Friday, May 24, 2013

Get to the point

It astounds me how often people don't "get the point." "The point" isn't anything special, and "the point" exists in just about everything we do. It's the reason behind a million little operations. When you undertake a project, the point isn't to do all the steps involved in producing the final product. The point is the final product. And sometimes, the final product isn't even the point: it's the impact, the result, or the change engendered by the final product.

Still, so many people seem to miss the point. They take all the steps but they don't tie them together.

I love the idea of the Archimedean point, the ultimate vantage from which you can move anything. It's a leverage, a hinge, a key. It's frequently referred to as a "godly" vantage point, but I think of it as being entirely mortal: it's practical, not divine. There's an Archimedean point in nearly every undertaking, and if you can find it, you can solve the whole problem.

The reason simple machines like pulleys, levers and screws are so awesome is because they amplify your effort. They exist in creative and intellectual work, too, you just need to work harder to find them.

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