This question already has an answer here:

To detail further; I'm looking for a word for someone who makes shallow attempts to be like someone or something they like or admire by doing nothing more than acting out the perceived actions, whilst making little to no effort to understand the deeper knowledge that facilitates those actions.

Basically a top-down approach to things, rather than a comprehension-based climb.

A good (possibly offensive) example might be the sorts of nerd-types who wear fedoras in attempts to be a 'gentleman' and invoke the kind of respect that goes along with it without understanding the finer points of what else actually creates that 'look' or description.

marked as duplicate by Edwin Ashworth single-word-requests Jan 17 '18 at 14:43

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    Wannabe, poser, imitator, pretender, neverweres (modeled after hasbeens etc). – Dan Bron Jan 17 '18 at 14:10
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    I had considered these, but they aren't quite exactly what i'm after, but they do work. – Logan Jan 17 '18 at 14:34
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    @Edwin Ashworth has marked this as a duplicate of the question "A word for somebody who supports things fleetingly and whilst they are popular" - it really doesn't seem as though this is the same question at all, only that the TYPES of people this question's answer might apply to could also venn into the types "A word for somebody who supports things fleetingly and whilst they are popular" might answer. – Logan Jan 17 '18 at 15:51
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    FYI @Edwin Ashworth, while I agree there are many similarities, not so sure this is a precise duplicate of english.stackexchange.com/questions/165460/…. In support, I point to the evocative "mental miss" quotation by the OP, in his comment on his accepted answer. – MikeRoger Jan 17 '18 at 15:51
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    @Logan Then please edit the question and mention there that you have already considered so-and-so and they are not what you are looking for... – NVZ Jan 17 '18 at 18:28

Ref wikipedia:Cargo cult

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    hahaha oh damn, that's very good. This is pretty much exactly the sort of mental miss i was thinking of. – Logan Jan 17 '18 at 14:33
  • Oft quoted among Comp. Sci. practitioners, along with such other colourful abstractions as en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shotgun_debugging – MikeRoger Jan 17 '18 at 14:36

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