Dave Eggers, in his work - The Circle - warns of a company so powerful that eventually they will run national elections. (See my review below.) Today, the USA is holding its congressional elections, and, according to the NYTimes, Facebook has its own "Get out the vote" campaign. This raises some issues though: "Facebook’s get-out-the-vote tests have … Continue reading Get out to vote: What if Facebook influenced our elections?
“Death, of course, is not a failure. Death is normal. Death may be the enemy, but it is also the natural order of things . (Loc. 133) The legal system instituted estate planning and wills to avoid confusion after one’s death and execute the his wishes. Atul Gawande, in Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in … Continue reading Book Review: BeingMortal by Atul Gawande
Suroweiki explains the wisdom of the crowds. He recounts, “At a 1906 country fair in Plymouth, eight hundred people participated in a contest to estimate the weight of a slaughtered and dressed ox. Statistician Francis Galton observed that the median guess, 1207 pounds, was accurate within 1% of the true weight of 1198 pounds. This … Continue reading James Suroweiki – Wisdom of Crowds
Peter Thiel’s masterpiece - Zero to One - is a must read for anyone thinking about starting a tech company. He opens by asking readers to respond to: “What important truth do few people agree with you on?” (5) Next, he reviews some lessons we learned from the dot-com bust while stressing that risk taking is … Continue reading Zero to One by Peter Thiel
“The big question of our time is not Can it be built? But Should it be built?” (273) One of the greatest challenges in startups is deciding how to prioritize limited resources. As companies develop “the startup has to constantly re-evaluate its strategy and ask – should we pivot or persevere” (51) Should the company … Continue reading Book review: The Lean Startup by Eric Ries
There is a tendency in our planning to confuse the unfamiliar with the improbable. The contingency we have not considered seriously looks strange; what looks strange is thought improbable; what is improbable need not be considered seriously. --Thomas Schelling (419) Nate Silver’s award winning book The Signal and the Noise enlightens us to our many biases … Continue reading The Signal and the Noise: Why So Many Predictions Fail — but Some Don’t by Nate Silver