Sunday, 25 June 2017

Risk Versus Experiment

Risk versus experiment - A change in mindset for self-learners attempting to learn by the method of experimenting.

The tweet above about risk and experimenting didn't convey all that I meant to and in less than 140 characters it is hard to put into a single tweet the content and the context at times. Hence an attempt to share this short post on how re-thinking risk as an experiment can help us in self-learning and not abruptly end our learning via experimenting because it is categorized as hard or as risky. 

Every experiment may or may not be composed of risks. 
I'd like to address via this tweet that some think few tasks as risky and wouldn't even attempt to figure out the solution by themselves. They would rather wait for someone else to conduct this experiment or take this risk on behalf of them to learn from it, which is fair too. But at the same time, if we are relaxed with whatever may be the outcome of the experiment conducted in the controlled environment, then we would continue to learn, focus on learning by experimenting and the results obtained rather than overly focus on the risk attached to the task.

Note that the experiments that I am talking here are not life-threatening experiments, but those that are aimed to aid us to learn. And can help us learn better when we are fine with whatever the outcome is  success or failure. We learn from both these outcomes on what to attempt next and what not to. Let us give ourselves the liberty to accept learning from failure/s as well as from success/es.

The context in which I shared this tweet (and in the way it was perceived and interpreted by Twitter friends), proves yet again how important it is to state the context. And to help the reader understand the context in a tweet sometimes isn't possible. Thus I made few more attempts by replying to the tweet to expand on the context. 
The tweet is aimed at an audience who would not try out (for themselves) tests, experiments when learning but rely on ready-made answers or would stop looking for answers because it isn't easy to proceed further along this journey of self-discovering answers/solutions. The target audience of this tweet would be those who are focused on learning and those who attempt to learn by experimenting. 

Point to ponder  Try replacing risk with experiment, as an experiment for a test that you are performing and check if there is a change in the mindset in the way we learn to perform tests. And note how different are we continuing learning despite the end result of this experiment. Share your views on such an experiment conducted below. 

Concluding thoughts — Know that, if we did not try finding a solution for ourselves we are relying on someone else’s assumptions, beliefs, circumstances, interpretations, limitations that they had created to arrive at the conclusion. If you had interest, time, resources and a drive to self-learn then it isn't wrong in attempting to learn by self-experimenting and along the way, one might as well gain self-satisfaction (if that is something that you crave for). 

Edited to include - 
  • One may refer to other's work done prior to continuing or to get inspired to perform their own experiments. 
  • If you find someone with the similar drive to experiment on a chosen area, then bond with the inspired group to experiment together.
  • Find Make-a-thon groups around you to be a part of such experimentation. 
  • Become a mentor to aspiring students. Share your experience and results of experiments conducted by you / your group.

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