See the image below. Imagine you start at the dot. Your job is to construct roads, in such a way to minimize the time spent traveling. It needs to be possible, starting at the dot, to arrive anywhere at the line. Here is the challenge: how do you construct the roads? If cost is not … Continue reading Tree structures, the last mile problem, fractals, and the inevitability of hierarchy
First of all, I think you should vote. Some people say, “I don’t vote because I don’t live in a swing state, so my vote doesn’t make a difference.” I find this to be a nonsensical reason for not voting, because your vote never makes a difference, whether you live in a swing state or … Continue reading Your vote will never matter. That’s why you should vote.
Anti-trust origins Anti-trust regulations are called that because they were once considered generically anti-corporate regulations, like what tough-on-corporation politicians expound today. Think the trusts are oppressing the workers? Hit them with some regulations! But eventually, anti-trust would come to by synonymous with curbing the power of monopoly. And with good reason. Market power is the … Continue reading A proposal for a better standard of anti-trust
You may have heard that symmetry is scientifically attractive. This statement is true, but incomplete. Symmetry is just a smaller component of a broader trait. Here, I will revisit a website I have linked previously on my blog, this. It allows you to combine faces. Personally, I think that all of the people’s faces are … Continue reading What is Attractiveness?
[I'm going to re-write most of this. Please be patient for now.] This series will be written with the assumption that you are up to speed with the nature of Harris’s positions, or that you understand the state of the debates in question. If that assumption does not apply to you, that’s ok; just please … Continue reading Do we have free will, or fate, or both? (Sam Harris is Wrong, Part 2)
In discrete mathematics, categorization is a form of abstraction. There are many different kinds of birds, but there is also bird”ness” that is common across all birds. There are many different types of rocks, but there is also rock”ness” that is common across all rocks. I can tell you about a rock without naming a … Continue reading Gods and Goddesses of abstraction: Why Western thought is scientific
This is the first installment of a series in which I look at various beliefs of Sam Harris and explain why they are wrong. Why am I picking on Harris? Although I believe Harris is wrong about many things, the way he is wrong is usually interesting: the intellectual consequence of mental traps that are … Continue reading “All we have is conversation or violence” (Sam Harris is Wrong, Part 1)