Our ancestors were bold and industrious–they built a significant portion of our energy and road infrastructure more than half a century ago. It would be almost impossible to build the system today. Unfortunately, we cannot rely on the infrastructure of our past to travel to our future.
Things I've Tagged ‘Wisdom’
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Even when change is elective, it will disorient you. You may go through anxiety. You will miss aspects of your former life. It doesn’t matter. The trick is to know in advance of making any big change that you’re going to be thrown off your feet by it. So you prepare for this inevitable disorientation and steady yourself to get through it. Then you take the challenge, make the change, and achieve your dream.
Strange how one person can saturate a room with vitality, with excitement. Then there are others… who can drain off energy and joy, can suck pleasure dry and get no sustenance from it. Such people spread a grayness in the air about them.
All men’s misfortunes spring from their hatred of being alone.
The problem is that deluded managers expect unreasonable returns from their investment. They think you can get the best from people by thinking the worst of them. It just doesn’t work like that. You can’t crack the whip with one hand and expect a firm handshake with the other.
If you watch little kids, they are intensely curious, always exploring and trying to figure out how things work. The problem is that school drives all that curiosity out. Instead of letting you explore things for yourself, it tells you that you have to read these particular books and answer these particular questions. And if you try to do something else instead, you’ll get in trouble. Very few people’s curiosity can survive that.
My ongoing diatribe against our current system of public education happens to coincide nicely with this quote. While Mr. Swartz has suffered a rather ignominious fate at the hands of the justice system (and ultimately by his own hands), I am discovering more and more about the intelligence of the man, and I am a little more than saddened by his loss.
In America the majority raises formidable barriers around the liberty of opinion; within these barriers an author may write what he pleases, but woe to him if he goes beyond them.
A recent comprehensive survey of state licensing practices by the Institute for Justice reveals little consistency or coherent purpose behind most licensing. Nevada, Louisiana, Florida, and the District of Columbia, for example, all require aspiring interior designers to undergo 2,190 hours of training and apprenticeship and pass an exam before practicing. In the other 47 states, meanwhile, there’s no legal training requirement. My friends and co-workers living in D.C.’s Virginia and Maryland suburbs appear to get on fine with unlicensed interior decorators, and all across America, amateurs have decorated their own homes without imperiling public safety.
This is part of the reason why I feel government intrusion can be detrimental to our interests. There’s such a fine balance to be struck here, because it seems much of this licensing is set up to either protect entrenched interests at the expense of entrepreneurs, and simultaneously protect practitioners from frivolous lawsuits, while giving the impression to consumers that it’s about their protection. In some cases yes, but in most cases–as shown above–perhaps not.
[The notion that “everyone should learn programming”] assumes that coding is the goal. Software developers tend to be software addicts who think their job is to write code. But it’s not. Their job is to solve problems. Don’t celebrate the creation of code, celebrate the creation of solutions. We have way too many coders addicted to doing just one more line of code already.
I can get behind this sentiment in a big way. Programming really isn’t for everyone–I know how to code, but I wouldn’t say that I “know” how to code well–and it requires a lot of time and dedication to learn how to write it efficiently. Plus anyone can learn the syntax–that part is easy–but it isn’t particularly useful unless you understand how to use it.
Like all tools, programming is useful in some contexts, but sometimes you don’t a hand planer. Sometimes, you need to know when you shouldn’t build furniture.
Conversely, brainstorming sessions are one of the worst possible ways to stimulate creativity.