In 2006, Stefani Germanotta had hit a turning point in her career. She had quit a rigorous musical theatre program at an elite college to focus on her musical passion and, after a year of hard work and little income, had signed a deal with Def Jam records. But this promise wouldn't last. Just three months after signing, Def Jam changed its mind about Stefani's unusual style and released her from her contract. Nearly two years after her initial rejection, Stefani was finally able to introduce her sound and her self to the world – as Lady Gaga.
Failure Does Not Necessarily Mean a Theory is WrongScience 2.0 (blog)However, it is not necessarily true that a theory is wrong merely because it hasn't produced a particular result. In fact, it can't produce a result.
Society would be better off if it became comfortable with trial and error, argues the author of "Adapt," a new book. One of the main ideas of the book is that the world is full of interesting ideas that might help solve some of our big problems, but nobody really knows which of these ideas will work and which will fail. So policy makers, corporate leaders and social campaigners need to be much more open to all sorts of formal and informal experiments.
People remember things better, longer, if they are given very challenging tests on the material, tests at which they are bound to fail. In a series of experiments, they showed that if students make an unsuccessful attempt to retrieve information before receiving an answer, they remember the information better than in a control condition in which they simply study the information. Trying and failing to retrieve the answer is actually helpful to learning. It’s an idea that has obvious applications for education, but could be useful for anyone who is trying to learn new material of any kind.
Fail early, fail fast, fail often. Failure is ingrained in the culture of American entrepreneurs. Silicon Valley’s FailCon is an annual conference to learn from other entrepreneurs’ failures, and it also hosts informal FailChat meetups.
Udacity, a startup focused on bringing free university-level educational worldwide, is today announcing a significant new investment: $15 million in Series B funding in a round led by top VC firm Andreessen Horowitz.