Month: March 2017

  • Kwame Anthony Appiah and others on hierarchy

    The entire article is very good. Apart from their civic importance, hierarchies can be surprisingly benign in life more broadly. Hierarchy is oppressive when it is reduced to a simple power over others. But there are also forms of hierarchy that involve power with, not over. Daoism characterises this kind of power effectively in the […]

  • A new machine learning journal

    From Chris Olah, it’s called Distill: As people rush out new discoveries without putting effort into communication, they produce research debt. The field becomes noisy and energy draining to follow. In such an environment, I think it’s extremely valuable for there to be people focused on human understanding, clarity, and communication — a kind of […]

  • Memetic selection

    A short review of Dennett’s new book, From Bacteria to Bach and Back. And a quote explaining the main theme of the book: Yet, as Dennett and others argue, genetic evolution is not enough to explain the skills, power and versatility of the human mind. Over the past 10,000 years, human behaviour and our ability […]

  • *They Thought They Were Free* by Milton Mayer

    My notes from They Thought They Were Free by Milton Mayer. Published in 1955, this book is a collection of stories by Mayer, a Jewish-American, as he interviewed 10 Germans in Kronenberg. Each of them were involved with Nazism in some form, but none of them were very high in the ranks of leadership, in […]

  • Past times

    A quote I dug up in my notes from Arthur Conan Doyle’s Complete Sherlock Holmes He walked past the couch to the open window, and held up the drooping stalk of a moss-rose, looking down at the dainty blend of crimson and green. It was a new phase of his character to me, for I […]

  • Imported archives

    This afternoon I imported a ton of archives from previous years and a few different places. Some posts are about things I had forgotten I knew, but it’s so nice to re-read them, for example this old analysis of Christianity and Alcohol. My thinking hasn’t really changed much since 2011, to be perfectly honest. But […]

  • How do you read advanced math texts?

    How do you read advanced math texts? “Slowly.”

  • Edward Tufte keynote: “The Future of Data Analysis”

    Edward Tufte keynote: “The Future of Data Analysis” The presentation starts at 2:30. The news article is here Bulletpoint take-aways from the end of the presentation: Numbers on the screen are representations of the real world. Look at the real world, not just representations. Walk around what you want to learn about. In doing creative […]