend to confuse correlation with causation while determining the reason for the problem, or can have hindsight bias. They can also create evidence out of nothing or assume a maliciousness intent from the decision-makers.

Mental models are tools that can help us navigate through such challenging or confusing situations.

Thinking is not IQ

We often make the mistake of thinking that people with high IQs think better. But it's not true. That's not the type of knowledge or brainpower that makes you better at life, happier, or more successful.

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