April 27th, 2011

beartato phd

(no subject)

There was this Ask Metafilter thread that I knew I had read years ago, and I finally found it again: Askers and Guessers. The simple way to describe it is in terms of two "personality types", but the reality is of course that even one person can find themselves playing these roles variously in different circumstances. And as much as I am often picky and critical about small-number personality-type classification, I think it's really a valuable lesson to be aware that the acts of Asking and Guessing exist in the world, and both function somewhat reasonably as long as one never collides with the other --- and in practice, they do often collide, and it's nice to be able to back off and say, oh, all that happened here was a collision of communicative strategies, nobody is actually trying to be a jerk.