Group intelligence and small cues

Aaron Saenz reports research from MIT into collective intelligence. They studied the effectiveness of a series of groups of varying sizes and performing a number of different tasks. Then they attempted to pin down the key factors that led to group success. Interestingly the IQ of group members was correlated with group performance but only […]

Mention your pet frog

I am huge believer that little details can make bid differences and I’m enjoying Richard Wiseman’s little book, 59 Seconds for its curation of some. Here’s one good one: In an experiment on negotiation, researchers compared the effectiveness of two versions of a final offer on a piece of art. In one version, the seller […]

Just a tweet

This tweet from Assistant Chief Constable Garry Shewan caught my eye. With respect I am unsure what the Home Secretary thinks that she told GMP to do different. She listened but said nothing. Tactics were ours! I think twitter so lowers the threshold for “publishing” that we start putting into the record things more spontaneously. […]

Thought for the day

@PhilosophyQuotz tweeted this: If a victory is told in detail one can no longer distinguish it from a defeat. – Sartre

Little bets

Bob Sutton points to some interesting sources on the value of little ideas. He reviews Little Bets a new book by Peter Sims. This modern masterpiece demonstrates that the most powerful and profitable ideas are produced by persistent people who mess with lots of little ideas and keep muddling forward until they get it right. […]

Small details and focussed attention

Viv writes about activities that mess with our minds – science experiments on the one hand, improv games on the other. Both draw attention to how quickly we add interpretation to simple inputs. It’s part of what makes us effective and also trips us up sometimes. Being able to apply focussed attention to how we […]

The mundane can be interesting

I don’t get excited about companies changing their logos but I liked this time lapse video of the four days to repaint a Virgin Atlantic Jumbo. I think there’s an interesting moral about marketing. Sometimes something apparently mundane (the process of painting a plane) may be more interesting to onlookers than what most marketeers get […]

Crediting the captain, not the storm

I liked this quote from Paul Seabright’s The Company of Strangers. Politicians are in charge of the modern economy in much the same way as a sailor is in charge of a small boat in a storm. The consequences of their losing control completely may be catastrophic (as civil war and hyperinflation in parts of […]

Hold a meeting

I posted this cartoon about six years ago*. It’s one of those throwaway posts that I notice still gets picked up by others. I often sense that meetings which are apparently being organised to deal with a problem become unwittingly, devices to avoid dealing with the problem. It’s like a variation of Shirky’s Principle. Here’s […]

It’s all connected

Tim Kastelle passes on this rather nice Diderot quote from the new book Superconnect: Everything is linked together… beings are connected with each other by a chain of which… some parts are continuous, though in the greater number of points continuity escapes us… the art of the philosopher consists in adding new links to the […]