Tagged with life

#48 - Brian Christian on better living through the wisdom of computer science

Optimal shopping. Multi-armed bandit. Really great parallels between CS and life. Will be picking up the book.

China’s Social Credit System: A Step Towards Dystopia? Part Two: Historical Context

Historical context behind the SCS

Dissect Season 2: My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy by Kanye West

MBDTF: rightfully considered one of the greatest hip hop albums ever, even more so when put into context.

Teaching Tech Together

Learn by constructing mental models where you can put the facts related to the domain

The Dream Machine

How the modern computer came to be, courtesy of the visionary JCR Licklider. Incredible. None of this was an accident.

Peter Attia, M.D. -- How to Live a Longer, Higher Quality Life

Great actionable advice on health. Will definitely try and read more of Attia's work.

China’s Social Credit System: A Step Towards Dystopia? Part Three: 2014 Social Credit Plan

The culmination of decades of iteration, the 2014 Social Credit Plan

China’s Social Credit System: A Step Towards Dystopia? Part Four: Joint Punishment

2016 plan to enforce and discipline within the social credit system.

China’s Social Credit System: A Step Towards Dystopia? Part Five: Barriers

Obstacles in place to the further implementation of the SCS.

China’s Social Credit System: A Step Towards Dystopia? Part Six: Looking Ahead

What's next for the SCS?

Beginner's Health and Fitness Guide

Thoroughly-cited and comprehensive baselines for health. Recommend to everyone.

Augmenting Long-term Memory

The paper that got me into Anki and spaced repetition. Has 10x'd my studying efficiency and retention.

Dissect Season 1: To Pimp a Butterfly by Kendrick Lamar

Incredibly detailed analysis of To Pimp a Butterfly. Incredible music with a purpose

Putting Mental Models to Practice

Get the most out of using mental models by applying them deliberately.

#1212 - David Goggins

Crazy dedication coming from a very rough childhood. Listening to him will make you want to run through a wall.

The Psychology of Money

Really really good blog post about fallacies people commit with money and in life

Chinese Businessmen: Let Reality Be The Teacher

Trial and error > business theory!!

355. Where Does Creativity Come From (and Why Do Schools Kill It Off)?

Creativity stems from early-life circumstances. How can these circumstances be replicated?

China’s Social Credit System: A Step Towards Dystopia? Part One: Introduction

Introduction to Social Credit System blog post series

Lost and Founder

Extremely transparent and valuable perspective of a 15-year startup CEO who has been through it all.

How to Read Self Help

Treat self-help as craft. Only listen to practitioners. Test everything.

The Playlist of Awesome: Putting Perceptual Exposure to Practice

How to use perceptual exposure to improve your subconscious processing.

Where Jonathan Haidt things the American mind went wrong

What's wrong with safe spaces and how they're hurting more than they're helping this generation

285. There's a War on Sugar. Is it Justified?

Sugar is addictive and toxic. People generally support some type of regulation, but not an outright ban.

A Nuanced Take on Preventing Burnout

Don't get burnt out. It's not worth it. Scientific literature suggests how.

Effective learning: Twenty rules of formulating knowledge

SuperMemo creator gets deep into best usages of SRS

The Mental Model Fallacy

The mental model fallacy is that it’s worth it to read descriptions of mental models, written and aggregated by non-practitioners, in the pursuit of self-improvement and success.

#1189 - Alex Honnold

Alex Honnold is a big wall free solo climber. Good insight into the mind of someone who is crazy but also rational.

354. How to Be Creative

We need more field experience and tests on creativity to really get to the root of it.

Don't Take Generic Business Advice From VCs

VC's incentives are not the same as entrepreneurs', don't delude yourself into thinking that they are.

Chinese Businessmen: Superstition Doesn't Count

Chinese businessmen are superstitious yet still successful because maybe 'rationality' isn't all that.

How Psychedelics Can Expand Your Consciousness, With Michael Pollan

Psychedelics are tools. They should be researched and used more.

On Writing

Half memoir, half writing advice from one of the great modern fiction writers.

Read Citations

Rant/description of how some 'pop-psychology' results have been warped from the original studies. Some is a stretch, some is legitimate.

The Gambler Who Cracked the Horse-Racing Code

Incredible story about the sharks of horse betting

Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions

How the human mind fails the people it is supposed to support

Show Your Work!

If you want people to see your work you have to put it in places where they can find it.

How Do We Learn? A Zine

ncase always publishes great stuff. We learn by making deep connections!

Getting Rich: from Zero to Hero in One Blog Post

Entry point for Mr. Money Mustache's work

Mel Gibson and Dr. Neil Riordan

Discussion of mesenchymal stem cells and their incredible results. Only legal in Panama right now.

Surprising Implications of Treating Self-Help as Art

Developing technique in the wild is better than reading self-help.

#471: Using Mental Models to Make Better Decisions

Argument for using mental models to improve thought processes

How Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Will Make You a Better Man

Gracie family member on the origins and modern usages of BJJ.

Annie Duke | How to Make Decisions Like a Poker Champ

Annie Duke (have heard her on other podcasts and have her book on my reading list) discusses the relative roles of decision quality and luck in producing life's outcomes.

353. How to Optimize Your Apology

Considerations when apologizing: don't wait, don't give context, apologize for actions not misunderstandings, identify your victim, express remorse, provide restitution.


Relatable and thought-provoking conversation about the true value of college today.

306 - Breaking Bad News

SPIKES system for breaking bad news: Setting Perception Invitiation Knowledge Emotions Strategy

90: Jonathan Haidt | The Danger of Good Intentions and Safe Spaces

What's wrong with the bubble of college campuses.

Killing Your $1000 Grocery Bill

Price-consciousness when it comes to food is all about $/calorie

Will Storr on why you are not yourself

Nothing we own today is ours. This is sobering, but we can fix it.

Nike Says Its $250 Running Shoes Will Make You Run Much Faster. What if That's Actually True?

Quantitative Nike Zoom Vaporfly 4% effects on marathon running performance.

Where Jonathan Haidt things the American mind went wrong

Digital minimalism

The Inner Game of Tennis

Great insight into overcoming mental hurdles to perform better both in pressure and non-pressure situations. Your brain should be an asset not a liability. Good stuff.

#1022 - Eric Weinstein

Managing director at Thiel Capital. Really smart, wide-ranging discussion.

Evolution, Accelerated

CRISPR/CAS9 gene editing is equal parts exciting and terrifying.

#387: Think Like a Poker Player to Make Better Decisions

Trust The Process. Poker-sourced advice is pretty similar to DFS.

#405: The Power of Team Captains

On the importance and misconceptions surrounding team captains in sports, and how the principles can be applied to the rest of life.

The Friendship Cure

5 great friends > many shallow ones

52: Cal Fussman | How To Ask Big Questions for Big Answers

Cal Fussman is a really good writer and interviewer. Good insight into his processes.

How to negotiate the long, slow, SaaS Ramp of Death

Interview covering the lifecycle, pitfalls, and possible solutions of starting and running a SaaS business

You 2.0: When Did Marriage Become So Hard?

Changing perspectives on long-term relationships have changed the nature of marriage.

The Bitter Regrets of a Useless Chinese Daughter

Bitingly relatable narrative on the experience of an Asian American

341. Why We Choke Under Pressure (and How Not To)

Preparation --> execution.

Here's Why All Your Projects Are Always Late--And What to Do About It

Projects, especially big ones, are always late. This is due to optimism bias, coordination neglect, the planning fallacy, and (in the case of government) planners not being around for consequences.

#382: The Secrets of Greater Endurance

Endurance is much much more elastic than you might think. It's also trainable!

#1213 - Dr. Andrew Weil

Combining 'scientific' and 'holistic' medicine. Interesting perspective.

#376: When to Copmete, When to Cooperate, and How to Succeed at Both

Assortment of advice and knowledge on human power dynamics

The Chinese Businessman Paradox

The success of Chinese businessmen under 'poor' business practices should make us question accepted Western wisdom.

Chinese Businessmen: Maybe Strategy Matters

Strategy might matter for growing massive, but it is less important at small scales.

Coolest Things I Learned in 2018

Assorted snippets from the author of Monday Musings

The Lazarus Drug

Narcan and Naloxone have saved thousands of lives, but they might actually encourage dangerous drug use.

How to Fall Asleep in 2 Minutes or Less

Bud Winter designed a program in WWII to help fighter pilots sleep whenever, wherever. Relax physically then relax mentally.

The Undoing Project: A Friendship That Changed Our Minds

Accounting of the partnership between Amos Tversky and Danny Kahnemanm, interwoven with their greatest hits both individually and as a pair. Equal parts informative, interesting, personal.

Keith Rabois - If You Can't Sell Them, Compete With Them

Mental models from an investor who has held senior positions at big companies.

Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard

How to drive behavior change: Direct the rider. Motivate the Elephant. Shape the path.

#377: 12 Rules for Life with Jordan Peterson

Jordan Peterson speaks more on his worldview and new book.

#1070 - Jordan Peterson

Jordan Peterson, champion of many people against 'neo-liberal' ideas, is quite persuasive and an engaging speaker.

The Surrender Experiment

A memoir about finding enlightenment through Buddhist meditation, and how that brought fortune to the other areas in the author's life. Well-told, but I wasn't able to fully get past my initial skepticism.

Lab Girl

Memoir of a female plant biologist from Minnesota with a one-track mind for science. No BS.

The Backfire Effect - Part Four

The Backfire Effect has been memed beyond recognizability from its conception. Clears the air about what exactly it is and where exactly is has been and cannot be observed.

126: Matthew Walker | Unlocking the Power of Sleep

Really smart woman who took a pretty unconventional path of running underground poker games, lost it all, and has come back strong.

David Deutsch on the infinite reach of knowledge

Futurist and optimist. Humans are significant because we have knowledge.

Draft No. 4

Master-class on long-form nonfiction writing (books, newspaper articles), with personal narrative interspersed. Not super applicable to me (editors, publishers, etc.) but extremely well-written and engaging nontheless.

How Exercise May Help the Memory Grow Stronger

Exercise -> stronger synapses -> stronger memory, stronger brain actions

Quitting my job has been the best thing I've done for my career

Interesting account from a software developer who quit his job and how it helped his life.

108: James Clear | Forming Atomic Habits for Astronomic Results

Reducing effort to make habits second-nature.

Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Adapts the story of Harry Potter by attempting to explain wizardry through the scientific method. I don't think I was smart enough to read this.

The 5 Elements of Effective Thinking

A case for the five parts of learning and thinking critically: deep understanding, failure, questions, the flow of idea, and change. Plus a helpful mnemonic!

Is the FIRE Movement a Good Idea?

You need money so you don't have to worry about day-to-day living, but you may not want to actually retire early.

The Bad Show

Are bad and good black and white? How do you evaluate the gray area?

#434: Legendary Coach John Wooden's Secrets of Leadership

Takeaways from one of the most accomplished coaches ever.

How to Study: A Brief Guide

Summary of study tips from Philosophy + Computer Science professor at University of Buffalo

EuroPython 2018: How to Ignore Most Startup Advice and Build a Decent Software Business

Lifestyle business, a counterpoint to VC-backed businesses.

#71 - Chris D'Elia

Don't be a cuda.

Google AI Chief Jeff Dean's ML System Architecture Blueprint

Lifestyle business, a counterpoint to VC-backed businesses.

Malcolm Gladwell's 12 Rules for Life

Pull the goalie.

60: Todd Kashdan | The Bright Truth about Your Dark Side

Channelling anger and frustration positively

151: Dave Asprey | Biohacking the Way to a Bulletproof Life

Dave Asprey biohacking

337. How to Build a Smart City

City-scale growth and management is extremely intricate and difficult.

51: Shane Snow | How To Work Together Without Falling Apart

Snippets of advice on how groups can succeed.

335. Does Doing Good Give You License to Be Bad?

It's inconclusive which way the seesaw of Corporate Social Responsibiliy vs. moral licensing tips.

Advice For First Time Founders

Answers from YC founders about three big startup questions

The Defining Decade

Mostly anecdotes and stories about how the 20s are high-stakes but not treated appropriately by people going through them. Entertaining read, not much actionable. Wish there was more data. Good reminders to get my ass into gear.

How to Kick Ass, With Mel Robbins

Life hacks and advice from author Mel Robbins.

Feedback Friday | How to Charge What You're Worth

Not much to see, just one resource and one nugget.

5 Psychology Terms You're Probably Misusing

Bystander apathy, hardwired brain, statistically reliable, personality type, and steep learning curve are all commonly misused.

#402: Why Honor Matters

What is honor? It still has a place as a part of civilization.

Nepotism: When Hiring the Best Just Won't Do

Nepotism is the practice of hiring family members who might not be qualified for the job. It has a long and checkered history.

Suze Orman: From Waitress to Personal Finance Wizard

Suze Orman is another example of stubbornness and hustle helping someone break into an industry.

Will Storr | Avoiding Self-Obsession in the Age of the Selfie

Don't compare yourself with other people. Evaluate against your own inner barometer.

Duana Welch | The Science of Jealousy and How to Manage It

Jealousy is rooted deeply into our psychology but there are ways to carve out the bad parts and leave the good.

#391: Micronutrients, Genetics, and Preventing Age-Related Diseases

Micronutrients are essential for health. Magnesium, folate, etc. Also goes into intermittent fasting.

Improv'ing Leadership

How a background in improv and comedy prepared Dick Costolo to be a CEO in Silicon Valley

#388: Why Group Culture Is So Important to Success

Leaders create strong cultures by providing vision, purpose, and connection, freeing members to engage in "deep fun"

#384: What It Really Means to Be Self-Reliant

Self-reliance is maintaining sovereignty over oneself in a connected civilized world.

#380: How to Be Braver

What bravery really is and how to apply it.

Career Moats 101

Summary page of CommonCog's first year of writing on Career moats

Muscle Over Motor

Manual labor > electric labor for the able-bodied. Also need to consider opportunity cost of time


Thoughts on starting for the first time and starting over.

Why Are We Still Teaching Reading the Wrong Way?

Reading should be taught methodically beginning with phonics, not by putting books in front of kids and telling them to read.

Nina Jacobson: How to Make a Hit in Hollywood

Big failures can be handled by pushing forward and believing in your core values.

120: Molly Bloom | The One Who Makes the Rules Wins the Game

Really smart woman who took a pretty unconventional path of running underground poker games, lost it all, and has come back strong.


Collection of thoughts and questions about dealing with people.

SYSK Selects: How Grief Works

Grief isn't as easily described ('5 stages') or widespread as you might think

Memorizing a programming language using spaced repetition software

Programming-specific SRS tips

The Wisdom of No Escape

Series of Buddhist-centric talks about life given by Pema Chodron. Generally too hand-wavy for me but good reminders of how to behave and live. Not heavily religious.

The Social Skills Guidebook

Mostly common sense advice on how to navigate social situations. Honestly reassured me about my own social skills more than anything else.

Why Being a Perfectionist is An Obstacle (And How to Beat It)

You're a work in progress that will never be perfect. Accept that and keep getting better.

Ryan Michler | Why Man Is His Own Worst Enemy

Title misleading. Just a chat about processes that help you maintain sanity