Monthly Archives: January 2014

Quote

The self-narrating animal

“We’re sto­ry­telling crea­tures by na­ture, and we tell our­selves story after story until we come up with an ex­pla­na­tion that we like and that sounds rea­son­able enough to be­lieve. And when the story por­trays us in a more glow­ing and pos­i­tive light, so much the bet­ter.”

– Dan Ariely, The (Honest) Truth About Dishonesty

We debate in groups but think in solitude

Conversations are meant to be transformational – it is the reason why language exists. Famous leaders sometimes prefer high-octane debates over consensus building.  Jeff Bezos and Amazon is famous for using confrontational, high-decibel verbal exchanges for decision-making.

But people and companies are different – in much the same way that your best friend may be a great listener over drinks in private but turns into the most confrontational, obnoxious jerk when the group gets big enough.

Humans are social animals.  But we are also solitary animals.  We are different animals in different settings. Continue reading

5 reasons I let Evernote Premium expire

My Evernote Premium service expired this past December.  I decided against renewing the subscription. Evernote is a fantastic free product, but when deciding whether to pay a yearly subscription fee, previously small shortcomings may become deal-breakers.  Continue reading

Man vs nature

“Shakespeare’s plays often turn on the idea of fate, as much as drama does. What makes them so tragic is the gap between what his characters might like to accomplish and what fate provides them.”

 

― Nate Silver, The Signal and the Noise

 

Keep up the good work – a feedback more valuable than it seems.

At work, it is now ever-more popular to give and receive feedbacks routinely.  These business guys, these doctors, and even these video game makers all talk about giving frequent feedbacks makes you a better whatever-it-is-that-you-do.  Unfortunately, very few people talked about the other person – what does one do when all these feedbacks started coming your way from well-intentioned leaders? Continue reading

Sorry Mario, our princess is in another castle. But here’s a job offer!

I spent the better part of childhood playing video games.  These absurdist approaches to accomplishment — rescuing a princess by jumping over turtles, rolling ever larger objects until you physically create a moon, or growing potatoes to defend against a brigade of the undead — they were immensely enjoyable. “Enjoyable” was all that video games were ever designed to be… until now.

As a kid, when my mom would grow upset when I go over my allotted hour – usually by factors >100% – I would defend by claiming it is improving my ability to think ahead and coordinate my hands and eyes.  Now, twenty years later, science has begun to prove me right.  However, when I sent this article to her to prove my point, she just chuckled and said that these things don’t actually translate to better jobs, better income, or even better “real-life” skills. Continue reading

The career advice an iPad would give

“Success in today’s world is no longer about being the best,” the iPad may say, “It’s about being good enough.” Continue reading