8 Months To Live

This post was originally an email sent to the Better Questions Email List. For more like it, please sign up – it’s free. ——How worried should I be that I have 8 months to live?—— So far, we’ve discussed how we make decisions involving probability: – We form beliefs about how likely certain events are based on our own experiences. – These beliefs are “Priors.” – They act…

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Map Meets Territory

This post was originally an email sent to the Better Questions Email List. For more like it, please sign up – it’s free. ——What is the territory?—— In our last email, we discussed the fact that we rarely come to a decision without any data. We have pre-existing beliefs about how likely or unlikely certain outcomes are. These beliefs are called priors, and they influence our decision-making both before……

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The Beauty Contest

This post was originally an email sent to the Better Questions Email List. For more like it, please sign up – it’s free. Since we’ve all had enough of being cooped up inside and self-quarantining… Let’s imagine a simpler time. You’re walking down an ocean boardwalk. You can feel the sun on your neck, warming you all the way through. The smells of salt air, cotton candy,…

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Bad Priors

This post was originally an email sent to the Better Questions Email List. For more like it, please sign up – it’s free. “The map is not the territory.” Alfred Korzybski Are you confused by the decisions people make? I am. Do you struggle to understand how, exactly people could believe what they believe? Me too. In the next couple emails, I’m going to try and hash this…

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The Factory Floor

This post was originally an email sent to the Better Questions Email List. For more like it, please sign up – it’s free. Not going to lie – this week’s email comes out swinging a bit. Not 100% sure it works. I debated sending it at all. In the end, there’s nothing to do but trust the process and hope it lands. Let me know your thoughts at the…

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Sending Pens To Space

This post was originally an email sent to the Better Questions Email List. For more like it, please sign up – it’s free. Am I Sending Pens To Space? Some stories are just too good to be true. This was my initial reaction upon reading about NASA’s issue with pens. In space. Here’s a quick summary from Scientific American: “During the height of the space race in the…

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Slack In The Rope

This post was originally an email sent to the Better Questions Email List. For more like it, please sign up – it’s free. Is there slack in my rope? Here’s something that is sometimes hard to remember: Maximal is not optimal. Imagine, if you will, a highway. Really picture the flow of cars down this highway… Fast ones, slow ones, tractor trailer trucks, sedans… All speeding along. If…

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Only You

Here’s a thing that is both exhilarating and terrifying: There are certain ideas only you can come up with.There are things in this world – Paintings, songs, books, concepts, speeches, organizations, businesses, products, romantic evenings, longing glances, buildings, achievements, inventions…That will only exist if and when you decide to birth them.They are completely and uniquely yours.They are your responsibility.This is not like saying “you could…

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How To Stay Informed About COVID-19 Without Stressing Out (As Much)

I’ve been trying to manage a kind of balance, lately. For one, I believe I have a civic duty to stay informed, to stay updated on COVID-19, to know what’s going on so I can best act to protect myself, my family, and my community. On the other hand, reading about COVID-19 all the time is stressing me the fuck out. As in, deep-pit-of-despair, knot-in-your-stomach…

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