In both work and life, there are few things worse than having the wrong metrics. Let me explain. Most people think metrics are similar to spreadsheets or staplers—part of the office setting that nebulously help it be successful. But metrics are more than that. I’m arguing here that they deserve your ultimate attention, both in […]
I just finished reading Metamorphosis of Prime Intellect for the first time in around 15 years. It was even more remarkable the second time, I think because I’m more thoughtful now than I was then. [ NOTE: There will be spoilers if you continue. ] The book is about human happiness, and how it relates […]
We humans are fantasy engines. Evolution, wanting to make us as successful as possible, fills our thoughts with what we wish we were. Those dreams could be that of a beautiful princess, a savage warrior, or a powerful superhero. These all make sense because they represent pinnacles of reproductive fitness. Everyone wants to be irresistible, […]
I was talking to my friend Brad about our Kindle apps (and books) recently and he asked me if I knew about X-Ray. I confessed to the negative, and he proceeded to show me one of the most useful features I’ve seen in a digital reading device since screens. Kindle X-Ray allows you to click […]
I believe it’s hardest to lose someone you love when it happens unexpectedly. Either way it’s devastating, but if you have time to say your goodbyes you at least know, after they’re gone, that things were made right before they passed. But having someone simply go to work one day, and never return, is infinitely […]
If you only take one vitamin, which you probably shouldn’t, make sure it’s Vitamin D. People don’t get enough sun exposure, and it’s becoming increasingly clear through multiple studies, and studies of studies, that Vitamin D deficiency is a problem. It’s being linked to a number of things, including dementia, which is something I’d like […]
I have some predictions as to what will happen with the current Ebola epidemic over its lifecycle. They are not pleasant. The virus will accelerate its advance throughout Africa for the next few months The virus will spread globally, but will only get true penetration into the geographies/continents/countries that are most vulnerable Africa, India, and […]
The Art of Presentation I’ve been wanting for a while to start making short video clips about topics, and I’ve finally made my first one. The topic here is presentation, and the focus is on identifying the underlying rules of what makes a good one and a bad one. The goal is to separate what […]
I believe this because the primary attribute of youth seems to be a freedom of lifestyle, and a freedom to follow one’s passions—not the age of our bodies. Getting old, in other words, means embracing an external, society-defined set of restrictions on ones behavior. Some examples: Old people work jobs they don’t like, because they […]
I came to an interesting realization a while back. I realized that I have done and experienced everything that I could hope to do in a life, and that I am humbled by my fortune. Here are some of the things I’m thankful for: I have enjoyed a beautiful romance for over 20 years I […]
I’ve been thinking for some time that my next watch would be a GMT Master II, but I have changed course. My next watch will be a Nomos. It’s a German brand focused on precision and simplicity. I’m quite taken with them.
We pay a heavy price for our fear of failure. It is a powerful obstacle to growth. It assures the progressive narrowing of the personality and prevents exploration and experimentation. There is no learning without some difficulty and fumbling. If you want to keep on learning, you must keep on risking failure — all your […]
Many of us use metrics at work. When done correctly they can concisely communicate the health of whatever it is we’re trying to improve. I’ve been working on a system at work that captures the overall health of our organization in a clear, visual fashion. It occurred to me the other day that I should […]
There’s a simple formula for effectively managing something using metrics. Determine what matters to you and your organization Figure out how to capture it into a simple metric Manage that metric to improve your outcomes Number one is crucial, and it’s the step most people miss. People instead skip to two and three by picking […]
I’m a proponent of reverse planning, i.e. deciding what you want and then working backwards until you get it. That’s one option for pursuing happiness, but it’s hard to do because people don’t know what they want. A better approach may be figuring out what went wrong and then doing the opposite. Regrets Considerable research […]
I collect aphorisms, and there are many greats. But one distinguishes itself in both style and substance. It is better to want what you have than to have what you want. ~ The Proverbs Top of the list.
I rarely read essays that I know to be in my top five of all time, but I just read one. I’ll include a funny quote from it here that’s rather unrelated to the content, but I encourage you to read the entire thing: This assumption actually has a name: the “Coolidge Effect,” named after […]
People argue constantly about how dangerous diet soda is. The main arguments include: Aspartame is bad Man-made sweeteners are bad You shouldn’t drink anything that ants walk around Fake sugar tricks the body into thinking it’s real sugar Etc. All good points, but I think I can simplify. None is best If you are the […]
I have a friend named Andrew who used to play poker professionally. And when I say professionally, I mean he’s made hundreds of thousands of dollars doing it. One of the lessons he learned from that experience is the concept of figuring out what your natural tendencies are, and engineering around the weaknesses of those […]
Most people think of Cancer as a disease in the same way they think of Malaria or Polio. They conceptualize it as something that happens to some people if you’re unlucky, and we’re searching for the cure. With cancer, that’s not the situation. Cancer is a byproduct of age. The more your cells replicate, the […]
I try to read a lot, and one of the main concepts of this site is capturing knowledge in a clear and consumable fashion. To that end, I’ve started a Reading Project where I capture the books I’ve read and distill them into concise summaries. Here’s my latest entry on Thomas Piketty’s Capital in the […]
Lifetime intellectual enrichment might delay the onset of cognitive impairment and be used as a successful preventative intervention to reduce the impending dementia epidemic… ~ PSMag I fail to see how this is surprising. When you go into space your muscles atrophy because there is no gravity. And when you come back to earth you […]
I have an extraordinary friend named Ken.
Superman is my favorite superhero. Always has been. But lately—especially after seeing Man of Steel—I’ve had a major problem with the overall concept. In a word, the problem is radiation.
My girl took me to see Tool for our 20th anniversary of being together. Despite Tool being my favorite band since…well, since I had a favorite band, it was my first time seeing them live. And she didn’t just get us tickets—she got the VIP package. I wasn’t overly enthused about the VIP thing, actually. […]