Recently spotted on Twitter: "Regulation" makes it sound abstract and far away, like someone setting the dial on their thermostat; "Impediment" is much better. To me, impediment connotes a roadblock, barrier, or even solid wall blocking the path of one or another organization, which is sort of the point. I'm imagining the organization as a… Continue reading Regulation as Friction
First, my own anecdotal point of view: Sometime last year I recall seeing a group on my campus handing out flyers for some (new?) video conferencing app called Zoom. I'd never heard of it! I looked at the brochure, decided that the features sure sounded a lot like what I was already getting for free… Continue reading Zoom: The Other Exponential Growth Story of 2020
(1700 words, ~6 minutes to read) You've been sent to prison, but you haven't committed a crime. You're stuck in your cell, day after day, briefly let out for food and medicine. Of course, this means your plans are cancelled for a while; you already haven't seen your friends in weeks. It's not your fault!… Continue reading The Long Haul
(700 words, 2-3 minutes to read) We live in a confusing time. 1) I often see "news articles" that contain blatant lies, or at least heavily doctored facts, making incendiary claims about this or that political/religious/ethnic group. There's a temptation to share such articles, along with my own comment pointing out the inaccuracies and warning… Continue reading Dark Side of Sharing
(1100 words, 3 minutes to read) Big news this week: in Trump's impeachment trial in the Senate, Mitt Romney voted to remove him from office. This is big news precisely because we live in such a tribal world, where everyone's well-justified expectation is for every Democrat to vote to remove, and every Republican to vote… Continue reading Should We Reward “Bad People” Who Unexpectedly Do Good Things?
(2,200 words, 7-9 minutes to read) I am a human, born in what is not yet known as the year 10,000 BC in what is not yet known as the Fertile Crescent. My tribe survives by finding and eating food that is naturally occurring and nearby, whether by gathering native grains or fruit, or by… Continue reading Derivatives of Progress
Breaking news: Autism isn't binary (not autistic / autistic), but instead it's a spectrum (not autistic ⇄ autistic). This, per the description in the fourth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, the DSM-IV, published in 1994. In the DSM-IV, autism was categorized as a discrete spectrum, with separable levels like "Asperger's… Continue reading Everything is a Spectrum