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The Failure Paradox

Thoughts from guest lecture by Richie Manu

Creativity is also finding hidden pattern through unrelated phenomena.

Where is my area of expertise and its expansion.

The Curiosity Bandwidth (Look up Ian Leslie - The Curious)

  1. Area of interest.

  2. Expand its related culture.

  3. Further expansion - things that might not always connect.

The Failure Paradox

Failure has its virtues. Understand the different between good and bad failure. Failure does not have a full stop. Iterate. Change your intervention. Failure has a timeline.

A friend of mine asked one day if failure is a good thing. I was thinking about it and I said 'Yeah, sure. Failure can take you into deeper insights'. Then he said 'No, failure is not a good thing. Wouldn't you rather not fail in life? Failure is inevitable. That's fair enough, but failure itself is not a good thing'. This struck a chord where we have been conditioned to think failure is good. There are good ways to handle failure; learning from it, iterating, figuring out what works and what doesn't work, and accidently discovering something new. However, failing itself, failing in achieving your object, I can see how it is not a good thing.

Failure can happen during formative assessment, but it should start being controlled trial and error by summative assessment.

Iterative and Constructive


Regressive and destructive

Iterative and Constructive is where I need to be. Record, Reflect, Analyse.

Bad direction: Bad timing, inconsistency, lack of growth, mismanagement of resources.

Information disappear year to year, generation to generation. Accept it.

Make sure my project doesn't become obsolete. Don't assume. Intervention - to find the best methods too.

Reversing assumption

What are the assumptions I'm making about my project?

The social entrepreneur

My interaction can be my Chaotic Good - this is the working intervention.

If I discover how people act differently, then I can figure out which method works for them.

A quiz? A method of finding this information? My intention plays a part here.

Negativity doesn't just come from social media. People were unhappy 200 years ago too. Think of Veneer Theory. We also spend so much time telling people how to be happy. Who's telling them how to be unhappy? What's the criteria?

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