Using herd mentality to your benefit

You notice it every week; how suddenly everyone seems to be talking about that same thing. A new trend. A new thing, having its moment. But how often are these trendy topics valuable?

Now I don't know this for a fact, but over the years I've noticed that trendy things are rarely, if ever, very useful. The trend usually preempts the usefulness. The real work begins when the trend is at its peak. Only after that do people discover, through trial and error, how to actually do the thing.

It will probably take a year or so until they turn around and can teach the rest of us how to use this, no longer trendy, topic in our own work.

This is good news. I think we can use this for our advantage. When I see something interesting I'll simply write it down, and then google it a year later. By then the experiments will have been run and I can learn from the results. All that time I'm not wasting keeping up with the trend I can use to study and experiment on my own stuff.