Rich DeVaul (Google X): “The classic definition of an expert is someone who…”
Consumed => “The Truth About Google X” by Jon Gertner on Fast Company.
I found these bits particularly interesting / inspiring:
“The classic definition of an expert is someone who knows more and more about less and less until they know everything about nothing.”
—Head of Rapid Eval
“Generally speaking, there are three criteria that X projects share. All must address a problem that affects millions–or better yet, billions–of people. All must utilize a radical solution that has at least a component that resembles science fiction. And all must tap technologies that are now (or very nearly) obtainable. But to DeVaul, the head of Rapid Eval, there’s another, more unifying principle that connects the three criteria: No idea should be incremental. This sounds terribly cliched, DeVaul admits; the Silicon Valley refrain of ‘taking huge risks’ is getting hackneyed and hollow. But the rejection of incrementalism, he says, is not because he and his colleagues believe it’s pointless for ideological reasons. They believe it for practical reasons. ‘It’s so hard to do almost anything in this world,’ he says. ‘Getting out of bed in the morning can be hard for me. But attacking a problem that is twice as big or 10 times as big is not twice or 10 times as hard.'”