Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Lesson learnt

A week ago, I started reading a book, Blink by Malcolm Gladwell. It's about our subconscious awareness. The idea is fascinating and I was intrigued. I read good reviews in NYTimes and New Scientist so decided to read it. The book however turned out to be a disappointment.

It was like when I have to write a 7 page paper and I don't have enough to write. I start writing interesting stuff and try to connect the disjointed ideas with the main idea to fill up space. The book has interesting stories, but they don't seem to giving any extra information. They are just there and then the author tries to connect them with the main idea, even if it doesn't make as much sense.

The book has less information than one lesson in the Introduction to Psychology class I took at San Jose State University. I'm not sure why everyone is raving about this book. It's another example of me not liking a popular book.

I ended up reading more than half of it. I kept reading in the hope that maybe there would be some information soon. Maybe he's just telling these stories to get the reader's interest, but doesn't seem like it anymore. I flipped through the rest of the book and it seems to be the same all the way through. I gave up in the middle of a bus ride, choosing to look outside at the dreary weather instead of suffering through the book.

I kind of believed that there is always something new to learn from a book, no matter how much one knows about the subject. Even on reading the same book again, one discovers new ideas overlooked the first time. I guess I was wrong after all. Now that is something new I did learn (rather unlearn) on reading this book.

I think the important thing that you missed about this book was that it told stories about things which we do not pay much attention to. Who would think that "snap" judgements are important..we all want to think about it a lot and then make decisions. "Snap" judgements are useful as they can make or break your life.
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