So today’s task was: browse the questions on Quora, list the top 10 that you feel compelled to answer and state why.
If you want to figure out what people’s “pain points” and desires are, you can:
(a) search for “I hate” , “I wish”, “If only” etc. on Twitter;
(b) study the posts people leave on Reddit;
(c) check the questions people have on Quora.
Quora gives you actually more than that. If you are interested in starting a business or chosing the right profession, you can use Quora to:
(1.) Check out what people are interested in, as mentioned above;
(2.) Learn which questions you are actually good in answering;
(3.) Realize which questions you love to answer.
“No matter what anybody tells you, words and ideas can change the world.” – Joe Di Lillo
That being said – let’s move on to the questions!
#1 – What are some good mini-habits to practise each day?
That’s an easy question to answer for me, because I have practised a lot of these small steps myself over the past year.
Case in point: this blog. From making your bed in the morning via writing down 10 ideas per day – which I am doing right now – to being thankful every day, I have practised several of these habits myself.
They have been incredibly helpful to me, so I like to share my experience.
#2 – What are some ways I can meet and connect with people in NYC?
Easy to answer, because there is this nice platform named meetup.com. There are tons of ways you can meet different people, especially in New York City.
Of course, you can also “work the room” at a party and then move to another bar with people.
#3 – An employer said he would call me ASAP to discuss a job position…
– he reassured me I’m still in the running, but it’s been 5 days and he hasn’t. I really want the job, what should I do?
I would answer that question because I can see how people can get nervous on one hand that they are not getting the promised offer; on the other hand, employers are sometimes overworked and there is no real bad intent about it.
Or maybe they just want to let people down easily, so they are not upfront about their offers.
Sometimes the applicant also gets confused and does not understand an indirect “no”.
Whatever it is, I’d like to provide my insight here because the sooner people can move on, the better.
#4 – I’m considering Dallas and Houston as choices on a list of several possible cities to move to from NYC…
… but I want to eliminate one of them from consideration. Which one should I take off the list?
In his book “Millionaire Fastlane”, MJ DeMarco talks about a very similar situation, where he had to decide whether he should move to Phoenix or Detroit, and he used the Weighted Average Decision Matrix for help.
There is a version on the web that does it for you, but basically, you list everything that is important to you – from taxes/economic situation to population density and weather – and then weigh each parameter based on how important it is to you on a scale from 1 to 10. In the end, you get two different numbers from which you can easily chose the higher one.
#5 – How do you figure out the equation for photosynthesis?
As a biochemist with a penchant for math, it’s fun for me to answer questions of this type.
#6 – What are Bach’s most famous pieces?
That question is close to my heart.
Bach is one of my favorite composers, and I know his works so much inside out that I can even recommend different pieces based on seasons or personal mood.
Right now, during winter holiday season, the Christmas Oratorio is a great piece to listen to (for obvious reasons). It is as famous in Germany as Händel’s “Messiah” is in the UK and the US.
If you like music that helps you be creative, I can point to anything from the “Well-Tempered Piano” or the “Goldberg variations”, and if you like solace, a “Musical Offering” or the “Art of the Fugue” is really good.
#7 – What are some books to stay away from, and why?
This question draws me in, because it so unusual – normally, articles recommend books to read and not to “stay away from”.
First of all, don’t stay away from ANY book!
But beyond that, this question is actually an opportunity to think about books that really made a strong impact. The stronger the message of a book, the more likely you have some people that are angered by it as well.
Ergo: those are the books that are likely very interesting.
#8 – What is the hardest thing to get used to after coming to America?
As someone who came to the US from Germany 10 years ago, I can answer this question easily: the food and the housing.
Beyond the simple answer, this is an opportunity to give back some of the experiences I made when coming here.
#9: What was your biggest epiphany or moment of insight during your studies of sciences or math?
This is a very personal question.
I have always loved math and did have one important moment of epiphany when I thought about how to calculate maxima and minima of a function.
The first derivative of a function has to be zero, because the curve does neither climb nor fall.
Another point came during my PhD thesis, when we finally figured out the function of the gene that we were studying.
Since that gene was a central regulator of how cells move in the body during development, our findings also told us what was important for cell migration in general.
These moments of clarity in science are like situations where all your work culminates in a huge offer for something you sell – or for the moment when you win a sports competition.
They are great rewards that confirm you are on the right path. They motivate you to move further ahead. Huge wins.
#10: What was the most difficult discovery, developing the atomic bomb or putting a man on the moon?
This was actually more of an engineering accomplishment and not a genuine scientific “discovery”.
Still, I find this question interesting, because it forces us to reconsider how much of a logistical problem it is to put scientific discoveries like the fission of uranium into application – to build nuclear bombs or reactors.
How do you engineer a device like the Apollo rocket or an atom bomb?
Whatever the answer is – where is the knowledge on how to split a uranium atom coming from?
Basic or applied research? Labs that are devoted to scientific discovery or industrial lab that are interested in carrying the information to market?
If you want to check out “Become an Idea Machine”, you can do so here.
Yesterday’s challenge: Click me!
What is this challenge about? This link will teach you more.
And to get back to the main page, you can click here.
Which questions appeal most to YOU?
Are you active on Quora?
Thanks for reading and let us know in the comments below!
(Pictures taken from Wikimedia Commons.)