Wednesday, October 5, 2011

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)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This is definitely one of the best posts I ever seen, A great advise from older people says that what matters is how good you are feeling, but this lacks of rigor, we got to count on the sides effects, side effects is what matters, if by improving my happiness I need eat lots of candies everyday certainly I will feel good, but what about side effects? Ignorance killed the cat and not curiosity.