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Larry Foobar
Larry Foobar

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3 reasons why you fail in new technologies

Developers write code, designers draw interfaces, architects plan buildings, engineers build things. All kinds of specialists do different kinds of things. But what action is common for them all?

This action is called Learning. Learning is an obligatory stage of every job you need to perform. But to actually learn things you need to learn how to learn.

Usually, to start our jobs we spend approx 10-18 years on learning things (school, college, master degree, etc). But in fact, this approach may mislead us in the future.

Meet Peter. Peter is a back-end web developer.

Meet Peter Developer

He writes code in Python and is good at Math and data structures. He likes exploring new technologies and wants to extend his development stack. Recently Peter started to show interest in Machine Learning (ML). He is captivated by some new popular projects that were built using ML. He definitely decides to start learning it. As his day-to-day job does not require ML, he comes up with an abstract idea of building some side-project.

Peter has a plan. It looks pretty good for him:

  1. Download (or buy) a couple of top-rated books on the topic. Read them.
  2. Register at Coursera/Udemy/Lynda/etc. Sign up for a course on the topic. Finish it. Get a certificate.
  3. Watch a series of Youtube lectures on the topic. Full 160 hours.
  4. Sketch up a ML project idea.
  5. Develop a project on GitHub
  6. Enjoy!

For Peter the expectation of achieving the goal to finish a ML project looks like this:

learning and then doing

Nothing can go wrong, right?


Of course, not!
In real crucial life what Peter got looks like this:

long learning and no doing

Familiar, right?
But why it happened in such a way?

There are at least several reasons for it:

  1. Peter is used to doing it like this.

    From early childhood, he was always taught to do it this way by our school, university, relatives, and friends. Paradigm of "first long learning - only then doing" was given for him as the only possible.

  2. Fear of new knowledge.

    Plunging into all this new knowledge, Peter realizes how much he does not know yet and how long the learning path is gonna be. Understanding this does not motivate Peter at all.
    fear of knowledge

  3. Learning in advance does not work.

    One can not absorb tons of new theory knowledge for several months and then just start using this in practice. Learning doesn't work like this. Knowledge requires consolidation and immediate application.
    rocko's knowledge

But, what Peter can do?

Cutting a long story short, Peter just needs to immediately start doing things without spending lot of time on learning. Both learning and doing processes should be divided into small pieces and combined into a whole process that will give Peter the desired result.
Peter needs to do the paradigm switch:

"First Learning And Then Doing"

"Doing by Learning And Learning By Doing":

learning by doing

Achieving "Doing By Learning And Learning By Doing" is not a simple thing by itself too. I've built several rules and concepts for this, and I'd like to share them with you in the next article.

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