Monday, September 04, 2006

It's all about the box

So much have been emphasize on thinking out of the box when it comes to work. Imagination seems to have kept knowledge on the substitute bench lately. Afterall, there is no limit to imagination unlike knowledge. So exactly what does it take for one to start thinking out of a box? To figure that out, lets "think out of the box" and look at this from another angle, lets figure what it takes to start thinking in a box. The notion of thinking in the box is the simplest form of mental process based on knowledge and past events in the absence of creativity (no this is not an official description). Basically, a person who thinks in the box is only interested in getting the job done hence the mindset; one solution for one problem.

I would think that people who are mathematically inclined tend to think in the box, for the mere reason that each math problem has only 1 unique answer (there are exceptions i must say). Say, if you can't solve a calculus problem during an exam, you'll probably get ZERO out of it even if you were to scribble something, but its different for an exam in arts/humanities, chances are you'll get a good few marks even if you wrote BS! I am telling this from experience, math is rigid, same goes to those who are mathematically inclined. Thinking out of the box requires creativity, willingness to accept new ideas (even non proven ones) and some appetite for risk.

Studying risk subjects during my varsity days made me lie even further left on the efficient frontier, so much for those risk modeling projects (I guess I think in the box too but I would like to see my box as a big big box! yeah bigger than a 42' plasma tv box). Its strange how I find non technical/mathematical people rich with creativity and ideas. Maybe its because their mental processes flow freely without any mathematical limits, laws of physics, economic assumptions...etc. In other words, we're too uptight with theories and equations up our ass. How do quants think out of the box then? They're pretty uptight too aren't they, coming from fields like physics, mathematics, engineering. So how do they answer questions like; whats 2+2? what happens if you throw a tennis ball at the Great Wall? These are supposedly interview questions for an equity derivatives position I read about from an article. So loosen up people...try taking some art/humanities subjects if you're going to be majoring in uptight-up-your-ass fields.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home