I’ve never really been into FaceBook.
I didn’t start using Twitter till 2010.
And the whole iPod / iTunes thing (that is – before the iPhone came out) was totally unknown to me. Those around me would look perplexed when I responded “Huh” to any conversation on this.
“Web 2.0” was alien to me (hell – what happened to 1.0?). “Gamification” sounded like something cute, and as far as I was concerned the “Cloud” was something that got in the way of the sun.
I felt that I was an “old fuddy duddy”, a dinosaur, a relic from a simpler time (just to be melodramatic).
However, I knew that I had to come to terms with this new “fad”. If only to be able to talk with others in my field.
When I first started tweeting, I remember I was shocked when I got my first “follower” (“Who is this person? “How did they find me?”). It was also around this time that I started blogging. I wasn’t really sure why, but it was a way to “put down on paper” what my thoughts were regarding the technology I work with.
It always bothered me that I seemed to be always ‘lagging”. That new things were coming out, and I was never an “Early Adopter”. Never on the cutting edge.
Then, last year, I read Malcom Gladwell’s book “What the Dog Saw”. Chapter 8 is titled “Late Bloomers”.
In it he talks about creativity, and describes some findings economist David Galeson had made in the world of art. Of the famous artists, there were those who did their best work when they were young, who knew what they wanted to achieve (Picasso), and then there were those who didn’t do their best work till much later (Cezanne).
It seemed that the younger “prodigies” start with a clear idea of where they want to go, and then they execute it.
On the other hand, the older “late bloomers” have imprecise goals, and tend to “explore” in a tentative, and an incremental, way. And, for these artists, because the goal is imprecise, they never actually get to a point where they say. “Goal achieved!” They just keep exploring, testing and discovering along the way.
This really struck me as interesting. It made me look at what I have been doing. As I mentioned above, I never started out with a goal when I started my blog. I never had an idea what I would be doing with Twitter.
But, looking back, I can see a journey of incremental discoveries. The “subject matter” of my posts were, initially, to do with “document management in a regulated environment”. But as I have done research on this, it has lead to other areas that, while not directly related, have a tenuous link with the initial concept. And these have, in turn, taken me to other, loosely connected, areas of interest.
This “way of learning”, this “exploration”, is a good example of “naturalistic vs. mechanistic” learning. It is my own passion, my own interest that is leading me on this journey. And I get the feeling that it has given me a far better (may I say “wiser”) view of things, and how they can be used, and applied in real-life situations.
I am proud to call myself a “Late Bloomer”
Other interesting “Late Bloomer” posts