Too Much Information / JIT Processing

You will never know everything that there is to know. In our world, information is being produced at breakneck speeds. To consume all of the information would be impossible. First, you would have to find the time to read, listen to, and watch everything; then you would have to evaluate if it were true and accurate, then you would have to find a way to apply it practically. You simply don’t have enough time or brainpower to consume everything you could. 

As an alternative, we have all moved to just-in-time(JIT) information access. Do you need a recipe for supper tonight? Google it. The same is true for an answer to your coding problems. The pitfall to JIT information access is that you might miss out on opportunities you weren’t aware of. If you search up ‘good hamburger recipes slow cooker,’ you might miss out on a great crockpot fajita recipe because you didn’t think to search for that specific term. There are two ways that we can make sure our just-in-time information access continues to broaden our horizons also. 

  1. When looking for information, use unexpected terms that can get you to the same results. ‘The queen’s favourite crockpot meal’ might not show you what the queen is having for supper, but it will lead you to many recipes that are ‘fit for a queen.’ A different search term can expose you to answers that you weren’t aware of before. 
  2. Don’t only read the first search result. Select the 3rd or 5th search result and find out what these pages say about your query also. These were still relevant results, they made it to the top 5, but if you only click on the first search result, you may miss diverse ideas or perspectives.

We will continue with just-in-time information access. This is a good thing. We are privileged to have so much information at our fingertips. As you access this information, take steps occasionally to diversify your perspective and the sources of the information.