Monthly Archives: January 2013

Ideas that add up #31

In the late Middle Ages … traders and poets, sailors and adventurers moved overland and around the inland seas picking up and often mixing more or less distantly related languages as they went, and only the most thoughtful of them … Continue reading

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Ideas that add up #30

People often think that the best way to predict the future is by collecting as much data as possible before making a decision. But this is like driving a car looking only at the rear-view mirror — because data is … Continue reading

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Ideas that add up #29

We seem prone to a kind of Noah delusion: as long as we save a pair of each kind, we have fulfilled our responsibilities. But although a species that is down to its last few members is not  extinct, it … Continue reading

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Ideas that add up #28

…Bayes theorem is an important reality check on our efforts to forecast the future. How, for instance, should we reconcile a large body of theory and evidence predicting global warming with the fact that there has been no warming trend … Continue reading

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Ideas that add up #27

In a sense what the song is telling you, is that he is coming to that decision [the President in TV’s The West Wing, on whether to resign or not] during this five-minute spread. It doesn’t tell you what it … Continue reading

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Ideas that add up #26

Life is a process of continually realizing what a twerp you used to be. Unattributed caption shared on Facebook Silly Saturday again. But for real too. Honest. The version of this I saw was in Chinese, it read: 生活是個不斷發現自己以前是個傻蛋的過程. I’m … Continue reading

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Ideas that add up #25

The problem with d’Annunzio lies instead with his suffocating and relentless self-centredness and need for fame. His life, his dress, his love-making, his going to war — everything was so minutely stage-managed with an eye to how it would appear … Continue reading

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