Thinking & Problem Solving

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February 27, 2012


Interview with Art Markman, author of the book Smart Thinking: Three Essential Keys to Solve Problems, Innovate, and Get Things Done




Mike Carruthers:
You’re probably not as smart as you think you are on many topics.


Art Markman:
The quality of our knowledge about the way the world works is less good than we think it is this is something that’s called the illusion of explanatory depth.


Art Markman

Art Markman, author of the book Smart Thinking ...


What this really means is that if you were to look around the world at lots of complicated things around you there would be some number of them that you think you understand the way that they work. The interesting thing is for a fair number of the things you that believe you understand you discover that you actually can’t explain it at all. And this is the sort of thing that happens to us when we’re in grade school and we think we’re utterly prepared for a test and then we sit down to write that essay and suddenly realize there’s key information that’s missing.


When you understand how effective thinking works you can become a better thinker.


If you look at Rodin’s classic sculpture The Thinker the poor guy is tortured. When you are thinking effectively you don’t look tortured like that. Really good thinking involves ideas flowing back and forth it’s an enriching, enlivening experience. And when you feel frustrated to the point where you are tortured like The Thinker you’re basically stuck. And the way that you get unstuck is to remember to change the way that you’re describing the problem because that’s going to remind you of different things and give you a different avenue for solving a problem.


To hear the complete unedited interview, click here.



  • Length: 1:43 minutes (1.58 MB)
  • Format: MP3 Mono 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)
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