Discover more from PhotoCamp Daily
Don't Do It
Don’t Surround Yourself With Smarter People challenges the notion of surrounding oneself with smarter people, pointing out the logical inconsistencies in the statement. Instead, the author suggests valuing individuals who possess unpredictable and unique capabilities. The article then delves into the concept of playing an infinite game and the significance of having the freedom to keep playing, which requires a domain-specific ability to perceive and act on reality in appropriate ways. The author argues that the ability to detect "parrots," or non-sequiturs, is a crucial component of the freedom to keep playing and that the descent into sleep, or immersion in finite games, is triggered by consumption addictions, attachment to capability, or group identity. The article concludes by suggesting that partial, imperfect overlapping of two finite game freedom-to-win fields of view can accidentally trigger a freedom-to-continue-playing moment for one party.
There is an idea that I have been guilty of uncritically parroting and promoting in the past: "surround yourself with smarter people." Another popular version is "never be the smartest guy in the room." Beneath the humble bragging in both versions, there is a basic logical issue. If smarter people are foolish enough to surround themselves with someone like you, they are dumber than you, which means they're smart and you're dumb. This is not just a cute paradox; it's a fatal Godel-level error that crashes the whole smarmy idea. The only way to make it work is hypocrisy: adopt at least a double standard for "smart." However, my alternative to this heuristic is that I am only interested in individuals as long as they are unpredictable to me. If I can predict what someone will do or say, I'll lose interest in them rapidly. If someone can regularly surprise me in some way, forcing me to think in unscripted ways to respond, I'll stay interested. It's reciprocal.
[ Original Article ]