Reflections on Predictably Irrational

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I recently read the book Predictably Irrational by Dan Ariely. I really enjoyed his insights into motivation and personal judgement of values. If you don’t have the time to read the book you may want to listen to this podcast which contains the core of the book: Dan Brinklin’s interview with Dan Ariely.

What I personally found most interesting is the chapter about options. The book clains that people tend to leave to many options open.

Dan advices that we should leave options, which are of no value for us, behind us. Otherwise you spread yourself to thin over too many options.

I’m convinced by his argumentation and I see in myself a pattern that I like to leave options open. I’m playing with several programming languages, IDE’s and have lots of technical books about a wide-spread range of topics.

I should depart from a technology if I believe that another is more appropriated from my tasks. But of course I need to be open for new technologies and trends.

Therefore I decided to do the following:

  1. I will stop playing around with several IDE’s and focus on only one IDE
  2. I will get rid of technology books and articles if I have not read them in 2 years. Two years are long enough; if I have not read then in two year I propertly will never read them.
  3. I also have several currently unused projects which I was planning to “fix later”. I will just leave them as they are.
  4. I will not maintain Articles from anymore if I’m not using that technology anymore and if there I no public interest in them.