Last week’s show of Thinking Allowed had a solid-gold conversation between Prof. David Gauntlett, author of Making is Connecting, and Prof. Richard Sennett, a sociologist at NYU and LSE, on Craft and Community. It began as an exploration of David Gauntlett’s book about ‘modern craftsmen’ on YouTube and other online venues but quickly flowed into [...]
Entries Tagged as 'philosophy'
May 4th, 2011 · 2 Comments
April 9th, 2011 · No Comments
Not only have the terms of success changed but also the very terms of life. For a person who can live within his illusions, the career has to be perfect, the wife has to be perfect, the children have to be perfect, the home has to be perfect, the car has to be perfect, the [...]
November 16th, 2010 · No Comments
Since moving into a new flat two months ago, I resolved to demolish my pile of unread books that had been eyeing me reproachfully for far too long. Counting some extra books I tackled after the pile of doom, I read:
Justice: What’s the Right Thing to Do? by Michael Sandel
The Lifecycle of Software Objects by [...]
March 9th, 2010 · 29 Comments
On December 9th 2007, a curious event took place at the University of South Carolina football stadium. As 29,000 people filed inside, each was given a piece of paper bearing four names and phone numbers. During the event, each person called those names and asked them to vote for Obama in the coming primary election.
March 9th, 2008 · No Comments
There’s a fascinating series of articles at the New York Times Magazine this week about charitable giving. While many of the articles tend to cover the same ground (e.g. the move towards measuring the effectiveness of donations) there are some real gems there:
Consider Mr. Improvident, who is just like us except that he is not [...]
February 18th, 2008 · 7 Comments
Spotted this wonderful, and very accurate, ‘equation’ by Daniel Kahneman:
The Secret of Regression to Mediocrity
Success = Some Talent + Luck
Great Success = Some Talent + A Lot of Luck
The term ‘regression to mediocrity’ (also known as ‘regression to the mean’) was first coined by Francis Galton in 1886. Galton showed that, on average, the children [...]
July 2nd, 2007 · No Comments
A little while ago I manage to acquire the last four years worth of In Our Time, a Radio 4 panel discussion that covers every subject under the sun in a very engaging and thoughtful manner. I’ve been working my way through the archives, usually alternating between topics that sound interesting (e.g. Agincourt, Tea) and [...]
June 24th, 2007 · 5 Comments
Lately, I’ve been thinking about the values that companies hold, and how they influence what they do. Many companies have mission statements or tenets or core values; some of them adhere to those values, some ignore them, and some can literally be defined by them. But are they actually helpful, and how do you come [...]
November 22nd, 2006 · 3 Comments
Next week, I’m speaking at a couple of conferences on Perplex City in London. Can you guess I didn’t get much notice? Anyway, if you happen to be going to either, please say hi!
Tuesday November 28th: BBC Audio Drama Festival. I’m speaking on the Gaming panel, which is at 9:30am and also repeated at 11:30am.
November 22nd, 2006 · 5 Comments
When I was 16, I was a member of my school’s debating society. As with all school debating societies, it wasn’t long before we landed on the topic of ‘Science vs. Religion’. It shouldn’t be a surprise to hear that, at the time, I strongly self-identified as a scientist and atheist, and so I naturally [...]