I’m staring at a chocolate bar with a few ants munching away at it. They carve winding valleys on the surface and presumably some subterranean tunnels. My first reaction was: “why aren’t you silly ants going in straight lines and being more efficient?” Then I saw the likely flaw. I’m no myrmecologist but it seems reasonable for ants to be Experts in Candy Consumption™. If someone is confused about the efficiency of ant chocolate eating paths, it’s probably me.
Presumably, they follow subtle gradients of chocolate density, sweetness, and other characteristics that I lack sensitivity to. Defaulting to an idea of doing things in orderly (legible) paths as the “efficient” one seems like a side effect of living in a culture of rational, top-down planning. Episteme replacing metis.
Also published on Medium.