Where My Interests Lie, 2011 edition

These are the sort of topics which catch my eye these days, and about which I'd like to learn & say more:


  • Where it comes from
  • Tools to make it both more comprehensible and easier to manage
  • How to communicate effectively with outside parties about how complex a thing actually is

    That's a compact way of saying: it really ticks me off when people who clearly understand many nuances and tradeoffs involved in some things (say, their job, or a sport or two) then consider everything they are not that familiar with to be very straightforward and obvious.

    This happens among otherwise-elite, brainy people too; this XKCD is a great example.


  • Humanity is constantly having to make big bets based on limited information.

    (I think this has always been true; while you could argue that people throughout history have been solving much simpler problems than we have today, they also lacked most of the modern tools we have to tell us about the world - accurate maps, for instance. We're always bumping against the limits of our understanding.)

  • How we (as a society) handle decision-making under great uncertainty could be improved.
  • How we (as a society) view past decisions made under great uncertainty could be improved.

Music - studying, performing, appreciating, describing

Software - design, construction practices

Apple stuff - Mac OS X, iOS devices (yes, still a big Apple fan)

Parenting - I have a 3-year old. 'Nuff said.

Business - Management; "Organizational Behavior"; Emergent properties of systems of people

Checklists (a la Atul Gawande) and any other ways to improve the performance of groups of people doing complex tasks.

Politics & Media - the various intractable problems we face and the channels through which we all learn about them.

There's plenty more, but those are the headline grabbers for me at the moment.

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Steve Bogart published on October 7, 2011 11:44 PM.

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Netflix backs out of the dead end road is the next entry in this blog.

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