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Old 11-29-2018, 10:19 PM
lingyi lingyi is offline
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How much am I missing by not being an "expert"...

Ignorance is bliss...or is it?

How much am I missing by not being an "expert" at something?

Food expert: "I love the flavor layering and contrast of texures."
Me: "This tastes good and I like the crunchy bits"

Car expert: "I have an enhanced suspension and use premium tires."
Me: "When I drive my car on these roads, it's lot a more bumpy."

Movie or audio expert: "I love the way the director framed that scene and used the music so effectively."
Me: "That was a good movie, especially that one scene."

BTW, I'm completely happy with liking what I like even without knowing why I like it!
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Old 11-29-2018, 10:24 PM
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IMHO, it's worth it to be an expert in something. But it's not worth it to be an expert in any particular thing unless you're interested in that thing. And no one can be an expert in everything.
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Old 11-30-2018, 12:41 AM
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I love magic. However, the more I learn about it the less I'm interested in it. The mystique diminishes and the thought of practicing anything for weeks to impress some friends every once in a while is not appealing to me in any way.
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Old 11-30-2018, 12:50 AM
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I think it's probably more healthy to be well-rounded. A true expert in any one thing has obviously spent X amount of hours refining their expertise. Perhaps neglecting other things.
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Old 11-30-2018, 01:26 AM
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IMHO, it's worth it to be an expert in something. But it's not worth it to be an expert in any particular thing unless you're interested in that thing. And no one can be an expert in everything.
This. One bad thing about the net is that you get bombarded with expertise from hundreds of people, and it is easy to get depressed about it. You don't have to listen to every third rate Baroque composer to be a well rounded person.
We've increased bandwidth, we've increased processor power, we've expanded memory - but we haven't increased the number of hours in the day.

Still being an expert in something you get paid for is very useful, since it distinguishes you and makes laying you off painful - sometimes. And being an expert in a field leads to good networking opportunities. But that doesn't go for civilian life.
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Old 11-30-2018, 03:08 AM
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I like doing origami. I like trying to make a new model. 'Trying' being the operative word. Sometimes I am very successful, other times, not so much. The fun is in the trying. If I was perfect I would not enjoy it much.
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Old 11-30-2018, 06:44 AM
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My friend is an expert in music (played in a band for years, works as a DJ, has done a bunch of remixes) and he has said it has pretty much killed his ability to just enjoy music. He hears everything through the lens of his work. So yeah, sometimes its better to not know how the sausages are made.
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Old 11-30-2018, 07:04 AM
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Expertise gives one the vocabulary to describe subtle points in a given field.

Unless you expect to be describing subtle points to others I believe that a working knowledge of many fields is better than expertise in any one.
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Old 11-30-2018, 07:11 AM
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You're not an expert on Joe Biden sandwich videos.
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Old 11-30-2018, 08:00 AM
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Maybe you're not missing anything. Consider this passage from Mark Twain's Life on the Mississippi:

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The face of the water, in time, became a wonderful book—a book that was a dead language to the uneducated passenger, but which told its mind to me without reserve, delivering its most cherished secrets as clearly as if it uttered them with a voice. And it was not a book to be read once and thrown aside, for it had a new story to tell every day. Throughout the long twelve hundred miles there was never a page that was void of interest, never one that you could leave unread without loss, never one that you would want to skip, thinking you could find higher enjoyment in some other thing. There never was so wonderful a book written by man; never one whose interest was so absorbing, so unflagging, so sparkingly renewed with every reperusal. The passenger who could not read it was charmed with a peculiar sort of faint dimple on its surface (on the rare occasions when he did not overlook it altogether); but to the pilot that was an italicized passage; indeed, it was more than that, it was a legend of the largest capitals, with a string of shouting exclamation points at the end of it; for it meant that a wreck or a rock was buried there that could tear the life out of the strongest vessel that ever floated. It is the faintest and simplest expression the water ever makes, and the most hideous to a pilot's eye. In truth, the passenger who could not read this book saw nothing but all manner of pretty pictures in it painted by the sun and shaded by the clouds, whereas to the trained eye these were not pictures at all, but the grimmest and most dead-earnest of reading-matter.

Now when I had mastered the language of this water and had come to know every trifling feature that bordered the great river as familiarly as I knew the letters of the alphabet, I had made a valuable acquisition. But I had lost something, too. I had lost something which could never be restored to me while I lived. All the grace, the beauty, the poetry had gone out of the majestic river! I still keep in mind a certain wonderful sunset which I witnessed when steamboating was new to me. A broad expanse of the river was turned to blood; in the middle distance the red hue brightened into gold, through which a solitary log came floating, black and conspicuous; in one place a long, slanting mark lay sparkling upon the water; in another the surface was broken by boiling, tumbling rings, that were as many-tinted as an opal; where the ruddy flush was faintest, was a smooth spot that was covered with graceful circles and radiating lines, ever so delicately traced; the shore on our left was densely wooded, and the somber shadow that fell from this forest was broken in one place by a long, ruffled trail that shone like silver; and high above the forest wall a clean-stemmed dead tree waved a single leafy bough that glowed like a flame in the unobstructed splendor that was flowing from the sun. There were graceful curves, reflected images, woody heights, soft distances; and over the whole scene, far and near, the dissolving lights drifted steadily, enriching it, every passing moment, with new marvels of coloring.

I stood like one bewitched. I drank it in, in a speechless rapture. The world was new to me, and I had never seen anything like this at home. But as I have said, a day came when I began to cease from noting the glories and the charms which the moon and the sun and the twilight wrought upon the river's face; another day came when I ceased altogether to note them. Then, if that sunset scene had been repeated, I should have looked upon it without rapture, and should have commented upon it, inwardly, after this fashion: This sun means that we are going to have wind to-morrow; that floating log means that the river is rising, small thanks to it; that slanting mark on the water refers to a bluff reef which is going to kill somebody's steamboat one of these nights, if it keeps on stretching out like that; those tumbling 'boils' show a dissolving bar and a changing channel there; the lines and circles in the slick water over yonder are a warning that that troublesome place is shoaling up dangerously; that silver streak in the shadow of the forest is the 'break' from a new snag, and he has located himself in the very best place he could have found to fish for steamboats; that tall dead tree, with a single living branch, is not going to last long, and then how is a body ever going to get through this blind place at night without the friendly old landmark.

No, the romance and the beauty were all gone from the river. All the value any feature of it had for me now was the amount of usefulness it could furnish toward compassing the safe piloting of a steamboat. Since those days, I have pitied doctors from my heart. What does the lovely flush in a beauty's cheek mean to a doctor but a 'break' that ripples above some deadly disease. Are not all her visible charms sown thick with what are to him the signs and symbols of hidden decay? Does he ever see her beauty at all, or doesn't he simply view her professionally, and comment upon her unwholesome condition all to himself? And doesn't he sometimes wonder whether he has gained most or lost most by learning his trade?
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Old 11-30-2018, 08:01 AM
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Old 11-30-2018, 08:15 AM
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Because our brains are inundated with information on a constant basis, we tend to exercise "need to know" when it comes to concentrating on any particular area and in learning any particular thing in depth, otherwise our brains could literally be overwhelmed. To put it in tech terms, our "CPU" becomes "overclocked".

Add to that the fact that we have detailed information on virtually every subject imaginable at our fingertips. Example: Just yesterday, I had a computer with a user account that had a corrupted profile so, instead of opening up in the user's profile, it was generating a .TEMP profile every time. Now, I could have taken an online course on the windows registry et al, but I didn't. Instead, I Googled, "User Profile Keeps Logging in as Temporary". I had the information I needed and solved the problem withing ten minutes, so there was no need to become an "expert". I got what I needed to know, and there my interest ended.
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Old 11-30-2018, 08:27 AM
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Now, I could have taken an online course on the windows registry et al, but I didn't. Instead, I Googled, "User Profile Keeps Logging in as Temporary". I had the information I needed and solved the problem withing ten minutes, so there was no need to become an "expert". I got what I needed to know, and there my interest ended.
I seem to have a reputation as a computer expert at work because I know how to effectively Google for quick answers. I'll admit, this does take some talent; watching other people use a search engine is like watching them edit a document. They have no idea how to quickly skim results and discount the results that aren't likely to provide a quick and excellent answer.

I'm at the point that it's quicker for me to Google MS Office features rather than try to guess which stupid Ribbon panel and icon has the functionality that used to be perfectly clear in the old menu system.
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Old 11-30-2018, 08:37 AM
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BTW, I'm completely happy with liking what I like even without knowing why I like it!
There are times when this point of view works, and times it does not.

In some ways it can be immature, like the person who goes to a fancy restaurant and gets chicken fingers because they love chicken fingers.

In some ways it can save you, like my friend who got into high-end audio, and I always felt there was underlying dissatisfaction when he listened to music, because he was listening for something to improve, and there's ALWAYS something to improve.

There is something to having a thoughtful preference for the things you like rather than a shallow one. People who are thoughtful about their environment are more interesting companions than those who are not.
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Old 11-30-2018, 09:24 AM
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I have often thought that the real reason I never pursued a career in writing was that I feared I would come to hate writing if I had to do it for a living.

Last edited by Two Many Cats; 11-30-2018 at 09:26 AM.
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Old 11-30-2018, 09:33 AM
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I think it's helpful to have at least passing knowledge of things but then there's diminishing returns in being an "expert". It's good to know how to cook stuff but less useful to get into long debates about the only "proper" way to cook something. It's good to know automotive basics and not drive until your oil light is flashing, but less profitable to debate the merits of different cabin air filters. There's value in knowing what the parts in your computer are and how they work but less value in troubling yourself over case air flow to get two degree cooler CPU temps.

All these things are worth doing if you want to do them and get satisfaction from the best way to cook something or optimize something. But the user experience for someone 60% of the way there and someone 95% of the way there are probably fairly similar.
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Old 11-30-2018, 11:11 AM
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I have often thought that the real reason I never pursued a career in writing was that I feared I would come to hate writing if I had to do it for a living.
I guess I should be glad I never went into porn acting, then.

Regards,
Shodan
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Old 11-30-2018, 11:17 AM
Steve McQwark Steve McQwark is online now
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There's an old joke about the difference between an expert and a generalist. An expert knows more and more about less and less until they know everything about nothing, and a generalist knows less and less about more and more until they know nothing about everything. I've always aimed to be a generalist because, as several people have pointed out, I can google details when I need them. If I have a rough understanding of something, it makes understanding the details much easier.
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Old 11-30-2018, 11:33 AM
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To put it in tech terms, our "CPU" becomes "overclocked".
Buffer overrun is more like it I think.

Anyway, I think that it's perfectly fine to not be an expert in anything, although I think there's a lot of utility in being knowledgeable about many things without necessarily being an "expert" in any one of them. Kind of like the 80/20 rule in practice with knowledge about things. Learning that first 80% is the easy part; that last 20% is the tough part and what takes all the time and effort.

I mean, I'm probably not a real expert in any one field, but I'm pretty knowledgeable about a lot of things- beer, wine, spirits, computers, games, gardening, automotive stuff, cooking, baking, etc...
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Old 11-30-2018, 11:53 AM
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You don't need to be an expert in anything to enjoy it. But I have found that when you know a little more about something, you appreciate it more. I really like to learn more about several things I like to do, and I find it enriches my experiences. I am not an expert photographer but I learned a lot about it and now, not only do I appreciate other photographers more, I appreciate just looking at things more. Photography (and art in general) is more about how you see the world than making a picture. I could never make a living as a cook but I've taken some cooking classes and have a greater appreciation for a really good meal.

You can certainly enjoy all those things without knowing much about them or even why you like them. Ignorance is bliss. But it's still ignorance.
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Old 11-30-2018, 01:16 PM
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...You don't have to listen to every third rate Baroque composer to be a well rounded person...
We used to call that sewing machine music.

I try to keep myself well-informed about a few things, but I am by no means much of an expert in anything except the very narrow field that I used to work in (and even that has changed in the 4 years since I retired). And I'm fine with that.
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Old 11-30-2018, 01:49 PM
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Ignorance is bliss...or is it?

How much am I missing by not being an "expert" at something?

Food expert: "I love the flavor layering and contrast of texures."
Me: "This tastes good and I like the crunchy bits"

Car expert: "I have an enhanced suspension and use premium tires."
Me: "When I drive my car on these roads, it's lot a more bumpy."

Movie or audio expert: "I love the way the director framed that scene and used the music so effectively."
Me: "That was a good movie, especially that one scene."

BTW, I'm completely happy with liking what I like even without knowing why I like it!
You're making the assumption that you're somehow getting the same quality as the experts get. The experts can make sure they're getting the good stuff because they know the difference between good and bad quality. You, at best, are trusting to random chance. And it's likely that you're getting a larger than random share of bad quality stuff because people save the good quality stuff for the experts who will insist on it.
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Old 11-30-2018, 01:49 PM
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And no one can be an expert in everything.
I've worked with several folks who would argue to the contrary.
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Old 11-30-2018, 01:49 PM
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Sometimes, being an expert, or at least very knowledgable about a particular subject can become a real source of pleasure when you come across references to it unexpectedly.

1 - A couple of days ago, my youngest daughter showed me characters in a videogame she loves. Each of them had a sort of motto related to their names. For one of them, the motto was a cleverly oblique reference to an old song. I chuckled. My daughter was just puzzled.

2 - At work, I once said to an IT consultant : "I have a question". He muttered "42". I basically went .

3 - On a Classical music forum, a poster mentioned that Bart鏦 had written a violin concerto that contained some then-unusual quarter-tones for Menuhin, who refused to play it as such and demanded they be changed to "normal" intervals (tones or half-tones). Another poster who was known for his borderline catty, dry wit posted something like : "Well, of course. He was already playing quarter-tones when they were not called for. Asking him to play them on purpose was running the risk of hitting a perfectly tuned note." This remains to this day my favourite non-Monty Python pythonesque quote.

So yeah, knowing a bunch of stuff with some depth can turn out to be great fun.
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Old 11-30-2018, 06:17 PM
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I have often thought that the real reason I never pursued a career in writing was that I feared I would come to hate writing if I had to do it for a living.
To this day I still say that whichever person came up with "Do something you love and you'll never work a day in your life" was a goddamned liar!!!
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Old 11-30-2018, 06:25 PM
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To this day I still say that whichever person came up with "Do something you love and you'll never work a day in your life" was a goddamned liar!!!
+1

There's a few things I know a good bit more about than the average person (though not an expert) and could possibly make a living at, but never would because it would ruin my enjoyment of it when I got home.

There are exceptions though. Long before the internet, I used to buy Hong Kong movie memorabilia by mail order catalog. I had a chance to talk to the owner on the phone a couple of times and she told me she was a big Jackie Chan fan and by buying non-Jackie things for resale she covered her trip and personal purchase costs. I don't know what she did other than her mail order business, but I don't think that was her sole source of income.
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Old 11-30-2018, 06:25 PM
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BTW, I'm completely happy with liking what I like even without knowing why I like it!
It can be helpful if you want to find more things that you like. But it's fair to say a lot of it is BS.
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Old 11-30-2018, 06:44 PM
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I guess I should be glad I never went into porn acting, then.

Regards,
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Old 11-30-2018, 07:24 PM
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Buffer overrun is more like it I think.
More like thrashing, actually.
Quote:
Anyway, I think that it's perfectly fine to not be an expert in anything, although I think there's a lot of utility in being knowledgeable about many things without necessarily being an "expert" in any one of them. Kind of like the 80/20 rule in practice with knowledge about things. Learning that first 80% is the easy part; that last 20% is the tough part and what takes all the time and effort.

I mean, I'm probably not a real expert in any one field, but I'm pretty knowledgeable about a lot of things- beer, wine, spirits, computers, games, gardening, automotive stuff, cooking, baking, etc...
Knowing a reasonable lot about a lot of things let me pass the Jeopardy test easily, so it helped there at least.
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Old 11-30-2018, 09:23 PM
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I have often thought that the real reason I never pursued a career in writing was that I feared I would come to hate writing if I had to do it for a living.

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Originally Posted by Shodan View Post
I guess I should be glad I never went into porn acting, then.
Or the gigolo business, for that matter.

But, seriously, I knew very early that I loved doing martial arts and I had a talent and skill at teaching it. Very briefly I had dreams of opening a studio of my own one day. But then I was somehow privy to the workings of my instructors' studio and later of their second branch studio as well. And seeing the issues of the daily business, of billing problems and recruiting efforts and tax payments and audits all helped me realize it wasn't quite-so-fun behind the scenes; it was work, it was a business like any other. And I knew I didn't want to spoil my love of martial arts with the necessary evils of running a business. So I've mostly just taught for free.



Quote:
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You're making the assumption that you're somehow getting the same quality as the experts get. The experts can make sure they're getting the good stuff because they know the difference between good and bad quality. You, at best, are trusting to random chance. And it's likely that you're getting a larger than random share of bad quality stuff because people save the good quality stuff for the experts who will insist on it.
True but, particularly in the arena of food consumption, if you can't tell the difference between Uncle Ben's Minute Rice and the long grain rice at your local Chinese restaurant, you won't know what you're missing when you taste Nishiki rice from California, or understand how it's different from Nishiki rice from northwestern Japan. And, quite frankly, you won't care, either!



The modern world requires specialists. Specialization helped hunter/gatherer societies become farmer/artisan/soldier/thinker societies and the rest, as they say, is history. And while experts are specialist specialists who help refine and expand the knowledge within their specialties, societies don't need as many of those in order to enjoy the benefits of their efforts.

And there's also the matter of topic. If you're the worlds greatest expert on gall wasps, not a whole lot of people will bug you. When you're the foremost researcher on human sexuality, then you become a historical figure!

And, for that matter, there's a lot of expertise that is either underappreciated or completely unappreciated. Al Gore's daughter's question on the environment spurred him to become quite an expert on the human factors in the changing climate of our planet. He wasn't the first to put it all together and he's not the foremost expert, but when he tried to share his knowledge and understanding, most people (well, those with wealth, status, and/or power; nobody else matters, right?) just wished he would shut up and go away.


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  #31  
Old 12-01-2018, 02:32 AM
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My friend is an expert in music (played in a band for years, works as a DJ, has done a bunch of remixes) and he has said it has pretty much killed his ability to just enjoy music. He hears everything through the lens of his work. So yeah, sometimes its better to not know how the sausages are made.
I decided a while back that dermatology is the one medical specialty I'd never want to have. Do you know a single person who doesn't have at least one skin condition? Acne and dandruff alone have to account for over half of humanity!





I've got some things I'm an expert at, and part of the reason I'm an expert in them is that I enjoy them: I didn't set out to be an expert, I became one by doing. Others I used to be an expert at, but they were professional interests and didn't interest me enough to keep up once they stopped being part of my job. There's things at which I'm good without bothering with the fancy stuff at all: my roasts don't look particularly pretty, but they also don't spend a lot of time looking like anything but "food being devoured".

I've known people who, as Beckdawreck said, had become experts in a very narrow field to the point of neglecting other things. Some of them were "experts" in such a narrow part of their chosen field that they were the equivalent of someone who knows how to steer a car without knowing how to sit in its driver's seat (1): the holes in their knowledge made them much worse at their chosen slice of field than someone with "a decent base".





1: for those of you who remember your chemistry: BS in Orgo, MS in Orgo, PhD in Orgo, and they didn't know that "you heat endothermic reactions and cool exothermic reactions", on account of this being physical chemistry and therefore something they weren't going to sully their brains with. They had not taken any physical chemistry except for whatever was part of their pre-university curriculum: no thermodynamics, no kinetics, nothing. I'm ChemE, specialty Orgo, and was doing Theoretical Chemistry: I had them for breakfast, spit out the bones and then asked for pancakes.
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Last edited by Nava; 12-01-2018 at 02:37 AM.
  #32  
Old 12-01-2018, 07:01 AM
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I'm not an expert in anything. There were periods of time where I was quite knowledgeable about a few useless things, but eventually I lost interest or they moved too fast, and I never really bothered to catch up again. Now I don't know all that much even about things I enjoy.

It's a bit embarrassing to impart knowledge of something I used to know and then be corrected because it's completely misremembered or way out of date. I step back a lot and say nothing these days. I haven't been on the General Questions forum in months* for that reason.

*or maybe even years
  #33  
Old 12-01-2018, 08:59 AM
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FWIW, multiple studies indicate that wine tasting is BS. The idea was that wine flavors were objectively identifiable, so a bunch of Frasier types would be able to discern the specific flavors, brand, and even the year by taste alone.

Studies have shown that wine experts cannot reliably distinguish flavors or types. They're just making it up by whatever arbitrary criteria, and they rely on external information when making their assessments. In attempting to discern the difference between a highly-regarded, expensive wine and whatever random table wine, even experts do no better than chance.
  #34  
Old 12-01-2018, 09:10 AM
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I work with a number of people who have the title, "Expert in XYZ."

But after years of working with them, I have discovered they're not experts. They're bullshitters. They spend every hour at work trying to convince people they're an expert, as opposed to becoming a real expert. They get lots of awards, and fool a lot of people.
  #35  
Old 12-01-2018, 02:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Arrogance Ex Machina View Post
My friend is an expert in music (played in a band for years, works as a DJ, has done a bunch of remixes) and he has said it has pretty much killed his ability to just enjoy music. He hears everything through the lens of his work. So yeah, sometimes its better to not know how the sausages are made.
Interesting. I've noticed that with people I always shared a common interest in as to musical types/genres really began to diverge once they became musicians. It seems like It's like someone suddenly taking a liking to bland food because they became enthralled with the process of how it's made than how enjoyable it is to consume. In turn, their tastes became more mellow, and they began to like the more wishy-washy works of favorite bands, once they took up guitar....because it was easier for them to play. The ones that formed, or joined bands to play in small venues/bars, all play just covers of typical top-40 "sellout" music, or if you will, corporate rock. Ostensibly, because "that's where the money is"....I guess.
  #36  
Old 12-01-2018, 02:10 PM
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True but, particularly in the arena of food consumption, if you can't tell the difference between Uncle Ben's Minute Rice and the long grain rice at your local Chinese restaurant, you won't know what you're missing when you taste Nishiki rice from California, or understand how it's different from Nishiki rice from northwestern Japan. And, quite frankly, you won't care, either!
I generally would disagree. There may be some areas in which expertise is mostly bullshit (I have my suspicions about wine tasting) but I think usually experts have information that genuinely exists. Some things are better than others. And experts, who know the field, know which things those are. So as a consequence they are experiencing better things than non-experts are experiencing. The non-experts may not be aware of what they're missing but they're still missing it.
  #37  
Old 12-01-2018, 02:16 PM
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I've known people who, as Beckdawreck said, had become experts in a very narrow field to the point of neglecting other things. Some of them were "experts" in such a narrow part of their chosen field that they were the equivalent of someone who knows how to steer a car without knowing how to sit in its driver's seat (1): the holes in their knowledge made them much worse at their chosen slice of field than someone with "a decent base".
As the saying goes, if your only tool is a hammer, you treat every problem like a nail. People who are too specialized in a single field of expertise can end up trying to apply it in all situations, even those where it's not appropriate.
  #38  
Old 12-01-2018, 04:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Crafter_Man View Post
I work with a number of people who have the title, "Expert in XYZ."

But after years of working with them, I have discovered they're not experts. They're bullshitters. They spend every hour at work trying to convince people they're an expert, as opposed to becoming a real expert. They get lots of awards, and fool a lot of people.
The most sage advice was given by the owner of a pet shop I worked at. I thought my friend/coworker was such an expert at pets and when I told the owner, she said: "It's only because of what you don't know." I've applied that advice to any 'expert' (especially self-proclaimed), I've meet and sure enough, the more I know, the more I find that what they say is sometimes over stated to prevent me from learning about it or outright lies.
  #39  
Old 12-01-2018, 04:41 PM
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Some things are better than others.
But when it comes to food or drink, what's "better" is entirely subjective. I mean, if we're talking taste, and not nutrition. People from different areas or raised in different environments (including times) will say different things are better. Rarity often plays a part.

Music and art - even more subjective.

Last edited by Tzigone; 12-01-2018 at 04:43 PM.
  #40  
Old 12-01-2018, 04:54 PM
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But when it comes to food or drink, what's "better" is entirely subjective.
No, of course it's not entirely subjective (and if it were, how could music and art be "even more subjective"?).

In all of these areas, being an "expert" can help you notice things you'd otherwise miss, thereby genuinely increasing your appreciation.
  #41  
Old 12-01-2018, 05:00 PM
Tzigone Tzigone is offline
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No, of course it's not entirely subjective (and if it were, how could music and art be "even more subjective"?).
Fine, you're right (I thought I had an "almost" in front of "entirely").

Quote:
In all of these areas, being an "expert" can help you notice things you'd otherwise miss, thereby genuinely increasing your appreciation.
Which still doesn't mean some things are just better. It might mean you prefer some things, but that doesn't make those things better, objectively speaking.

Last edited by Tzigone; 12-01-2018 at 05:00 PM.
  #42  
Old 12-01-2018, 06:20 PM
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An example of liking what I like, without knowing why I like it and having no desire to learn more is Cream (Eric Clapton, Jack Bruce, Ginger Baker).

The first time I heard their first album (Fresh Cream), was because my brother owned. And I hated it! Then suddenly in my late teens, I listened to it and fell in love it! I then spent decades learning about and listening to everything Clapton ever did, even digging into the blues and jazz since they influenced how he played. Finally, after listening to virtually everything that I could find from Cream, including bootlegs, I came to the realization that it was the chemistry between the three members that led Clapton to play the way he did and that it had never been before or since been replicated.

There are experts that talk about each members techniques and why they meshed, played and sonically challenged each other so well on stage, but that doesn't matter to me. I just know that I like the music they made.

Last edited by lingyi; 12-01-2018 at 06:23 PM.
  #43  
Old 12-01-2018, 07:58 PM
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Originally Posted by lingyi View Post
An example of liking what I like, without knowing why I like it and having no desire to learn more is Cream (Eric Clapton, Jack Bruce, Ginger Baker).

The first time I heard their first album (Fresh Cream), was because my brother owned. And I hated it! Then suddenly in my late teens, I listened to it and fell in love it! I then spent decades learning about and listening to everything Clapton ever did, even digging into the blues and jazz since they influenced how he played. Finally, after listening to virtually everything that I could find from Cream, including bootlegs, I came to the realization that it was the chemistry between the three members that led Clapton to play the way he did and that it had never been before or since been replicated.

There are experts that talk about each members techniques and why they meshed, played and sonically challenged each other so well on stage, but that doesn't matter to me. I just know that I like the music they made.
I share your love of Cream, but do you not love how he played on the John Mayall's Bluesbreakers album?
You might not want to watch Beware of Mr. Baker. Fascinating, but we get to see the animosity within Cream, which was kind of depressing to me.
  #44  
Old 12-01-2018, 08:33 PM
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I used to think Clapton with Bluesbreakers was the epitome of his playing, which actually was what lead me blues players like Elmore James and Robert Johnson. However, I've come realize that the blues/jazz of Cream is what I really love and Clapton will never play that way again because no one can replace Jack and Ginger. As Clapton said in a Rolling Stone interview:

"Is the puzzle ever complete?

It’s never complete. But I remember one night in Philadelphia with Cream. It was near the end of our touring together [in 1968]. We knew it was over. We were just having a good time playing. And I remember thinking “This is as great as it will ever be.” Have I ever been satisfied? Definitely for one night, yeah."

https://www.rollingstone.com/music/m...guitar-127052/

I'll probably never know what night the Clapton the expert is referring to, much less know what he found so great about it. But it's nice to know that at some little level we share something.

I've seen Beware of Ginger Baker and found it fascinating. I met him once '80's (still have his autograph) and asked "When will Cream get get back together." (of course having been asked that thousand of times before and he just laughed. I've also watched every documentary on Cream I could find and have come to accept that Ginger is till bitter about Cream breaking up, Jack had moved on and Eric views it a a stepping stone to the blues he always wanted to play.

Last edited by lingyi; 12-01-2018 at 08:36 PM.
  #45  
Old 12-01-2018, 09:19 PM
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I love magic. However, the more I learn about it the less I'm interested in it. The mystique diminishes and the thought of practicing anything for weeks to impress some friends every once in a while is not appealing to me in any way.
Many years ago a friend came over and introduced my wife and I to her new boyfriend. He was very much into magic, and was a true one-trick-pony (excuse the pun).

Everything was about magic. Every time I tried to strike up casual conversation he would divert it to magic "that reminds me...have you ever wondered why cards look the way they do? Let me show you something..."

He was very good at table magic, but it was tedious and boring. Perhaps it is not bad to refrain from becoming a true expert in something like that unless one truly knows how best to wield the talent.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Les Espaces Du Sommeil View Post
2 - At work, I once said to an IT consultant : "I have a question". He muttered "42". I basically went .
Whenever my kids said that I would reply with "I have an answer...let's see if they match!"
They would ask their question, and I would always reply with "Wow! My answer was 'squid ink'; I guess they didn't match.

It got to the point that as soon as I said "I have an answer..." they would reply "we know...'squid ink'"
  #46  
Old 12-02-2018, 07:36 AM
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Les Espaces Du Sommeil Les Espaces Du Sommeil is offline
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...

Whenever my kids said that I would reply with "I have an answer...let's see if they match!"
They would ask their question, and I would always reply with "Wow! My answer was 'squid ink'; I guess they didn't match.

It got to the point that as soon as I said "I have an answer..." they would reply "we know...'squid ink'"
Great, I'll give your method a try .
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la place o la foudre a frapp trop souvent
Un cur o chaque mot a laiss son entaille
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  #47  
Old 12-02-2018, 08:56 AM
Nava Nava is offline
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As the saying goes, if your only tool is a hammer, you treat every problem like a nail. People who are too specialized in a single field of expertise can end up trying to apply it in all situations, even those where it's not appropriate.
Yeah but these guys were grabbing the hammer by the head.
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