Monday, December 26, 2011

Not worth doing

Worth but not worth doing There are many things that are really worth doing. But they are not worth doing. When doing refers to the action of doing, rather than having them done without the effort. It is better to be on time. But it may not be worth doing. If doing entails obsessing for two hours to make sure you come on time (+ the later pain and discomfort when not arriving on time) it is not worth even to have it on your list.  So it is usually really best to be on time, but when accounting for the cost of doing it, it is not worth it. (and accounting to later pain when late, not even worth having it on your list...) Small improvements usually are the same. Lofe can be wastly better if we introduce nedless small improvements. I mean it. Because a million small improvements accumulate to even a completely different life. But usually the small things a not worth the effort and place in mind of *doing* them. Here comes the knowledge part. When people do not do something, they usually make themselves beleiving it is worthless. Just to be able not to do it (there is a natural bias that if something has value we must do it, so it is easier to avoid something by having a full belif it is useless.). The second reason is to feel comfrotable about not doing it. We fool ourselves that it is totally worthless in order to feel good. A wish person undstands that if its not worth doing it is not worth to do @even@ if it has some value. No pain. Because it makes no sense to do.  And.... No stupidity. You still acknowledge its value. Sometimes, the knowledge of this small value is useful. 

Sunday, October 23, 2011

The autodidact advantage. 2 : Much more aspects

The weighting problem. In reality, the distribution of the importance of different parts of knowledge, is highly skewed. Some ideas are immensly more  relevant than others. I suspect that formal training makes you treat all knowledge with the same importance (got to pass exams;))

Very exciting to think freshly and at your own interest and pace.

Since everyone thinks that formal education is where the wisdom is, there is much more place to invent and learn in the less trodden way. It is like digging gold in a new continent. You do not dig gold in newyork city center.

Since most formal training is not teaching you much, it is a huge waste that can be utilized to much more effective study.

If you want a hundred papers looking for minor variances of known phenomena maybe you are better off with those people who are "in the trade". If you prefer a single breakthrough, you may be better off trying to listen to foreigners

Being AD, you can concentrate on the areas where you have the most advantage. i.e. you can optimize your learning inline with your personal strengths. (remember the 20/80 adage "You win by entering the races where you have an advantage, not by striving to improve your performance in 'the race'" – The 20/80 principle P.142).
You may also focus your learning toward your goals.

The mistake of selection. Some notice that people with degrees are sharoer on average. Yet the degree is probably not the cause. Smarter people have higher chance to enroll and finish formal studies. 
Most of the effect of formal degrees is to signal who is capable. Possibly the study itself is not adding (there is no easy data on how much of  degrees effect to salarie is signaling  and selection, but it is very plausible)

Looks like learning and reading without the purpose of passing exams and writing a paper may be much more optimal. Because you can do shortcuts, and once you get the point you are done.

AD is a selection toward true interest in the topic, and a real interest may increase truth seeking and investment is whatever needed to know better. But formal learning is usually oriented toward a goal, and when your goal is to accomplish your PhD, truth and intellectual curiosity is not the highest value.

{copied}"The reasonable man adapts himself to the world," wrote George Bernand Shaw. "The unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man." 
we need sutodidacts that are not in the habit of accomodating themselves to the system

Saturday, October 22, 2011

The autodidact advantage. The beginning......

Ultimately Being autodidact is about creativity. The difference between predictable ways of doing knowledge and autonomously chosen wyas, is what differs institutionally taught thinkers and self learned. Creativity and self created order is a double edged quality. But only a moron will say that predefined order is always better.

Autodidact is about enjoying learning and thinking. When you are free, you tend to learn with joy. In enjoyable ways. You choose the most interesting subjects and so on. 
Ultimately, the more you enjoy the process the more productive you are. And more creative ( good mood breds ceativity, research shows)

Self study has more relevance. You have no system to force you, so you gravitate towards what is naturally most interesting. Which is usually the more relevant questions

More practically oriented. 

Better odds for interesting findings. Much of academ is about doing thing is a quite known way. Hence, many people act similarly and may get incrementally better results, but not much unexpected breakthrough. Autodidacts have better chnaces to find really new things (steve jobs was thinking differently)

No domain insulation. Much insights come from combining different fields. Autodidacts are less field secluded.

Do not listen to phds about this
The self interest of the phds is against autodidacts. Every critic of this that has a phd, is suspect. As he has a strong self interest to exalt the value of his institutional (and overvalued) "knowledge"

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Why voting is rational

Assume the value of difference between two candidates is half a trillion dollar (reasonable with crises, iraq etc.).

With twenty or less million votes being critical, the probability of a. Sngle vote changing who is president is 1/20,000,000. 

The expected value of a single vote is the soceity value ($500,000,000,000) times teh probability of the vote being pivotal. * 1/20,000,000

==== $25,000 value of a single vote. 

This is the value for soceity.

Thus, if voters care about their soceity as a whole, they are very reasonable in spending one. Hour to vote and giving. The public $25,000 in value.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Your first idea, vs. the rest of newere ideas

You have a first idea that come to your mind. then you start entertaining other possibilities. maybe maybe and maybe. 
there is the one first idea, and the myriad of alternative ideas. who is better? (on average)

The first idea that comes to mind, compared to every single other idea, is generally better. Not better than all the ideas. But better than the next one, or if compared to one idea of the bunch chosen randomely.
the reason is that what comes first to mind is not coming first for no reason. the system is usually bringing the seemingly best idea first, and every additional idea is on average of lower quality.

Now one of the additional million ideas, is probably better tahn the first one. But this is only this idea that is the best of all the rest. 

So if you select the best idea of all the all the newer ideas, you can get a much better idea than the first. But the average idea is worse.
PS> related to stupid openmindedness post above

stupid openmindedness

being open minded is many times bad. very bad.
open mindedness is useful only when the outcome of opening ones mind is better than the closed minded alternative. 

So opening your mind when stupid people are around, or those who do not understand your issues etc. is stupid. 

I am now walking on the street and a couples of advertising teenagers stop me to give me a leaflet of a boxing match. This is distracting and useless.
Openmindedness suggest that I will think again "maybe I hsould take the leaflet?"
This is stupid openmindedness.

stupid open mindedness is very common when we have an emotional want to something. trying again with the ex? do nto be closed minded, give it a chance.
some newspaper is on the desk, you know it is poisenous for the brain and the psyche (only troubles there), yet you are enfatuated to read it. so you become openminded "maybe there is still something useful" + " do nto be so sure on your opinion, some people find newspapers sueful" etc.

The same idea holds when people that have a vested interest tell you to be openminded and listen to them. I have a rule "never listen to self improvement advice from someone currently arguing with you / complaining. Note that the very giving of advice in this case is highly inelegant. Again, stupid openmindedness makes you listen, and again you r self interest.

assumptions (theories) and local optimizaitons of individuals

some peopel ahve a grand theory of life. Like having a specific health approach, or to thinking.

They are immensly successful and have many success stories of followers as well.

These guys are efficient, smart, and are DOERS.

Being efficient, smart and a DOER is a good way to have lots of success.

Yet, they attribute their successes to their grand theory of things. Instead to plain old doing things well, maximizing, working hard etc.

This is a huge delusion, and very easy to fall into.

Germ free pigs, air condition, and the optimized life

Pigs that are grown with zero germs are healthier than the average pig.
This statement is highly misleading. Wile technically true, it ides the fact that these pigs are very very sensitive.

They must get a very special kind of food. Small change in food and they are dead.
If by whatever accident they get a bacteria - end of story.

So they are healthier in case they were perfectly handled (which is the case much of the time).

The same story holds for some technical innovations.
Air condition in the hot summer improves feeling for most, and we can see that work performance gets better (for every temperature decrease from 30c down to 22 you improve work by 2%).

When you do not sterelize the airconditioner from accumulating bacteria, you get lots of upper respiratory infections. Solution is available. Yet until you do, there is lots of damage.
The sudden change of temperature when going out of the cooled room is dangerous. So, either you keep the in-out changes to minimum, or you minimize moving in-out. Again, the average user is not taking care, and many like extreme cooling etc.

I have not researched that, I I think there is a driness problem. Again, completely solveable, but very few do.

In sum, a good improvement IF and a huge if you do all parameters right .

The average.
What counts for practical life is not the theoretical usefulness, nor the effect on some specific person. But the average over all people and the average parameter.

Here the germless pigs are LESS healthy than the average pig. Because we count all pigs, including those who died by some infection, and those who by some case got the less-than-perfect food.
We want to nkow how much is moving to this regime faring on the sum of all cases, not a subgroup that is imagined to be the best one....

Same with aircondition. For practical purposes one may say that airconditon is bad (assume the sum of the side effects is not wirth the results).

This fairly represents many modern "improvements" where a sub group is better of. In theory it is better of, but when considering the whole thing, it is going backwards. (like marriage where ALL research ignores the terrible effects of marriage on the divorced)

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Bulshit, vs. Strange models and ...

The idea "i do not want to be like my parents" sounds delusional. Logically, what you want is a good life for ,your, life, and your life is so different.
Moreover, there is so much emotional involvement in the. Parental comparison that it is hard to thik straight when this comes to mind.

Yet, this can be a useful heuristic. The model you see is a mind model, which is as stupid and as partly useful as a ny model and frame of thinking.

In a way, many of our thoughts that we consider delusional have some meaning. Many seemingly irelevant ideas and memories that "perturb" thinking bear at times some knd of relevant ideas and attitudes to the question at hand.

P.s. This is a subtle justification to stupid thoughts. Most of the time, stupid is stupid

Friday, June 3, 2011

The one dimensionality problem

Sometimes, we discover a dimension of our existence that is central. For example, we discover that lack of sleep is what makes us feeling bad, and that changing this single parameter (napping, or more sleep) will produce a big change in our lives.

The side effect is that we tend to forget that there are other dimensions. And there will always be other relevant aspects. 
Once you put all your energy in one thing, you tend to later forget the multi dimensionality of life.

This is especially crucial for artificial solutions that avoid the source of the problem.
Consider asid/base balance. It is shown that modern diets are biased towards over acidity, thereby causing a constant state of overacidity illness (weak form of the disease acidosis).
There is an easy solution to ts problem. Take potassium bicarbonate supplements. This is the base mminerals that will balance it back. And there are hints in the resach that this works.

Doing this is super. Do it. Yet the central problem of nutritional imbalance is not solved. There are clearly other aspects of health affected with unhealthy food.

Clearly do it. Clearly do not think about "there is something better" because this is a non doing saying for losers. You improve and do not care about perfectionism. Yet still, there are other aspects untreated.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Who cares abiut evolution?

I am talking to a cute girl, it is enticing to think about dragging her to bed. 
But i do not want it. I have more interesting things to do now, and besides i do not want to spend my energy on this.

Should I follow what evolution is dragging me to do?

Nature is nature. But you have got to be a moron to accept the enslavement of evolution on us,

Like all realities, these effects and emotional dynamics are there and we live with them, trick them, sometimes bend our head to them. 
But taking them as a given prescription? This is totally stupid

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

We are not wired for overal utility/rational management of life

We are not wired for overal utility/rational management of life

A rational men, calculates every move (& and smile) with his sum total of utility in mind. If you forget calculation costs, this is sensible. You have a total of love, money, health, rest, exerience etc. And every move and decisoin goes for the maximization of this sum total.

Problem is, nature has not wired us to act this way. We have specified emltional systems, drives etc. 
Feeling hunger is the activation of a complex army of sensations motivations and thoghts that are solely geared towards eating. Same for sexual lust, wisdom search (assuming there is a natural tendency for searching wisdom.....) etc.

Besides that we are not wired for rational.... 

Acting and thinking in the rational summation way, kills (or weakens) the natural systems and dynamics. If when you are horney (and in bed with someone) you tell yourself "it is healthy to fuck", not only is this ludicrous, it literaly kills the natural system that says (cries) *sex*

That is why utilitarians are stupid
When you judge everything in terms of its overal utility, you lose appreciating the peculiarities, the specific, the beautiful and the experiental aspects of life.
Not only is it a lose of experience, but a lose of understanding. Life is in the specific, in the non summarized

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Reshuffling. changing the arrangement, without improving the whole

You see people investing lots of money to "renovate" their hiuse, while in practice they  just chsnge the order of rooms.

In life, likewise, you can make changes that are merely a reshuffle of the stuff, not an improvement.

Many job changes are like that. Chznging green with yellow.

With improvement, i mean increasing the overal value. Like when one improves his health, get a betterr job (rather than the common "path for improvement") and so on.

Take moving to another city.
Sometimes, it is about change. The general properties of both places are similar, and you just move.
Yet sometimes, it is a real improvement. If you go to a place whose atamosphere is making you happier, whose culture is betater for you, whkse jobs are more compatible with your life (or better air sun prices, etc.) that is an improvement.

Reshuffling - like all parameter changes- can improve life. 
Changing the order of rooms at home, while not a tangible improvement, can actually be a real improvement. 

While objectively the above is true, we should respect the value of positie illusions. People engage continousely in various tricks to delude themsekves thast they areimproving their lives. The very ide that life goes for the better gives hope and energy, and should nkt be undervalued. Reshuffling seres many times in these illusions.

Distinguish between reshuffling and improvement
Many changes in life do reshuffle, but do not improve the overal state of affairs. 

Sunday, May 15, 2011

It is not laziness. It is stopping the dynamicss

Finding my cellphone not charged is annoying. The additional pain is the self insult.
How could i be so lazi/stupid as to not charge it. It is such a small effort.

Not. Besides the ,doing effort, it has another sometimes very high cost.

What is the cost of using a condom?
Killing a dynamic. You are in the flow of of love making, and 1) stoping it all. 2) introducing mentally emotionally etc. An extremely mundane and unappealing action etc.
It has a highly debilitating effect. But much has to do with killing a dynamic. You practically lose much of the energy that was built in the air, in the bodies and in the mind states of the parties involved (no matter how many)

Teeth brushing can be relaxing for many, but for me, it sometimes takes me out f sleepiness and into action mode. So that sometimes it implies for me (i guess i am an exception) losing the dynamic of moving into sleep.

When you are already on the go whereever, and the cell phone charging comes to mind, going for the charger may mean cutting the flow of anything else. And this cost is not always trivial

PS. Have you noticed how many people are stuck with an empty battery phone. I used to think they a morons, why not get the habit to charge nightly. (i am right). But now i understand it better. (yet building this habit of nightly charging is highly worth it)

Many aphorisms now on twitter

"it has value"

Almost everything has some value.

We cannot pay attention or pursue everything that has value.
So usually people Assume that anything that is not very important is irelevant, worth nothing. Which is stuoid and untrue. Albit maybe practically useful delusion.

Being realistic enough to accept the value of the miryad tngs we do not pursue, yet not getting upset or drawn to ursue them, requires a strong presence of mind. Or simply ebing smart enough. (to have the deeo understanding )

"it has value" has a deeper notion, a cold one. The idea that when something has value it does not mean we run on all four to get it. We can calmly ignore it, or treat it as something with some vaoue but no more.

I hope the idea went throught.

Monday, March 7, 2011

causation vs. inherent value

It is curious and tempting to think about why we came to think about something.

yet this is very dangerous as it mixes the idea itself with the less relevant source thereof.

It is many times emotional conflicts, mistakes and obsessions that lead us to think on very right ideas.

The same in emotional and behavior directions.
Observations, and decisions may originate in strange approaches. Cynicism, emotional blindness and other troubles of the soul lead us to observe and decide.
Yet the meaning of decisions is only about its inherent value. And an observation sourced in malice, can be highly valueable.

It is true that many sophisticate sounding life strategies are not coming for normal peaceful people. These folks usually are more natural in their ways of managing life, and maybe this is better.
yet once an idea occurs to us, we are very naturally observing this extant idea, and not its source. We follow it, even if some others are lucky enough never to think too much.

Another point in this direction is that while it maybe not normal to think on X, it is even more weired to avoid thinking on it once it appeared in our mind.
Maybe it is better to be naive and trusting, but once you are more aware of possible cheating, you are doubly stupid to avoid this knowledge. (Smarter still, seek situations where you are less subject to these....)

Monday, January 31, 2011

Boredom and enjoying life

In hostel chillout room chatting leisurely with travelers.
I am preaching about enjoying life, and an objeciton comes up.

"you will get bored having fun too long"
Kids wait for school after too long a summer holiday, but ts shows they aree kids and do not know to arrange for life enjoyment.

The idea is to find ways to enjoy life without getting bored. 

Seeing work as the only solution for boredom is moronic.
It is clearly true that work can be a last resource escape from an aimless do nothing that brings suffering. 

There are so many ways to enojoy life without getting bored. Without resorting to a job or similar things. 

We all need people in our lives. If you have no friends, you can always "create" social connections etc. But this has a sad side to it. And if you know to enjoy human society it is so far superior to technically going for it like a moron.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Results based coaching?

A central problem with most health and personal management advice is the lack of incentive to give advice or to coach.

Drugs, surgeries etc. make money for the seller. Yet health advice is not making money to anyone (like telling people to stop smoking). Hence no incentive to anyone to help. In these issues.

A simple solution here would be to create a system where someone makes money of helping us getting healthier.

It can be as simple as a health club where the owner get paid according to the added muscle mass of customers rather than the yearly pre paid way.

The greater idea is to make the personal interests of the individual aligned with that of health providers and anyone willing to help. Once so, efficient market will take care to improve matters