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Kasper Mróz
Kasper Mróz

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🚧 The Einstellung Effect 🚧

Hello everyone, welcome to my very first blog post! I hope it will provide you some value, and what's more important, a bit of reflection. 🧠

Today I'll briefly cover the Einstellung effect, something I recently discovered while progressing Learn how to Learn course by dr Barbara Oakley.

What does it mean? 🤔

The German word Einstellung can be loosely translated as mindset or attitude. In terms of problem solving, it means to create sort of an automated state of mind. 🤖 This can be useful, especially when we want to master a repetitive manual task - see this takoyaki master. In case of a software engineer however, it can sometimes make our life harder!

Why does it matter? 🤷

The Einstellung can be also referenced as a problem solving set. It determines our predisposition to handle given problem in specific way, often ignoring better or more appropriate solutions. Think of a last time when you solved an issue that you found relatively easy, maybe even trivial - depending on your experience it can be related to implementation, design or architecture. You didn't give it much thought, did you? Yeah, and neither did I!

Our brains have this amazing superpower to create neural patterns, kind of paths that our mind follows step by step after initial thought. It takes time and repetition to create such patterns, otherwise they faint and disappear. When we learn something new and keep repeating this thing over and over, it strengthens our neural pattern and leads us to automaticity - this is exactly what Einstellung is all about.

How can we prevent it from affecting us? 🛡

The best way to make sure we don't fall for our mind's traps is stopping for a while and simply asking yourself a question - is this really the best way to do it? Try a different approach from time to time, always keep doing your research. Look for current state-of-art solutions, compare it with yours. Simply put, give it another thought!

Wrap up 🎗

Today we learned about The Einstellung, a of mechanised way of thinking. We discovered how this negative effect of previous experience can influence our problem solving effects, and how to handle falling for it!

Thank you for reading! 🙇

Consider giving me a feedback on how to improve in writing, I will be grateful for life. 🙏
Also, follow me here and on Twitter (@kasper_mroz) if you found my post interesting and/or want to connect!

Top comments (7)

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Shaquil Maria

Good read! The post is well structured and straight to the point.

This is something that I guess affect a lot of us, once you get comfortable with a task or method, it becomes more easy to keep implementing it the same way than to find a new more suitable or best way to do it. This post is a great reminder to not become totally static.

Congrats & welcome to the DEV club👊 I hope to see more posts from you!

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Kasper Mróz

Thank you, this means a lot to me! 🔥

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technoglot profile image
Amelia Vieira Rosado 🐣✨

Lovely post! I think I need to check that course out! I've heard a ton about it. 😅

One way I beat automaticity is by taking an alternative route home (so long it does not get me stuck in a traffic jam, haha)! 😜

Great job on this post, keep up the good work! 🙌🏻

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Kasper Mróz

Thank you! There is so much more to come 🔥

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technoglot profile image
Amelia Vieira Rosado 🐣✨

Can't wait! 😁

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Sylwia Vargas

Kasper! I can’t believe this is your first blog — so good!
Congratulations — and welcome to the DEV community!

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Kasper Mróz

Thank you for your kind words!

Timeless DEV post...

How to write a kickass README

Arguably the single most important piece of documentation for any open source project is the README. A good README not only informs people what the project does and who it is for but also how they use and contribute to it.

If you write a README without sufficient explanation of what your project does or how people can use it then it pretty much defeats the purpose of being open source as other developers are less likely to engage with or contribute towards it.