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Links, June 2022
Found myself in somewhat of a funk this month, low on energy and motivation. My usual menu of neuroses bubbling up and my usual response; fits-and-starts of bouyancy followed by lethargy. Unhappy with my work. I think I need a holiday. And twenty more IQ points.
Anyway, not much writing, just Wallets As Identity, a rough first draft of a chapter from the Ethereum book.
I began five books but only finished one: Feyerabend’s Against Method. I intend to write in more detail about it, because it was both very good and also rather illegible. After some effort, I think I have a clear idea of what he is trying to do, but I can’t see how his arguments don’t collapse into a much broader scepticism. Here’s a Twitter thread with some quotes I enjoyed.
The unabridged edition of Simon Schama’s History of Great Britain series is wonderful – Schama writes so well – and it’s currently included with any Audible subscription, although that will change this month.
A collection of memos ‘written for an internal audience’, mostly business and technology but some politics too. Diaries and letters and other documentary on how the sausage gets made gives you a good sense for 1. the trade-offs involved in absolutely everything, something that is easy to consider intellectually and much harder to feel intuitively, 2. how chaotic and unregimentable progress is a priori, and 3. the sheer variability of approaches and styles of success and failure.
Michael Nielsen writes on effective altruism and his take on its problems providing a moral core for an individual’s life.
A friend pointed me to this Dylan B-side, from the Blood on the Tracks sessions. Lovely and sad and detached. Dylan’s narrator is always at arm’s length from his subject, even when he’s singing about himself.
For a bit of context on the jurisprudential questions that underly the Roe v Wade debates, a chat between Scalia and Breyer.
And here’s a beautiful photograph of a new(-ish; May 2020) impact crater found on Mars: