Tuesday, March 27, 2007

New wine in an old bottle - redux

Kathy Sierra makes some smart observations on How to be an Expert. Lot of it makes sense. I agree with most of what she says about being able to become an expert by modifying how and what we practice.

Reading her last paragraph is what brought me back to my earlier post on learning to play the guitar. I agree that we can master activities that need the brain cells at any point in our life. But, where I differ is when other cells (muscles/organs) come into picture. Neurons can be created/linked at virtually any age. That is not so for other cells in our body. Human growth stops abruptly in our late teens to early 20s. So does our body's ability to be nimble and flexible. Anyone who started yoga at the age of 60 knows what I am talking about.

So, it is easy for one to learn new things and become experts at it as long as it just involves the brain (and maybe other organs that age well). It is not really true for things of physical nature.