Gain specific knowledge by making an observation

As defined by Naval Ravikant, specific Knowledge is the knowledge that you cannot be trained for it. It is located at the edge of knowledge and is very hard to figure out. To acquire specific knowledge requires a combination of existing tools but also creativity to combine them in innovative ways to create something new. To gain specific knowledge in your field you need to experiment. Everything starts with the question “what would happen if?“.

1. Make an observation

Let’s say you’re a blogger and you saw that one of your blog posts has five times the average number of views as your blog’s average. However, you don’t know why.

2. Ask a question

Much in life is about asking the right questions. So, let’s suppose you’re writing a new article. Based on that you may want your new post to be as successful as your older one. The question would be: how can I make this new post as successful as the previous one?

3. Form a hypothesis

Here you build a testable explanation. After taking a closer look at the old post, you realize that you inserted images in the article. That is something that you never did. Then your hypothesis is: An article with images will perform better than without.

4. Make a prediction

Based on your hypothesis you can say: if I put images on the new article it will perform better than the average.

5. Test the prediction

To test this prediction all you have to do now is to include images on the new article you’re writing.

6. Iterate to make new hypothesis and predictions

After a month you analyze the page views and realize that the new article did not perform better than the average. So, the images were not the key to getting more views. It’s time to take a look at the old article again and form another hypothesis. You realize now that the article is 500 words longer than the average. Your new hypothesis is that the combination of images with a longer article will perform better.
The faster the feedback loop, the faster you can gather specific knowledge. The more specific knowledge you have the harder is going to be to replace you.

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