Simply listing my interests doesn’t quite encapsulate everything I’d like to share. Instead, here is a list of the questions that much of my reading and thinking revolves around. Let me know what catches your interest and start a conversation with me! Tell me what questions I should be asking.
- Where do our stated preferences diverge from revealed preferences?
- Is the unexamined life worth living? (context)
- What do panics, especially of the moral and financial varieties, tell us about what’s actually going on?
- Why do we focus so much debate on trivial issues and what can we learn from infosphere’s various importance-focus differentials?
- How should we think about the consistency of our philosophical frameworks and our intuitions? Should we try to rationalize our way to internal consistency or be pluralist and accept that intuition can go beyond pure reason? What are the implications of each viewpoint?
- How do we separate values, policy, and culture? In what ways are they inextricably linked?
- Can centrism be rebranded into an identity or project that can be rallied around?
- How do we distinguish between those who are great at thinking vs those who most accurately map their mental models to reality?
- More questions TBD
My friend Athena Kan wrote up some of her questions. If you do too, send them to me!
This is a list of essays and authors I re-read often — the type of writing where you get something new out of it each time. Inspired by Slava Akhmechet’s post.
- The days are long but the decades are short, Sam Altman
- Was Cypher Right?: Why We Stay In Our Matrix, Robin Hanson
- It’s Not Easy, Oak Tree Capital
- Relentlessly Resourceful, Paul Graham
- What You Can’t Say, Paul Graham
- Visualizing Algorithms, Mike Bostock
- How to Say Nothing in 500 Words, Paul Roberts
- The LA Speed Story, Brian Shul
- The Costs of Savoring, Robin Hanson
- A Mathematician’s Lament, Paul Lockhart
- 500 Miles, Trey Harris
- Julia Galef
- Scott Alexander (alternative list here)
These are the books that I re-read and recommend the most. Some are pragmatic, some are simply pleasure reading.
- Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman!, Richard Feynman
- The Elephant in the Brain, Robin Hanson
- Unbroken, Laura Hillenbrand
- The Complete Robot, Isaac Asimov
- The Power of Habit, Charles Duhigg
- The Three Languages of Politics, Arnold Kling
- Influence, Robert Cialdini
- Leviathan Wakes, James S.A. Corey
- The Most Good You Can Do, Peter Singer
- The Hard Thing About Hard Things, Ben Horowitz
- Snow Crash, Neal Stephenson
- The Old Man and the Sea, Ernest Hemingway
Tell me your go-to essays and books! Contact info on homepage.
Yes, I genuinely do like The Old Man and the Sea. Everyone yells at me for that one. It’s the one “school made me read this” book I didn’t hate.