Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Me Novice, you expert - We select new knowledge and products differently.

Even when experts search for apples on a tree, it takes some effort.;
Learning is a lifelong process; that is why you are reading this article. It might involve learning a foreign language, a new recipe, another trade or line of business, or starting out as an entrepreneur. Learning experiences do not always have to be new. Old hands can learn new tricks. On the other hand, you can pick out a novice from an expert based on how they chose to learn.

We seek new knowledge because we want to improve, to do the same old things in better ways. That implies a selective process; the ability to pick out the useful material from the clutter. All this is done based on experience. The more experienced you are, the easier it is to pick out the relevant information from the unnecessary. This is what distinguishes novices from experts. Novices chose information that enhance their broad knowledge, while experts seek to deepen or specialize in a knowledge area.

Different prices for novices and experts.

This difference between how novices and experts chose to increase their knowledge is the reason why seeking out new knowledge involves different costs. It is just like when seeking out the news. The general news costs differently from specific niche news, especially in the academic arena. This is because when one starts out, his selective picking ability involves very little costs. A novice usually picks from generally available cheap news sources, believing that in doing so, he could stumble upon useful finds. In short, a novice does not yet face the costs of what he is seeking. That is why new general knowledge, or knowledge that covers broad aspects, usually costs lesser than new specialized knowledge.

As for an expert, he is experienced in seeking out knowledge, understands the costs of doing so and picks out the best quality news source. Furthermore, an expert does not just select anything; an expert selects new knowledge only from a chosen area and is blind to other areas.

And so were discounts and coupons born. Without these buying incentives, novices will find it costlier seeking out new knowledge and products.
College text books at great discounts of 25- 45% - 125z125 banner
Discounts and coupons make a novice stop searching, so he does not spend more for search. Experts understand the market better. Discounts and coupons do not influence their buying decisions, rather quality of information and products usually do.

Search engines exist so you do not spend more searching for quality.

Another way to filter novices from experts is in the quality of products or information they seek. Some say you can tell a man’s education if he reads the New York Times, and his financial literacy if he finds the Wall Street Journal boring. Publishers who cater to experts know that their information and products are of higher quality, and hence price these higher than mundane and general purpose products whose quality require much more advertising signals. Some sellers even sell two types of products: one for the novice, and another for the expert. I see these most often when I visit a flea market. Mass produced clothing is of different quality than customized clothing because the latter caters to the tastes of experts and fashion connoisseurs.

Let’s take a man who searches for a job that pays highly. Because of the status of the job, he spends more in searching for it and in order to be successful, he spends more in acquiring the needed knowledge to find the job. If he is averse to spending on finding a job, then he’d have to settle for one of lower status. That is what I want you to remember: if you desire information and products of high quality, it is often wise to seek the opinion of experts, else you’d be a novice playing in the field of experts and could be hoodwinked to take a low quality product for high.

There is then a high incentive to shop around because of the difference between high and low quality products and services. To solve this problem, search engines like google, amazon, yahoo and bing exist. If you go to websites like wirefly with search facilities for electronic accessories, especially mobile phones and smart phones, you’d have to possess higher knowledge than a novice. You do not necessarily have to be an expert, but you should be adept and should be able to find your way around the universe of phones.

Even when we love seeking out new knowledge, sometimes we do prefer sticking to our favorites, to the brands and news sources that we have come to trust, whether we be experts or novices. Eventually, every knowledge becomes favorite or disfavored. Keep that in mind as you go shopping.


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