fun facts

The hidden complexity of wishes

“There are three kinds of genies: Genies to whom you can safely say “I wish for you to do what I should wish for”; genies for which no wish is safe; and genies that aren’t very powerful or intelligent.“ | learn more

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Short guide to Iraq

Written in 1943 for distribution to US troops by the War and Navy Departments in Washington, DC. “YOU HAVE been ordered to Iraq (i – RAHK) as part of the world-wide offensive to beat Hitler.” | learn more

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Higher than the shoulders of giants

Something happened in the early 1970s that led to dozens of unexplained trends. Many blame the US dropping the gold standard. This author blames a different policy that Nixon signed into law. This is a fascinating read. “New drugs lead to scientific […]

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This story of a $33 Billion SPAC deal has everything.

Analysis from a friend: “Terrible incentives ✔, Lack of any regulatory oversight ✔, Insiders with opportunity cash out immediately ✔, Massive payday for investment bankers ✔, “Medical reimbursements” sort of historically shady biz ✔, “Complex data analysis” and “disruption” name […]

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Friendship paradox

“The friendship paradox is the phenomenon first observed by the sociologist Scott L. Feld in 1991 that most people have fewer friends than their friends have, on average.” | learn more

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How to build a small town in Texas

“How do you build a town?” We know well how it used to be done, but these last one or two centuries we have forgotten how to do it (with only a handful of notable exceptions during the last century).” […]

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Do parachutes prevent death?

Hah! “As with many interventions intended to prevent ill health, the effectiveness of parachutes has not been subjected to rigorous evaluation by using randomised controlled trials.” | learn more