Briefly, the “Paradox of Choice” means that the more choices people are offered, the less satisfied they tend to wind up with their decision. For me it is maybe the most important insight I learned in 2006. This is one of those ideas who are so valuable that once you understand them they seems obvious, almost self explanatory. Don’t we all know it from our own experience? As a child, you got one chocolate ice cream and you were happy, but when you had to pick 2 scoops from 10 different tastes you always ended up regretting your choice. And yet we build products and shopping malls and societies where we see choice as a core requirement of freedom.
Maybe the tools being built now with the Long Tail in mind will eventually help counter the Paradox of Choice, filtering choices on a single person’s interests resolution? This is starting to read like something out of Wired Magazine, so I’ll stop now. Favorite video of 2006: Paradox of Choice