Wednesday, September 2, 2009

For the annals of "footnotes that are more important than the main text"

Flow, boiled down to 8 rules.

When someone asked AskMetafilter for examples of psychological "rules of thumb," I gave a shot at boiling down Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi's Flow into one rule:

You will be happiest if you do an activity that poses appropriately increasing challenges allowing you to continually engage with the activity and apply your increasing level of skill to effectively tackle the challenges.
(That was my off-the-cuff version; I left out several of the elements.)

It's perhaps unsurprising that a constitutional law professor, familiar with the Supreme Court's opinion in United States v. Carolene Products, would appreciate the power of a disproportionately significant footnote.

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