Re: Practice Makes Perfect

From: HARNAD Stevan (
Date: Thu Jun 06 1996 - 22:07:02 BST

> Date: Sun, 26 May 1996 15:58:23 +0100 (BST)
> From: "Beckett, Duan" <>
> This is the concept where it is believed that we are either born with
> 'talents', known as innate potentials, or have to work to attain a high
> level of ability at a certain task.
> To believe in people having 'talents' it to agree with the idea that
> everyone is biologically predisposed for certain tasks. So that when we
> are born we already have innate abilities as certain tasks. For example
> top sports people are considered to be very talented e.g. Linford
> Christie at the hundred metres or Gary Kasparov at chess, but this
> takes in no consideration of the time or effort these people put in to
> be that good.
> Practice makes perfect is the idea that there are no 'gifts' but just
> hard work. If someone spends twice as long practicing e.g. a musical
> instrument than someone else the chances are that that person will be
> alot more competent at it. For exmaple a study was carried out with a
> group of music students, all the same age, where the amount of time
> they spent practicing was found. The top students in the class, all
> thought of as gifted, praticed for around ten thousand hours a year.
> This figure is twice that of most of the other students thus
> supporting the idea of practice makes perfect. Also if, for example a
> child at school appears to be good at a certain subject or sport it is
> likely that more time will be spent teaching that child, making he/she
> very good at that subject, giving the impression that the child is
> talented when it just hard work.
> However if two people put the same amount of time and effort into a
> certain task one will eventually appear to be better. Perhaps alot
> better giving the idea that that person is somehow talented. So
> practice makes perfect in relation to creativity is not so clear cut.

Use a spell-checker, always.

Relate this to the question of creativity and preparation, and the issue
of techniques and algorithms.

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Tue Feb 13 2001 - 16:23:45 GMT