Iterate on complex ideas to find simplicity¶
Complexity isn't always necessary, but it's sometimes easier to achieve than simplicity. Working out which parts are necessary requires a deep understanding of the idea.
Generally, the necessary part is called essential complexity and the part which is not is called incidental complexity. Complexity always has to exist somewhere, so it's still important to recognise when you're just pushing essential complexity to somewhere else. As understanding increases, the ability to tell what complexity is essential and where it should live will improve.
You can often create something concrete to understand an idea more fully. This is a good start for somewhere to iterate from. By iterating on an idea, you provide two things that are necessary for understanding. Understanding requires ideas to have context and needs active learner engagement.
- Discover incidental and essential complexity by keeping a zettelkasten
- Iterating on complex ideas allows us to find simplicity. One way of structuring your writing in order to allow this iteration is by building a permanant note collection such as a zettelkasten.