Justin Sung
Justin Sung

Skeptical optimist. Like to laugh.

Fire & Motion 15

Stin's reading note.

Fleeting quotes

Study hard what interests you the most in the most undisciplined, irreverent, and original manner possible.


📄過日子的渴望,專訪一隅有花 ╳ 顏伯駿:與花告別,是強韌的開始

植物學上,一年生指的是在一年期間發芽、生長、開花然後死亡。《一年生》陪伴度過人類的 366 天,卻是許多花的一生。不同時間維度的對應,也是讓人重新思考自身生命狀態的契機。







📄Are Ideas Getting Harder to Find Because of the Burden of Knowledge?

New problems require new knowledge to solve, but using new knowledge requires understanding (at least some) of the earlier, more basic knowledge. Over time, the total amount of knowledge needed to solve problems keeps rising. Since knowledge can only be used when it’s inside someone’s head, we end up needing more researchers.

📄When Everything is Important But Nothing is Getting Done

People were throwing their hands in the air and acting with learned helplessness: things just won’t change here. Because of that, I didn’t have to pitch anyone on the idea that things were broken. In fact, I volunteered for the role because no one wanted to take on a project that seemed doomed to fail. But these are the sorts of asymmetric projects I love and seek out. If you solve them, then there is a huge upside. If you don’t, it’s still a great learning experience and no one will hold it over you. After all, they’re already resigned that it can’t be solved. Even incremental progress/small wins are appreciated. Word of advice: if you get the chance, always volunteer for such asymmetric bets.

It's the same principal taken from Antifragile, of taking the asymmetric bets which has limited downside but unlimited upside. And according to my own experience, one's mental pressure will be low when incremental progress is appreciated.

Individual switching costs (time, productivity) between projects goes up exponentially as both the number of projects and thus the number of switches go up. This manifests as time spent in refamiliarization with a project's context and code bases, coordinating with other people, and other distractions that add up as the number of projects goes up. A single-hour block of time might end up wasting 50% of it on just the “meta” work of preparation.

I find myself having too much switching cost when doing too many stuffs within a short time period. Having projects in parallel, even they are not dependent on each other, also lower the productivity due to the time spent on re-entering the context. Be focus.

The only advice I have here is to be vigilant to the creep of political decisions that led to the bad patterns in the first place and be overly communicative with those people. Even though I felt like I kept repeating myself, there was never a single instance where I benefited from communicating less or when someone complained that I already told them something. More often than not, people had selective listening or were distracted during a conversation... so when I repeated myself the next week (and the week after that), there was constantly "new" information being received by the listeners.

Love that uses of "overly" communication. One of the antidotes to human's selective bias is to get the incentive right, as if the words have been spoken to their hearts.

Outside Interest!

🎶李宗盛 - 飄洋過海來看你

🎥Past Futures: Nostalgia in the Age of Escapism



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