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This is the archive for September 2010

Sunday, September 05, 2010

I became aware of Alan Fletcher's book "The Art of Looking Sideways" when it was first published in 2001, and though I've still not read it, the term stuck with me. I eventually came to associate it with a technique for thinking about "hard" problems that I'd always used in some form, but that subsequently became more refined and deliberate once I had a term for it. So while I suspect that much of what I will describe will have some similarity to Fletcher's work, this really has nothing directly to do with it aside from that wonderfully useful term.

By "hard" problems, I meant, at least in part, those question in philosophy and its ugly stepsister, politics, that have seemingly defied conclusive answers, and have certainly defied widely accepted consensus answers. But it also means any problem one is having difficulty coming up with an answer for by the usual means, whether in science, computer programming, personal finance, relationships, wherever such problems arise.