George Santayana

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pages: 194 words: 49,310

Clock of the Long Now by Stewart Brand

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Albert Einstein, Brewster Kahle, Buckminster Fuller, Colonization of Mars, complexity theory, Danny Hillis, Eratosthenes, Extropian, fault tolerance, George Santayana, Internet Archive, Jaron Lanier, Kevin Kelly, knowledge economy, life extension, Metcalfe’s law, nuclear winter, pensions crisis, phenotype, Ray Kurzweil, Robert Metcalfe, Stephen Hawking, Stewart Brand, technological singularity, Ted Kaczynski, Thomas Malthus, Vernor Vinge, Whole Earth Catalog

But a storm is blowing from Paradise; it has got caught in his wings with such violence that the angel can no longer close them. This storm irresistibly propels him into the future to which his back is turned, while the pile of debris before him grows skyward. This storm is what we call progress. The idea of history as horror and warning itself has a distinguished history. The philosopher George Santayana voiced the sharpest version of the perennial warning in 01905: “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” Blinkered willfulness leading to calamity is so common in human experience that we can count on it recurring endlessly unless attention is paid and lessons harshly drawn, diligently remembered, and then applied. It is no accident that among the finest leaders of the 20th century is a professional historian.

Mary Leakey, quoted by Neville Agnew and Martha Demors, “The Footprints at Laetoli,” Conservation (Spring 1995), p. 16. 1:27 “I love everything that’s old . . .” Oliver Goldsmith, She Stoops to Conquer, Act I. 1:28 “This storm is what we call progress.” Walter Benjamin, “Theses on the Philosophy of History” (1940), Illuminations (New York: Schocken, 1968), p. 257. 1:28 “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” George Santayana, The Life of Reason; Vol. 1: Reason in Common Sense (1905) (New York: Prometheus, 1998). 1:28 Describing Winston Churchill, Isaiah Berlin wrote. . . Isaiah Berlin, “Winston Churchill in 1940,” (1949) The Proper Study of Mankind (New York: Farrar Straus, 1998), p. 608. 1:29 “General knowledge of history is less and less characteristic of American decision-makers and their aides.” Richard Neustadt and Ernest May, Thinking in Time (New York: Free Press, 1988), p. 245.

Optimism Options, preservation and increasing of Ostrum, Elinor Out of Control Pace, contradictions of Pace-layering Packard, David Packard Foundation, David and Lucile Page, Walter Hines Papert, Seymour Parfit, Derek Past being free of and the Internet preservation of uses of PDP-10 (pioneer microcomputer) Pessimism Phase locking Picard, Rosalind Plagues and Peoples Pol Pot Population Prediction machines Preservation and determining what to save Prisoner’s Dilemma (game) Ptolemy VIII Pugin, Augustus Pyramids of Gaza RAND Real Time Release 1.0 Religion and the long view and time Responsibility long-term Responsibility Record Revelle, Roger Revolutions and continuity and the past Rise of the West, The Ritchey, Rob Robinson, Kim Stanley Robo-users of artifacts Rome, fall of Rose, Alexander Rosenstock-Huessy, Eugen Rothamsted Experimental Station Rothenberg, Jeff Rush Saffo, Paul and forecasting Salk, Jonas Santa Fe Institute Santayana, George Satellite systems Scenario planning Schaller, George Schwab, Klaus Schwartz, Peter Science Science fiction Scientific agriculture Scientific American Scientific studies, long-term “Serial Bit Adder” Serres, Michel Shakespeare Shih Huang-ti Sibylline Books Singularity, the Slow and good things Slowing down Social sector Software, brittleness or resiliency of Solar water heaters on roofs Space program Sparrow, Oliver SRI International Stapledon, Olaf Stein, Gertrude Steiner, George Sterling, Bruce Stonehenge Stoppard, Tom Sun Microsystems Superbus, Tarquinius Sustained endeavor Su Sung Synder, Gary Szymborska, Wislawa Technology accelerating definition of and the environment museum of history of “right” Techno-rapture Teledisc Temporal exhaustion 10,000-Year Library.


pages: 364 words: 103,162

The English by Jeremy Paxman

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back-to-the-land, British Empire, colonial rule, Corn Laws, Etonian, game design, George Santayana, global village, Isaac Newton, James Hargreaves, Khartoum Gordon, mass immigration, Neil Kinnock, Own Your Own Home, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Right to Buy, sensible shoes, urban sprawl, women in the workforce

It’s a reasonable supposition that cold wet weather, which forced teenagers to stay indoors in winter instead of going to the beach or skiing, probably has something to do with the country’s capacity for inventive rock music. But is there something more profound? Has a mild and gentle climate, rarely too hot and rarely extremely cold, played a role in producing a moderate, pragmatic people? The Anglophile philosopher George Santayana believed that England is pre-eminently a land of atmosphere … English landscape, if we think only of the land and the works of man upon it, is seldom on the grand scale. Charming, clement, and eminently habitable, it is almost too domestic, as if only home passions and caged souls could live there. But lift the eyes for a moment above the line of roofs or treetops, and there the grandeur you miss on the earth is spread gloriously before you.10 Santayana wrote a lot of near-incomprehensible stuff, but you can almost see what he was getting at.

Elias Canetti: Crowds and Power, p. 172. 2. Alexander Kinglake: Eothen, pp. 200–202. 3. Max O’Rell: John Bull and his Island, p. 18. 4. Michael Lewis: ‘Oh, not to be in England’, in the Spectator, 23 May 1992. 5. Hermann Muthesius: The English House, p. xv. 6. Ibid. 7. Ibid., p. 8. 8. Ibid., p. 9. 9. Ralph Waldo Emerson: ‘English Traits’, in Collected Works, Vol. V, pp. 59–60. 10. George Santayana: Soliloquies in England, p. 14. 11. Samuel Johnson: The Idler, No. 11. 12. Bill Bryson: Notes from a Small Island, p. 278. 13. Johnson, op. cit. 14. Prof. C. G. Collier, letter, 29 October 1996. 15. André Maurois: Three Letters on the English, pp. 261–2. 16. Odette Keun: I Discover the English, p. 151. 17. Quoted in Vincent Cronin: Napoleon, p. 48. 18. Jean Duhamel: The Fifty Days: Napoleon in England, p. 61. 19.

RYE, WILLIAM BENCHLEY: England as seen by foreigners in the reign of Elizabeth and James the First, London, John Russell Smith, 1865. SACKVILLE–WEST, VITA: ‘Outdoor Life’, in The Character of England (ed. Ernest Barker), Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1947. ST GEORGE, ANDREW: The Descent of Manners, London, Chatto & Windus, 1993. SAKLATVALA, BERAM: The Origins of the English People, Newton Abbot, David & Charles, 1969. SANTAYANA, GEORGE: Soliloquies in England, London, Constable, 1922. SCHAMA, SIMON: Citizens: A Chronicle of the French Revolution, London, Viking, 1989. SELLAR, W. C., and YEATMAN, R. J.: 1066, And All That, London, Methuen, 1930. SHEPPARD, FRANCIS: London 1808–1870: The Infernal Wen, London, Secker & Warburg, 1971. SHOWALTER, ELAINE: The Female Malady: Women, Madness and Culture 1830–1980, London, Virago, 1987.


pages: 407 words: 114,478

The Four Pillars of Investing: Lessons for Building a Winning Portfolio by William J. Bernstein

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asset allocation, Bretton Woods, British Empire, buy low sell high, carried interest, corporate governance, cuban missile crisis, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, Dava Sobel, diversification, diversified portfolio, Edmond Halley, equity premium, estate planning, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, financial independence, financial innovation, fixed income, George Santayana, German hyperinflation, high net worth, hindsight bias, Hyman Minsky, index fund, invention of the telegraph, Isaac Newton, John Harrison: Longitude, Long Term Capital Management, loss aversion, market bubble, mental accounting, money market fund, mortgage debt, new economy, pattern recognition, Paul Samuelson, quantitative easing, railway mania, random walk, Richard Thaler, risk tolerance, risk/return, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, South Sea Bubble, survivorship bias, The inhabitant of London could order by telephone, sipping his morning tea in bed, the various products of the whole earth, the rule of 72, transaction costs, Vanguard fund, yield curve, zero-sum game

We tend to think of the stock and bond markets as relatively recent historical phenomena, but, in fact, there have been credit markets since human civilization first took root in the Fertile Crescent. And governments have been issuing bonds for several hundred years. More importantly, after they were issued, these bonds then fluctuated in price according to economic, political, and military conditions, just as they do today. Nowhere is historian George Santayana’s famous dictum, “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it,” more applicable than in finance. Financial history provides us with invaluable wisdom about the nature of the capital markets and of returns on securities. Intelligent investors ignore this record at their peril. Risk and Return Throughout the Centuries Even before money first appeared in the form of small pellets of silver 5,000 years ago, there have been credit markets.

The average investor lives through at least a few markets of both types. Even with an appreciation of their behavior, dealing with both buoyant and morose markets is difficult. Sometimes even the best-prepared can fail. But if you are unprepared, you are sure to fail. 5 Tops: A History of Manias Progress, far from consisting in change, depends on retentiveness. Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it. George Santayana There is nothing new—only the history you haven’t read. Larry Swedroe Men of business have keen sensations but short memories. Walter Bagehot To many readers, this section on booms and busts will seem out of place. After all, this book is a humble how-to tome; it has no pretension of being a documentary work. But of the four key areas of investment knowledge—theory, history, psychology, and investment industry practices—the lack of historical knowledge is the one that causes the most damage.

Mackay, Charles, Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds. Harmony Books, 1980. Maddison, Angus, Monitoring the World Economy 1820-1992. OECD, 1995. Malkiel, Burton G., A Random Walk Down Wall Street. W. W. Norton, 1996. Nocera, Joseph, A Piece of the Action. Simon and Schuster, 1994. Ritter, Jay R., “The Long Run Performance of Initial Public Offerings.” Journal of Finance, March, 1991. Santayana, George, The Life of Reason. Scribner’s, 1953. Siegel, Jeremy J., Stocks for the Long Run. McGraw-Hill, 1998. Smith, Edgar L., Stocks as Long Term Investments. Macmillan, 1924. Sobel, Dava, Longitude. Walker & Co., 1995. Strouse, Jean, Morgan: American Financier. Random House, 1999. White, Eugene N., ed., Crashes and Panics. Dow Jones Irwin, 1990. Chapter 7 Benzarti, S., and Thaler, Richard H., “Myopic Risk Aversion and the Equity Premium Puzzle.”


pages: 223 words: 58,732

The Retreat of Western Liberalism by Edward Luce

3D printing, affirmative action, Airbnb, basic income, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, Branko Milanovic, Bretton Woods, call centre, carried interest, centre right, cognitive dissonance, colonial exploitation, colonial rule, computer age, corporate raider, cuban missile crisis, currency manipulation / currency intervention, Dissolution of the Soviet Union, Doha Development Round, Donald Trump, double entry bookkeeping, Erik Brynjolfsson, European colonialism, everywhere but in the productivity statistics, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, future of work, George Santayana, gig economy, Gini coefficient, global supply chain, illegal immigration, imperial preference, income inequality, informal economy, Internet of things, Jaron Lanier, knowledge economy, liberal capitalism, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Martin Wolf, mass immigration, means of production, Monroe Doctrine, moral panic, more computing power than Apollo, mutually assured destruction, new economy, New Urbanism, Norman Mailer, offshore financial centre, one-China policy, Peace of Westphalia, Peter Thiel, Plutocrats, plutocrats, precariat, purchasing power parity, reserve currency, Richard Florida, Robert Gordon, Ronald Reagan, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Skype, Snapchat, software is eating the world, South China Sea, Steve Jobs, superstar cities, TaskRabbit, telepresence, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas L Friedman, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, universal basic income, unpaid internship, Washington Consensus, We are the 99%, We wanted flying cars, instead we got 140 characters, white flight, World Values Survey, Yogi Berra

Rather than a springboard to liberty, the Magna Carta was a messy expediency between a temporarily weakened king and his restive nobles. It quickly expired. That it is today so prized – a copy sits next to the Declaration of Independence in the US National Archives – is a measure of our amnesia. If the intellectual basis of Western liberalism is scepticism, we should learn to live up to its meaning. We should be particularly wary of the siren song of history. George Santayana famously said, ‘Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it’. The idea of history as a separate force with a mind of its own is a bedtime story to help us sleep. ‘History as contingency is a prospect that is more than the human spirit can bear,’ said Robert Heilbroner, the late American economist. For centuries, Westerners have taken a linear view of history, in which time is always marching us towards a happier place.

., 149 media: exposure of Nixon, 131–2; fake news, 130, 148, 178–9; falling credibility in US, 130; in Russia, 129–31, 172–3; television, 84, 128, 129, 130 medicine and healthcare, 35, 36, 42, 58, 59, 60, 62, 102, 103, 198 Medvedev, Dimitry, 79 Meiji Restoration in Japan, 78 mercantilism, 78 ‘meritocracy’, 43, 44–6 Merkel, Angela, 15, 180 Mexico, 29, 114 Middle East, 181, 183 Middle East and North Africans (MENAs, US ethnic category), 95 Midland, Michigan, 194–5 migration, 41, 99–100, 196, 198; current crisis, 70, 100, 140, 180–1; and welfare systems, 101, 102 Milanovic, Branko, 31, 32, 33 Mill, John Stuart, 161, 162 Mineta, Norman, 134 Mitterrand, François, 90, 107 Modi, Narendra, 201 Moldova, Grape Revolution (2009), 79 Mongol China, 25 Monroe Doctrine (1823), 164–5 Moore, Barrington, 12 Morozov, Evgeny, The Net Delusion, 129 Mounk, Yascha, 68, 123 Müller, Jan-Werner, 90, 118, 139 multinational companies, 26–7, 69–70 multipolarity, 6–8, 70 Musharraf, Pervez, 80 Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, 82 Napoleonic Wars, 156 Nathan, Andrew, 84 National Endowment for Democracy (NED), 82 National Front in France, 15, 102, 108–10 National Health Service, 102 nationalism: comeback of, 11, 97, 102, 108–9, 170, 174; and end of Cold War, 5; European, 10–11, 102, 108–9; and global trilemma, 72–3; Summers’ responsible nationalism, 71–2 Nato alliance, 135, 140, 179 Navarro, Peter, 149, 167, 180 Negroponte, Nicholas, 127 Netherlands, 102 New York, 49–50, 54 New Yorker, 35 Nixon, Richard, 131–2, 134 non-governmental organisations (NGOs), 85 North American Free Trade Agreement, 73 North Korea, 175 nuclear weapons, 5, 167, 174–6 Nuttall, Paul, 90 Obama, Barack: and AIIB, 84; and Arab Spring, 82; Asia pivot policy, 157, 160–1; election of (2008), 97; and financial sector, 193, 199; gay marriage issue, 188; gender identity order (2016), 187–8; on history’s long arc, 190; and Islam, 182; and nuclear weapons, 175–6; trip to China (2009), 159–60; US–Russia relations, 79; and world trade agreements, 73; ‘wrong side of history’ language, 187–8, 190 Occupy Wall Street, 139 oikophobia, 111–12, 117 Opium Wars, 23 Orbán, Viktor, 138–9, 181 Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, 29 Orwell, George, 69, 128 Oxford University, 4 Paine, Thomas, 126 Pakistan, 175 Philippines, 61, 136–7, 138, 160, 202 Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE), 4 Plato, 137 politics in West: 1968 Democratic Convention, 188–9; decline of established parties, 88–90; declining faith in system, 8–9, 12, 14, 88–9, 98–100, 103–4, 119–23, 202–3; and disappearing growth, 13; falling voter turnout in UK, 99; left embraces personal liberation (1960s), 188–9; and ‘meritocracy’, 43–6; move rightwards of working classes, 95–9, 102, 108–10, 189–91, 194–5; and national identity, 71–3; privatising of risk since late 1970s, 191–3; responses to digital revolution, 52–4, 56–8, 59–61, 67–8; Third Way, 89–92; urban–hinterland split, 46–51, 119, 120, 130, 135; US political system, 131–6; voter disdain for elites, 14, 98–100, 110, 119 Pomerantsev, Peter, Nothing Is True and Everything Is Possible, 79, 130, 140, 172 populist right: ‘alt-right’ fringe, 97, 104; America First movement, 117; and automation, 67; cultural and economic anxieties, 190–6; Davos’s solution, 69, 70–1; in Europe, 139–40; Andrew Jackson’s election (1828), 113–14; and migration crisis, 181; as not democratic, 139; racism as not root cause, 97, 98, 100, 195; Republican Party dog whistles, 190; stealing of the left’s clothes, 103; ‘take back control’ as war cry, 190; and war against truth, 79, 86, 127, 128–31, 172–4, 178–9, 195–6; see also Putin, Vladimir; Trump, Donald Portugal, 77 Primakov, Yevgeny, 6 protectionism, 19–20, 73, 78, 149 Putin, Vladimir: 2012 presidential victory, 130; annexation of Crimea (2014), 8, 173; and fall of Soviet Union, 6; interference in Europe, 179, 180; and Islam, 182; mastery of diversion/confusion, 86, 129, 130–1, 137, 172–3; Medvedev succeeds (2008), 79; replaces Yeltsin as president, 78; Trump’s admiration for, 7, 129, 135; and Trump’s victory, 7, 12, 79; and US ‘war on terror’, 80; and US–China war scenario, 146–7, 152–3 Putnam, Robert, 38 Quadruple Alliance, 7 Quah, Danny, 21 race and ethnicity: and 2016 US Presidential election, 94, 95, 96–7, 98; and ‘identity liberalism’, 14, 96–8; majority-white backlash concept, 12, 14, 96, 102, 104; poor whites in USA, 95–6, 112–13; return of racial politics, 102, 103, 104; US classification data, 94–5; and welfare systems, 101, 102 racism, 97, 98, 99, 100–1, 104, 113–14, 195 Reagan, Ronald, 37 Reagan Democrats, 95, 189 Reeves, Richard, 44 Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, 167 remote intelligence, 13, 61–2 Renaissance, 24 Reuther, Walter, 66–7 the rich, 32–3, 50–1, 68, 197; Aristotle on, 200; loss of faith in democracy, 122–3; and rising inequality, 32–3, 43, 46; Trump’s support for, 193, 195, 196, 199–200 robot economy, 34, 51–5, 56, 60–2, 123 Rodrik, Dani, 72, 73 Rome, classical, 25, 128–9 Roosevelt, Eleanor, 10 Roosevelt, Franklin Delano, 128 Rousseau, Jean-Jacques, 126 RT (Russian state TV channel), 84, 85 Rubin, Robert, 71 Russia: conference on ‘polycentric world order’ (Moscow, 2016), 5–8; dissidents’ view of West, 140; expulsion of Western NGOs, 85; as failed democracy, 12, 78, 79, 82, 173; and fake news, 178; media in, 129–31, 172–3; metropolitan elites, 130; and multipolarity, 6–8; and nuclear weapons, 175; privatisation fire sale in, 79; reality-TV politics in, 79, 86, 129–31, 172–3; Revolution (1917), 115; and Trump, 7, 12, 79; and Washington Consensus, 29, 78–9; see also Putin, Vladimir; Soviet Union Sajadpour, Karim, 193, 194–5 Salazar, António de Oliveira, 77 San Bernardino massacre (2015), 182 San Francisco, 49 Sanders, Bernie, 92, 93 Santayana, George, 10 Saudi Arabia, 175, 182 Scandinavia, 43, 101, 197 Schröder, Gerhard, 90 Schwarzman, Stephen, 199–200 science, 72, 171, 172 Scopes Monkey trial, 111 Scruton, Roger, 111–12 Seattle world trade talks (1999), 73 Second World War, 116–17, 163, 169, 170–1 Sessions, Jeff, 151 Shanghai Cooperation Organization, 80 Shultz, George, 132 Shultz, Martin, 15 Singapore, 21 Sino-Indian war (1962), 166 slave trade, African, 23, 55, 56 Smith, Adam, The Theory of Moral Sentiments, 38–9 Social Darwinism, 162 social insurance systems, 42, 101–3, 191, 198 social media, 34, 39, 53, 54, 66, 67, 70, 178 Solow, Robert, 34 South America, 32 South China Sea, 147–8, 160–1 South Korea, 21, 29 Soviet Union, 80, 115, 130, 171, 174; collapse of, 6, 78, 168; see also Russia Spain, 43, 63, 77, 140 Stalin, Joseph, 128, 171 suburban crisis, 46–8 Summers, Lawrence, 71 Sun Tzu, 161 Surkov, Vladislav, 172–3 surveillance technologies, 68 Sweden, 101, 122 Taiwan, 145, 158, 164, 165, 166–7, 168; and US ‘One China’ policy, 145–6, 158; and US–China war scenario, 145, 151–3 Taiwan Strait, 152, 158 Task Rabbit, 63 taxation, 110, 198, 199–200 technology: age of electricity, 58–9; and globalisation, 55–6; leap forward (from 1870), 58–9; steam power, 24, 55–6; the telegraph, 127; as Trump’s friend, 131, 171; and utopian leaps of faith, 127–8; see also digital revolution television, 84, 128, 129, 130 tesobono crisis, Mexican (2005), 29 Thailand, 21, 82 Thatcher, Margaret, 189–90 Thiel, Peter, 34, 53 Thompson, E.P., 201 Thoreau, Henry David, 127–8 Thrower, Randolph, 132 Tillerson, Rex, 147–8, 161 Toil Index, 35–6 Trans-Pacific Trade Partnership, 73, 167 transport, 54, 55, 56–7, 58, 61; self-driving vehicles, 54, 57, 60, 68 Trump, Donald: admiration for Putin, 7, 129, 135; and America First movement, 117; autocratic/authoritarian nature of, 133, 169, 171, 178–9; Bannon as Surkov of, 173; Chinese view of, 85–6, 140; confusion as strategic goal, 79, 86, 127, 128, 130, 131, 173, 178–9, 195–6; foreign policy, 167–70, 178–80, 181–4; ignorance of how other countries think, 161, 167–9; inaugural address, 135, 146; Andrew Jackson comparisons, 113–14; and male voters, 57; as mortal threat to democracy, 97, 104, 111, 126, 133–6, 138, 139, 161, 169–70, 178–84, 203–4; and Muslim ban, 135, 181, 182; narcissism of, 170; need for new Mark Felt/Deep Throat, 136; and nuclear weapons, 175, 176; offers cure worse than the disease, 14, 181; plan to deport Mexican immigrants, 114, 135; poorly educated as base, 103, 123; promised border wall, 94–5; protectionism of, 19–20, 73, 149; and pro wrestling, 124; stealing of the left’s clothes, 101, 103; stoking of racism by, 97; support for plutocracy, 193, 195, 196, 199–200; and Taiwan, 145, 166–7, 168; targeting of Muslims, 135, 181–3, 195–6; and Twitter, 70, 146; and UFC, 126; urban–hinterland split in 2016 vote, 47–8, 119, 120, 130, 135; and US political system, 131, 133–5; US–China war scenario, 145–53, 161; victory in US presidential election, 5, 6–7, 11–12, 15, 28, 47–8, 79, 87, 96–8, 111, 120, 194–5 Trump: The Game (board game), 7 Tsai Ing-Wen, 151 Tunisia, 12, 82 Turkey, 12, 82, 137, 140, 175 Twitter, 34, 53, 70, 146 Uber, 63 UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship), 125–6, 127 UK Independence Party (UKIP), 90, 98, 100, 101–2, 190; xenophobia during Brexit campaign, 100–1 Ukraine: Orange Revolution (2004), 79; Putin’s annexation of Crimea (2014), 8, 173 United States of America (USA): 1968 Democratic Convention, 188–9; 2016 presidential election, 5, 6–7, 11–12, 15, 28, 47–8, 79, 87–8, 91–8, 119, 130, 133, 135; 9/11 terrorist attacks, 79–80, 81, 182; America First movement, 117; civil rights victories (1960s), 190; ‘complacent classes’ in, 40; Constitution, 112–13, 163; and containment of China, 25–6, 145–6, 157–61, 165; decline of established parties, 89; declining hegemony of, 14, 21–2, 26–8, 140–1, 200–1; domestic terrorist attacks, 182, 183; elite–heartland divide, 47–8, 119, 130, 135; foreign policy since WW2, 183–4; gig economy, 63–5; gilded age, 42–3; growth after 2008 crisis, 30–1; growth of inequality in modern era, 43, 44–8, 49, 50–1; history in popular imagination, 163; Lend-Lease aid to Britain, 169; middle-income problem in, 35–41; Monroe Doctrine (1823), 164–5; murder rate in suburbs, 47; nineteenth-century migration to, 41; Operation Iraqi Freedom, 8, 81, 85, 156; opioid-heroin epidemic, 37–8; Patriot Act, 80; political system, 112–13, 131–6, 163; post-Cold War triumphalism, 6, 71; primacy in Asia Pacific, 26, 157, 160–1; racial/ethnic make-up of, 94–6; relations with Soviet Union see Cold War; relative decline of, 170; ‘reverse white flight’ in, 46; technological leap forward (from 1870), 58–9; vanishing class mobility in, 43–6; ‘war on terror’, 80–1, 140, 183; Washington’s ‘deep state’, 133–4 Universal Basic Income (UBI) proposals, 196–7 Universal Declaration of Human Rights, 8–9, 10 Vance, J.D., 108 Venezuela, 82 Versailles Conference (1919), 154 Vienna, Congress of (1814–15), 7 Vietnam, 166 Wallace, George, 113 Walters, Johnnie M., 132 ‘war on terror’, US, 80–1, 140, 183 Warsh, Kevin, 150 Washington Consensus, 29–30, 71, 77, 78–9, 158–9 Washington Post, 132 Weber, Max, 162 welfare systems, 42, 101–3, 191, 198 Western thought: on China, 158–9, 161–2; conceit of primacy of, 4–5, 8–9, 85, 158–9, 162; declining influence of, 200–1; idea of progress, 4, 8, 11–12, 37; modernity concept, 24, 162; non-Western influences on, 24–5; see also democracy, liberal; liberalism, Western WhatsApp, 54 White, Hugh, 25, 158 Wilders, Geert, 102 Wilentz, Sean, 114 Williamson, John, 29 Wilson, Woodrow, 115 Woodward, Bob, 132 Wordsworth, William, 3 World Bank, 84 World Trade Organization (WTO), 26, 72, 149, 150 Wright, Thomas, 180 WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment), 124–5 Xi Jinping, 19–20, 26, 27, 146, 149, 168, 170; and US–China war scenario, 150, 152 Yellen, Janet, 150 Yeltsin, Boris, 78, 79 Young, Michael, 45–6 YouTube, 54 Zakaria, Fareed, 13, 119


pages: 327 words: 103,336

Everything Is Obvious: *Once You Know the Answer by Duncan J. Watts

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active measures, affirmative action, Albert Einstein, Amazon Mechanical Turk, Black Swan, butterfly effect, Carmen Reinhart, Cass Sunstein, clockwork universe, cognitive dissonance, collapse of Lehman Brothers, complexity theory, correlation does not imply causation, crowdsourcing, death of newspapers, discovery of DNA, East Village, easy for humans, difficult for computers, edge city, en.wikipedia.org, Erik Brynjolfsson, framing effect, Geoffrey West, Santa Fe Institute, George Santayana, happiness index / gross national happiness, high batting average, hindsight bias, illegal immigration, industrial cluster, interest rate swap, invention of the printing press, invention of the telescope, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Jane Jacobs, Jeff Bezos, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Rogoff, lake wobegon effect, Long Term Capital Management, loss aversion, medical malpractice, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Milgram experiment, natural language processing, Netflix Prize, Network effects, oil shock, packet switching, pattern recognition, performance metric, phenotype, Pierre-Simon Laplace, planetary scale, prediction markets, pre–internet, RAND corporation, random walk, RFID, school choice, Silicon Valley, statistical model, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, supply-chain management, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, the scientific method, The Wisdom of Crowds, too big to fail, Toyota Production System, ultimatum game, urban planning, Vincenzo Peruggia: Mona Lisa, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, X Prize

And when we conclude from the surge in Iraq that it caused the subsequent drop in violence, we are invariably tempted to apply the same strategy again, as indeed the current administration has done in Afghanistan. No matter what we say we are doing, in other words, whenever we seek to learn about the past, we are invariably seeking to learn from it as well—an association that is implicit in the words of the philosopher George Santayana: “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”19 This confusion between stories and theories gets to the heart of the problem with using common sense as a way of understanding the world. In one breath, we speak as if all we’re trying to do is to make sense of something that has already happened. But in the next breath we’re applying the “lesson” that we think we have learned to whatever plan or policy we’re intending to implement in the future.

“In The Oxford Handbook of Analytical Sociology, ed. P. Hedstrom and P. Bearman. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press, pp. 315–41. Salganik, Matthew, and Duncan J. Watts. 2009b. “Web-Based Experiments for the Study of Collective Social Dynamics in Cultural Markets.” Topics in Cognitive Science 1:439–68. Sandel, Michael J. 2009. Justice: What’s the Right Thing to Do? New York: Farrar Straus & Giroux. Santayana, George. 1905. Reason in Common Sense, Vol. 1. New York: George Scribner’s Sons. Sassoon, Donald. 2001. Becoming Mona Lisa: The Making of a Global Icon. New York: Harcourt, Inc. Schacter, Daniel L. 2001. The Seven Sins of Memory: How the Mind Forgets and Remembers. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin. Schnaars, Steven P. 1989. Megamistakes: Forecasting and the Myth of Rapid Technological Change. New York: Free Press.

Arguably, in fact, it is the capacity of the scientific method to pursue explanatory power, even at the cost of theoretical elegance and parsimony, where its real strength lies. 17. For Berlin’s full analysis of the differences between science and history, and the impossibility of remaking the latter in the image of the former, see Berlin (1960). 18. See Gaddis (2002) for a warning about the perils of generalizing, and also some examples of doing just that. 19. George Santayana (1905). CHAPTER 6: THE DREAM OF PREDICTION 1. See Rosenbloom (2009). 2. See Tetlock (2005) for details. 3. See Schnaars (1989, pp. 9–33) for his analysis and lots of entertaining examples. See also Sherden (1998) for additional evidence of the lousy forecasting record of futurologists. See also Kuran (1991) and Lohmann (1994) for discussions of the unpredictability of political revolutions; specifically the 1989 collapse of the East Germany.


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Animal Spirits: How Human Psychology Drives the Economy, and Why It Matters for Global Capitalism by George A. Akerlof, Robert J. Shiller

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affirmative action, Andrei Shleifer, asset-backed security, bank run, banking crisis, collateralized debt obligation, conceptual framework, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, Deng Xiaoping, Donald Trump, Edward Glaeser, en.wikipedia.org, experimental subject, financial innovation, full employment, George Akerlof, George Santayana, housing crisis, Hyman Minsky, income per capita, inflation targeting, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Jane Jacobs, Jean Tirole, job satisfaction, Joseph Schumpeter, Long Term Capital Management, loss aversion, market bubble, market clearing, mental accounting, Mikhail Gorbachev, money market fund, money: store of value / unit of account / medium of exchange, moral hazard, mortgage debt, Myron Scholes, new economy, New Urbanism, Paul Samuelson, Plutocrats, plutocrats, price stability, profit maximization, purchasing power parity, random walk, Richard Thaler, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, South Sea Bubble, The Chicago School, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, too big to fail, transaction costs, tulip mania, working-age population, Y2K, Yom Kippur War

The term animal spirits originated in ancient times, and the works of the ancient physician Galen (ca. 130–ca. 200) have been widely quoted ever since as a source for it. The term was commonly used in medicine through medieval times and up until Robert Burton’s The Anatomy of Melancholy (1632) and René Descartes’ Traité de l’Homme (1972 [1664]). There were said to be three spirits: the spiritus vitalis that originated in the heart, the spiritus naturalis that originated in the liver, and the spiritus animalis that originated in the brain. The philosopher George Santayana (1955 [1923], p. 245) built a system of philosophy around the centrality of “animal faith,” which he defined as “a pure and absolute spirit, an imperceptible cognitive energy, whose essence is intuition.” 4. The so-called IS-LM model has had an enduring influence on macroeconomic thought. Milton Friedman, who throughout his entire career was highly critical of Keynesian macroeconometric models, was eventually prevailed upon, late in his academic career, to develop a model that represented his views.

Advanced Macroeconomics, 3rd ed. New York: McGraw-Hill/Irwin. Sah, Raaj K. 1991. “Social Osmosis and Patterns of Crime.” Journal of Political Economy 88(6):1272–95. Samuelson, Paul A. 1997 [1948]. Economics: An Introductory Analysis, 1st ed. New York: McGraw-Hill (reprinted, with a new foreword). Sands, David R. 1991. “GAO Chief Says Banks Must Win Confidence.” Washington Times, March 8. Santayana, George. 1955 [1923]. Skepticism and Animal Faith. New York: Dover. Sargent, Thomas J. 1971. “A Note on the Accelerationist’ Controversy.” Journal of Money Credit and Banking 3(3):721–25. Sargent, Thomas J., and Neil Wallace. 1975. “Rational Expectations, the Optimal Monetary Instrument, and the Optimal Money Supply Rule.” Journal of Political Economy 83(2):241–54. Schank, Roger C., and Robert P.

., 188n10, 11 Rosner, Josh, 181n18 Ross, Stephen A., 182n22 Rules, monetary and fiscal. See targets Russia, 2 Russian currency crisis, 84 Sachs, Jeffrey, 67, 185n25 Sah, Raaj, 39, 182n26 St. Vincent Millay, Edna, 183n1 Saks, Raven E., 183n14 Salomon Brothers, 83 Samuelson, Paul, 46, 107–8, 113–14, 189n2, 193n3 Sands, David R., 181n13 Sanford Spinning Mill, 60 San Francisco, California, 169 Santayana, George, 178n4 Sargent, Thomas J., 178n4, 183n8, 190n14 Saulnier, Raymond, 113 Save More Tomorrow, 121, 125 saving, 6, 116–30, 174, 190–92n1–26; cues for, 119–20, 128, 130; deviation from standard economics of, 122–25; framing of, 119–21, 122, 191n4; long-term consequences of, 116–18; mental accounts and, 120–21, 192n25; national impact of, 125–28, 129–30; variability of, 118–22 savings and loan (S&L) crisis, 30–33, 93, 172; cost of, 31, 86; deregulation and, 30 Sbordone, Argia, 179n9 Schank, Roger C., 51, 183n2 Schellhammer, Melanie, 181n9 Schmeidler, David, 194n32 Schnyder, Ulrich, 181n9 Scholes, Myron, 84 Schultze, Charles L., 189n1 Schumpeter, Joseph A., 62, 184n9 Schwartz, Anna Jacobson, 61, 186n7 Schwarz, Christopher, 182n23 securities, 27–29 Securities Act of 1933, 39 Securities and Exchange Commission, 33, 147 Securities Exchange Act of 1934, 39 securitized loans, 87, 90, 170 selfish behavior, 22–23 Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs, 83 Sender, Henry, 188n17 Seuss, Dr.


pages: 257 words: 13,443

Statistical Arbitrage: Algorithmic Trading Insights and Techniques by Andrew Pole

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algorithmic trading, Benoit Mandelbrot, Chance favours the prepared mind, constrained optimization, Dava Sobel, George Santayana, Long Term Capital Management, Louis Pasteur, mandelbrot fractal, market clearing, market fundamentalism, merger arbitrage, pattern recognition, price discrimination, profit maximization, quantitative trading / quantitative finance, risk tolerance, Sharpe ratio, statistical arbitrage, statistical model, stochastic volatility, systematic trading, transaction costs

When change is absolute there remains no being to improve and no direction is set for possible improvement: and when experience is not retained, as among savages, infancy is perpetual. Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it. In the first stage of life the mind is frivolous and easily distracted, it misses progress by failing in consecutiveness and persistence. This is the condition of children and barbarians, in which instinct has learned nothing from experience.’’ The Life of Reason, George Santayana. 6 STATISTICAL ARBITRAGE the output of the same, but the theory, models, and analysis are of an emergent process, not the causal mechanism(s) proper. No matter how impressibly we may describe routines and procedures of the regular players, from analysts (writing their reports) to fund advisors (reading those reports, recommending portfolio changes) to fund managers (making portfolio decisions) to traders (acting on those decisions), the modeling is necessarily once removed from the elemental processes.

See also Return decline catastrophe process, 194–198 catastrophe process forecasts, 198–200 catastrophe process theoretical interpretation, 205–209 Cuscore statistics and, 200–205, 211–221 risk management and, 209–211 trend change identification, 200–205 Revealed reversion, see Expected revealed reversion Reverse bets, 11 Reversion, law of, 67–89, 113–114, 139–140 first-order serial correlation and, 77–82 inhomogeneous variances and, 74–77 interstock volatility and, 67, 99–112, 164–165 looking several days ahead and, 87–89 nonconstant distributions and, 82–84 in nonstationary process, 136–137 serial correlation, 138–139 75 percent rule and, 68–74 in stationary random process, 114–136 temporal dynamics and, 91–98 U.S. bond futures and, 85–87 Reynders Gray, 26 Risk arbitrage, competition and, 160–161 Risk control, 26–32 event correlations, 31–32 forecast variance, 26–28 market exposure, 29–30 market impact, 30–31 229 Index Risks scenarios, 141–154 catastrophe process and, 209–211 correlation during loss episodes, 151–154 event risk, 142–145 new risk factors, 145–148 redemption tension, 148–150 Regulation Fair Disclosure (FD), 150–151 Royal Dutch Shell (RD)–British Petroleum (BP) spread, 46–47 S&P (Standard & Poor’s): S&P 500, 28 futures and exposure, 21 Sample distribution, 123 Santayana, George, 5n2 SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome), 175 Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), 3, 150–151 Seismology analogy, 200n1 September 11 terrorist attacks, 175 Sequentially structured variances, 136–137 Sequentially unstructured variances, 137 Serial correlation, 138–139 75 percent rule, 68–74, 117 first-order serial correlation and, 77–82 inhomogeneous variances and, 74–77, 136–137 looking several days ahead and, 87–89 nonconstant distributions and, 82–84 U.S. bond futures and, 85–87 Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), 175 Shackleton, E.


pages: 300 words: 79,315

Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity by David Allen

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Albert Einstein, asset allocation, cognitive dissonance, conceptual framework, Everything should be made as simple as possible, George Santayana, index card, knowledge worker, Ralph Waldo Emerson, rolodex

To know and to be clear about the purpose of any activity are prime directives for clarity, creative development, and cooperation. But it’s common sense that’s not commonly practiced, simply because it’s so easy for us to create things, get caught up in the form of what we’ve created, and let our connection with our real and primary intentions slip. Fanaticism consists of redoubling your efforts when you have forgotten your aim. —George Santayana I know, based upon thousands of hours spent in many offices with many sophisticated people, that the “why?” question cannot be ignored. When people complain to me about having too many meetings, I have to ask, “What is the purpose of the meetings?” When they ask, “Who should I invite to the planning session?” I have to ask, “What’s the purpose of the planning session?” Until we have the answer to my questions, there’s no possible way to come up with an appropriate response to theirs.

notebooks notes, processing of note-taking, electronic objectives, two key office actions lists office equipment office space, setting up office supplies, see work tools one-final-thing syndrome one item at a time, processing of open loops (incompletes) options, expansion of organization, in managing workflow basics of next-action categories nonactionable items planning in of projects workflow diagram for organizers organizing of action reminders of checklists of nonactionable data of project reminders seven basic categories in workflow diagram for organizing tools outcome focusing applied outcome thinking and fast track and and mastering the mundane multilevel outcome management and natural planning and positive organizational culture and outcomes, classification of outlines, planning and Ovid pagers paper and pads paper-based files paper-based workflow, management of paper-holding trays papers, loose “parking lot” for projects Pauling, Linus pending items personal digital assistants (PDAs) personal incompletion triggers lists personal notebook planners personal projects phone calls planning choosing projects in informal real-world application of support structures for tools for typical steps in see also natural planning; project planning positive organizational culture Post-its predefined work principles, in planning priorities ABC codes for process actionable do, delegate, or defer next action no action required “Projects” lists workflow diagram for processing “in,” description of guidelines for identifying projects and next action and no action required as one-directional workflow diagram for procrastinating productive state, getting into productivity professional incompletion triggers lists professional projects project planning key ingredients of relaxed control in natural model reactive model unnatural model vertical focus and projects choice of current definition of identification of informal planning and lists for subsorting of support material for triggers for actuation of, see triggers purpose, in planning random project thinking reactive planning read/review lists ready state, of martial artists reference material organization of variety of reference systems for reference storage reference systems, two types of resources, alignment of responsibility, areas of reticular activating system reviewing of bigger picture importance of lists for right time and place for six-level model for two major issues in updating your system of weekly what and when Rogers, Will Rolodexes ruthless execution Saffo, Paul Santayana, George scanning, emergency Schwab, Charles Scientific American setting up, see getting started sharing Shaw, George Bernard short-term memory Snyder, Steven software someday/maybe items lists for special categories of staplers starting, see getting started stress “stuff ”: corralling of definition of key to management of transformation of subprojects success Suzuki, Shunryu Symantec telephone calls telephones threefold model for evaluating daily work tickler files tickling time available departing from traditional management of setting aside as work factor time-specific actions to-do lists unworkable Toffler, Alvin Tomlin, Lily top item first, processing of trash guidelines for tricks of implementation triggers lists of Twain, Mark two-minute rule unnatural planning values thinking Van Doren, Mark vertical control or focus vision: planning and three- to five-year waiting-for lists wastebasket/recycling bins weekly review why, value of thinking about Wilson, Desmond Woodruff, Julia Louis work: ambiguous boundaries of definition of knowledge shifting job definitions and six-level model for review of threefold model for evaluation of workflow, five stages of mastering collect do organize process review work space, setting up work tools basic list of writing instruments writing paper and pads Yutang, Lin “zone,” 1 I consider “work,” in its most universal sense, as meaning anything that you want or need to be different than it currently is.


pages: 1,106 words: 335,322

Titan: The Life of John D. Rockefeller, Sr. by Ron Chernow

California gold rush, collective bargaining, death of newspapers, delayed gratification, double entry bookkeeping, endowment effect, family office, financial independence, Frederick Winslow Taylor, George Santayana, God and Mammon, income inequality, invisible hand, Joseph Schumpeter, Louis Pasteur, Mahatma Gandhi, Menlo Park, New Journalism, oil rush, oil shale / tar sands, passive investing, Plutocrats, plutocrats, price discrimination, profit motive, Ralph Waldo Emerson, refrigerator car, The Chicago School, Thorstein Veblen, transcontinental railway, traveling salesman, union organizing, Upton Sinclair, white picket fence, yellow journalism

AN, B111 F21, letter to Mr. Edward Judson, November 29, 1892. Gates, Chapters in My Life, p. 312. Nevins, Study in Power, vol. I, p. 342. UC–JDR, B1 F2, letter from Dr. Augustus H. Strong, November 26, 1887. IMT, B 1/14, letter from V. C. Hicks to Ida Tarbell, June 29, 1905. McCormick, George Santayana, p. 283. Ibid. Wacker, Augustus H. Strong, p. 84. Ibid., p. 101. AN, B130, letter from Dr. Augustus Strong, January 4, 1887. Ibid., editorial note from T. W. Goodspeed. McCormick, George Santayana, p. 282. Santayana, The Letters of George Santayana, p. 22. UC–JDR, B1 F2, letter from Dr. Augustus H. Strong, November 26, 1887. Ibid., letter from W. R. Harper, January 11, 1887. John D. Rockefeller, Random Reminiscences, pp. 112, 116. The New York Tribune, September 21, 1890. AN, B130, letter from William Rainey Harper to T.W.

RAC, vol. 214, no. 79, letter to F. T. Gates, May 12, 1905. AN, B117 F59, letter from S. Murphy, August 16, 1905. RAC, vol. 217, no. 480, letter to Mrs. Watson Van Duyne, May 1, 1906. AN, B117 F59, letter to Bessie Strong, December 20, 1905. RAC–CAS, III, “Letters 1906–1907.” Santayana, The Letters of George Santayana, p. 86. RAC, Inglis notes, 4.12, “Hoster Manuscript,” p. 4. Ibid., p. 5. Ibid., p. 19. Ibid., p. 8. Flynn, God’s Gold, p. 424. Ibid., p. 423. McCormick, George Santayana, p. 284. Ibid. RAC, Inglis notes, 4.12, “Hoster Manuscript.” AN, B131. RAC, Inglis notes, 4.12, “Hoster Manuscript,” p. 27. AN, B117 F60, letter from George Rogers, July 9, 1906. RAC–CAS, III, “Letters 1906–1907,” letter from Charles A. Strong to William James, July 23, 1906. Nevins, John D. Rockefeller: The Heroic Age of American Enterprise, vol.

Rugoff, Milton. America’s Gilded Age: Intimate Portraits from an Era of Extravagance and Change, 1850–1890. New York: Henry Holt and Co., 1989. Russell, Bertrand. Freedom Versus Organization, 1814 to 1914. New York: W. W. Norton and Co., 1934. Sampson, Anthony. The Seven Sisters: The Great Oil Companies and the World They Shaped. Reprint. New York: Bantam Books, 1975 [1973]. Santayana, George. The Letters of George Santayana. Ed. Daniel Cory. New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1955. ———. Persons and Places: The Background of My Life. New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1944. Schenkel, Albert F. The Rich Man and the Kingdom: John D. Rockefeller, Jr., and the Protestant Establishment. Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 1995. Schreiner, Samuel A., Jr. Henry Clay Frick: The Gospel of Greed. New York: St.


pages: 791 words: 85,159

Social Life of Information by John Seely Brown, Paul Duguid

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AltaVista, business process, Claude Shannon: information theory, computer age, cross-subsidies, disintermediation, double entry bookkeeping, Frank Gehry, frictionless, frictionless market, future of work, George Gilder, George Santayana, global village, Howard Rheingold, informal economy, information retrieval, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, John Markoff, Just-in-time delivery, Kenneth Arrow, Kevin Kelly, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, loose coupling, Marshall McLuhan, medical malpractice, moral hazard, Network effects, new economy, Productivity paradox, Robert Metcalfe, rolodex, Ronald Coase, shareholder value, Shoshana Zuboff, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, Superbowl ad, Ted Nelson, telepresence, the medium is the message, The Nature of the Firm, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, transaction costs, Turing test, Vannevar Bush, Y2K

Then as now, much of the fast-breaking news was little more than gossip and scandal dressed as public interest and surrounded by ads. Thomas Jefferson once stated, "A man who never looks into a newspaper is better informed than he who reads them."41 But the content, the information, was not key to the way these documents helped to make and maintain a sense of community across the nation. As the philosopher George Santayana summed it up: "It doesn't matter what, so long as they all read the same thing."42 And the endless cutting, pasting, forwarding, reading aloud, and discussing meant that, to a surprising degree, Americans wereor felt they werereading much the same thing. The blizzard of newspapers, pamphlets, journals, and tracts allowed each reader to feel that what he or she was doing, thousands and possibly tens of thousands of others with the same interests were doing at the same time.

See Credentialing Delegation, bots and, 53 54 Demassification, 23 of production, 26 27 Page 309 Desktop publishing, 79 80 Dibbell, Julian, 190 Dickens, Charles, 135, 195 196 DigiCash, 60 Digitized libraries, 179 181 Disaggregation, 23 information revolution and, 65 66 Disintermediation, 6 effects of, 28 31 Displacement, 81, 105 Distance combating, 167 170, 226 227 and education, 211 212, 223 227, 229 241 geographic, 224 recomputing, 229 social, 224 Divisions communities of practice, 141, 142 143 implications of, 143 146 networks of practice, 141 142 d-lib research, 180 Documents versus database, 186 fixity of, 197 198 nature of, 183 185 validation through, 187 188 Downes, Larry, 23, 84 Downsizing, downside of, 122 Dretske, Fred, 138 Drucker, Peter, 118 Dylan, Bob, 199 E eBay, 44 acquisitions activities of, 25 Education centralized, 227 228 decentralization of, 231 241 of disadvantaged groups, 224 distance, 223 224 distance, history of, 211 212 enculturation in, 219 220 external degree programs and, 229 facilities for, 236 240 faculty responsibilities, 235 for-profit, 209 210 future of, 233 241 graduate, 221 in information age, 207 209, 212 213 massification in, 25 26, 209 misrepresentation in, 216 219 on-line and off-line activities in, 226 227 peer support in, 221 223 reorganization of, 230 231 research and, 235 236 student needs, 233 234 U.S. structure, 213 215 undergraduate, 220 Electronic books, 178, 179 181 Electronic newspapers, 177 179 e-lib research, 180 Eliza, computer program, 35 36 Encryption, 59 60 Enculturation, 219 220 Englebart, Douglas, 84 Epistemology, 118 Page 310 Ethernet, development of, 176 177 Eureka project, 112 113, 125, 142 e-zines, 193 F Faraday, Michael, 86 FedEx, 29 Fidler, Roger, 189 Field Communications, 178 Fish, Stanley, 223 Fixity, 197 198 of newspapers, 199 value of, 201 202 Flat organizations, information technology and, 28 29 Ford, 122 reengineering of, 92 Ford, Henry, 27 Froomkin, Michael, 46, 52 Fukuyama, Francis, 28, 29 Futurology, limitations of, 31 32 G Gates, Bill, 11, 20, 39, 248 Gateway (Times Mirror), 178 Geer, Dan, 60 61 Gehry, Frank, 71 Gibbons, Jim, 221 222 Giddens, Anthony, 62 Gildea, Patricia, 130 GM, 23 Saturn project of, 154 Granovetter, Mark, 113 Gray, Jim, 11 Greeley, Horace, 195 Guardian, Web presence of, 178 GUI (Graphical User Interface), development of, 150 151, 156 157, 158 161 H Hammer, Michael, 91, 92, 93, 98, 107, 111, 144 Hayek, Friedrich, 139 Heckman, James, 223 Hewlett-Packard and best practice, 123 reengineering of, 92 Home office concentration of effort at, 79 80 costs of, 81 82 drawbacks to, 69 70 trends regarding, 67 68 Hooke, Robert, 191 Hot desking, 69, 70 lack of success of, 70 74 Hughes, Robert, 228 Huizinga, Johan, 197 Humphrys, Mark, 54 I IBM, 87, 157, 159 PC division of, 154 reengineering of, 92 rhetoric of, 20, 207 208, 213 Illinois, University of, 211 212 Improvisation, 108 109 in business practice, 109 111 Indiana University, 207, 213 Information checking reliability of, Page 311 187 189 compared to knowledge, 119 120 connotations of term, 118 controlling flow of, 12 documents and, 183 185 fluidity of, 197 200 overload of, 15 17 overreliance on, 21 22 peer-group sharing of, 102 103, 106 108, 125 126 social context of, 8 9 traditional institutions redefined in context of, 20 21, 23 31, 210 211 Information age, 1 limits to, 6 8 origin myths about, 17 19 selective constituency of, 5 6 tunnel design and, 2 4 Information brokering, 41 44 Information Rules, 171 Information technology concerns about, 39 41 displacement and concentration provided by, 81 disruption caused by, 83 86 effects on organizations, 145 146 expectations of, 19 20 and flatness of organizations, 28 29 future of, 38 41 hidden costs of, 77 78 instability caused by, 75 76 and intellectual property law, 248 250 supplanting of traditional institutions by, 16 17 ubiquity of, 13 17 Innis, Harold, 30, 200 Innovation and complementarity, 160 versus invention, 155 and organization, 160, 171 172 Institutions evolution of, 246 252 future of, 250 252 Intel, 59 Intellectual property rights, 246, 248 250 Internet community-forming aspect of, 189 190 e-zines on, 193 194 free information on, 56 57 retailers on, 37 Internet Service Providers, 28 J Jaspers, Karl, 219 Java, 87 Jefferson, Thomas, 196 Jobs, Steve, 151, 158 Johnson, Samuel, 243 K Kenney, Martin, 166 Keyfax (Field Communications), 178 Knight-Ridder, 178 Page 312 Knobot, 42 44 Knowledge clustering and, 161 167 compared to information, 119 120 connotation of term, 118 119 decoupling organizational links and, 154 ecological view of, 164 167 and learning, 124 125 organizational structure and, 171 172 and personalization, 120 122 philosophical musings on, 133 135 problems of moving, 149 150, 151 154 Knowledge economy, 121 Knowledge management, 93, 18 problems of, 122 124 Kodak, 157 Krugman, Paul, 26 L Laser printer, development of, 176 177 Latour, Bruno, 198 Lave, Jean, 50, 126, 138, 141, 142 Law of Diminishing Returns, 23 Law of Disruption, 84 Learning, 124 125 on demand, 136 137 divisions of, 140 143 experience and, 130 131 and identity, 138 139 mentoring and, 131 133 practice and, 129 135 social, 137, 139 140 types of, 128 129 See also Education Leonard-Barton, Dorothy, 122, 123 Lessig, Larry, 249 Libraries, digitized, 179 181 London, University of, external degrees, 229, 231 Longfellow, Henry Wadsworth, 196 Lotus Notes, 124 Lusk, Wyoming, 66, 77 M Macintosh computers, bot use on, 37 38 Madcap project, 244 246 Maes, Pattie, 41, 44, 46, 48 Malthus, Thomas, 171 Man in the Gray Flannel Suit, 152 March, James, 95 Markets, self-organizing character of, 170 Marshall, Alfred, 164, 165 Marx, Karl, 139 Massification, 24 25 of markets and consumption, 27 McLuhan, Marshall, 185, 200 Media, massification of, 24 25 Mediamorphosis, 189 Mega-universities, 25 26, 209 Memex system, 179 180 Mercantilism, 246, 247 Merchant brokering, 46 48 Page 313 Mergers, 24 25 Merrill Lynch, 148 Metcalfe, Bob, 176 177 Microsoft, 23, 26, 28, 87, 157 acquisitions activities of, 25 antitrust suit against, 24, 189 presence in Silicon Valley, 169 170 relations with AT&T, 25, 28 rhetoric of, 20, 66 technology costs at, 82 Microsoft Research, 210 Miller, George, 130 Milken, Michael, 209 Minitel, 189 190 Mokyr, Joel, 86 Monarchism, 246, 247 Moore, Gordon, 14, 157 Moore's Law, 14 15, 59 Moore's Law solutions, 14, 59 Morse, Samuel, 18, 19 Mui, Chunka, 23, 84 Mundie, Craig, 79 N Narration, importance of, 106 108 NASA, infomatics division of, 38 Negotiating agent, 48 50, 51 52 human approach to, 50 51 Negroponte, Nicholas, 15 Nelson, Horatio, 30 Netscape, 26, 28 Networks of practice, 141 142, 162 Neuromedia, 36 New York Herald, 196 New York Times, Web presence of, 178 New York Tribune, 195 Newspapers characteristics of, 185 186 electronic, 177 179 fixity of, 199 history and influence of, 194 197 as portals, 179 Newton, Isaac, 191 NIP (new imaging processes), 155 157 Nunberg, Geoffrey, 31, 248 NYNEX, reengineering of, 92 O Oakeshott, Michael, 54 O'Brien, Flann, 187 O'Connor, Eileen, 152 Odlyzko, Andrew, 81 Office design of, 75 help systems in, 76 77 home, 67 70, 79 82 importance of, 72 74 Open Learning Australia, 224 Open University (Britain), 25, 209, 224 Organization and innovation, 160, 171 172 versus self organization, 170 171 Orr, Julian, 99, 100 105, 107 108, 111, 113, 125, 126 Page 314 P Pacific Gas & Electric, technology costs at, 82 Paine, Thomas, 195 Paper in history, 191 194 immutability of, 200 201 persistence of, 18 19, 174 175, 181 183 transformation of use of, 175 177 Paperless office, 18 19, 176 Papows, Jeff, 124 Penn State, World Campus of, 211, 212 Personal assistants, 41 Personality theft, 58 Phillips, Tom, 11 Phoenix, University of, 209, 236 Photocopier development of, 161 patents for, 159 PLATO, 211 212 Platt, Lew, 123 Polanyi, Michael, 134 Portals, 37, 179 Post-it notes, 181 182 Press history and importance of, 194 197 See also Newspapers Printing, history of, 191 192 Privacy, U.S. versus European approaches to, 251 Process meaning, 95 97 perfecting, 94 95 representing, 99 100 views regarding, 97 99 Processing defined, 109 effects of, 110 111 Product brokering, 44 45 Productivity current trends in, 83 84 historical trends in, 83 Project Gutenberg, 180 Prusak, Larry, 122, 198 R Railroads, history of, 32 Reddy, Michael, 184 Reengineering, 92 93, 247 difficulties of, 97 99 process and, 94 95 top-down nature of, 97 98 Reengineering the Corporation, 144 Representation, bots and, 54 56 Resources, complex nature of, 243 244 Rheingold, Howard, 188, 190 Rosenberg, Nathan, 160 161 Route 128, 164 culture of, 166 167 Royal Society, 191 192 Ryle, Gilbert, 128 129, 134 S SAABRE system, 45 Sabel, Charles, 94 Salinger, Pierre, 188 San Francisco Chronicle, Web presence of, 178 Page 315 San Jose Mercury, Web presence of, 178 Santayana, George, 196 Sartre, Jean-Paul, 140 Sassen, Saskia, 27 Saxenian, Anna Lee, 165, 166 Scientific community, printing press and, 191 192 Scientific Management, 113 Seagram, reengineering of, 92 Self-organization, 170 171 Shallow Red, computer program, 36 Shapiro, Carl, 171 Sherlock, computer program, 37 38, 41 Shulsky, Abram, 28, 29 Silicon Valley clustering in, 164, 166, 169 culture of, 161, 166 and death of distance, 167 168 resources available to, 168 169 Sitkin, Sim, 145 6-D vision, 21 23, 201 dimensions of, 23 31 limitations of, 31 33 Slate, Web presence of, 178 Smith, Adam, 52, 92, 145, 153 Smith, Stevie, 12 Social distance, combating, 224, 226 227 Social issues, artificial intelligence and, 40 Social learning, 137, 139 140 Social periphery, defined, 5 Software, legal issues regarding, 249 250 South Pacific, University of, 224 Southern California, University of, distance education and, 212 Space binding, 200 Spender, J-C., 172 Sterne, Laurence, 24 Stewart, Thomas, 122 Stock, Brian, 192, 197 Storytelling, 106 108 Strassmann, Paul, 77, 79, 81 Strauss, Anselm, 190, 197 Suchman, Lucy, 119 Sun Microsystems, 87 Symantec, 59 T Tagore, Rabindrath, 136 Taylor, Frederick, 113 Technology integration into society, 86 81 taming of, 86 Telecommunications history of, 30, 87 89 modern trends in, 89 Tenner, Edward, 3 ThirdVoice.com, 182 3Com, 168 Time binding, 200 Times Mirror Newspapers, 178 Tocqueville, Alexis de, 196, 197 Toffler, Alvin, 18, 67, 69, 79 Total Quality Management, 145 Toulmin, Stephen, 107 Transaction costs, 23 24 Page 316 Trow, Martin, 217 Tunnel design, 2 4 TV University System (China), 25 TVI (tutored video instruction), 222 U USWeb/CKS, technology costs at, 82 V Varian, Hal, 171 Viewtron (Knight-Ridder), 178 Virtual Community, 190 Virtual University (California), 211, 212 W Wall Street Journal, Web presence of, 178 Wal-Mart, 29 Warrants documents as, 187 188 unreliability of, 188 189 Weizenbaum, Joseph, 35 WELL (Whole Earth 'Lectronic Link), 190 Wells, H.G., 84 Wellsprings of Knowledge, 122 Wenger, Etienne, 96, 126, 138, 141, 142 Western Union, 88 Whalen, Jack, 131, 133 Whyte, William, 152 Wilensky, Robert, 40, 41, 62 Williams, Raymond, 246 Wired, Web presence of, 178 Work practice cautions regarding, 114 115 collaborative, 104 106, 125 126 improvisation in, 108 109, 110 investigation of, 99 100, 102 109 lateral aspects of, 111 113 social aspects of, 102 103, 106 108 understanding of, 100 102 World Wide Web access and, 226 business plans on, 247 248 characteristics of, 201 economic importance of, 147 149 education on, 212, 225 227 mutability of, 198, 200 news on, 178 179 origins of, 147 services on, 37 structure and terminology of, 182 183 structure of page on, 202 205 Wren, Christopher, 191 X Xerox, 110, 142, 154 management of managers at, 78 79 and personal computers, 150 151, 157 160 Xerox PARC, 76, 150 151, 154, 155 157, 158 159, 190, 200, 244 and Apple Computer, 151, 157, 163, 166 Page 317 and paperless office, 176 177 reengineering of, 92 Z Zero-Knowledge Systems, 59 Zilog, 166 'zines, 193 Zuboff, Shoshona, 30 Page 319 About the Authors JOHN SEELEY BROWN is the Chief Scientist of Xerox Corporation and the Director of its famous Palo Alto Research Center (PARC).


pages: 410 words: 101,260

Originals: How Non-Conformists Move the World by Adam Grant

Albert Einstein, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, availability heuristic, barriers to entry, business process, business process outsourcing, Cass Sunstein, clean water, cognitive dissonance, creative destruction, cuban missile crisis, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, Dean Kamen, double helix, Elon Musk, fear of failure, Firefox, George Santayana, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, Jeff Bezos, job satisfaction, job-hopping, Joseph Schumpeter, Kickstarter, Lean Startup, Louis Pasteur, Mahatma Gandhi, Mark Zuckerberg, meta analysis, meta-analysis, minimum viable product, Network effects, pattern recognition, Paul Graham, Peter Thiel, Ralph Waldo Emerson, random walk, risk tolerance, Rosa Parks, Saturday Night Live, Silicon Valley, Skype, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Pinker, The Wisdom of Crowds, women in the workforce

In Stanton’s eyes, “The death of no woman in America had ever called out so general a tribute of public respect and esteem.” Stone was the “first who really stirred the nation’s heart on the subject of women’s wrongs,” and their disagreement many years earlier was because Stone “felt the slaves’ wrongs more deeply than her own—my philosophy was more egotistical.” “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it,” philosopher George Santayana wrote. That would prove to hold true for the American women’s suffrage movement, on at least two occasions. In 1890, two members of Anthony’s organization, furious at her scheming to create a national organization and the move toward tempered radicalism, split off to form a rival group that attacked the efforts to unify. Anthony and Stanton quashed it, but they were not around to warn their successors against the narcissism of small differences.

, 219, 223, 226–28, 232, 235–36, 241, 242 overconfidence, 33–34, 54, 186, 195 Overstreet, Bonaro, 146 Overstreet, Harry, 146 Ozcelik, Hakan, 225 Page, Larry, 17–18, 83 Palestine-Israel conflict, 142, 143n Palm Computing, 90, 186 parents, parenting, 159–70, 252–54 discipline and, 163–65, 169n as role models, 170–71 values and, 167–71 Park, Joseph, 105 Parker, Sarah Jessica, 114 Parks, Rosa, 12, 93, 153, 238 passion, 32, 55–57, 180 Pasteur, Louis, 107 Patel, Priya, 221n Paul, Alice, 145 pen design, 136–37 Pennebaker, James, 240n Perry, Meredith, 122–24, 140–41, 248 persistence, 79, 80, 89, 249 pessimism, defensive, 212–14, 217 Peters, Tom, 236 Peterson, Bill, 171 Phillips, Damon, 83 photography: digital, 183, 184, 186, 187 Polaroid and, 175–76, 179, 181–87, 199, 203, 209 Picasso, Pablo, 35, 36 Pink, Daniel, 113 Pinker, Steven, 156 Pinochet, Augusto, 226 pioneers, 103–8 Planck, Max, 107–8 PlayStation, 186 Poitier, Sidney, 93 Poland, 227 Polaroid, 175–76, 179, 181–87, 199, 203, 209 police officers, 130 politicians, 151, 154 Pontikes, Elizabeth, 106 Popovic, Srdja, 126, 218–20, 223, 226–31, 235–36, 238, 241, 242 Porter, Roger, 193n positive features, listing, 73–74 power, 65, 66, 68, 86, 88 praise, 168–70, 252–53 presidents, 23–24 inaugural addresses of, 214n Presley, Elvis, 230n problems and solutions, 197, 251 procrastination, x, 26, 93–102, 108, 246 improvisation and, 100 planning and, 102 professional blueprint, 180–82, 181n professors, 33, 67 prototypes, 41, 42 public speaking, 215 Pugh, Lewis, 210–12, 214, 217–18, 237–38 quantity, 35–38 quality and, 37 Queen, 18 Quiet (Cain), 216 Quillen, Robert, 148 radicalism, tempered, 124–26, 128, 140, 145, 248 Raffiee, Joseph, 17 Raines, Tim, 149 Rakove, Jack, 11 Rebele, Reb, 60 rebels, 152, 153, 155, 157, 161n, 162 Reebok, 186 Reingen, Peter, 128, 143 Reinventing the Wheel (Kemper), 106 Reiser, Paul, 42 relationships, 128–31 ambivalent, 129–31 Republicans, 6 reputation, 186 respect, 66, 67, 88 revolutions and resistance movements, 219–20, 223, 225–27 Rickey, Branch, 19, 172 Ride, Sally, 14 Ries, Eric, 39n risk, 14, 16–23, 26, 40, 43, 83, 106, 209, 234 birth order and, 150, 153–56 comedians and, 158 parenting and, 160, 162 portfolios of, 18–20, 25, 66–67, 246–47 reputational, 186 Rivera, Lauren, 190n Rivers, Joan, 158 Robinson, Jackie, 19, 93, 146–48, 150, 153–54, 157, 159–60, 162, 167, 171–72 Robinson, Mack, 157 Robinson, Mallie, 160, 167, 171 Robinson, Willa Mae, 160 Rock, Chris, 158 Rockefeller, Nelson, 99 Rogers, Howard, 182 role models, 170–74, 252 roller blading, 136, 137 Roman Catholic Church, 191, 207 Roosevelt, Eleanor, 253–54 Roosevelt, Franklin D., 234–35 Rosenberg, Jonathan, 55 Rosette, Ashleigh, 86, 87 Rottenberg, Linda, 20 Rowling, J. K., 40–41, 174 Rustin, Bayard, 238 Safari, 4–6 Saffo, Paul, 195 Sahlman, Bill, 52, 56, 106n Salovey, Peter, 233 Sandberg, Sheryl, ix–xii, 85, 114, 172 Santayana, George, 144 Sarick, Leslie, 69, 77 Sarick Effect, 69–75, 77 Saturday Night Live, 46, 190 Schmidt, Eric, 55 Schneider, Benjamin, 182 Schulz-Hardt, Stefan, 199n Schumpeter, Joseph, 13 Schwartz, Shalom, 205 Schwarz, Norbert, 74 science, 207 Science Talent Search, 97–98 scientists, 151–52, 154 Scully, Maureen, 124, 236–37 Segway, 29–32, 38, 39, 50–56, 60, 106n Seinfeld, 31, 39–42, 42n, 44–46, 49–50, 57 Seinfeld, Jerry, 45, 57, 158, 215 self-confidence, 212, 213 overconfidence, 33–34, 54, 186, 195 self-doubt, 212–14, 235 Selma, 18 Semmelweis, Ignaz, 107 September 11 terrorist attacks, 64, 107, 240n Serbia, 218–20, 223, 226, 227, 231–32, 235–36, 242 Serial, 37 settlers, 103–7 sexual harassment, 85n Shakespeare, William, 35–36, 135 shapers, 208–9 sharing, 120–21 Shaw, George Bernard, 1 Shin, Jihae, 94–95 siblings: birth order of, 148–59, 162, 174 niche picking and, 156–59, 174, 253 parenting and, 159–70 Silicon Valley, 125, 180–82, 187n Silverman, Josh, 220–21, 222 Simonton, Dean, 34–37, 48, 155, 173 sincerity, 193 Sinek, Simon, 124 singing, 120, 216 Sistine Chapel, 11, 12 Sivers, Derek, 225 Sixtus V, Pope, 191 Skype, 220–22 smartphones, 7, 90 iPhone, 7, 90, 91 Smiley, Glenn, 238–39 Smith, Rick, 20 Snoop Dogg, 123 social approval, 23 solutions, focus on, 197, 251 Sonenshein, Scott, 212 songs: singing, 120, 216 tapping rhythm to, 75–76 Sony, 183, 186 Sørensen, Jesper, 183 Soske, Trina, 201–3, 205, 207 Soule, Sarah, 120–21, 122n Spanx, 20, 114 speaking up, 62–91, 196n, 201–2, 205 women and, 84–88 See also dissenting opinions Sperry, Roger, 109, 111 Stanislavski, Constantin, 237 Stanton, Elizabeth Cady, 115–16, 118–19, 121, 126–31, 142, 144 star blueprint, 180–82, 181n Star Trek, 173 status, 65–68, 82–83, 86, 88, 202 movements and, 121n–22n Stearney, Scott, 125 Steinman, Josh, 125 Sternberg, Robert, 11 Stewart, Abigail, 171 Stewart, Jon, 158 “Still I Rise” (Angelou), 36 stock market, 83, 181, 182 Stone, Lucy, 114–16, 118–19, 121, 127–31, 133–34, 141–45 stop system, 216–17, 229, 240 strategic flexibility, 101 strategic optimism, 212–13 Streisand, Barbra, 161n Subotnik, Rena, 97–98 Sulloway, Frank, 150–52, 156n, 157, 162 support, 225–27 surface acting, 237, 238 surgeons, 229 Sutton, Robert, 37, 229 Syria, 227–29 Tadic, Boris, 231, 242 Tartikoff, Brandon, 34, 41 teachers, 9–10 Tellis, Gerard, 103–4 tempered radicalism, 124–26, 128, 140, 145, 248 Thiel, Peter, 106, 123, 172 Thinking, Fast and Slow (Kahneman), 55 This American Life, 36–37 Thoreau, Henry David, 93 three-ring binder, 135–36 Time, 30 time of day, 97n timing, 26, 92–113 age and, 108–13 first movers and, 93, 103–8 procrastination and.


pages: 395 words: 116,675

The Evolution of Everything: How New Ideas Emerge by Matt Ridley

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affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Albert Einstein, Alfred Russel Wallace, altcoin, anthropic principle, anti-communist, bank run, banking crisis, barriers to entry, bitcoin, blockchain, British Empire, Broken windows theory, Columbian Exchange, computer age, Corn Laws, cosmological constant, creative destruction, Credit Default Swap, crony capitalism, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, demographic transition, Deng Xiaoping, discovery of DNA, Donald Davies, double helix, Downton Abbey, Edward Glaeser, Edward Lorenz: Chaos theory, Edward Snowden, endogenous growth, epigenetics, ethereum blockchain, facts on the ground, falling living standards, Ferguson, Missouri, financial deregulation, financial innovation, Frederick Winslow Taylor, Geoffrey West, Santa Fe Institute, George Gilder, George Santayana, Gunnar Myrdal, Henri Poincaré, hydraulic fracturing, imperial preference, income per capita, indoor plumbing, interchangeable parts, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Jane Jacobs, Jeff Bezos, joint-stock company, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, Kevin Kelly, Khan Academy, knowledge economy, land reform, Lao Tzu, long peace, Lyft, M-Pesa, Mahatma Gandhi, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, meta analysis, meta-analysis, mobile money, money: store of value / unit of account / medium of exchange, Mont Pelerin Society, moral hazard, Necker cube, obamacare, out of africa, packet switching, peer-to-peer, phenotype, Pierre-Simon Laplace, price mechanism, profit motive, RAND corporation, random walk, Ray Kurzweil, rent-seeking, reserve currency, Richard Feynman, Richard Feynman, rising living standards, road to serfdom, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, Satoshi Nakamoto, Second Machine Age, sharing economy, smart contracts, South Sea Bubble, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, transaction costs, women in the workforce

How could they have made me waste all those years at school plodding through the tedious platitudes and pedestrian prose of Jesus Christ or Julius Caesar, when they could have been telling me about Lucretius instead, or as well? Even Virgil was writing partly in reaction to Lucretius, keen to re-establish respect for gods, rulers and top–down ideas in general. Lucretius’s notion of the ceaseless mutation of forms composed of indestructible substances – which the Spanish-born philosopher George Santayana called the greatest thought that mankind has ever hit upon – has been one of the persistent themes of my own writing. It is the central idea behind not just physics and chemistry, but evolution, ecology and economics too. Had the Christians not suppressed Lucretius, we would surely have discovered Darwinism centuries before we did. The Lucretian heresy It is by the thinnest of threads that we even know the poem De Rerum Natura.

(with Paul Paddock) 207 Page, Larry 188 Pagel, Mark 80, 81–2 Pakistan 32, 206 Paley, William 38–9, 41–2, 51 Panama 286 Paris 102, 121, 254 Park, Walter 139 Parris, Matthew 303 Parys Mine Company, Anglesey 278 Pascal, Blaise 273 Paul, Senator Rand 241 Paul, Ron 114, 285, 292, 295 Paul, St (Saul of Tarsus) 8, 258, 264 Pauling, Linus 121 Pax Romana 239 Peace High School, Hyderabad (India) 181 Peel, Robert 246, 283–4 Peer-to-Peer Foundation 308 Peninsular War 280 People’s Printing Press 288 personality: and the blank slate 156–7, 158–9; and genes 159, 160–2; and homicide 169–71; innateness of behaviour 157–8; intelligence from within 165–7; non-genetic differences 162–5; and parenting 159–60, 161–2; and sexual attraction 172–3; and sexuality 167–9 Peterloo massacre (1819) 245 Pfister, Christian 276 Philippe, duc d’Orléans 286 Philippines 190 Philips, Emo 140 Philostratus 258 Phoenicia 101 Pinker, Steven 28, 30, 31–3, 172–3; The Better Angels of Our Nature 28–9 Pinnacle Technologies 136 Pitt-Rivers, Augustus 127 Pixar 124 Planned Parenthood Foundation 204 Plath, Robert 126 Plato 7, 11 Plomin, Robert 165, 167 Poincaré, Henri 18, 121 Polanyi, Karl 133 Polanyi, Michael 253 politics 314–16 Poor Law (1834) 195 Pope, Alexander 15 Popper, Karl 253; ‘Conjectures and Refutations’ 269 Population: American eugenics 200–3; control and sterilisation 205–8; and eugenics 197–9; impact of Green Revolution 208–10; Irish application of Malthusian doctrines 195–7; Malthusian theory 193, 194–5; and one-child policy 210–14; post-war eugenics 203–5 Population Crisis Committee 206 Portugal, Portuguese 134 Pottinger, Sir Harry 233 ‘Primer for Development’ (UN, 1951) 232 Prince, Thomas 242 Pritchett, Lant 179–80; The Rebirth of Education 176 Procter & Gamble 130 Proudhon, Pierre-Joseph 194–5 Prussia 176 Psychological Review 159 Putin, Vladimir 305 ‘The Puzzle of Monogamous Marriage’ (Henrich, Boyd & Richerson) 89 Pythagoras 85 Pythagorism 259 Qian XingZhong 213 Quesnay, François 98 Raines, Franklin 292 Ramsay, John 25 RAND Corporation 206, 300 Ravenholt, Reimert 206 Ray Smith, Alvy 124 Reagan, Ronald 254, 290 Red Sea 82 Reed, Leonard 43 Reformation 216, 220 religion: and climate change/global warming 271–6; and cult of cereology (crop circles) 264–6; existence of God 14–15; heretics and heresies 141–2; as human impulse 256–8; predictability of gods 259–60; and the prophet 260–3; temptations of superstition 266–8; variety of beliefs 257–8; vital delusions 268–71 Renaissance 220 Ricardo, David 104–5, 106, 246 Richardson, Samuel 88 Richerson, Pete 78, 89 Ridley, Matt, The Rational Optimist: How Prosperity Evolves 110–11, 126–7 Rio de Janeiro 92 Roberts, Russ 4 Robinson, James 97–8 Rockefeller Foundation 229, 230–1 Rodriguez, Joã 47–8 Rodrik, Dani 228 Rome 257, 259, 260 Romer, Paul 109 Roosevelt, Franklin Delano 251 Roosevelt, Theodore 197 Rothbard, Murray 243 Rousseau, Jean-Jacques 165, 216 Rowling, J.K. 122 Royal Bank 281 Royal Mint 278, 279 Royal Navy 297 Royal United Services Institution 198 Rudin, Ernst 202 Rufer, Chris 226 Runciman, Garry, Very Different, But Much the Same 94 Rusk, Dean 206–7 Russell, Lord John 195 Russia 119, 204, 227–8, 250, 303 Russian Revolution 318 Sadow, Bernard 126 Safaricom 296 St Louis (ship) 202–3 St Maaz School, Hyderabad (India) 181 Salk Institute, California 67 San Marco, Venice 53 Sandia National Laboratory 136 Sanger, Margaret 201, 204 Santa Fe Institute 93, 126 Santayana, George 10 Sapienza, Carmen 67 Satoshi Nakamoto 307–8, 309–10, 312 Schiller, Friedrich 248 Schmidt, Albrecht 222 Schumpeter, Joseph 106, 128, 251; Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy 106–7; Theory of Economic Development 106 science: as driver of innovation 133–7; as private good 137–9; pseudo-science 269 Science (journal) 70 Scientology 263 Scopes, John 49 Scotland 17, 280–2, 286 Scott, Sir Peter 211 Scott, Sir Walter (‘Malachi Malagrowther’) 283 Second International Congress of Eugenics 200 Second World War 105, 138, 203, 231, 252, 254, 318 Self-Management Institute 226 Selgin, George 297; Good Money 279, 280 Shade, John 188 Shakespeare, William 15, 131, 216, 224 Shanker, Albert 180 Shaw, George Bernard 197 Shaw, Marilyn 155–6 Shelley, Mary, Frankenstein 16 Shelley, Percy 16 Shockley, William 119 Shogun Japanese 130 Sierra Club 204 Silk Road 311–12 Silvester, David 274 Simon, Julian 209 Singapore 190 Sistine Chapel, Rome 256 Skarbek, David, The Social Order of the Underworld 237–8 Skinner, B.F. 156, 267–8 Skirving, William 244 skyhooks 7, 13, 14, 18, 65, 67, 71, 150, 267 Slumdog Millionaire (film, 2008) 185 Smith, Adam 3, 20, 21, 22–7, 28, 33, 110, 112, 117, 234, 243, 244, 246, 249; The Theory of Moral Sentiments 23–4, 27, 28, 37–8, 98; The Wealth of Nations 24, 38, 98–100, 103–4, 137 Smith, John Maynard 53 Smith, Joseph 263, 264, 266 Smithism 110 Snowden, Edward 303 SOLE (self-organised learning environment) 186 Solow, Robert 108, 137 Somalia 32 Song, Chinese dynasty 101 Song Jian 210–11, 212–13 South America 247 South Korea 125, 190, 229 South Sea Bubble (1720) 285, 294 South Sudan 32 Soviet-Harvard illusion 3 Soviet Union 114, 122 Spain 101, 247 Sparkes, Matthew 313 Sparta 101 Spencer, Herbert 216–17, 249, 253 Spenser, Edmund 15 Spinoza, Baruch 20, 141–2, 148, 268; Ethics 142; l’Esprit des lois 142–3 Sputnik 138 Stalin, Joseph 250, 252, 253 Stalling, A.E. 10 Stanford University 184, 185 Stealth bomber 130 Steiner, George, Nostalgia for the Absolute 266 Steiner, Rudolf 271 Steinsberger, Nick 136 Stephenson, George 119 Stewart, Dugald 38, 244 Stiglitz, Joseph 292 Stockman, David 288, 289–90; The Great Deformation 294 stoicism 259 Stop Online Piracy Act (US, 2011) 304 Strawson, Galen 140 Stuart, Charles Edward ‘The Young Pretender’ 282 Stuart, James Edward ‘The Old Pretender’ 281 Sudan 32 Summers, Larry 110 Sunnis 262 Suomi, Stephen 161 Sveikauskas, Leo 139 Swan, Joseph 119 Sweden 101, 284 Switzerland 32, 190, 247, 254 Sybaris 93 Syria 32 Szabo, Nick 307, 310; ‘Shelling Out: The Origins of Money’ 307 Tabarrok, Alex 132; Launching the Innovation Renaissance 132 Taiwan 190 Tajikistan 305 Taleb, Nassim 3, 92, 107, 135, 285, 312 Tamerlane the Great 87 Taoism 259, 260 Taylor, Winslow 250 Taylorism 250, 251 Tea Act (UK, 1773) 282n Tea Party 246 technology: biological similarities 126–31; boat analogy 128; computers 123–5, 126; copying 132–3; electric light 1–2; and fracking 136; inexorable progress 122–6, 130–1; innovation as emergent phenomenon 139; and the internet 299–316; light bulbs 118–19, 120; many-to-many 300; mass-communication 200; open innovation 130; patents/copyright laws 131–2; and printing 220; and science 133–9; simultaneous discovery 120–2; skunk works 130; software 131 TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) lecture 177 Thatcher, Margaret 217 Third International Congress of Eugenics 201–2, 204 Third World 231–2 Thrun, Sebastian 185 Time (magazine) 241 The Times 308 Togo 94 Tokyo 92 Tolstoy, Leo 217 Tooby, John 43 Tooley, James 181–4 Toy Story (film, 1995) 124 Trevelyan, Charles 195 Tuchman, Barbara, A Distant Mirror 29 Tucker, William 90; Marriage and Civilization 89 Tullock, Gordon 35 Turner, Ted 213 Twister (messaging system) 313 Twitter 310, 313 U-2 reconnaissance plane 130 Uber 109 UK Meteorological Office 275 UN Codex Alimentarius 254 UN Family Planning Agency 213 UN Framework Convention on Climate Change 254–5 UN General Assembly 305 UNESCO 205 Union Bank of Scotland 281 United Nations 131, 213, 232, 305 United States 34, 122, 125, 138, 139, 176, 200–2, 232, 235–8, 245, 247, 250, 254, 284–5, 286, 302 United States Supreme Court 50 universe: anthropic principle 18–20; designed and planned 7–10; deterministic view 17–18; Lucretian heresy 10–12; Newton’s nudge 12–13; swerve 14–15 University of Czernowitz 106 University of Houston 71 University of Pennsylvania 133 UNIX 302 Urbain Le Verrier 120–1 US Bureau of Land Management 240 US Department of Education 240 US Department of Homeland Security 240, 241 US Federal Reserve 285, 286, 288, 293, 297, 309 US Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission 294 US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) 240 US National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration 240 US Office of Management and Budget 290 Utah 89 Uzbekistan 305 Vancouver 92 Vanuatu 81 Vardanes, King 258 Veblen, Thorstein 249 Verdi, Giuseppe: Aida 248; Rigoletto 248 Veronica (search engine) 120 Versailles Treaty (1919) 318 Victoria, Queen 89 Virgil (Publius Vergilius Maro) 10, 23 vitalism 270–1 Vodafone 296 Vogt, William 205, 209; Road to Survival 204 Voltaire, François-Marie Arouet 14, 15, 20, 22, 25, 41, 143, 243, 268; Candide 15 Volvo 101 Wagner, Andreas 47 Wall Street Journal 125, 132 Wallace, Alfred Russell 20, 54–5, 196 Wallison, Peter 294 Walras, Léon 106 Waltham, David, Lucky Planet 19 Walwyn, Thomas 242 Wang Mang, Emperor 267 Wang Zhen 212 Wannsee conference 198 Wapinski, Norm 136 Washington, George 220, 222, 240 Washington Post 241 Watson, James 121, 145 Webb, Beatrice 197 Webb, Richard 5, 319 Webb, Sidney 197 Webcrawler 120 Wedgwood family 38 Wedgwood, Josiah 199 Weismann, August 55 Wells, H.G. 197, 251 West, Edwin 178; Education and the State 177 West, Geoffrey 93 West Indies 134, 286 Whitney, Eli 128 Whittle, Frank 119 Whole Foods 227 Wikipedia 188, 304–5 Wilby, Peter 315 Wilhelm II, Kaiser 198, 247 Wilkins, Maurice 121 Wilkinson, John 278–9 Willeys 278–9, 280 Williams, Thomas 278 Williamson, Kevin 33; The End is Near and it’s Going to be Awesome 238–9 Wilson, Catherine 12 Wilson, Margo 171 Wolf, Alison, Does Education Matter?


pages: 743 words: 201,651

Free Speech: Ten Principles for a Connected World by Timothy Garton Ash

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A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Andrew Keen, Apple II, Ayatollah Khomeini, battle of ideas, Berlin Wall, bitcoin, British Empire, Cass Sunstein, Chelsea Manning, citizen journalism, Clapham omnibus, colonial rule, crowdsourcing, David Attenborough, don't be evil, Donald Davies, Douglas Engelbart, Edward Snowden, Etonian, European colonialism, eurozone crisis, failed state, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Ferguson, Missouri, Filter Bubble, financial independence, Firefox, Galaxy Zoo, George Santayana, global village, index card, Internet Archive, invention of movable type, invention of writing, Jaron Lanier, jimmy wales, John Markoff, Julian Assange, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, mass immigration, megacity, mutually assured destruction, national security letter, Netflix Prize, Nicholas Carr, obamacare, Peace of Westphalia, Peter Thiel, pre–internet, profit motive, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, Ronald Reagan, semantic web, Silicon Valley, Simon Singh, Snapchat, social graph, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, The Wisdom of Crowds, Turing test, We are Anonymous. We are Legion, WikiLeaks, World Values Survey, Yom Kippur War

There is something odd about the fact that it was the institutions of post-1945 European integration, such as the European Commission, Parliament and Court of Justice, which were in the forefront of demanding a ‘right to be forgotten’. For the leitmotif of post-1945 Europe was ‘never forget!’ Never forget the horrors of the Holocaust, Gulag, multiple wars, occupations and dictatorships. I have lost count of the times I have heard European and especially German politicians repeat George Santayana’s line that those who forget the past are condemned to repeat it.89 This ‘never forget!’ was itself a departure from a centuries-old European tradition of dealing with a difficult past by consigning it to oblivion. Just two days after the murder of Caesar, Cicero declared in the Roman Senate that all memory of the murderous discord should be consigned to eternal oblivion: oblivione sempiterna delendam.

Sagar, Rahul. 2013: Secrets and Leaks: The Dilemma of State Secrecy. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Sajó, András, ed. 2007: Censorial Sensitivities: Free Speech and Religion in a Fundamentalist World. Utrecht, The Netherlands: Eleven International. Sambrook, Richard. 2012: Delivering Trust: Impartiality and Objectivity in the Digital Age. Oxford: Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism. Santayana, George. 1980 [1905]: Reason in Common Sense. New York: Dover. Sassen, Saskia. 2001: The Global City. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Saviano, Roberto. 2007: Gomorrah. Translated by Virginia Jewiss. London: Pan. Scammell, Michael. 1981: ‘How Index on Censorship Started’. Index on Censorship, vol. 10, no. 6, 6–71. doi: 10.1080/03064228108533275. Scanlon, Thomas. 2003: The Difficulty of Tolerance: Essays in Political Philosophy.

., 32, 103 Rose, Flemming, 145 Rosen, Jay, 204 Rosen, Jeffrey, 238, 304 Rosenstiel, Tom, 202 Roth, Philip, 91 Rowson, Martin, 243–44 Roy, Olivier, 279 Rusbridger, Alan, 146, 338 Rushdie, Salman, 2, 19, 63, 95, 141–42, 208, 212, 226, 273, 275, 277 Russia, 34, 36, 46–48, 56, 67, 102, 123–24, 142, 175f, 234, 237, 239, 254, 317, 321, 353–55, 362–63, 371; Kostroma, 234. See also Soviet Union Russian language, 76, 210 Rwanda, 94, 135, 136–37, 149, 233 Saatchi, Charles, 298–99 Sacks, Jonathan, 210 Sacranie, Iqbal, 226 Saddam Hussein, 285, 326, 328–29, 344 Sadek, Morris, 64, 66 Sagar, Rahul, 341 Said, Khaled, 315 samizdat, 56, 183–84 Sanger, Larry, 170–71 Santayana, George, 304 Sarrazin, Thilo, 213, 217, 231 satirical journals/programmes, 188, 204 Saudi Arabia, 27, 67, 87, 276, 278–80, 362, 374 Saviano, Roberto, 141–42 Say, Fazil, 278 Scanlon, Thomas, 74–75, 209, 282 Schauer, Frederick, 88 Schiller, Friedrich, 251 Schlink, Bernhard, 213 Schmidt, Eric, 47, 284, 307 Schmitt, Carl, 323 Schneier, Bruce, 284 schools: open debate in, 231–33; religious education in, 271 Schrems, Max, 310, 312 Schudson, Michael, 181, 202 Scientology, Church of, 228, 260 Scott, A.


pages: 251 words: 44,888

The Words You Should Know to Sound Smart: 1200 Essential Words Every Sophisticated Person Should Be Able to Use by Bobbi Bly

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Albert Einstein, Alistair Cooke, Anton Chekhov, British Empire, Columbine, Donald Trump, George Santayana, haute couture, Honoré de Balzac, John Nash: game theory, Network effects, placebo effect, Ralph Waldo Emerson, school vouchers, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs

.” – Iris Murdoch, Irish writer and philosopher facetious (fuh-SEE-shus), adjective Comments made specifically to get a laugh out of those around you; something said in jest; sarcastic. “Boarding school manners and attitudes—stoic denial, FACETIOUS irony—are still deeply entrenched in the character of the country.” – Jonathan Raban, British travel writer and novelist facile (FASS-ill), adjective Accomplished easily and with little effort. “The hunger for FACILE wisdom is the root of all false philosophy.” - George Santayana, Spanish-born American author and philosopher faction (FAK-shin), noun A small dissenting group within a larger one. “I will keep where there is wit stirring, and leave the FACTION of fools.” – William Shakespeare factitious (fack-TISH-uss), adjective Contrived; fabricated. At first, we thought the rumor FACTITIOUS, but then we learned that couture-producer Hermes does, in fact, plan to design and market a helicopter.

libation (lye-BAY-shun), noun An alcoholic beverage consumed at social gatherings, parties, and celebrations. With the LIBATIONS flowing freely, each member of the winning team felt compelled to make a drunken speech. libertine (LIB-er-teen), noun, adjective Licentious and free of moral restraint; or, a person so characterized. “It is easier to make a saint out of a LIBERTINE than out of a prig.” – George Santayana, author and philosopher libration (ly-BRAY-shun), noun The oscillation of Earth’s moon around its axis. LIBRATIONS are caused by changes in the intensity of Earth’s gravitational pull on the moon. licentious (ly-SEN-shus), adjective Promiscuous; slutty; someone who is sexually uninhibited and free. Janine’s LICENTIOUS behavior was really a cry for attention, the school psychologist was convinced.


pages: 232 words: 67,934

The Immortalization Commission: Science and the Strange Quest to Cheat Death by John Gray

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Alfred Russel Wallace, anthropic principle, anti-communist, dematerialisation, George Santayana, laissez-faire capitalism, Law of Accelerating Returns, life extension, Nikolai Kondratiev, random walk, Ray Kurzweil, the scientific method

Religion is not a primitive type of scientific theorizing, any more than science is a superior kind of belief-system. Just as rationalists have misunderstood myths as proto-versions of scientific theories, they have made the mistake of believing that scientific theories can be literally true. Both are systems of symbols, metaphors for a reality that cannot be rendered in literal terms. Every spiritual quest concludes in silence, and science also comes to a stop, if by another route. As George Santayana has written, ‘a really naked spirit cannot assume that the world is thoroughly intelligible. There may be surds, there may be hard facts, there may be dark abysses before which intelligence must be silent for fear of going mad.’ Science is like religion, an effort at transcendence that ends by accepting a world that is beyond understanding. All our inquiries come to rest in groundless facts.

p. 222 If our universe is one of many …The fact that humans exist in this universe needs no special explanation: For a discussion of these issues, see Paul Davies, The Goldilocks Enigma: Why Is the Universe Just Right for Life?, London: Penguin, 2007. p. 224 tools we use to tinker with the world: I owe my use of the term ‘tinkering’ to Nassim Nicholas Taleb. See Taleb’s Tinkering: How to Live in a World We Don’t Understand, forthcoming. p. 227 a really naked spirit cannot assume that the world is thoroughly intelligible …for fear of going mad: George Santayana, ‘Ultimate Religion’, in The Essential Santayana: Selected Writings, Bloomington and Indianapolis: Indiana University Press, 2009, 343. p. 227 When at last I had disabused my mind of the enormous imposture of a design …limitless hope and possibilities: Richard Jefferies, ‘Absence of Design in Nature’, in Landscape with Figures: An Anthology of Richard Jefferies’s Prose, London: Penguin, 1983, 244.


pages: 235 words: 62,862

Utopia for Realists: The Case for a Universal Basic Income, Open Borders, and a 15-Hour Workweek by Rutger Bregman

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autonomous vehicles, banking crisis, Bartolomé de las Casas, basic income, Berlin Wall, Bertrand Russell: In Praise of Idleness, Branko Milanovic, cognitive dissonance, computer age, conceptual framework, credit crunch, David Graeber, Diane Coyle, Erik Brynjolfsson, everywhere but in the productivity statistics, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Frank Levy and Richard Murnane: The New Division of Labor, full employment, George Gilder, George Santayana, happiness index / gross national happiness, Henry Ford's grandson gave labor union leader Walter Reuther a tour of the company’s new, automated factory…, income inequality, invention of gunpowder, James Watt: steam engine, John Markoff, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, Kodak vs Instagram, labour market flexibility, labour mobility, low skilled workers, means of production, megacity, meta analysis, meta-analysis, microcredit, minimum wage unemployment, Mont Pelerin Society, Nathan Meyer Rothschild: antibiotics, Occupy movement, offshore financial centre, Paul Samuelson, Peter Thiel, post-industrial society, precariat, RAND corporation, randomized controlled trial, Ray Kurzweil, Ronald Reagan, Second Machine Age, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, Skype, stem cell, Steven Pinker, telemarketer, The Future of Employment, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, universal basic income, wage slave, War on Poverty, We wanted flying cars, instead we got 140 characters, wikimedia commons, women in the workforce, working poor, World Values Survey

We’re all connected.”36 If this message isn’t enough to prick your moral sense, consider the monetary sense it makes. Because whether you’re talking about Dutch drifters, Indian sugarcane farmers, or Cherokee children, fighting poverty is good not only for our conscience, but for our wallets, too. As Professor Costello dryly notes, “That’s a very valuable lesson for society to learn.”37 Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it. GEORGE SANTAYANA (1863–1952) 6 The Bizarre Tale of President Nixon and His Basic Income Bill History is not a science that serves ups handy, bite-size lessons for daily life. Sure, reflecting on the past can help to put our trials and tribulations into perspective, from leaky faucets to national debts. After all, in the past, pretty much everything was worse. But with the world now changing faster than ever, the past seems more remote from us, too.

“It introduced no less a social and economic innovation than the ‘right to live,’” Polanyi wrote, “and until abolished in 1834, it effectively prevented the establishment of a competitive labor market.” In the end, Speenhamland resulted in “the pauperization of the masses,” who, according to Polanyi, “almost lost their human shape.” A basic income introduced not a floor, he contended, but a ceiling. At the top of the briefing presented to Nixon was a quotation by the Spanish-American writer George Santayana: “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”2 The president was stunned. He called on his key advisors and ordered them to get to the bottom of what had transpired in England a century and a half earlier. They showed him the initial findings of the pilot programs in Seattle and Denver, where people clearly had not started working less. Furthermore, they pointed out, Speenhamland more resembled the social spending mess that Nixon had inherited, which actually kept people trapped in a vicious poverty cycle.


pages: 299 words: 98,943

Immortality: The Quest to Live Forever and How It Drives Civilization by Stephen Cave

Albert Einstein, Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, back-to-the-land, clean water, double helix, George Santayana, invention of the printing press, Isaac Newton, Lao Tzu, life extension, planetary scale, Ray Kurzweil, stem cell, technoutopianism, the scientific method

Both these ideas, as we have seen, have found their champions among the poets, thinkers and myth makers: half suggest that we must live with the awareness of inevitable extinction, while the other half argue that we can never doubt that life is eternal. A few, of course, have also recognized the underlying paradox that both these ideas seem true. The Spanish-American philosopher and writer George Santayana, for example, captured it perfectly when he wrote of our clumsy struggle to reconcile “the observed fact of mortality and the native inconceivability of death.” The paradox stems from two different ways of viewing ourselves—on the one hand, objectively, or from the outside, as it were, and on the other hand, subjectively, or from the inside. When we deploy reason to view ourselves as we do other living things around us, then we realize that we, like them, will fail, die and rot.

Freud’s comments on the impossibility of imagining nonexistence are from his essay “Thoughts for the Times on War and Death” (1915, available for example in the collection Civilization, Society and Religion, Penguin, 1991). The Edward Young quote is from his poem “Night Thoughts” (1742–1745). Jessie Bering reports his research into the cognitive mechanisms underpinning belief in immortality in his book The God Instinct: The Psychology of Souls, Destiny and the Meaning of Life (Nicholas Brealey, 2010). The quote by the Spanish-American philosopher George Santayana is from Reason in Religion (first published 1905, reissued by Bibliobazaar in 2009 and available online). Also see the chapter “Death” in the philosopher Thomas Nagel’s The View from Nowhere (Oxford University Press, 1986) for a discussion of the distinction between first-person and third-person perspectives on one’s own death. Freud’s disciple Otto Rank did the most to develop the idea that this could be important in understanding human culture, in particular in Psychology and the Soul (first published in German in 1930, available in English from Johns Hopkins University Press, 1998).


pages: 698 words: 198,203

The Stuff of Thought: Language as a Window Into Human Nature by Steven Pinker

airport security, Albert Einstein, Bob Geldof, colonial rule, conceptual framework, correlation does not imply causation, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Brooks, Douglas Hofstadter, en.wikipedia.org, experimental subject, fudge factor, George Santayana, loss aversion, luminiferous ether, Norman Mailer, Richard Feynman, Richard Feynman, Ronald Reagan, Sapir-Whorf hypothesis, science of happiness, speech recognition, stem cell, Steven Pinker, Thomas Bayes, Thorstein Veblen, traffic fines, urban renewal, Yogi Berra

This violates the Maxim of Quality, because the comedian got the cliché about vice presidents and the presidency backwards. But the audience could infer that he was really saying that Bush was out of his depth as president and Cheney was running the show. There is almost always a butt to a joke, someone you are laughing at rather than laughing with. The butt is depicted as inept or foolish or undignified and thus loses authority in the eyes of onlookers. As George Santayana said, “To knock a thing down, especially if it is cocked at an arrogant angle, is a deep delight of the blood.” By hiding the insult in an implicature the challenger makes it all the more compelling, because any listener who can retrace the implicature successfully—who “gets the joke”—realizes that she knew about the target’s infirmity all along, and that others who are laughing with her knew about it, too.

relativism relativity religion: religious profanity taboo words drawn from domain of Remembrance of Things Past (Proust) reminding response cries responsibility: criminal moral right hemisphere (brain) rigid designators Robotman roots, formation of new Rosen, Larry Ross, Haj Rostand, Jean Roth, Philip Rozin, Paul Rush Hour Russell, Bertrand Russian language Sacks, Oliver Santayana, George Santos, Laurie Sapir, Edward sarcasm Sassoon, Siegfried Satran, Pamela Saussure, Ferdinand de Schank, Roger Schelling, Thomas Schön, Donald science: analogies in avoiding dogmatism in communality in definitions in English as lingua franca of fashion in metaphors in rational ignorance in see also evolution; philosophy of science; physics Scott, Sir Walter second-person pronouns segregation Seinfeld semantics: defined “mere” semantics see also meaning; reference semantic satiation sense see also philosophy of meaning; reference sex differences: all-or-none conception of in implicature and indirect speech and names in swearing in subjects of verbs for sex sexual come-ons sexual harassment sexuality: aggressive use of words for as communal relationship emotional coloring of words related to English terms for euphemism treadmill in terms for exchange element in polite transitive verb for sex prosecution of terms for results of suppressing in seven words you can’t say on television syntax of taboo words drawn from domain of talking about Shakespeare, William Shakespeare in Love shall shape, representation of Sheidlower, Jesse Shepard, Roger shit Shona language Silence of the Lambs, The Silverstein, Larry simile Simon, Herbert simple present tense Simpson, O.


pages: 184 words: 12,922

Pragmatic Version Control Using Git by Travis Swicegood

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continuous integration, David Heinemeier Hansson, en.wikipedia.org, Firefox, George Santayana, revision control

So far, we’ve covered how to use Git moving forward, but a key part of any VCS is how we can use it to see where we’ve been. The next chapter Chapter 6, Working with Git’s History, on the next page deals with that. Report erratum Prepared exclusively for Trieu Nguyen this copy is (P2.0 printing, March 2009) 79 Download at Boykma.Com Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it. George Santayana Chapter 6 Working with Git’s History A key aspect of any version control system is its history. Every new file you add and every change you add creates one more commit in its history. In this chapter, you’ll learn how to do the following: • Inspect the history of your repository using git log • Specify ranges of commits to help searching • View differences between commits • Annotate files with a line-by-line history • Follow content as you move it around • Undo changes you’ve made • Rewrite the history of your repository Inspecting that history can provide invaluable information.


pages: 168 words: 47,972

Vagabonding: An Uncommon Guide to the Art of Long-Term World Travel by Rolf Potts

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dematerialisation, Exxon Valdez, financial independence, follow your passion, George Santayana, Lao Tzu, large denomination, personalized medicine, Ralph Waldo Emerson, the map is not the territory

In Return Passages, critic Larzer Ziff describes a special quality of social tolerance and endurance in Ledyard — a trait that all vagabonders might do well to emulate: “He seemed the perfect democrat, at ease with those who were regarded as his betters, yet free of presumption, self-assured and not self-important; possessed of an urbanity acquired more from contact with the gentlemen of the primitive world than those of the city, and, most importantly, able to accept rebuffs — to undergo in order to go.” CHAPTER 7 We need sometimes to escape into open solitudes, into aimlessness, into the moral holiday of running some pure hazard, in order to sharpen the edge of life, to taste hardship, and to be compelled to work desperately for a moment no matter what. — GEORGE SANTAYANA, “THE PHILOSOPHY OF TRAVEL” Get into Adventures A few hundred years ago, “adventure travel” involved brave expeditions into the terra incognita — the mysterious lands at the edge of the known world, thought to be populated by monsters and mermaids. The more these unknown areas were explored, the smaller the terra incognita became, and gradually the physical limits of the world ceased to be such a mythical secret.


pages: 225 words: 55,458

Back to School: Why Everyone Deserves a Second Chance at Education by Mike Rose

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blue-collar work, centre right, creative destruction, delayed gratification, George Santayana, income inequality, moral panic, new economy, Ronald Reagan, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, the built environment, urban renewal, War on Poverty

The philosophy project at LaGuardia 178 I M P ROV I N G T H E P E O P L E ’ S C O L L E G E began with one new instructor. Fortunately, the college’s presidents noticed and encouraged his idea. A sign of a vibrant institution is an openness at the top to ideas emerging from those closest to the students themselves. This frontline to mid-level domain is also roiling with protection of turf, with entrenched political conflict, with interpersonal rivalries and animosities. I think it was the American philosopher George Santayana who observed that academic politics are so nasty because the stakes are so small. In addition to local politics, traditions and ossified routines also form barriers to the realization of good ideas. I’ve heard so many stories of department chairs or deans quashing innovative curricula, cooperation between departments, or fresh ways to deliver services. Some of the people at those California conferences were calling for strong professional development at this mid-level of administration to address these problems and to focus on how to recognize and foster talent.


pages: 225 words: 11,355

Financial Market Meltdown: Everything You Need to Know to Understand and Survive the Global Credit Crisis by Kevin Mellyn

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asset-backed security, bank run, banking crisis, Bernie Madoff, bonus culture, Bretton Woods, collateralized debt obligation, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, cuban missile crisis, disintermediation, diversification, fiat currency, financial deregulation, financial innovation, financial intermediation, fixed income, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, George Santayana, global reserve currency, Home mortgage interest deduction, Isaac Newton, joint-stock company, liquidity trap, London Interbank Offered Rate, long peace, margin call, market clearing, mass immigration, money market fund, moral hazard, mortgage tax deduction, Northern Rock, offshore financial centre, paradox of thrift, pattern recognition, pension reform, pets.com, Plutocrats, plutocrats, Ponzi scheme, profit maximization, pushing on a string, reserve currency, risk tolerance, risk-adjusted returns, road to serfdom, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, South Sea Bubble, statistical model, The Great Moderation, the new new thing, the payments system, too big to fail, value at risk, very high income, War on Poverty, Y2K, yield curve

This is precisely what the Federal Reserve failed to do in 1930. It kept money too tight, failed to bail out the banks, and in the process dried up money and credit in the real economy. Businesses closed, employment collapsed, more businesses closed, and so forth in a downward spiral. Until 2009, it seemed impossible that the world would be capable of repeating the tragedy of the 1930s. The philosopher George Santayana famously said that ‘‘Those who forget history The Fed Demystified are destined to repeat it,’’ but he failed to warn us that you can remember history and still end up repeating it. HELICOPTER BEN Ben Strong, to be fair, had no guidance about how to be a central banker aside from what his friend Montagu told him. Ben Bernanke, our current wizard, has spent his academic career trying to understand what went wrong in the 1930s.


pages: 263 words: 81,542

Drinking in America: Our Secret History by Susan Cheever

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British Empire, George Santayana, Howard Zinn, nuclear winter, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Ronald Reagan, trade route, white picket fence

These days, our surplus of corn, subsidized by government help, is made into another liquid that is cheap and easy to transport—high fructose corn syrup. Pollan concludes that “corn sweetener is to the republic of fat what corn whiskey was to the alcoholic republic.” We used to be the drunkest nation in the world; now we are the fattest nation in the world. “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it,” wrote George Santayana. In the twenty-first century, as we swing back toward regulation and laws against drinking, we are repeating our own history. At the same time, because we often ignore the effects of alcohol in current events and in our own experiences, we are in the midst of a public education crisis. According to the New York Times, fewer than 10 percent of people needing treatment for alcohol and drug abuse get that treatment.


pages: 281 words: 78,317

But What if We're Wrong? Thinking About the Present as if It Were the Past by Chuck Klosterman

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a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, British Empire, citizen journalism, cosmological constant, dark matter, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Frank Gehry, George Santayana, Gerolamo Cardano, ghettoisation, Howard Zinn, Isaac Newton, non-fiction novel, obamacare, pre–internet, Ralph Nader, Ray Kurzweil, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, Stephen Hawking, the medium is the message, the scientific method, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, too big to fail, Y2K

But I don’t believe subjective distinctions about quality transcend to anything close to objective truth—and every time somebody tries to prove otherwise, the results are inevitably galvanized by whatever it is they get wrong.30 In 1936, a quarterly magazine called The Colophon polled its subscribers (of whom there were roughly two thousand, although who knows how many actually voted) about what contemporary writers they believed would be viewed as canonical at the turn of the twenty-first century. The winner was Sinclair Lewis, who had won the Nobel Prize for literature just five years earlier. Others on the list include Willa Cather, Eugene O’Neill, George Santayana, and Robert Frost. It’s a decent overview of the period. Of course, what’s more fascinating is who was left off: James Joyce, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Ernest Hemingway (although the editors of The Colophon did include Hemingway on their own curated list). Now, the predictive time frame we’re dealing with—sixty-four years—is not that extreme. It’s possible that someone who voted in this poll was still alive when the century turned.


pages: 1,261 words: 294,715

Behave: The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst by Robert M. Sapolsky

autonomous vehicles, Bernie Madoff, biofilm, blood diamonds, British Empire, Broken windows theory, Brownian motion, car-free, clean water, cognitive dissonance, corporate personhood, corporate social responsibility, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, delayed gratification, desegregation, double helix, Drosophila, Edward Snowden, en.wikipedia.org, epigenetics, Flynn Effect, framing effect, fudge factor, George Santayana, hiring and firing, illegal immigration, impulse control, income inequality, John von Neumann, Loma Prieta earthquake, long peace, loss aversion, Mahatma Gandhi, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Mohammed Bouazizi, mouse model, mutually assured destruction, Network effects, out of africa, Peter Singer: altruism, phenotype, placebo effect, publication bias, RAND corporation, risk tolerance, Rosa Parks, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), self-driving car, Silicon Valley, stem cell, Steven Pinker, strikebreaker, theory of mind, transatlantic slave trade, traveling salesman, trickle-down economics, ultimatum game, Walter Mischel, wikimedia commons, zero-sum game

Would pain be less painful if you knew that it would be forgotten? Would the same happen to hatred, if you knew that with time it would fade and the similarities between Us and Them would outweigh the differences? And that a hundred years ago, in a place that was hell on earth, those with the most temptation to hate often didn’t even need the passage of time for that to happen? The philosopher George Santayana provided us with an aphorism so wise that it has suffered the fate of becoming a cliché—“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” In the context of this final chapter, we must turn Santayana on his head—those who do not remember the extraordinary truces of the World War I trenches, or who do not learn of Thompson, Colburn, and Andreotta, or of the reconciliative distances traveled by Abe and Fiske, Mandela and Viljoen, Hussein and Rabin, or of the stumbling, familiar moral frailties that Newton vanquished, or who do not recognize that science can teach us how to make events like these more likely—those who do not remember these are condemned to be less likely to repeat these reasons to hope.

Simmons, 170–71, 589, 590, 592 Rosenberg, Julius and Ethel, 396 Rousseau, Jean-Jacques, 305, 309, 325, 616 Rozin, Paul, 399, 562 Rudolph, Wilma, 596 runaway trolley problem (killing one person to save five), 55, 56, 58–59, 117, 482, 488–91, 505–7 self-driving cars and, 612n Russell, Jeffrey, 606 Rwanda, 570 genocide in, 571–72, 573, 619 Hutu and Tutsi tribes in, 372, 469, 570–73 Sabah, Nayirah al-, and supposed atrocities during the Gulf War, 632–33 sacred values, in conflict resolution, 575–79, 643–44 Sahlins, Marshall, 318 Saleh, Ali Abdullah, 653 Samoans, 122 Sandusky, Jerry, 597 Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre, 561 San Francisco earthquake (1989), 301 Santayana, George, 669–70 Saud, King, 367 Saypol, Irving, 396 Scalia, Antonin, 590 scapegoating, 531 schadenfreude, 15, 413 Schiller, Friedrich, 443 schizophrenia, 234, 235, 239, 582, 586, 593, 607 Schultz, Wolfram, 68, 71 Science, 133, 246–47, 251, 266, 278, 300n, 313, 322, 495, 524, 546, 549, 574–75, 636 Scientific American, 298 selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, 694 self-confidence, 102–3, 237 Semai, 313, 502n Semang, 317, 318 sensorimotor contagion, 86, 395, 522 sensory stimuli, 6–7, 15, 81–98 amygdala and, 40–41 in animals, 83–84 auditory, 6, 83–84, 89 cultural differences in processing, 276 haptic (touch), 565–66 hormones and, see hormones interoceptive information, 90–92, 528, 529, 566 real vs. metaphorical sensation, 565–68 and sensitivity of sensory organs, 96–97 subliminal and unconscious, 84–90, 93–96 language, 92–93 temperature, 566 visual, 6, 84 Sepoy Mutiny, 391n September 11 attacks, 619 Seromba, Athanase, 572 serotonin, 134, 692 aggression and, 76–77, 250–55 genes and, 227, 246, 250–55, 264 psilocybin and, 693 selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, 694 SES, see socioeconomic status sex, 11, 39, 43, 65–66, 95 oxytocin and, 110 sex differences, 266 cultural, 272 dimorphic, 366 and hormones in prenatal environment, 211–19 math skills and, 266–67, 267, 406 obedience and, 474 in monkey behaviors, 213–14, 214 transgender individuals and, 215n sexual selection, 330–31 Seyfarth, Robert, 337–38 shame, 502–3 Shariff, Azim, 623 Shepher, Joseph, 371 Sherman, Marshall, 554 Shermer, Michael, 495 Shweder, Richard, 271, 494 Sigmund, Karl, 350 Silkwood, Karen, 652 Simpson, O.


pages: 469 words: 97,582

QI: The Second Book of General Ignorance by Lloyd, John, Mitchinson, John

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Ada Lovelace, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, Captain Sullenberger Hudson, clean water, double helix, Etonian, George Santayana, ghettoisation, Isaac Newton, Lao Tzu, Louis Pasteur, Mikhail Gorbachev, Murano, Venice glass, out of africa, the built environment, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, transatlantic slave trade, traveling salesman, US Airways Flight 1549

All other living things on earth are programmed to die. What does the future hold for a species that isn’t? A life-form in which each individual has the potential to found colony upon colony of fellow immortals … THE USES OF INTERESTINGNESS There are books in which the footnotes, or the comments scrawled by some reader’s hand in the margin, are more interesting than the text. The world is one of those books. GEORGE SANTAYANA (1863–1952) We think all books, even the ones that are handsomely bound and come with an index, are still works in progress. If the pursuit of interestingness has taught us anything it is that there is no final word on any subject. For this reason we encourage you to scrawl furiously in the margins of this book or, better still, visit our website and pick up the conversation with us there.


pages: 509 words: 92,141

The Pragmatic Programmer by Andrew Hunt, Dave Thomas

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A Pattern Language, Broken windows theory, business process, buy low sell high, c2.com, combinatorial explosion, continuous integration, database schema, domain-specific language, don't repeat yourself, Donald Knuth, general-purpose programming language, George Santayana, Grace Hopper, if you see hoof prints, think horses—not zebras, index card, loose coupling, Menlo Park, MVC pattern, premature optimization, Ralph Waldo Emerson, revision control, Schrödinger's Cat, slashdot, sorting algorithm, speech recognition, traveling salesman, urban decay, Y2K

For anything you find yourself doing repeatedly, develop a set of macros (or equivalent) to handle it. Do you know everything your editor is capable of doing? Try to stump your colleagues who use the same editor. Try to accomplish any given editing task in as few keystrokes as possible. 17. Source Code Control Progress, far from consisting in change, depends on retentiveness. Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it. • George Santayana, Life of Reason One of the important things we look for in a user interface is the key—a single button that forgives us our mistakes. It's even better if the environment supports multiple levels of undo and redo, so you can go back and recover from something that happened a couple of minutes ago. But what if the mistake happened last week, and you've turned your computer on and off ten times since then?


pages: 292 words: 88,319

The Infinite Book: A Short Guide to the Boundless, Timeless and Endless by John D. Barrow

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Albert Einstein, Andrew Wiles, anthropic principle, Arthur Eddington, cosmological principle, dark matter, Edmond Halley, Fellow of the Royal Society, Georg Cantor, George Santayana, Henri Poincaré, Isaac Newton, mutually assured destruction, Olbers’ paradox, prisoner's dilemma, Ray Kurzweil, short selling, Stephen Hawking, Turing machine

Just as the addition of quantum theory to our description of events in the early Universe is expected to smooth out physical infinities into events of very high but finite density, so the same is expected in the high-density remnants of black hole explosions, if they occur.22 What we have found is that, despite the special attitude of cosmologists to the existence of physical infinities, and the particular places where they would expect to find them, there is a general unwillingness to admit them into the Universe because of their unpredictable consequences. Rather it is expected that their prediction is another signal that existing theories need more work in order to extend their domain of applicability. Physical infinities will be nuanced by the laws of Nature. THE GREAT BLUE YONDER ‘It is a great advantage for a system of philosophy to be substantially true.’ George Santayana23 The third flavour of infinity is the most familiar, the most controversial, and the least amenable to investigation. To some it is a matter of faith, to others a state of mind, and to most others a harmless mystical feeling about the Universe that does not have any real impact on the here and now. This is what we might call transcendental or, using Cantor’s words, absolute infinity. It is the cosmic encompassment of everything.


pages: 219 words: 15,438

The Essays of Warren Buffett: Lessons for Corporate America by Warren E. Buffett, Lawrence A. Cunningham

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compound rate of return, corporate governance, Dissolution of the Soviet Union, diversified portfolio, dividend-yielding stocks, fixed income, George Santayana, index fund, intangible asset, invisible hand, large denomination, low cost carrier, oil shock, passive investing, price stability, Ronald Reagan, the market place, transaction costs, Yogi Berra, zero-coupon bond

Gutfreund, John. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 110 Hazen, Paul 97 Heider, Charlie.... . . . 136 Heineman, Ben . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 139 Henderson, William Thomas 122 115, 150 Hoskins, Ed Ivester, Doug. . . 90 Johnson, Samuel 47 Jordan, Michael.................. 90 Kelleher, Herb. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 112 Keough, Don .... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 90 Keynes, John Maynard. .. 14, 81, 171, 185 Kiewit, Peter. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 121 Li'l Abner. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 205 Lincoln, Abraham................ 198 Lowenstein, Lou. .. . . 149 Lynch, Peter 74,77 Maguire, Jim " 17, 122, 123, 131 Marx, Karl 45 Mason, Jackie. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 109 Medlin, John. .. . .. . .. .. .. .. .. .. . . 146 Methuselah " 26, 211 Milken, Michael. . . . . . . . . . .. 17, 102, 103 Mockler, Colman, Jr. ... . . . . . . . . . . 110 Morrison, Garry. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 44, 45 Murphy, Tom 83,87,88,97,139 Nicklaus, Jack. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42 Noah............................ 139 O'Hara, Scarlett. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 106 Ogilvy, David 42, 66 Okun, Arthur. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 170 Palmer, Arnold.................. 42 Pritzker, Jay 67, 71 Reagan, Ronald. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 61 Reichardt, Carl 97, 98 Russell, Bertrand. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 100 Sagan, Carl. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 53, 207 Santayana, George 137 Schey, Ralph 59,60 Schofield, Seth. . . . . . . .. 42, 112, 113, 115 Scott, F.C. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 81 Scott, Walter, Jr. 121 Sellers, Peter. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 68 Sigler, Andy..................... 110 Simmons, Dick. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 83 Simpson, Lou . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 83 Singleton, Henry . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 139 Smith, Adam 45, 130 Snyder, Bill. . .. . .. . .. . . .. . .. . .. . . 83 St.


pages: 353 words: 110,919

The Road to Character by David Brooks

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Cass Sunstein, David Brooks, desegregation, Donald Trump, follow your passion, George Santayana, Mahatma Gandhi, meta analysis, meta-analysis, moral hazard, New Journalism, Ralph Waldo Emerson, rent control, Snapchat, Steve Jobs, Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, union organizing, Upton Sinclair, upwardly mobile

One high school classmate recalled, “He spoke biblical poetry. And Browning. He would tackle you and then get up and recite a poem.”16 As a freshman he became the first black student in forty years to win his high school’s oratory prize. By senior year he made the all-county football team, and he was a class valedictorian. He developed a passion for opera, Mozart, Bach, and Palestrina, and George Santayana’s novel The Last Puritan was one of his favorite books. On his own he also read Will and Ariel Durant’s The Story of Civilization, which, he testified, was like “taking a whiff of something that simply opens your nostrils except that it happened in my brain.”17 Rustin went off to college at Wilberforce University in Ohio and then Cheney State in Pennsylvania. While in college he realized he was gay.


words: 49,604

The Weightless World: Strategies for Managing the Digital Economy by Diane Coyle

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barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, blue-collar work, Bretton Woods, clean water, computer age, Corn Laws, creative destruction, cross-subsidies, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, dematerialisation, Diane Coyle, Edward Glaeser, everywhere but in the productivity statistics, financial deregulation, full employment, George Santayana, global village, hiring and firing, Howard Rheingold, income inequality, informal economy, invisible hand, Jane Jacobs, Joseph Schumpeter, knowledge economy, labour market flexibility, laissez-faire capitalism, lump of labour, Marshall McLuhan, mass immigration, McJob, microcredit, moral panic, Network effects, new economy, Nick Leeson, night-watchman state, North Sea oil, offshore financial centre, pension reform, pensions crisis, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, spinning jenny, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, the market place, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, Tobin tax, two tier labour market, very high income, War on Poverty, winner-take-all economy, working-age population

A new politics of weightlessness is needed so that the economic benefits can be captured and shared, the technocrats made accountable for economic success or failure. There is now a strand in political philosophy that detests economic progress, linking it to the fundamental modern liberal agenda. For example, John Gray has criticised the ‘elite of opinion formers’ who have paternalistically imposed conformity on the world. It is a political tendency ‘for which progress is more important than liberty’. He quotes George Santayana approvingly: ‘We all feel at this time the moral ambiguity of mechanical progress. It seems to multiply opportunity, but it destroys the possibility of simple, rural or independent life.’4 Everybody feels the appeal of the simple life. I have desired to go where springs not fail, To fields where flies no sharp and sided hail And a few lilies blow. And I have desired to be where no storms come And the green swell is in the havens dumb And out of the swing of the sea.


pages: 327 words: 88,121

The Vanishing Neighbor: The Transformation of American Community by Marc J. Dunkelman

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Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Albert Einstein, assortative mating, Berlin Wall, big-box store, blue-collar work, Bretton Woods, Broken windows theory, call centre, clean water, cuban missile crisis, dark matter, David Brooks, delayed gratification, double helix, Downton Abbey, Edward Glaeser, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Filter Bubble, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, George Santayana, Gini coefficient, glass ceiling, global supply chain, global village, helicopter parent, if you build it, they will come, impulse control, income inequality, invention of movable type, Jane Jacobs, John Markoff, Khyber Pass, Louis Pasteur, Marshall McLuhan, Martin Wolf, McMansion, Nate Silver, Nicholas Carr, obamacare, Occupy movement, Peter Thiel, post-industrial society, Richard Florida, rolodex, Saturday Night Live, Silicon Valley, Skype, Steve Jobs, telemarketer, The Chicago School, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, the medium is the message, Thomas L Friedman, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, urban decay, urban planning, Walter Mischel, War on Poverty, women in the workforce, World Values Survey, zero-sum game

., 19, 84, 128, 176, 230 Chinatown in, 33–35 Diamond District in, 98–99, 135 Jacobs’s views on, 85–86, 166, 167–68 New York Times, xiv, 27, 38, 46, 54–55, 59, 182, 229 New York Times Book Review, 5–6 New York Times Magazine, 64 niches, 36, 40, 41, 44–45, 73–74 affirmation and, 107–8, 110–11 Nichols, Mike, 4, 248n Nie, Norman, 125 1950s, 3–6, 32, 50, 52, 60, 114, 115, 127, 138, 139, 248n conformity in, 4–5, 65, 73, 74 family routines in, 58 fantasy view of, 3, 51 membership associations in, 130–31 1960s, 70–71, 248n social trust in, 135 upheavals of, 6, 68, 87, 108–9, 128 Nisbet, Robert, 194 North American Free Trade Agreement, 197–98 nostalgia, ix–x, 51, 72, 146, 182–83 nuclear war, 51, 52, 55, 56, 57, 60 nursing homes, 197, 200, 202, 206–7 Obama, Barack, 24, 37–38, 42, 59, 146, 186, 205, 210 Occupy movement, 109–10 Office, The (TV show), 131 Ogle, Richard, 162 Olds, Jacqueline, 130 Olympic Games (2014), 178 online buying, 41, 69–70 online communities, 114–15, 116, 145, 250n opportunity, 12–13, 26, 27, 32, 43, 49, 62, 69, 73, 74, 75, 98, 212, 213 affirmation and, 103, 108 optimism, 51, 82, 114, 236 Organization Man, The (Whyte), 5, 6, 138 organizations: new breed of, 116–18 voluntary, 80, 116, 118, 130–31, 187, 201, 228, 239 Osteen, Joel, 72, 238 other-directedness, 5–7 Our Best Life (Osteen), 72 outer-ring relationships, 96–97, 114–19, 137, 138–39, 143, 145, 147–48, 169, 173, 190, 204, 237, 238 affirmation and, 107–12, 115 online, 114–15, 121–22 Oxycodone epidemic, 147–48 Packer, George, 235, 236 Palin, Sarah, 206 Pariser, Eli, 37, 48, 176, 194–95 Park Forest, 4–5 Pasteur, Louis, 158–59, 174 Pauling, Linus, 161 PBS, 182, 192 pensions, 20, 205, 235–36 Perot, Ross, 197–98 Perry Preschool Project, 224 Pew Center for American Life, 250n Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life, 71 Pew Internet & American Life Project, 125 Pew Research Center, 106–7, 237 Pixar studio, 164–65 Planet Money (radio show), 180–81 Platinum Mile, 176 polio, 51, 52, 59 political science, 66–69, 141 politics, xiv–xvii, xix, 11, 15, 82, 101, 148, 181–95, 210, 229, 232 affirmation and, 108–10 Chinatown Bus effect and, 44, 47–48 culture wars and, 114 globalization and, 18 taste and, 37–38 polls, polling, 7, 29, 182, 226 deliberative, 192–93, 195 World Values Survey, 67–68, 73 Poole, Keith, 184 Porter, Eduardo, 255n potlikker, 136–37 poverty, 11, 22, 41, 43, 54, 62, 75, 146, 194, 201, 226, 255n in Brazil, 178, 267n urbanism and, 83, 216 prejudice, 88, 146, 148, 231 against homosexuals, 42, 43, 51 racial, 24, 39, 146 productivity, 19, 53, 167 progress, 24, 31, 35, 68, 75, 174, 238 progressives (the left), 11, 15, 23, 26, 31, 47, 148, 235 crime and, 56 Washington dysfunction and, 182, 184, 189, 190 property, 82, 179, 229 prosperity, 52–55, 57, 62, 67, 68–69, 72, 178, 230 psychology, Maslow’s influence in, 61–62 public policy, failure of, 22–23 Pulitzer, Joseph, 188 purchasing power, 53–54 Putnam, Robert, 7, 97, 99–100, 113–16, 119, 120, 141, 151–52, 170, 192 on social trust, 134–35 quality of life, 21, 50–62 affluence and, 52–55, 62, 72 health and, 31, 51, 52, 57–60 hierarchy of needs and, 61–62, 72 security and safety and, 52, 55–62, 72 Quest for Community, The (Nisbet), 194 race, 11, 32, 68, 79, 147, 148, 237 prejudice and, 24, 39, 146 see also African Americans racism, 4, 51 Radicalism of the American Revolution, The (Wood), xii, 81, 194 radio, 36, 37, 71, 133, 148, 152, 180–81 Rainie, Lee, 237 Rauch, Jonathan, 199 Raytheon, 165 Reagan, Ronald, 22 Real World, The (TV show), 63 rebels, 102–3, 127 religion, 29, 39, 48, 71–72, 74, 114, 147, 148, 231, 238 Republicans, 15, 37–38, 148, 182–85 retirement, 55, 60, 104–5, 197, 198, 204–5, 235–36 Riesman, David, 5–8, 12, 65, 73, 74, 213 Rock, Chris, 40 romance, 70, 71, 74 Romney, Mitt, 37–38 Roosevelt, Franklin D., 203 Rose, Charlie, 182 Rosenthal, Howard, 184 Rotary Clubs, 44, 45, 116 Rumspringa, 28–29, 30 Sachar, Abram L., 4 Saddleback Church, 72 Safford, Sean, xi, 97, 169–72 Sampson, Robert, 149–50 San Francisco, Calif., 129, 189 Santayana, George, 51 Saturn model, 95–98 see also intimate relationships; middle-ring relationships; outer-ring relationships Schmidt, Eric, 18 Schwartz, Richard, 130 Second Wave society, 16–17, 20, 23, 31–32, 48 mass market and, 40 membership organizations and, 44 townships in, 88, 89, 233 security and safety, 52, 55–62, 67, 68, 72, 133, 150 segregation, 40–41, 79, 237–38 self-actualization, 61, 72 self-control, 214–25 self-expression, 69, 71–72 self-fulfillment, 104, 261n self-interest, 183, 195 Senate, U.S., xvi, 184, 185, 186, 188, 191 service jobs, 18–19, 53, 132, 138, 236 settled horticultural societies, 92, 95 shopping, 25, 38–42, 49 shopping malls, 40, 41 Silicon Valley, 174, 175, 227, 237 Silver, Nate, 7 Skocpol, Theda, 44, 45, 116–18, 130, 201 smallpox, 157–58 social architecture, 232–34 in Barbados vs.


The Culture of Narcissism: American Life in an Age of Diminishing Expectations by Christopher Lasch

cuban missile crisis, delayed gratification, desegregation, feminist movement, full employment, George Santayana, impulse control, Induced demand, invisible hand, Kitchen Debate, Marshall McLuhan, mass immigration, means of production, Norman Mailer, road to serfdom, Scientific racism, Stewart Brand, technoutopianism, theory of mind, Thorstein Veblen, union organizing, upwardly mobile, urban renewal, yellow journalism

. , pseudo-mutuality, 172-3, 176 psychiatric justice, 229-30; see also thetapeutic model of authority psychiatiy. self criticism of, 163-5; see also helping professions psychoanalysis: 162, 172; growing concem with narcissism, 42 3, and social theory, 34-6; and sociology, 94; suspension of secondary process in therapy, 97-8; theory of narcissism, 35-6 psychological man, xvi, 13, 202-3 psychosocial development: normative schedule of, 48-9,212; see also I ife cycle Sade. Donatien A. F.. Marquis de; on war of all againsl all, 69-70 Sage, Russell: on compulsive industty , 57 Salk, Lee, 167 n. Salk Institute, 215 San Francisco£wm/ntfr 106 , Santayana, George, 9 Sarason, Seymour B.: on fear of entrapment, 45 n. Saturday Evening Post, 58 Schaffner, Bertram: on human relations 165 n. , schizophrenia, 24, 41 , 177; family background of, 188-9; and narcissism, 171-2; and pseudo- mutuality, 172 Scholastic Aptitude Tests. 128 Schur. Edwin, 30; on awareness movement, 25-7 scientific management, 183, 223; and sports, 120 Scoring (Grecnberg), 19 Scott, Jack, 104, 114; on competition. 117-8 Seattle 7, 23 secondary process: suspension of, 231 Stem, Susan: on Weathermen, 7-8,23 Selective Service Act(l95I), 139 self actualization, 183 self-culture, 56-7 Studies in Classic American Literature (Lawrence), Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), 23, 82 55 n.


pages: 1,351 words: 385,579

The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined by Steven Pinker

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1960s counterculture, affirmative action, Alan Turing: On Computable Numbers, with an Application to the Entscheidungsproblem, Albert Einstein, availability heuristic, Berlin Wall, Bonfire of the Vanities, British Empire, Broken windows theory, California gold rush, Cass Sunstein, citation needed, clean water, cognitive dissonance, colonial rule, Columbine, computer age, conceptual framework, correlation coefficient, correlation does not imply causation, crack epidemic, cuban missile crisis, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Brooks, delayed gratification, demographic transition, desegregation, Doomsday Clock, Douglas Hofstadter, Edward Glaeser, en.wikipedia.org, European colonialism, experimental subject, facts on the ground, failed state, first-past-the-post, Flynn Effect, food miles, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, fudge factor, full employment, George Santayana, ghettoisation, Gini coefficient, global village, Henri Poincaré, Hobbesian trap, humanitarian revolution, impulse control, income inequality, informal economy, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invention of the printing press, Isaac Newton, lake wobegon effect, libertarian paternalism, long peace, loss aversion, Marshall McLuhan, mass incarceration, McMansion, means of production, mental accounting, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Mikhail Gorbachev, moral panic, mutually assured destruction, open economy, Peace of Westphalia, Peter Singer: altruism, QWERTY keyboard, race to the bottom, Ralph Waldo Emerson, random walk, Republic of Letters, Richard Thaler, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, Saturday Night Live, security theater, Skype, Slavoj Žižek, South China Sea, statistical model, stem cell, Steven Levy, Steven Pinker, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, theory of mind, transatlantic slave trade, transatlantic slave trade, Turing machine, ultimatum game, uranium enrichment, V2 rocket, Vilfredo Pareto, Walter Mischel, WikiLeaks, women in the workforce, zero-sum game

The second half of the 20th century saw a historically unprecedented avoidance of war between the great powers which the historian John Gaddis has called the Long Peace, followed by the equally astonishing fizzling out of the Cold War.7 How can we make sense of the multiple personalities of this twisted century? And what can we conclude about the prospects for war and peace in the present one? The competing predictions of Toynbee the historian and Richardson the physicist represent complementary ways of understanding the flow of events in time. Traditional history is a narrative of the past. But if we are to heed George Santayana’s advisory to remember the past so as not to repeat it, we need to discern patterns in the past, so we can know what to generalize to the predicaments of the present. Inducing generalizable patterns from a finite set of observations is the stock in trade of the scientist, and some of the lessons of pattern extraction in science may be applied to the data of history. Suppose, for the sake of argument, that World War II was the most destructive event in history.

Rumsfeld, Donald Rush, Benjamin Rushdie, Salman Rusk, Dean Ruskin, John Russell, Bertrand Russett, Bruce Russia: capital punishment in civil war in and Cold War, see USSR compulsory military service in crime in peasant uprisings in retaliation in terrorism in Time of Troubles and World War I Russian Revolution Rwanda Ryder, Norman Saakashvili, Mikheil sacred values Sadat, Anwar Sade, Marquis de sadism introduction of concept psychology of by serial killers and torture Sagan, Carl Sagan, Scott Sageman, Marc Sailer, Steven Saint Pierre, Abbé de Salehyan, Idean Salem witch trials Salmon, Catherine Sampson, Robert Samuel Sand Creek Massacre Santayana, George Sassoon, Siegfried SAT (Scholastic Aptitude Test) satire Saudi Arabia Saul, King Saunders, J. J. savage, use of term Saxe, Rebecca Sayers, Dorothy L. Scandinavia homicides in Scarpa, Angela schadenfreude; see also sadism Schama, Simon Schechter, Harold Schell, Jonathan Schelling, Friedrich Schelling, Thomas schools: corporal punishment in education in weapons in see also education Schwager, Raymund Schweitzer, Albert Schwerner, Michael science, value system of scientific reasoning; see also modernity Scientific Revolution Scotland Scott, Sir Walter Scully, Diana Seabrook, John security dilemma; see also Hobbesian trap Seeking system Seinfeld, Jerry self-control and Civilizing Process and counterculture and crime and ego depletion and etiquette and experience fatigue of heritability of and human brain and intelligence introduction of concept language of measures of and reason sexual strategies of self-deception self-determination self-domestication self-esteem self-help justice self-organized criticality self-serving biases Seligman, Martin Semai people sensation seeking; see also attention deficit hyperactivity disorder September 11 attacks Serbia serial killers serotonin Servetus, Michael Sesame Street (TV) Seven Years’ War sexism; see also women, attitudes toward; women, male control of; women, as property; women, rights of sex ratio sexual abuse sexual jealousy sexual revolution sexual sadism sexual selection, theory of sexual self-control Shaka (Zulu) Shakespeare, William Falstaff Henry IV, Part I, Henry V, King Lear Measure for Measure The Merchant of Venice Portia Shylock Titus Andronicus Shasta County, California, ranchers Shaw, George Bernard Sheehan, James Shen, Francis X.


pages: 394 words: 118,929

Dreaming in Code: Two Dozen Programmers, Three Years, 4,732 Bugs, and One Quest for Transcendent Software by Scott Rosenberg

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A Pattern Language, Benevolent Dictator For Life (BDFL), Berlin Wall, c2.com, call centre, collaborative editing, conceptual framework, continuous integration, Donald Knuth, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Hofstadter, Dynabook, en.wikipedia.org, Firefox, Ford paid five dollars a day, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, George Santayana, Grace Hopper, Guido van Rossum, Gödel, Escher, Bach, Howard Rheingold, index card, Internet Archive, inventory management, Jaron Lanier, John Markoff, John von Neumann, knowledge worker, Larry Wall, life extension, Loma Prieta earthquake, Menlo Park, Merlin Mann, new economy, Nicholas Carr, Norbert Wiener, pattern recognition, Paul Graham, Potemkin village, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Stallman, Ronald Reagan, Ruby on Rails, semantic web, side project, Silicon Valley, Singularitarianism, slashdot, software studies, source of truth, South of Market, San Francisco, speech recognition, stealth mode startup, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Stewart Brand, Ted Nelson, Therac-25, thinkpad, Turing test, VA Linux, Vannevar Bush, Vernor Vinge, web application, Whole Earth Catalog, Y2K

The two 130-page reports of the NATO software engineering conferences foreshadow virtually all the subjects, ideas, and controversies that have occupied the software field through four subsequent decades. The participants recorded their frustration with the lumbering pace and uncertain results of large-scale software development and advocated many of the remedies that have flowed in and out of fashion in the years since: Small teams. “Feedback from users early in the design process.” “Do something small, useful, now.” “Use the criterion: It should be easy to explain.” George Santayana’s dictum that “those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it” applies here. It’s tempting to recommend that these NATO reports be required reading for all programmers and their managers. But, as Joel Spolsky says, most programmers don’t read much about their own discipline. That leaves them trapped in infinite loops of self-ignorance. We tend to think of the labors of art and those of science as distinctly separate endeavors, but in fact they form more of a spectrum.


pages: 457 words: 126,996

Hacker, Hoaxer, Whistleblower, Spy: The Story of Anonymous by Gabriella Coleman

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1960s counterculture, 4chan, Amazon Web Services, Bay Area Rapid Transit, bitcoin, Chelsea Manning, citizen journalism, cloud computing, collective bargaining, corporate governance, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, David Graeber, Debian, East Village, Edward Snowden, feminist movement, George Santayana, hive mind, impulse control, Jacob Appelbaum, jimmy wales, Julian Assange, mandatory minimum, Mohammed Bouazizi, Network effects, Occupy movement, pirate software, Richard Stallman, SETI@home, side project, Silicon Valley, Skype, Steven Levy, WikiLeaks, zero day

Many participants draw (or at least seek to draw) sensible lines of order from IRC and other stable sites of interaction. This order, nevertheless, is delicate and precarious—on the edge of disorder. However, like so many trickster scenarios of disorder, these moments of chaos don’t necessarily lead to breakdown and stasis. Instead, they often function as beginnings—necessary for the vitality and even regeneration of the broader community. Juxtaposing two quotes by Spanish philosopher George Santayana puts this lesson into relief: Chaos is name for any order that produces confusion in our minds but it won’t be chaos once we see it for what it is. Chaos often breeds life, when order breeds habit. In the somewhat tangled story I am about to tell, it will be clear how Anonymous, like most social movements, remains open to chance, even chaos. The difference is that Anonymous is perhaps just a touch more open to mutation.


pages: 537 words: 144,318

The Invisible Hands: Top Hedge Fund Traders on Bubbles, Crashes, and Real Money by Steven Drobny

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Albert Einstein, Asian financial crisis, asset allocation, asset-backed security, backtesting, banking crisis, Bernie Madoff, Black Swan, Bretton Woods, BRICs, British Empire, business process, capital asset pricing model, capital controls, central bank independence, collateralized debt obligation, commoditize, Commodity Super-Cycle, commodity trading advisor, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, currency peg, debt deflation, diversification, diversified portfolio, equity premium, family office, fiat currency, fixed income, follow your passion, full employment, George Santayana, Hyman Minsky, implied volatility, index fund, inflation targeting, interest rate swap, inventory management, invisible hand, London Interbank Offered Rate, Long Term Capital Management, market bubble, market fundamentalism, market microstructure, moral hazard, Myron Scholes, North Sea oil, open economy, peak oil, pension reform, Ponzi scheme, prediction markets, price discovery process, price stability, private sector deleveraging, profit motive, purchasing power parity, quantitative easing, random walk, reserve currency, risk tolerance, risk-adjusted returns, risk/return, savings glut, selection bias, Sharpe ratio, short selling, sovereign wealth fund, special drawing rights, statistical arbitrage, stochastic volatility, survivorship bias, The Great Moderation, Thomas Bayes, time value of money, too big to fail, transaction costs, unbiased observer, value at risk, Vanguard fund, yield curve, zero-sum game

The goal is to provide an understanding of how successful global macro hedge fund managers navigated the most significant financial crisis of our lifetimes and to offer suggestions for how real money managers and all investors can incorporate certain elements of the macro approach into their own investment process. For all of our benefit, I hope this book makes progress toward that end. Steven Drobny Manhattan Beach, California December 2009 Part One REAL MONEY AND THE CRASH OF ‘08 Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it. —George Santayana Chapter 1 Rethinking Real Money I. Why Real Money? Real money is a commonly used term in the financial markets to denote a fully funded, long-only traditional asset manager. Real money managers are often referred to as institutional investors. The term real money means the money is managed on an unlevered basis. This contrasts with hedge funds, which often manage money using borrowed funds or leverage.


pages: 624 words: 127,987

The Personal MBA: A World-Class Business Education in a Single Volume by Josh Kaufman

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Albert Einstein, Atul Gawande, Black Swan, business process, buy low sell high, capital asset pricing model, Checklist Manifesto, cognitive bias, correlation does not imply causation, Credit Default Swap, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Heinemeier Hansson, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, Dean Kamen, delayed gratification, discounted cash flows, Donald Knuth, double entry bookkeeping, Douglas Hofstadter, en.wikipedia.org, Frederick Winslow Taylor, George Santayana, Gödel, Escher, Bach, high net worth, hindsight bias, index card, inventory management, iterative process, job satisfaction, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Kevin Kelly, Lao Tzu, loose coupling, loss aversion, Marc Andreessen, market bubble, Network effects, Parkinson's law, Paul Buchheit, Paul Graham, place-making, premature optimization, Ralph Waldo Emerson, rent control, side project, statistical model, stealth mode startup, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, subscription business, telemarketer, the scientific method, time value of money, Toyota Production System, tulip mania, Upton Sinclair, Vilfredo Pareto, Walter Mischel, Y Combinator, Yogi Berra

For example, if you know that families go out to celebrate the end of school or that an annual convention is coming up, you can adjust for that seasonality by using historical data. The more you can isolate the change you made in the system from other factors, the more confidence you can have that the change you made intentionally actually caused the results you see. SHARE THIS CONCEPT: http://book.personalmba.com/correlation-causation/ Norms Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it. —GEORGE SANTAYANA, PHILOSOPHER, ESSAYIST, AND APHORIST If you want to compare the effectiveness of something in the present, it’s often useful to learn from the past. Norms are measures that use historical data as a tool to provide Context for current Measurements. For example, by looking at past data you may discover trends in your sales data directly related to the date the sale was made, which is called seasonality.


pages: 505 words: 142,118

A Man for All Markets by Edward O. Thorp

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3Com Palm IPO, Albert Einstein, asset allocation, beat the dealer, Bernie Madoff, Black Swan, Black-Scholes formula, Brownian motion, buy low sell high, carried interest, Chuck Templeton: OpenTable, Claude Shannon: information theory, cognitive dissonance, collateralized debt obligation, compound rate of return, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, diversification, Edward Thorp, Erdős number, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, financial innovation, George Santayana, German hyperinflation, Henri Poincaré, high net worth, High speed trading, index arbitrage, index fund, interest rate swap, invisible hand, Jarndyce and Jarndyce, Jeff Bezos, John Meriwether, John Nash: game theory, Kenneth Arrow, Livingstone, I presume, Long Term Capital Management, Louis Bachelier, margin call, Mason jar, merger arbitrage, Murray Gell-Mann, Myron Scholes, NetJets, Norbert Wiener, passive investing, Paul Erdős, Paul Samuelson, Pluto: dwarf planet, Ponzi scheme, price anchoring, publish or perish, quantitative trading / quantitative finance, race to the bottom, random walk, Renaissance Technologies, RFID, Richard Feynman, Richard Feynman, risk-adjusted returns, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, rolodex, Sharpe ratio, short selling, Silicon Valley, statistical arbitrage, stem cell, survivorship bias, The Myth of the Rational Market, The Predators' Ball, the rule of 72, The Wisdom of Crowds, too big to fail, Upton Sinclair, value at risk, Vanguard fund, Vilfredo Pareto, Works Progress Administration

These two measures—democratic elections and shareholder rights to put issues to a vote—would allow the owners of the company, namely, the shareholders, to exert control over the compensation of top executives, their so-called agents, and would, in my opinion, be far more effective and accurate than direct government regulation. Our economy slowly recovered in the years following the 2008–09 crisis. However, little has been done to add safeguards to prevent a recurrence. As the philosopher George Santayana famously warned, “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” Though the institutions of society have difficulty learning from history, individuals can do so. Next, I share some of what I’ve learned. Chapter 30 * * * THOUGHTS To end this story of my odyssey through science, mathematics, gambling, hedge funds, finance, and investing, I would like to share some of what I learned along the way.


pages: 651 words: 180,162

Antifragile: Things That Gain From Disorder by Nassim Nicholas Taleb

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Air France Flight 447, Andrei Shleifer, banking crisis, Benoit Mandelbrot, Berlin Wall, Black Swan, Chuck Templeton: OpenTable, commoditize, creative destruction, credit crunch, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, discrete time, double entry bookkeeping, Emanuel Derman, epigenetics, financial independence, Flash crash, Gary Taubes, George Santayana, Gini coefficient, Henri Poincaré, high net worth, hygiene hypothesis, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, informal economy, invention of the wheel, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, James Hargreaves, Jane Jacobs, joint-stock company, joint-stock limited liability company, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, knowledge economy, Lao Tzu, Long Term Capital Management, loss aversion, Louis Pasteur, mandelbrot fractal, Marc Andreessen, meta analysis, meta-analysis, microbiome, money market fund, moral hazard, mouse model, Myron Scholes, Norbert Wiener, pattern recognition, Paul Samuelson, placebo effect, Ponzi scheme, principal–agent problem, purchasing power parity, quantitative trading / quantitative finance, Ralph Nader, random walk, Ray Kurzweil, rent control, Republic of Letters, Ronald Reagan, Rory Sutherland, selection bias, Silicon Valley, six sigma, spinning jenny, statistical model, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, stochastic process, stochastic volatility, The Great Moderation, the new new thing, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Bayes, Thomas Malthus, too big to fail, transaction costs, urban planning, Vilfredo Pareto, Yogi Berra, Zipf's Law

After the mathematical scientist Benoît Mandelbrot read the galleys of The Black Swan, a book dedicated to him, he called me and quietly said: “In what language should I say ‘good luck’ to you?” I did not need any luck, it turned out; I was antifragile to all manner of attacks: the more attacks I got from the Central Fragilista Delegation, the more my message spread as it drove people to examine my arguments. I am now ashamed of not having gone further in calling a spade a spade. Compromising is condoning. The only modern dictum I follow is one by George Santayana: A man is morally free when … he judges the world, and judges other men, with uncompromising sincerity. This is not just an aim but an obligation. Defossilizing Things Second ethical point. I am obligated to submit myself to the scientific process simply because I require it from others, but no more than that. When I read empirical claims in medicine or other sciences, I like these claims to go through the peer-review mechanism, a fact-checking of sorts, an examination of the rigor of the approach.


pages: 653 words: 205,718

The Guns of August by Barbara W. Tuchman, Robert K. Massie

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British Empire, George Santayana, trade route

MüHLON, WILHELM (a director of Krupp’s), L’Europe devastée: notes prises dans les premiers mois de la guerre, tr., Paris, Payot, 1918. RITTER, GERARD, The Schlieffen Plan, Critique of a Myth, tr. (contains first published text of many of Schlieffen’s papers), London, Oswald Wolff, 1958. RUPPRECHT, CROWN PRINCE OF BAVARIA, Mein Kriegstagebuch, Vol. I, Munich, Deutscher National Verlag, 1929. SANTAYANA, GEORGE, Egotism in German Philosophy, 2nd ed., New York, Scribner’s, 1940. SCHINDLER, OBERLEUTNANT D., Eine 42 cm. Mörser-Batterie im Weltkrieg, Breslau, Hoffmann, 1934. The author served as artillery officer with the 420s at Liège and afterward. His book is the only firsthand account of the operation of the siege guns. SCHLIEFFEN, ALFRED, FELDMARSHALL GRAF VON, Cannae, tr. Fort Leavenworth, Command and General Staff School Press, 1936.


pages: 670 words: 194,502

The Intelligent Investor (Collins Business Essentials) by Benjamin Graham, Jason Zweig

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3Com Palm IPO, accounting loophole / creative accounting, air freight, Andrei Shleifer, asset allocation, buy low sell high, capital asset pricing model, corporate governance, corporate raider, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, diversified portfolio, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, George Santayana, hiring and firing, index fund, intangible asset, Isaac Newton, Long Term Capital Management, market bubble, merger arbitrage, money market fund, new economy, passive investing, price stability, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Richard Thaler, risk tolerance, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, sharing economy, short selling, Silicon Valley, South Sea Bubble, Steve Jobs, survivorship bias, the market place, the rule of 72, transaction costs, tulip mania, VA Linux, Vanguard fund, Y2K, Yogi Berra

Rockefeller family Rodriguez, Robert Rogers, Will Rohm & Haas Rosen, Jan M. Ross, Robert M. DEL Roth, John Rothschild, Nathan Mayer Rothschild family roulette Rouse Corp. Rowan Companies Royce, Charles Ruane, Bill Ruettgers, Michael “Rule of 72,” “rule of opposites,” “safety of principle,” safety tests: for bonds San Francisco Real Estate Investors Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. Santa Fe Industries Santayana, George savings accounts savings and loan associations savings banks savings bonds Saxon Industries Saylor, Michael SBC Communications Schilit, Howard Schloss, Walter J. Schow, Howard Schultz, Paul Schwab (Charles A.) Corp. Schweber, Mark Schwert, William Scientific-Atlanta Scudder, Stevens & Clark Sears Roebuck Co. SEC. See Securities and Exchange Commission secondary companies securities: delivery and receipt of Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC): and advice; and AOL-Time Warner case; and defensive investor; and; GEICO; and hedge funds; and investment funds; and IPOs; and letter-stocks; and mutual funds; and new issues; and NVF-Sharon Steel case; and per-share earnings; and Realty Equities case; regulation of brokerage houses by; regulation of public utilities by; and repurchase plans; and security analysis; and stock selection for defensive investors; and Tyco case; website for Securities Industry Association Securities Investor Protection Corp.


pages: 719 words: 181,090

Site Reliability Engineering by Betsy Beyer, Chris Jones, Jennifer Petoff, Niall Richard Murphy

Air France Flight 447, anti-pattern, barriers to entry, business intelligence, business process, Checklist Manifesto, cloud computing, combinatorial explosion, continuous integration, correlation does not imply causation, crowdsourcing, database schema, defense in depth, DevOps, en.wikipedia.org, fault tolerance, Flash crash, George Santayana, Google Chrome, Google Earth, job automation, job satisfaction, linear programming, load shedding, loose coupling, meta analysis, meta-analysis, minimum viable product, MVC pattern, performance metric, platform as a service, revision control, risk tolerance, side project, six sigma, the scientific method, Toyota Production System, trickle-down economics, web application, zero day

Five Practices for Aspiring On-Callers Being on-call is not the single most important purpose of any SRE, but production engineering responsibilities usually do involve some kind of urgent notification coverage. Someone who is capable of responsibly taking on-call is someone who understands the system that they work on to a reasonable depth and breadth. So we’ll use “able to take on-call” as a useful proxy for “knows enough and can figure out the rest.” A Hunger for Failure: Reading and Sharing Postmortems “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” George Santayana, philosopher and essayist Postmortems (see Chapter 15) are an important part of continuous improvement. They are a blame-free way of getting at the many root causes of a significant or visible outage. When writing a postmortem, keep in mind that its most appreciative audience might be an engineer who hasn’t yet been hired. Without radical editing, subtle changes can be made to our best postmortems to make them “teachable” postmortems.


pages: 1,402 words: 369,528

A History of Western Philosophy by Aaron Finkel

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British Empire, Eratosthenes, Georg Cantor, George Santayana, invention of agriculture, liberation theology, Mahatma Gandhi, Plutocrats, plutocrats, source of truth, the market place, William of Occam

), 343 salvation, 18, 19, 230, 239, 313, 524, 577, 771, 792-, and St. Augustine, 351, 363, 365, 366 and Christianity, 308, 346 and St. Paul, 326 and Rousseau, 687, 693 Salzburg, 394 Samarcand; 218 Samaria, 316 Samos, 29–30, 131, 222, 241 Samson, 356 Samuel, Hebrew judge and prophet, 302, 429, 440 Books of, 340* Sandford and Merton, 793 Sanskrit writings, 423 Santa Claus, 818 Santayana, George, Spanish-born philosopher, poet and author (b. 1863), 203, 811–812 quoted, 827 Saracens, 375, 395, 397, 399, 407 Sardes, 30 Sardinia, 383 Sargon I, King of Babylon (2637?–2582 B.C.), 227 Sarmatians, 343 Sarpi, Paolo, Italian philosopher and historian (1552–1623), 496 Sartor Resartus (Carlyle), 751 † Satan, 135, 360, 376, 358, 365, 379, 380, 469, 480, 758 and Ahriman, 476 Satanism, 747, 749, 752 Satyric drama, 90 Saul, King of Israel (fl. ca. 1025 B.C.), 302, 429 savage (s), 15, 112, 687, 688, 693, 694 Savonarola, Girolamo, Italian Dominican friar and reformer (1452–1498), 487, 498, 502, 503, 504 Savoy, 685 Savoyard Vicar.