Philosophies for Focus

Imagine a machine that an operator did not control, but rather, the machine controlled the operator. This “sentient” machine was introduced in Part 2, Rule #1 of Cal Newport’s book, Deep Work. Conceptualized by architect, David Dewane, this machine is actually just a building. This building has no moving parts besides the people moving through it. Deriving from the ancient Greek concept of eudaimonia, this building aims to bring its users to a state in which they are achieving their full human potential – or as Newport would say, this building aims to enable the user to practice the deepest of deep work. The Eudaimonia Machine, as Dewane refers to it, is a long, rectangular series of five rooms. Each room is designed to have their own distinct purpose to facilitate the transition to deep work. The rooms are as follows:

Peak Performance

As children, we always dream of becoming the best. How many times have you heard a kid say they want to be the best firefighter or the greatest ballerina? This dream of being the best transcends into adolescence and early adulthood, as we work tirelessly to get a quality education and a respectable job. While many of us share the urge to be the best at what we do, how is it that only some of us become experts?

“An expert is a person who has made all the mistakes
that can be made in a very narrow field.”

– Niels Bohr