French novelist Marcel Proust wrote that, “The real act of discovery consists not in finding new lands but in seeing with new eyes.” To me, this sounds like the exact opposite of déjà vu. We all know that déjà vu feeling. It’s the distinct feeling that, even though we are in a completely unfamiliar place, somehow, we’ve […]
Category Archives: Life in General
Stomping Grapes or Making Wine?
I read something the other day that appealed to the techno-geek in me. It has to do with techniques for predicting technological progress. The go-to rule for predicting progress in the technology realm, at least what I always thought was The Rule, was attributed to Gordon Moore, co-founder of Intel Corporation. The rule is commonly […]
Too Many Choices?
While my wife and I were visiting my father-in-law in Pittsburgh, we did some grocery shopping at the local Giant Eagle supermarket. I enjoy walking around the store, which is huge, checking out the almost unbelievable variety of products available in virtually every category of grocery. There is an entire aisle–50 to 60 feet of […]
Fast Food is Really Fast!
Why Are We in Such a Hurry to Make Up Our Minds??
Perhaps you’ve wondered: Why did banks and traders make such bad decisions leading up to and during the 2007-2008 financial crisis? Frank Portnoy [a former derivatives trader and current professor of law and finance at the University of San Diego] , was apparently wondering the same thing. In Professor Portnoy’s case, it led to the writing […]
The Power of the First Follower
Why Do We Call It Spam?
A particularly egregious piece of junk e-mail showed up in my Inbox this morning, and I remarked out loud, “How did this piece of junk get through my spam filter?” I deleted the message, but then started thinking about the word spam. Why do we call unwanted junk email “spam?” I remember the canned meat product, Spam, […]
A Follow-up on Out-of-Control Controls
A few months ago I authored a screed on out-of-control controls, where I took on the FAA for its seemingly impossible to navigate process for approval of safety related controls for a new US-based airline. It struck a chord with at least some of my readers, who related their own frustration with controls and control […]
What if there was a Pill to make us like each other?
Philosophy Bites is one of my favorite podcasts. There’s a new one every week or so, and I enjoy them all. It’s an easy way to get some quick and easy exposure to important philosophical issues. Earlier this month I listened to a conversation with Pat Churchland on “What Can Neuroscience Teach Us About Morality”. […]