This is a really quick method I've found for estimating what 2^n is. As we can see on the left there is some kind of pattern as to when we move up an order of magnitude If your n ends in a 0 a 4 or a 7 then you will be on the first… Continue reading Powers of 2
Who should houses be for?
Two views one often reads about houses are that they should be: An investment item: they are the largest store of wealth for most families and so people benefit if they increase in price like an investment.Affordable to first time buyers: you should be able to get onto the property ladder at an age younger… Continue reading Who should houses be for?
Arts and progress
Has there been any progress at all in philosophy since Confucius? Or in literature since Aeschylus? How does contemporary architecture bold, original and impressive as it is compare with the temples of ancient Egypt or Greece or our sculptures with those of the parthenon. This is a passage from The Lessons of History by Will… Continue reading Arts and progress
New ways to think
Yesterday while walking my pet sheep I saw a pink tree. Now I'd be surprised if this is something that's actually happened to you and yet I'd also be fairly confident that you didn't have much trouble picturing the scene. If I said what is 5*10 theres a good chance your mind will flash 50… Continue reading New ways to think
Before getting to the general rules I've come up with lets take a quick look at the most famous method to solve compounding questions. The rule of 72: what is it and why does it work "In order to find the time it takes to double your money divide 72 by the rate of return"… Continue reading Compounding
The Affluent Society – J K Galbraith
To secure to each family a [universal] minimum income would help ensure that the misfortunes of the parents, deserved or not, were not visited on their children. Investment in eduction assessed qualitatively as well as quantitatively could become the closest to being the basic index of social progress. The large corporation is seen as good… Continue reading The Affluent Society – J K Galbraith
How to actually change your mind – Eliezer Yudkowsky
Rationality: rational beliefs should not be preferences they should be the best estimate of the way things actually are. why bother learning about rationality if you can’t become fully rational, for the same reason that you would double check a test answer if you can’t be sure it will be correct. ‘if you don’t seek… Continue reading How to actually change your mind – Eliezer Yudkowsky
Clever people’s laws
One area I am quite interested in is eponymous laws. These are often statements that seem obvious in hindsight but reveal somethings about the real world that tends to be quite profound. Whilst one could quite easily know the ideas behind these without knowing the names I find that having the names crystallises some of… Continue reading Clever people’s laws
Map and Territory – Eliezer Yudkowsky
This is a book by Eliezer Yudkowsky on rationality. I would strongly recommend this to anyone interested in the subject and below I have put a few notes on bits I found particularly interesting. scope insensitivity: what would you pay to save 2000/20,000/20,000 birds? ideas is that you have a prototype bird and the emotional… Continue reading Map and Territory – Eliezer Yudkowsky
How confident are you?
There's a wonderful paper by Richard Zeckhauser (most of his stuff is pretty good) called investing in the unknown and unknowable. I could write about it but it's not too long and worth a read without me spoiling it. One thing that I do want to put up though is a little quiz from the… Continue reading How confident are you?