With the Voyager space sailing beyond out solar system, this article looks at some ways we could send people to Alpha Centauri.
This article is a complete mindmelt 🤯: ion drives, solar sails, nuclear rockets, foraging for dark matter.
I don’t really understand this stuff, but I do like the idea that people could potentially fly around the universe and find a new home. Especially considering the black holes out there.
Deep dive into the interactive animations in the Sire Shortcuts app. I need to spend some time and understand this. It’s pretty involved.
PS I love the nice whiteboard he came up with for the architecture.
Amazing article on solving problems by first understanding essentials of the problem (not the solution). Simplify and focus on the big picture or “core” of the problem before jumping into details.
Finding the true form of the problem is almost as important as the answer that comes after.
I practically want to copy and past the whole article in here, but here are a few select highlights.
Finding the core problem
…it is to get the bigger picture right before you go chasing after the details. Otherwise, you start by pointing yourself in the wrong direction.
Shannon’s reasoning… was that it isn’t until you eliminate the inessential from the problem you are working on that you can see the core that will guide you to an answer.
Looking at the problem in different ways
One of Shannon’s go-to tricks was to restructure and contrast the problem in as many different ways as possible. This could mean exaggerating it, minimizing it, changing the words of how it is stated, reframing the angle from where it is looked at, and inverting it.
In every day life
Much of life — whether it’s in your work, or in your relationships, or as it relates to your well-being — comes down to identifying and attacking a problem so that you can move past it.
This mural is at Elibaeth St. and South Congress.
This #AccidentallyWesAnderson Instagram post caught my eye.
Next time I’m in LA, I’m going to check out this super-short and super-cute railway. It looks like it covers about one block in downtown LA. It’s been around over 100 years, minus a hiatus in the 1970’s and 1980’s due to some “urban renewal”.
Or “This beach isn’t nearly as nice as Hawaii.” Hey, Galveston is still a beach! Sand, waves, wind. Heaven.
Just because there might exist some other version somewhere that is (arguably) better doesn’t mean this one isn’t good/fun/yummy. You’re only hurting yourself, people! So I like this Teddy Roosevelt quote.
Comparison is the thief of joyTeddy Roosevelt via Soup Peddler
I’d consider myself to be an optimist, even against overwhelming evidence at times. It’s a sort of faith. It’s fun to be optimistic and see what happens. I like to give the middle finger to negativity.
While this article acknowledges the positive powers of optimism, it also details the surprising advantages of some healthy pessimism. I may need to work on leveraging some pessimism more, especially while estimating projects and budgets!
Pessimism can help us prepare and do our best work, increase desire and enthusiasm to improve things, and even reduce anxiety by motivating focus over avoidance. 🤯
The down side of optimism
Multiple research has shown that optimism has a dark side too. Not only it can lead to poor outcomes, but it makes us underestimate risks or take less action.
Optimists pay less attention to detail and fail to seek new information to challenge their rosy views leading to poor decisions.
The Optimism Bias is one of the two key factors why we inaccurately calculate big projects — we tend to underestimate both time and cost.
Defensive Pessimist is a particular type of pessimist that takes negative thinking to a whole new level. It’s a strategy that helps people reduce their anxiety — it drives focus rather than avoidance.
The defensive pessimist focuses on the worst-case scenario — s/he identifies and takes care of things that optimists miss. This approach can help us better prepare for events that are out of our full control such as a job interview.
In philosophy, Meliorism is a concept which drives our ability to improve the world through alteration — we can produce outcomes that are considered better than the original phenomenon.
Meliorism doesn’t mean ignoring the world’s evils. But to accept life’s setbacks as challenges to overcome. This joie de vivre energizes us — it boosts our desire and enthusiasm
I’ve been thinking lately how many “good” things have a bad side, and many “bad” things have a good side. A crisis is an opportunity. A loss is a rebirth. A failure renews focus. Sadness motivates appreciation. And on the flip side, getting what you want can be a letdown or even a disappointment.
I think Shakespeare’s quote is mostly about attitude and perception, and that’s a big part of this equation.
There is nothing good or bad, but thinking makes it so.William Shakespeare
I love that Herman is actually delivering this speech to a bunch of rich boys. And only Max Fischer applauds. 😆
Take dead aim on the rich boys. Get them in the crosshairs and take them down. Just remember: they can buy anything, but they can’t buy backbone. Don’t let them forget that. Thank you.
These scientists used a virtual telescope the size of the entire Earth to nail down this black hole. And it appears that Einstein’s “least favorite idea” is holding up. Also, black holes are terrifying. 🤯
Great podcast about Houston’s ethnic diversity and a crazy giant underground cistern.
Anna Pham of Mai’s Restaurant and the chef Chris Shepherd discuss Houston’s heritage and how it’s being reinvented.
This episode of The Daily gives a great overview of why the heck “Brexit” has been so hard for the British prime minister to work out. I never really got it until now.
In a last-ditch effort to fulfill her promise of delivering Brexit, Britain’s prime minister dangled a final sacrifice.
— Read on www.nytimes.com/2019/04/01/podcasts/the-daily/brexit-uk-theresa-may.html
I can’t even describe how amazing Garageband is. It’s lets you record almost anything. And it sounds good! And it’s free! And easy to use! And it has basically all the guitar amps and pedals in the world. And real professional musicians use it to record real music. And it works on the iPhone and iPad.
I just recored a punk-inspired version of Bruce Springsteen’s No Surrender with it. I sang (yikes!) and played two guitar tracks, Drums were compliments of Garageband. It took like half an hour. I mean, what the hell?!?!
Here is Steve Jobs introducing GarageBand in 2004. “Garageband is a major new pro music tool. But it’s for everyone.”
And here’s an interesting list of milestones for Garageband.
Okay, this stuff drives me crazy. I’m glad to see an article about it.
Here’s the perfect quote to summarize the idea:
The point is to prepare the kid for the road, instead of preparing the road for the kid.
Via Apple News.
Procrastination is emotional
We put something off when there is a negative mood about it. By putting it off, we (1) get some momentary relief and (2) increase negativity about the task. This makes us want to put it off more. So it becomes an “especially vicious” cycle. We momentarily feel better by putting off an unwanted task, and we learn to dislike the task more the more we put it off. 😑
This only compounds the negative associations we have with the task, and those feelings will still be there whenever we come back to it, along with increased stress and anxiety, feelings of low self-esteem and self-blame.
Procrastination is irrational
When we procrastinate, we’re not only aware that we’re avoiding the task in question, but also that doing so is probably a bad idea. And yet, we do it anyway.
With procrastination, we are overly focused on the present and tend to look at our futures self (who has to do the task) as a different person, and the thing we’re putting off as “somebody else’s problem”. 🤷🏻♂️😳
Dealing with procrastination
Aka “The Bigger Better Offer”. Make it easier and feel better to not procrastinate than to procrastinate.
Procrastination is about emotions, not productivity. The solution doesn’t involve downloading a time management app or learning new strategies for self-control. It has to do with managing our emotions in a new way.
- Consider only the next action
- Make your temptations more inconvenient
- Make the things we want to do as easy as possible
- Forgive yourself for procrastinating. This can actually break the cycle!
- Practice self-compassion. (Side note, this also “boosts motivation, enhances feelings of self-worth and fosters positive emotions like optimism, wisdom, curiosity and personal initiative.”)
- Be curious about your own feelings on the procrastination
|👉 Does It Actually Matter Where You Go to College?|
I was curious about this article because, when hiring for my kind of job at least, a fancy college doesn’t make any real difference for a candidate. It just matters how competent you are at the skill. And many of the smartest people I have ever known went to “middle tier” public schools.
This article says that public and community colleges tend to lift people up financially more than fancy colleges.
The colleges that most excel in promoting social mobility… aren’t the Ivies — they are excellent, open-access public institutions and community colleges with large numbers of working-class students, like the City University of New York.
And fancy schools don’t make you happier or more fulfilled.
For a broader view, a 2014 survey of tens of thousands of graduates by Gallup found that college selectivity correlated not at all with later satisfaction in work or fulfillment in life
via Instagram https://ift.tt/2TPXh13
Nothing super groundbreaking in this article, but it’s a good refresher. Basically, you earn a certain amount of success, happiness, and confidence by failing and bouncing back over time.
This is a lot of how I look at parenting (hopefully) resilient kids…
…the best way to gain strength is by falling and continually bouncing back, practicing, working around obstacles. But this flexibility is critical to long-term success.
Fortunately, it’s easy to struggle. 😉 This makes me think of George Washington, who failed a lot. Like, he was pretty bad for quite a while before he became amazing.
You don’t need to go out of your way to struggle and stumble, because it will happen naturally to most of us. And many a great has failed before they bloomed.
Wow, it’s kind of sad to see this nice idea implode after a few years.
Believing in a comfortable future for our planet probably means some giant carbon-sucking machines.
#enchantedrock #hiking #kids #texas #fredericksburg #shotoniphone #springbreak #mcgkids #bluesky via Instagram https://ift.tt/2Y8fu8t
On my Austin to-do list, this “monumental work, a 2,715-square-foot stone building with luminous colored glass windows, a totemic wood sculpture, and fourteen black and white marble panels” looks amazing!
Related NY Times articles…
When things seem a little “off”, you might be right. Not only is the universe expanding, but it is expanding faster than we (i.e. astrophysicists) thought. But don’t worry, we’re only off by about 9%.
Look for the word “megaparsec” in this article. It means 3.26 million light years. 🚗💫🤯
An existential nightmare
If dark energy remains constant, everything outside our galaxy eventually will be moving away from us faster than the speed of light, and will no longer be visible. The universe will become lifeless and utterly dark.
As the universe expands, the push from phantom energy would grow without bounds, eventually overcoming gravity and tearing apart first Earth, then atoms.
But just a theory so far
Let’s science the sh*t out of this…
Two space missions — the European Space Agency’s Euclid and NASA’s Wfirst — have been designed to study dark energy and hopefully deliver definitive answers in the coming decade. The fate of the universe is at stake.
A phone addict puts away his phone for a month. I’m not convinced that phones hurt our brains, but this looks like an interesting story.
Favorite quote from this story:
“I’m sad that you’re having trouble with this,” she said, “because it’s been great for me.”
This looks fun! And they’re supposed to open a permanent exhibit in San Antonio eventually.
Do512 is What To Do in Austin
— Read on do512.com/hopscotch
We went, and here are some pics!
Takeaway: App developers are not the fastest growing job. But they are the fastest growing well-paid job.
There is one six-figure salary job that is seeing more openings than any other over the next few years: app developer. The U.S. will add over 255,000 app developer positions to the job market between 2016 and 2026, more than any other high-paying jobhttps://www.linkedin.com/feed/news/the-fastest-growing-well-paid-job-3911825/
- Do you know what the new role is clearly defined, you know what the expectations are and why the position is open?
- Do you have (or want to develop) the skills to do the job?
- Do you want to do that kind of work?
What does success in this role look like?
Health and lifestyle
The new gig might negatively impact your health if it’s not a good fit. Chronic work-related stress can cause high blood pressure and elevated cholesterol levels.
If you don’t have specific objectives in mind — identifiable skills you want to sharpen, an idea of the direction you want your career to go — you’re not going to know if this promotion is going to get you to closer to those goals
Use self-assessment tools such as Strengthsfinder to figure out if the promotion plays to your talents.
“Think of what you’re doing now, what you’re good at, what you want to do more of, and see if the promotion will allow you to continue to do that,” she said. “If the promotion is not going to let you do that, it might not be a good fit.”
Try ranking the top three things you’re looking for in any position you take. Everyone’s priorities are different. For some, it could be proximity to home, the ability to engage in challenging work and maintaining a certain salary bracket. For others, flexible work hours, being on a cohesive team and access to mentors are priorities
It’s important to keep an open mind and think about the doors that might open if you take the job. You could contribute to an exciting project, break into an emerging industry or learn a new skill set
focus on the things you can control when it comes to your professional development. Instead of fretting over when opportunities for advancement will present themselves, hone your expertise and strengthen your network so you’ll be a competitive hire no matter what
The goal is deep work. Avoid “persistent attention residue” by avoiding “quick checks” of your phone, websites, etc.
Seems like this basically boils down to clearing out the time and space to focus on deep work.
Concentration is like a super power in most knowledge work pursuits
- Actively include “deep work” blocks of time in your day and protect them. Use your calendar if you need to. Make deep work a habit rather than rely on willpower.
- Embrace boredom. Frequently expose yourself to boredom. If you whip out your phone every time you get bored, your brain will build a Pavlovian connection between boredom and stimuli. So when it comes time to think deeply (which is boring in the sense of lacking constant stimuli), your brain won’t tolerate it.
- Quit (reduce?) social media. Be intentional and selective about what digital channels you allow into your life. Helps protect your ability to focus.
- “Drain the shallows”. Shallow work does not require extended concentration (check email, schedule meetings). If your day becomes dominated by shallow work, you won’t get to the deep work that really moves the needle. Aggressively minimize shallow work and be organized and productive about what remains.
Book – Deep Work
Meta-programming for Swift, stop writing boilerplate code
I haven’t tried this yet, but it sounds interesting if you find yourself writing repetitive code and can’t find another way around it. I gather it generates code from some sort of template.
Sourcery is a code generator for Swift language, built on top of Apple’s own SourceKit. It extends the language abstractions to allow you to generate boilerplate code automatically.
Holy crap, there’s finally a dedicated iOS API (NWPathMonitor) that detects and monitors network status!
We’ve been dealing with or avoiding the problem of network connectivity on iOS apps for years. Now you can monitor the network status with a callback sort of like you would with location or other services. And you can specify wi-fi or cellular.
I’m glad this finally made it to the to of Apple’s backlog! 👍
A beautifully elegant way to store Swift properties in UserDefaults or Keychain. This approach really makes the most of Swift extensions and protocol-oriented programming. And more than anything, it makes for very simple, reusable code.