20 Oct

Book Review: A Whole New Mind: Why Right-Brainers Will Rule the Future

Category:UncategorizedTag: :


After having listened to the recording of a speech by Daniel Pink, I quickly decided to purchase the audio version of A Whole New Mind: Why Right-Brainers Will Rule the Future. In this book, the author first starts to describe how our brains work from a high-level point of view. The human brain is divided into two hemispheres, a left and a right part. The author explains the differences between these two parts of our brains, stating that left-brain (L-directed) thinking implies more logical, linear reasoning while right-brain (R-directed) thinking is more holistic and artistic.

The message that he is trying to bring across, is that while society highly values L-directed thinking, R-directed thinking is getting more and more important in the world of tomorrow. There are three basic questions that identify and point to R-directed activities:

  1. Can someone overseas do it cheaper?
  2. Can a computer do it faster?
  3. Am I offering something that satisfies the nonmaterial, transcendent desires of an abundant age?

The answer to these questions should be ?no, no and yes?. If not, then those kind of activities can be automated or done much cheaper by out-sourcing. Those kind of activities are delineated as left-brain activities.

The second part of the book is called ?The Six Senses?, which are:

  • Design
  • Story
  • Symphony
  • Empathy
  • Play
  • Meaning

For each of these senses, the author tries to find real-world examples and stories to prove the values of these aptitudes.

In short, this is simply a fascinating book. I can highly recommend this book to just about anyone. Two thumbs up! 

3 thoughts on “Book Review: A Whole New Mind: Why Right-Brainers Will Rule the Future

  1. I have met no Right Brainers who give two seconds of thought to: “Can someone overseas do it cheaper?” on anything. That’s not a Right Brain thought, it’s a pragmatist idea generally born of logic and cost sensitivity. This idea is not unique to anyone and is mostly feared by the American workforce in general.

    “Can a computer do it faster?” Seriously, who needs to ask that question in 2010?

    “Am I offering something that satisfies the nonmaterial, transcendent desires of an abundant age” — rephrased as “am I doing something of no value in the realm of Social Networking”.

    The book sounds pitiful.

  2. I’ve heard a few of the pitches from Mr. Pink and frankly I find he’d make an excellent leader for the ship that was mean’t to be cast into the sun, but ended up screwing up the great computer.

    Point one in particular is a very dangerous assumption, especially when thinking for tomorrow. In 2006 it cost $25/hour and 500 hours to build the widget I designed using local talent. In 2007 it cost me $5/hour and 1200 hours to get a new version of the widget built in Taiwan. By 2008 those Taiwanese were getting clever and bumping up their costs to $10/hour and started designing their own knock-offs, so I switch to India where I could get it built for $3/hour and 1500 hours. Hopefully by the time they fully clue in and start getting too expensive, those ee-PCs we sent to Nigeria will get that resource pool modernized enough that I can get the work done for $0.50/hour even if it takes 3x as long.

    Pretty soon you run out of candidates to pawn off those “Left sided” activities as the overseas market becomes more Right-sided themselves. Then what? You’ve eliminated “doing” in your own country in favour of “directing”, and you’re left with a country full of directors with no one willing to take directions. What do-ers are left are working on useless projects convincing people that money grows on trees. Online gambling sites, social networking sites that somehow convince glorified real estate salesmen that they’re worth billions of dollars? Tulips anyone? It’s a smegging website catering to a fad.

    Look how expensive it is to extend/build a highway in the U.S. now? I remember hearing that road production in the U.S. isn’t measured in miles, it’s measured in “schools”. Concrete and asphalt didn’t get that much more expensive, but finding labour… I went to Malaysia recently. Not only were they slapping down new road every other day, but they were replacing rail systems and buildings like crazy. Ah well, soon enough the elastic will completely snap, there will be a Depression, and everything will equalize. God bless capitalism.

Comments are closed.