We were thrilled to get a College student studying Technology Marketing reach out on LinkedIn asking about how they could learn tech in a long term and lasting way.
We pondered on this question a bit and came up with 13 things you can do now to learn about emerging tech.
13 Ways to Learn Emerging Tech
- Learn how to learn – If you can master a great process for learning you can absorb any complex topic. Key topics range from accelerated learning to memory to mental models.
- Read – This will be the most critical way to gather more information on whats out there. This is often free and only costs your time.
- Find community online and off – There are many groups online like discord and telegram. For offline engagement, Meetup.com and Eventbrite are great places to find people doing events.
- Interact with newcomers, experts and everyone in between – This is a great way to see what topics people are talking about. This could be anything from a social media interaction to calling a techy friend to chat. The more you do this, the more dialed in you will become to what’s valuable to people.
- Ask questions – The more curious you can be the better. Even if you are just asking questions for your own self-study, this is a very helpful practice. Extra points if you seek out experts and authors and ask them directly.
- Write a glossary of vocab words – This may seem like overkill if you aren’t a writer. However, this helps immensely if you’re new to the space and need to get up to speed quickly. Your upfront efforts will go a long way in the future.
- Research definitions – Take your glossary above and research the meaning of each word. Extra credit if you write them down in your master glossary document. If you do this regularly your core knowledge will increase FAST.
- Go to conferences (virtual and in person) – In person tends to be more visceral and memorable but if you’re diligent and focused, online events are great and just as inspiring. Whether you’re attending in person or virtual events, you can be engaged and curious through conversations or digital chats.
- Curate authors, experts and websites to follow – This helps create your own “newspaper” of content and topics to peruse regularly. Take your time and don’t get too overwhelmed. It’s normal to feel a little frazzled from the volume of information you will find but you got this.
- Join great email lists – Don’t be afraid to sign up for someone’s newsletter or even click an ad that looks like an informative “newsletter”. We found exceptional email lists on various topics this way. Be disciplined and take your time to curate the absolute best.
- Master project and time management – There will be tons of information to go through so, the more organized you are the better. This will help you learn and do more in record time.
- Use the tech tools as much as possible – This could be software or buying some hardware like a Raspberry Pi. The more time you spend with the tools the more your knowledge will grow automatically just by using them.
- Buy books and courses – If you are a reader, books are super inexpensive (sometimes free) and just require a payment of time and focus. If you are more of a “watcher” into videos, a course might work well but you will often pay 10 or 100X the price of a book.
Our last thought is nail down what is your purpose of learning about the Technology.
Is it work related, a passion project, for play or hobby?
From your answer here you can decide what bodies of work and experts to follow.
Often, industry focused use cases will have deep amounts of knowledge to peruse while hobbyist might have little information available with very basic websites.
Either are valuable depending on your goals.
In fact, sometimes the obscure hobbyist blogs are the most fulfilling since you’re really pioneering new ground that few have attempted.
Either way, we wish you much learning and success with your perfect set of Emerging Tech tools.
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Accelerated Learning and Mental Models
- Brighter Brain Brilliant Life by Jim Kwik
- Mental Models: Learn How to Think Better and Gain a Mental Edge by James Clear
- This Is Exactly How You Should Train Yourself To Be Smarter by Michael Simmons
In Real life (IRL) Communities
Project and Time Management
- The Pomodoro Technique
- Getting Things Done (GTD)
- Atomic Habits
- Project management methodologies: 12 popular frameworks
(Free) Books and Courses
Action Items to Learn Emerging Tech
- Ask yourself: what is your purpose for learning tech? (Work, Leisure, Play etc)
- If work or industry focused seek out trade associations, thought leaders, researchers and other experts
- If leisure or play, look for tutorials and hobbyist blogs which are treasure troves of passion projects
- Pick 1-3 of the “ways” listed above and apply this to your ideal subject matter
- Give yourself a week or a month (more ideally) to really go deep
- Focus on mapping out the main ideals quickly and dive into the specific topics you like consistently over time
- If you’re not sure what you’re looking for you can look up YouTube videos around your search to get some ideas and inspirations, also read the above Emerging Tech 101 article