Understanding Essence vs Efficiency

When something’s been Turing Tested, it means that a computer has successfully tricked a human into thinking it was a human. In other words, the task has been fully automated and most likely, somebody’s job just got a whole lot easier.

Automation is a tempting way to think about things. You pare the important from the unimportant, locate each dependent step and distill it into a system. Whether you ultimately hand it over to a computer or not, it takes a certain kind of ingenuity cut waste and create order.

But I would argue that that is weak and ultimately very replaceable (hello outsourcing). I think you look at it from the right angle, it’s simple exploitation. A process of squeezing something dry. Important but not transcendent. What’s special is the ability to scrap the process in favor of something different entirely. Solutions not improvements.

I guess what I mean to say is that you can sit around Turning Testing yourself until you’ve got half your company tricked chatting with your computer. Or, you can really think about what it is that you have in front of you and how you can make it go away by folding it on itself.

Here are some things that have helped me do that, maybe they’ll work for you:

Cesar’s Way by Cesar Millan (seriously)

Blue Ocean Strategy by Chan Kim (incremental vs exponential)

Take that, 6 Percenters (Jeff Jarvis)

Without Walls: Interview with Leebeus Woods (Bldblog)

Be Bold (Wikipedia)

Strong Opinions, Weakly Held” (Turning Pro)

Dismounting a Dead Horse” (Mountain Runner)

The Anxiety of Influence (Wikipedia, Book)

Written by Ryan Holiday
Ryan Holiday is the bestselling author of Trust Me, I’m Lying, The Obstacle Is The Way, Ego Is The Enemy, and other books about marketing, culture, and the human condition. His work has been translated into thirty languages and has appeared everywhere from the Columbia Journalism Review to Fast Company. His company, Brass Check, has advised companies such as Google, TASER, and Complex, as well as Grammy Award winning musicians and some of the biggest authors in the world. He lives in Austin, Texas.