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Showing posts from August, 2013

Mnemonic for Kahneman's Three Divisions of the Mind

Otto's secret author of
much of what you think;
Connie cannot rouse herself
unless he's on the blink.

Econ's cold and maximal
a lucid heart of glass;
Zappa's contradictory,
inconstant, foiling Nash.

Remmy is deluded, or,
creative with the past;
Esper suffers greater thus
and flies off, Otto-fast.

(I should really use "Tass" instead of Otto but that ruins the last line.)

magic rationalism

Say you're a magician. Say you know that most things can be controlled with magic, but say each spell takes ages to learn - decades, say. What to learn first? How to produce terrifying fireballsimmense speed? understanding of aliens?

No: as every child knows, you wish for more wishes first. Immortality would be best, obviously, but no-one knows that one yet, so you take those cheap potions of minor fortituderecall and wit that are around. At the same time, you target your own willpowermemory, reading speed, and read other wizards getting to the point of spell-books, saving years. Most of all, you learn the hard spell that makes you as right as you can be: strict conscious and unconscious reason.

leaving home miscellany

(c) Roddy Macfarlane (2012)

Beauty... You came back. But I didn't notice. I was too busy defining myself.
- Carter Ratcliffe

Five years in Aberdeen; I was transformed here. It's enough to make you grateful for the pathologically dark cold, the fish stink, and those that fled sinking economies for this raft of fossilised sun-sludge. Aberdeen is a test of character. There are so many cliches about why it's a shit place that valuing it, choosing it, does say something about you. Everyone grumbles about the town - its insane weather and uniform architecture, its oilmen and lack of clubs. The difference between you as incomer and you as settler is if you see past this to quieter facts: the pride and persisting difference of the place. You earn your affection. If you disagree, go watch this and then talk to me.

(Anyway towns are like multiplayer games - their worth depends more on who you're playing with than the game.)


When is …