Tuesday, March 9, 2021

WTF Intersection

Dave mentioning money that is not used deteriorates in value. This is very similar to something Curtis mentioned on our phone call. "you have x dollars to help someone, if you don't help them the money goes away." This feels like a very interesting intersection. I feel like it gets to some core incentives which are fascinating. I am not quite sure what to make of it yet, or understand really what this means, but I am sure curious.

Podcasts

Lex Fridman #161 w/Jason Calacanis

Listening to this podcast was very interesting. Calacanis thinks quite differently than I do. This is certainly expected. There were a few interesting tidbits in this podcast I feel.

One was the mention of the tension between changing the world and work life balance. It seems to really change the world you almost have to go full in on your work. But I don't like this or think this is healthy. Why is it that the world is like this? Is it just because the person who works the most is going to outwork everyone else? And in that case they don't have that balance? Why do we incentivize this? Is this even healthy? To me it seems like it would be a lot healthier to have more balanced people coming up with balanced long term solutions.

Tim Ferris #270

Apple Podcast

Well I know I for sure bookmarked the shit out of this podcast but it was mainly for a single reason. That was because Chris Sacca was dropping some knowledge. One thing that stuck with me was his mention that the old school computer scientists were way better in a lot of ways. That the new generation of computer science students have had it much too easy. Going into college knowing the degree is very valuable, and not having that much outside life experience to go along with that degree (traveling to other countries, working different jobs). I believe he makes the point that, now, people have very narrow perspectives because they haven't needed to go out and see the world since they could easily get a job and buy a house. That this has led to a lack of empathy in the industry in general. I find this fascinating and agree, and recognize that I am very much in this same position. Yes, I've gotten more life experience than most other engineers I know, yet, I haven't seen anything. He also mentions people trying to build products for people they don't even know or understand. Again this resonates with me, and something that I need to work on more. Build on an informed and emotionally informed basis. Freaking loved this.

Lex Fridman Podcast #157‚Äč w/Natalya Bailey

One thing I absolutely loved from this podcast was her mention of the cost of ion engines in NASA days vs now and how low you have to go to compete with SpaceX. Something like 3 or 4 orders of magnitude cheaper. I guess my perspective on this was maybe it is good for the government to take care of things for a certain amount of time, and then let capitalism take over at some point. I feel maybe this could be the way with healthcare. Let the government take it, and if you want to compete the government has set the bar you have to beat. Now do it orders of magnitude better and improve outcomes across the board.

Lex Fridman Podcast #166 w/Cal Newport

This whole thing is worth a listen if you ask me. However this podcast inspired me to ask a few questions so wanted to note them down.

One thing was Newport mentioning something about what if we pay for social media? I think this is a very interesting idea and personally I would love to pay for social media if it can provide me an experience worth paying for. What would that experience be? Well I think something that is not addictive. I want to get genuine and deep updates from people. I am not sure exactly what this means, but something more than just a photo. However this immediately raises the question for me, do we want people spending even more time thinking about social media??! Anyway, I certainly want to hear your long form ideas. I also want to be able to separate out more cleanly, digital connections and physical ones. The things I might want to share between the groups might be mightily different. In general this brings the idea of sharing to different groups, which I think Google did in Circles back in the day. But I really think this is a great idea. I would love to see just certain information from certain groups some of the time. I might want to consume different information in a concentrated, intentional way. So I can actually focus on that topic relatively deeply and engage with the material.

Beyond paying for social media, I think there was a mention of what web 2.0 really means. It has turned out to be walled gardens, antithetical to the spirit of the Tim Berners Lee's vision for the Web. I do wonder if we through Web 2.0 have now found abstractions all the platforms use and can develop a protocol for them to have better interactivity between platforms. I think the bigger question is here, how does this benefit the person using the platform relative to today? What does the difference in interaction look like? How is it 'better'?

A big part of the podcast was also focused on E-mail. That we spend so much time kicking the ball back and forth without making progress. I guess in general I just don't like to worry about needing to kick the ball back. Rather I don't mind needing to kick the ball back as long as it means making progress on something. But I've found (at least in my previous job) E-mail doesn't really make any forward progress. At least not in the same way that a direct phone call with intention and purpose does. I guess however this is all focused on productivity, which is not in and of itself the best goal.