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Things Other People Don't Do

When someone gets an idea, what determines whether that idea gets put into practice or not? There are a lot of factors, but one of the largest is whether or not he believes that the idea can actually be executed. The problem is that while our mental models for things we have experience with can be quite good, our mental models for the unknown are often poor.

A big part of the problem is that we give a lot of weight to the "other people factor". If someone else has done it, then obviously it's possible to do. The converse is not true, though-- just because no one has done it doesn't mean that it's impossible or even difficult. It just means that no one else has ever done it. We can know that logically, but our brains don't subconsciously think that way.

I fell into this trap recently. I've always wanted to be able to plug a microphone into my camera, but it doesn't have a microphone port. I did a few searches, but no one had figured out how to get a microphone jack on the Sony NEX. For about a year I did nothing, until one night as I was falling asleep, it occurred to me that it might not be that hard, and that the only reason I thought it was impossible was because no one else had done it. The next morning I figured it out.

When designing SETT, I really wanted it to be possible to log in without the page refreshing. To the best of my knowledge, no content-heavy sites have ever done anything like that. I almost gave up on the idea before even trying it, just because no one else had done it before. But then I realized that for SETT to be successful, I would have to do a LOT of things that no one else had done before. I took a crack at it, and again it turns out that it wasn't all that tough.

Run For Your Lives! (Fitness Friday, Zombie Edition)

On Man of the Couch

[caption id="attachment_341" align="aligncenter" width="600" caption=""The first rule of Zombieland: Cardio. When the zombie outbreak first hit, the first to go, for obvious reasons... were the fatties." ~ Columbus, Zombieland (2009)"][/caption]

Wednesday I shared that I've started running. I also explained that I don't like it much. To turn this around I've signed up for a race in Denver this June. I won't be competing in this race though, I'll be trying to eat the brains of the people who are.

This summer, my wife and I are participating as Zombie volunteers in the Run For Your Life Zombie 5k.

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="211" caption="Braaaaiiiinnnzzzzz!!!"][/caption]

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