Exploring curiosity beyond boundaries

Several times, we are curious about how unfamiliar things work. However, we also tend to set artificial boundaries around us which prevent us from going ahead and exploring such curiosities.

It is interesting to note that such creative geniuses as Leonardo da Vinci and Steve Jobs did not restrict their curiosities in such ways.

Leonardo actually wrote a daily journal in which he noted what curiosities he wanted to explore. He included such varied things as “how the tongue of a woodpecker looks”, “why fish swim faster in water than birds fly in air” etc.

Similarly, Jobs was deeply influenced by the arts, calligraphy and other disciplines.

Another contemporary example of this is Tim Wu who, among other accomplishments, is a professor of Law, has a degree in biochemistry, ran for election as Lieutenant Governor of New York, published a best-selling book and coined the term “net neutrality” (!).

Therefore, it appears that by putting ourself in a bucket and never going outside, we miss out on a lot of interesting and educational experiences, which could end up helping us in our main specialization. We tend to have a narrative about ourselves, which may go something like “I am a software engineer and that is all I am” or “I am a chemist and that is all”. As the above examples show, it could really pay to break out of such self-imposed narratives and really spend some time exploring all our curiosities.