Curious by Ian Leslie summary

The desire to know and why your future depends on it

I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious Albert Einstein

Kanzi experiment, and how because of curiosity she succeeded compared to her mother

John Lloyd and suddenly succes after 40,tv producer and director

massive failure after, because of no curiosity ? dpresion. After this started to investigate and came up with the QI bbc show idea( massive succes)

There is nothing more important or more strange than curiosity

From the examples in the past, adam and even , icarus and the sun, pandora box , once could apply that curiosity is deviant. That is going to get you into conflict like galileo or charles darwin or steve jobs

Our society values more order above everything and will try to surpress curiosity

Curiosty is the way to succed in this bureacry ordered monotonous life that we are right now, those people are the best for finances or software enginnering industries, and are the ones whose jobs are not going to be replaced by AI

Need for cognition intelectual curiosity scientific mesure , test to try

The problem nowdays is that you can find anything you want on your phone or searching on google, by doing that you are less likely to make the effort to learn the knwoledge thats behind it.

Curiosity is vulnerable of bening neglect. As we grow orlder we tend to become less active explorers, alsom sometiems we dont find time to pursie our interests. Dont allow it, otherwise our life will be drained of color, interest and pleasure.

For it to not happen we have to understand what feeds curiosity and what starves it

Types of curiosity : diversive, epistemic, unchanelled (bad)

We have a massive boost of diversive curiosity since the internet , but it only depends by your tendency to use it

Empathis curiosity : curiosity about thoughts and feelings of other people. Is not gossip, is when you put yourself in the shoes of the other person and the mind

Diversive curiosity might make your wonder what a person does for a living

empathic one makes you wonder why they do it. They are tied with each other in the end. Its a social quality and it can be contagios , like incuriosity aswell

The only reason people do not know much is because they dont care much. They are incurious, stephen fry (actor, writer english )

People who were learning/reading through they whole life, the acrrued extra neuronal capacity, a lifelong ivnestment in their cognitive reserve

If human curiosity isnt fed, you are going to die inside.

How curiosity works

Curiosity with the example of the gun. Curiosity overwristes seelf preservation which his our most deep rotted instict.

Danger of untutored curiosity ( like example of Brian Smith with the gun )

In its raw form, impulsive form, curiosity deserves its reputation for danger. Instead what it requires it epistemic curiosity sustained cognitive effort. Its more and more difficult but ultimately more rewarding.

Why is homo sapiens such a curious animal? Capable of put our well-being at risk to create difficulty and uncertainty where before there were none?

The more information about her environment a human acquiered ,the more liketly to survive and pass on the genes

You have to have a balance between knowledge and self preservation

How our ancestores driven by curiosity, left the savanah and started to leave in coasts, deserts forests, mountains, plains, ice, even on outer space. Becase of our culture, our ability to learn from others, to copy, to imitate, share and imporve

Culture freed humans from the limitations of their biology

This ability to pass knwoled from generation to generation is what makes us

How curiosity begins

Since we are babies we have the desire to investigate and understand in our own way the enviroment. Your sense of identity is formed by yhe cultural knowledge you learn, first from family then from others.

The main factors are cognitive ability(intelligence) and the responses received from the parents and caregivers in the first years.

Since we are very young we are always curious about the surrounding, and we cointinue that curiosity based on how we are managed by the adults, in the end the intelligence and curiosity is contagious. So its like a mirror

Questioning is an incredible important engine for cognitive development

Children intuitively understand that adults can be trustworthy informers

Problem nowdays with tecnology, giving to them so that we ignore their questions


We became lazy as adults, we dont strive so much for information and fall back on what we have.

Curiosity is stimulated by understanding and by the absence of it xD. Better said its the gap in our existing information

Overconfidence inclines to be less curious.

Our almost unlimited ability to ignore our ignoracne

Curiosity and confidence can go hand to hand if its balanced,Confidence is the knowledge emotion in the end,

curiosity is fundamentally masochistic, in evolutionary terms the emotioms are motivational, anger makes us change a situation, love bind us to someone even if dissapoints us. The same with emotional force of curiosity, a curios person wont feel emotionally fullfilled until the finds what she seeks and understands

Fear and desire blanaces the curiosity

What will happen next?

Leowenstein propose that curiosity is about finding the answer in order to salve our frustation at the gap where the information should be

Misteries have a longer life than puzzles ( shakespear hamlet example- amleth)

Science in the end is a continuious exploration of mysteries

The mistery is the source of all true art and science albert einstein

our society is based on a puzzle mentality and its limited doing that. Mysteries are more challengng but also more sustaining, they inspire long term cursity by keeping us focused on what we dont know

The problem with internet*, it converts mysteries into puzzles, it gives immediate access to answer and this way it cuts the interest, they kill curiosity before root

Technology makes life easier, but takes difficult apart of it which is a hidden value, we dont strive so much to learn because of this.

We learn better when we find learning difficult. Slow to learn, slow to forget, lincoln abraham

Skills come from struggle

The curiosity divide, 3 ages of curiosity

The mix between vice and virtue. The passion for knowing by Cicero , roman

Then , catholic church, curiosity is a sin from contemplating from the God, lol

During the banishment by the church, we lost lots of centuries of evolution. We can see that as soon as curiosity was embraced we started to have an explosion of enlightiment , like industrial revolution, (before and after aswell)

It was a cascade effect, which is still present nowdays.

Also, we have a new enemy nowdays, like in primeval era because of the church, now is that we have access to anything, and we lose taste of intelectual exporation.

Machines are for answers, humans are for questions. Kevin kelly wired magazine

the web give us answer before we have even had the time to think about the question. It makes it to easy for us to ignore our own ignorance

Curiosity makes us aware of our blind spots, it makes us lucky. Like the fleming invention of penicilin or raytheon for microwave.

What do I need to learn?

Finishing, everyone has access to the same information, you have to find ways to better exploting it and increase advandge this way

The curiosity dividend

Education is the single biggest factor in determining how likely you are to prosper in today world

Important traits for intelligence : persistence, self discipline, grit (deal with failer, overcome setback, focus on long term goals)

Desire to learn, biggest factor. The problem with internet is how its used. Reddit example of 1950 person describing today(phone with cats).

The problem is that instead of using for education and so on, they use to play games and argue and so on…

Is the internet making us stupid or more intelligent ? YES

The internet in the end is going to mirror your actions? You want to learn? You want to be lazy? This is where the division of curiosity is happening, between curious and incurious

The power of questioning

If you havent asked the question, the answer has nowhere to go

No matter how many answers you are being given. If you dont ask the question, its useless.Teaching of question has the potential to change lives. Its one of the fundaments of being human.

We learn it (question asking) from our family, or from those around us. If no questions are asked and we dont learn about it, tis not something that you can learn it conscionsly, its a sophisticated skill after all.

There is also a relation with the classes, the richer the environment the more better to learn the art of questioning of how and why.

And its normal in the end to see this difference betwee nclasses, its because when you are affluent economically , you can afford to be more curious, you dont need to preocupy for food , warmth, because they are being taken care of.. Its a social advantage for intellectual development

The importance of knowing

Experiment in the rural zones of india, favoring the courious mentality . They were able to achieve the same performances as someone using a pc daily, after a couple months without any supervisor.

We miss in the society the curiosity driven education, everything is static and monotonous nowadays.

Our generation doesnt need to rediscover fire. We stand on the sholders of our makers and giants.We have to teach our young how to make it easier not more difficult.

The success of teaching aproaches : feedback, quality of instruction and direct instruction. Traditional teaching from adults to children is the most effective when skillfully executed.But all of this goes together with the child ability to be ready to learn.

Independend learning is a great goal, but it has to be guided otherwise its much harder to reach a destination.

The same happen with our society, where schools, family and teachers forces children what to learn. Schools kills creativity, because they dont let childer express themselves, and instead they are being forced to teach academic facts.

The main point of this is that nowdays, there is needed time in order to produce masterpieces, first it has to be accumulated knowledge of that field for years.

In resume, we have to transform the diversive curiosity into an epistemic curiosity, constant one.

Also schools should teach thinking skills instead of knowledge.

Passing forward we reach the mental skill, which is not the same as an algorithm, a process that can be applied to any program. Of course at the same time the more we know the better we are at thinking.

Our memory is not a computer memory, it is divided in short term(working memory) and long term. With short one we keep the conscious at any one time, the temporal space where we arrage a sentecen, resolve an equation and so on. We can only keep a few items in it simultaneosly.

Then we have the long term which is like an underground warehouse, we have everything here : words, names, capital cities.

Experiment with 74830582894062 short them and “ lucy in the sky “

In resume the long term is the hidden power , it help us cross a road, make food, write an email and so on.The key to increase our intelligence is to expand this memory. How? By feeding it with knowlodge. But without curiosity it aint possible, they go hand by hand.

Anyone who stops learning because he can google them later, is making himself stupid.

Matthew effect : the knowledge rich tend to get richer, the poor get poorer.

At the same time, the most success people, arent necessarily the cleverest, but they are the one who dont give up.

Seven way to stay curious

Stay hungry.Stay foolish

Build the database

through long term memory

Great ideas dont just come up at the moment, their root extend back months,years,decades . They are the product of long formed habits

Forage like a foxhog

Specialist or generalist?

Here why the fox and the hog. Fox knows many things, hedgehog knows one big thing.Bill clinton fox, roanl reaged hedgeho, steve wozniak hedgehog, jobs fox

The best thinkers, will be a hybrid of them both. Warren buffet- best in stocks, but still reads everyday from other fields

Ask the big why. Learn how to differenciate between what and why although they look similar

Knowing the what is crucial to making good decisions and discoveries, but it will always be important to ask why, its part of what makes us human after all.

When we stop asking why, we became like Kanzi, intelligent apes who can follow instructions but blind to the deep truths.

Be a thinkerer

Social, collaborative way of thinking

To sweat the small stuff while thinking big, to get interested in processes and otucomes, tiny details and grand visions.

Question your teaspoons

If something is boring, try again in two minutes. Then in 4 if its still boring. Then 8, then 16 and so no…You will eventually discover that is not boring at all

Find what happens when nothing happens.

Diferentiate between things that are important and those you do for pleasure.

Also, sometimes when we are forced to do the painfully dull tasks, we have to find a way to turn this mundane activity into something that stimulates our curiosity, because once we get interested in it, we are more likely to spend time on it. We have to learn to live in the present while not losing track of the future

And of course, turn puzzles into misteries

A puzzle is something that commands our curiosity until we have solved it. A mistery, by contrast never stops inviting inquiry.

If we keep it a mystery, we will sustain our curiosity . This way a passing interest can be transformed into a lifelong passion.

The more mysteries we pursue, the more knowledge we gather, the greater intellectual.


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