no more emails, career optionality & scaling education
CC#41 - Human Intelligence, Lead Exposure in Europe & Mentoring Future Entrepreneurs
Hey there and welcome to ✨ CuratedCuriosity - a bi-weekly newsletter delivering inspiration from all over the internet to the notoriously curious.
Things I Enjoyed Reading.
Some good advice on how to organise your day and structure your communication channels to increase the possibility for deep work.
It’s funny to think of where we ended up. Meetings were the original problem breaking up deep work blocks, so we tried to push meetings as much as possible to emails that could be handled asynchronously. But then emails piled up too much and were hard to process due to only having a single inbox, so we built Slack which separated things into multiple channels and made multi-person communication much more seamless. But then Slack piled up and got too overwhelming, so we’re suggesting pushing things back to email again or actually doing more meetings to go through communication items synchronously rather than be constantly distracted by async communication?
I guess I am guilty on this one. Interesting collection of thoughts on balancing optionality, capping downsides and taking risks in your career.
One risk with pursuing optionality is that it prevents you from taking risks. In focusing so much on acquiring options to cap your downside, you also cap your upside by being too comfortable to take risks, life-style wise and reputationally. You get an MBA, work a few years in finance or consulting or FAANG, and before you know it you’re 30 and you haven’t taken any risks. Is that what you plan to do with your wild and precious life?
How come that we humans are at the level of intelligence we are at right now? Whats the underlying physical transformation that enabled this? No definite answers but some clues to get one thinking about thinking.
Purposeful problem-solving behaviors like tool use and cooking are not unique to hominids; some other mammals and birds use tools, and lots of vertebrates (including birds and fish) can learn to solve puzzles to get a food reward. The general class of “problem-solving behavior" that we see, to one degree or another, in many vertebrates, doesn’t seem to have arisen surprisingly fast compared to the existence of animals in general.
However, to the extent that Homo sapiens has unique cognitive abilities, those did show up surprisingly recently, and it makes sense to privilege the hypothesis that they have a common physical cause.
So what are these special human-unique cognitive abilities?
Food for Thought.
🛫 Small aircrafts are still allowed to use fuel that contains lead (also in Europe) which exposes children living or attending school close to airports used by those piston-engine aircrafts to harmful amounts of lead, resulting in serious long-term health damages as well as cognitive impairment.
📚 Much of education is focused on analysing small experiments. However, in order to figure out a way to improve the whole education system, we also need to know what type of interventions scale.
Justin Sandefur @JustinSandefur"Feed all the kids, and let them go to school for free" No, really. Our new @CGDev report on the economics of achieving universal education in low- and lower-middle income countries. https://t.co/QEsTIHbxva https://t.co/kXd0F3I7Sj
🤝 Seems like mentoring actually does make a difference.
📱Next level strategy to break phone addiction.
🏦 Ever wanted to play central bank? This is your chance - try to maximize GDP by adjusting money supply.
🏙 Students in Urban Technology at the University of Michigan designed a city from scratch during one of their courses and drew it all by hand. Interesting approach to teach about city planning - this blog post reflects on the project.
Spent some relaxing holidays camping in Switzerland. Had my phone turned off for a couple of days. Very refreshing. Can recommend.
Getting back to work now. Currently working remotely from Vienna for the next 2 weeks or so. Very excited to be back for some time. Let me know if you are in town and have some time to go for a coffee, would love to meet up! ☕️