Gwern

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Waiting for the W...
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Tree Houses: Fair...
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The Book of Disquiet
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Jan 14, 2019 05:41PM

 
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Anti-Tech Revolution by Theodore J. Kaczynski
" (That's not Kaczynski, that's a sarcastic line by someone else.) "
Titan by Ron Chernow
" That's a bizarre psychology to impute to them. Kids are cheap, if you want them to be; even people who are broke or making $2 a day still manage to ha ...more "
Digital Gold by Nathaniel Popper
" I do not recommend anything on transhumanism or Bitcoin written by David Gerard. "
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A History of Life-Extensionism in the Twentieth Century by Ilia Stambler
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(Online fulltext: HTML, PDF; 280k words)

Official description sums it well: an ambitious survey of life-extension movements and researchers from the late 1800s onwards across the West (specifically, America, Europe, and Russia), giving capsule biograp
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Waiting for the Wind by Steven D. Carter
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The Midas Paradox by Scott Sumner
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I picked this up to try to learn a little more about Scott Sumner’s market monetarism paradigm of macroeconomics. I’ve read his blog for any number of years now and Sumner’s forecasting abilities and consistent application of EMH have impressed me—he

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The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro
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A not particularly successful experiment in evoking amnesia and an anesthetized & passionless world by remixing Arthurian romance into a darker genocide/WMD take on the conquest of England; the hilariously cliched dialogue & prose becomes bla ...more
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Unsong by Scott   Alexander
Unsong
by Scott Alexander
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(~233k words) Unsong is a Kabbalah-punk adventure serial in ~72 chapters by Scott Alexander, generally better known for his nonfiction essays/blog-posts on politics, psychiatry, medicine, & statistics on SlateStarCodex.com/Tumblr.


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The Media Lab by Stewart Brand
" The absurdity of most startup plans: https://marginalrevolution.com/margin... (and Cowen doesn't even include Netflix) "
More of Gwern's books…
Lewis Carroll
“Begin at the beginning," the King said, very gravely, "and go on till you come to the end: then stop.”
Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

Jorge Luis Borges
“In the critic's vocabulary, the word "precursor" is indispensable, but it should be cleansed of all connotations of polemic or rivalry. The fact is that every writer creates his own precursors. His work modifies our conception of the past, as it will modify the future."
-- Essay: "Kafka and his Precursors”
Jorge Luis Borges

Gene Wolfe
“We believe that we invent symbols. The truth is that they invent us; we are their creatures, shaped by their hard, defining edges. When soldiers take their oath they are given a coin, an asimi stamped with the profile of the Autarch. Their acceptance of that coin is their acceptance of the special duties and burdens of military life—they are soldiers from that moment, though they may know nothing of the management of arms. I did not know that then, but it is a profound mistake to believe that we must know of such things to be influenced by them, and in fact to believe so is to believe in the most debased and superstitious kind of magic. The would-be sorcerer alone has faith in the efficacy of pure knowledge; rational people know that things act of themselves or not at all.”
Gene Wolfe, Shadow & Claw

David Hume
“If we take in our hand any volume; of divinity or school metaphysics, for instance; let us ask, Does it contain any abstract reasoning concerning quantity or number? No. Does it contain any experimental reasoning concerning matter of fact and existence? No. Commit it then to the flames: for it can contain nothing but sophistry and illusion.”
David Hume

Jorge Luis Borges
“You have wakened not out of sleep, but into a prior dream, and that dream lies within another, and so on, to infinity, which is the number of grains of sand. The path that you are to take is endless, and you will die before you have truly awakened.”
Jorge Luis Borges

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