Link Search Menu Expand Document

learning and self-judgement

Date: 2020-11-08

I posted this to #low-error-rate on discord and

One of the most important skills for life is good self-judgement. Having good self-judgement means that you’re able to tell when you’re prone to making mistakes (and what they are) or when it’s safe to be confident in doing something with a low error rate.

Learning efficiently requires a cycle of: do it once, do it consistently, do it fast/cheap/autopilot. This becomes very important because learning is an incremental process, so your learning history affects your learning future.

If your learning cycle is incomplete then you won’t create a solid foundation for future knowledge. You need a solid foundation because new knowledge/skills will compound errors in the foundation. Example: if you have bad fine motor skills then you will have a lower limit on how fast you can type; errors in precise finger movements (or precise-but-slow finger movements) disproportionately affect your typing speed (compared to precise-and-fast finger movements).

Being able to judge your own learning cycle requires good self-judgement. Without good self-judgement you can’t learn quickly and efficiently. Without good self-judgement you will end up making more mistakes than you would do otherwise. This error rate becomes an upper ceiling on your progress. Since error rates compound as you learn new things, it is possible to get stuck. At that point you stop being able to reliably make progress. To solve this you need to go back to earlier (more foundational) topics and complete the learning cycle.

If you plan to learn without outside assistance, you should do your best to ensure that your self-judgement is consistent enough and cheap enough for the topics you want to learn about.

Goal of the above post: I wanted to practice doing something that I could submit to #low-error-rate. I also wanted to write something which is useful for other FI ppl, and which helps me understand topics like learning and overreaching. I think I succeeded. However, this took ~50 minutes to write and edit, so I have not reliably completed step 3 of the relevant learning cycle(s).

You can leave a comment anonymously. No sign up or login is required. Use a junk email if not your own; email is only for notifications—though, FYI, I will be able to see it.

Comments powered by Talkyard.