Habits

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After not writing anything for like 3 weeks, I think I have some thoughts on habits. I’ve been trying to start a few habits and stop a few others, with varying success. I haven’t read any literature on the topic 

How to sleep

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Since apparently none of my friends know how to sleep, and sleep happens to be my favorite thing in the whole wide world, here are some non-scientific guidelines. – Make your room as dark as possible and block out as 

Two kinds of smart

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Meditating on knowledge, I think it’s fair to say that there are two ways to ‘know’ something. It can either be reasoned/figured out in real time, or it can be looked up from previous experience (Cached Thoughts). The vast majority 

The Self-modifying light bulb

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In response to Falkenstein’s Parable of a Light Bulb, I would just say that throughout our lives we have quite a bit of influence over how our neural connections are weighted. In other words, we have significant control over not only 

Lotteries are hard

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http://www.wired.com/magazine/2011/01/ff_lottery/all/1 The man in the article didn’t strike me as particularly brilliant but rather helped underscore the difficulty of the problem at hand: creating a game with sufficiently close to zero but negative expectancy that still incorporates elements which trick 

Beauty of physics

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It’s a good thing that our brain filters out most of the details in our lives and makes them mundane, otherwise we’d be sitting around all day drooling. We need psychoactive drugs or sensory enhancement/artists to focus our brain. This 

Experts suck

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Simple linear models outperform experts in making predictions. Notice that the examples are mostly from the social sciences; it seems they have yet to learn a lesson that hard sciences learned over a hundred years ago. Potential root causes include 

Beware of stories

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The best heuristic I’ve ever heard to make better real-world decisions, just watch: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RoEEDKwzNBw A link to Tyler’s blog is on the right…

Humans walk in circles

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http://kottke.org/11/01/the-natural-curves-of-human-movement I learned about this before from the Herzog film Encounters at the End of the World (recommended) where they show how in a blizzard it is very difficult to navigate since without visual cues humans will walk in circles. 

No More Bananas and GMO

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From the New Yorker 1/10/2011: http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2011/01/10/110110fa_fact_peed The banana variety known as the Cavendish makes up 97% of exports and is pretty much the only one consumed in the US and Europe. Until the 60s, the hardier, sweeter and larger Gros 

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