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JT Olds
Works at Space Monkey
Attends University of Utah
Lives in Sandy, UT
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JT Olds

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Just, wow.

Basically, we have to remove CO2 from the atmosphere if we don't want "ruinous" damage to the planet; even in the best case, renewable energy will not solve our problems.

Interesting, albeit not altogether surprising, how immediately dismissive they are of legislative solutions.

'Unfortunately, not every Google moon shot leaves Earth orbit. In 2011, the company decided that RE<C was not on track to meet its target and shut down the initiative. The two of us, who worked as engineers on the internal RE<C projects, were then forced to reexamine our assumptions.'

[...]

'Hansen set out to determine what level of atmospheric CO2 society should aim for “if humanity wishes to preserve a planet similar to that on which civilization developed and to which life on Earth is adapted.” His climate models showed that exceeding 350 parts per million CO2 in the atmosphere would likely have catastrophic effects. We’ve already blown past that limit.'

[...]

'So our best-case scenario, which was based on our most optimistic forecasts for renewable energy, would still result in severe climate change, with all its dire consequences: shifting climatic zones, freshwater shortages, eroding coasts, and ocean acidification, among others. Our reckoning showed that reversing the trend would require both radical technological advances in cheap zero-carbon energy, as well as a method of extracting CO2 from the atmosphere and sequestering the carbon.'

[...]

'To reverse climate change, our society requires something beyond today’s renewable energy technologies. Fortunately, new discoveries are changing the way we think about physics, nanotechnology, and biology all the time. While humanity is currently on a trajectory to severe climate change, this disaster can be averted if researchers aim for goals that seem nearly impossible.'

Perhaps there will even be disincentive from fixing the problem: http://www.businessinsider.com/russia-is-militarizing-the-arctic-2014-12
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for real i don't know
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I completely support this:

'What if full employment wasn’t a necessity in our economy? What if it was okay to not have a full-time position? What if robots stealing our jobs could actually be a good thing, rather than something to fear?

That’s the thinking behind Basic Income. Basic Income (also called Universal Basic Income or Basic Income Guarantee) is an idea that’s been quietly gaining traction in recent years. The premise of it is very simple: every adult in the United States would receive a monthly stipend from the government, which would be enough for them to live on.'
or: How we can save ourselves from the coming robot revolution
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Ugh, yes!
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'As an industry, we need to have zero tolerance and respond forcefully and fearlessly whenever men make women feel unsafe or unwelcome.

The thing about knowing what systemic sexism feels like from the inside is that it can be very subtle. Things that seem completely harmless to you, from your perspective, given what you know, could have a completely different effect on someone in a different perspective, interacting with different people.

"Lost a wheel?"
"THAT'S THE WORST JOKE AND I'VE HEARD THAT 10,000 TIMES"
"Geez, overreact much?"
"No, actually, you just don't have my perspective."

If you are a man, you need to recognize that it is very easy behavior for you to make a women feel unsafe. It’s not that you’re a good person and it’s all those other terrible people giving men a bad name. You have the same internal scripts in your head that all the other men have. You need to work tirelessly to interrupt them in yourself. You are on the blind side of an asymmetric interaction.'
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'I’ve spoken to hundreds of leaders and managers as we’ve started Lighthouse and one common pattern we’ve found is somewhere around 25 employees, everything breaks.  If you’re a particularly skilled founder, you may not see this until almost 40 employees, or if you’re a first timer, some of these challenges could strike as early as 10-15 employees.'
When you have rapid company growth, you can quickly face many challenges. This post covers the causes & solutions to problems when you grow to 25 employees.
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lol

'In three studies involving 660 participants, the researchers examined various measures including cognitive style ranging from intuitive to analytical, plus verbal and numeracy skills. Then they looked at the participants' smartphone habits.

Participants in the study who demonstrated stronger cognitive skills and a greater willingness to think in an analytical way spent less time using their smartphones' search-engine function.

"Our research provides support for an association between heavy smartphone use and lowered intelligence," said Pennycook. "Whether smartphones actually decrease intelligence is still an open question that requires future research."

The researchers say that avoiding using our own minds to problem-solve might have adverse consequences for aging.'
Our smartphones help us find a phone number quickly, provide us with instant directions and recommend restaurants, but new research indicates that this convenience at our fingertips is making it easy for us to avoid thinking for ourselves.
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kpcswd
 
All of the journal articles are on the interweb. That's why scientists actually created the interweb.
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'The magic ingredient, I suspect, is the analog nature of the process. A computer is a portal to near endless distraction. Because we use these machines for so much of our efforts, the staccato rhythm of broken concentration they generate begins to feel natural — as if this is the necessary experience of work.

All it takes, however, is a forced break from the digital — as I experience when polishing my books — to remember the levels of depth we’re missing, and the satisfactions they can bring.

Inspired by this observation, I’ve found myself increasingly trying to carve out tasks that can be done free from a screen. I’m now more likely, for example, to venture to a library with only a notebook to work on a proof, or to leave my laptop in my bag at my office to dig into some paper reviews.'
A Curious Observation I've written enough books at this point to notice trends about the process. Case in point, while many stages of pulling together a book
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One of the downsides of being hilariously wacky as a parent is your kids have no idea that anything is even amiss until much, much later.

+Dale Olds, I told my coworkers about your programming music listening habits and now we're all listening to Gregorian Chant.
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<3 Gregorian chants. Though, I think I was predesposed to them given the name.
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There's an online meme that goes, "Arguing with an engineer is a lot like wrestling with a pig in the mud; after a couple of hours, you realize the pig likes it." It's a prevalent enough form of communication in our field that most of us can think of an argument we had recently. Vim versus Emacs. Test-driven development versus whatever is the opposite of test-driven development. Python versus Ruby. JK, that's totally not a debate. Python is clear...
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lol
"Python versus Ruby. JK, that's totally not a debate. Python is clearly superior in every way [*insert smiley, winky, troll face here*]."

Interesting...
"As I said in my introductory blog post, women and minorities are the "canary in the coal mine". High attrition rates from these groups indicate a toxic environment"
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'Normally, self-affirmation is reserved for instances in which identity is threatened in direct ways: race, gender, age, weight, and the like. Here, Nyhan decided to apply it in an unrelated context: Could recalling a time when you felt good about yourself make you more broad-minded about highly politicized issues, like the Iraq surge or global warming? As it turns out, it would. On all issues, attitudes became more accurate with self-affirmation, and remained just as inaccurate without. That effect held even when no additional information was presented—that is, when people were simply asked the same questions twice, before and after the self-affirmation.

Still, as Nyhan is the first to admit, it’s hardly a solution that can be applied easily outside the lab. “People don’t just go around writing essays about a time they felt good about themselves,” he said. And who knows how long the effect lasts—it’s not as though we often think good thoughts and then go on to debate climate change.'
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'Random employees conducting random interviews based in part on subjective psychological assessments, each producing not data but a “hire/no-hire” recommendation, reassembled by a hiring manager into a decision that would be made only marginally less rigorous if it also involved a goat sacrifice. That’s not a sentence, I know. The more I think about interviews, the more of my composure I lose.'

Very good hiring suggestions
1. The software developer job interview doesn't work. Companies should stop relying on them. The savviest teams will outcompete their peers by devising alternative hiring schemes. Years from now, we'll look back at the 2015 developer interview as an anachronism, akin to hiring an orchestra ...
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I like to think so. I'd say we've figured out about half of this pretty well. Definitely room for improvement though.
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'Nim (http://nim-lang.org/) is a young, statically typed programming language that has been getting more attention recently. See these articles for an introduction: What is special about Nim? (http://hookrace.net/blog/what-is-special-about-nim/), What makes Nim practical? (http://hookrace.net/blog/what-makes-nim-practical/) and How I Start: Nim (http://howistart.org/posts/nim/1). The language offers a syntax inspired by Python and Pascal, great performance and C interfacing, and powerful metaprogramming capabilities. The author of "Unix in Rust" just abandoned Rust in favor of Nim (https://github.com/ckkashyap/rustix/issues/8) and some early-adopter companies are starting to use it as well (https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=9050114).'
An anonymous reader writes: Nim is a young, statically typed programming language that has been getting more attention recently. See these articles for an introduction: What is special about Nim?, What makes Nim practical? and How I Start: Nim. The language offers a syntax inspired by Python and Pa...
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'One morning, that month, I was lying in bed, half-asleep.  And I wanted my laptop.  But my laptop was a few feet away, so reaching it sounded hard (because I was half-asleep).  

After lying there a while wishing, I finally noticed what my brain was up to.  And I noticed that what my brain was doing was visualizing my laptop whooshing toward me.  Again and again.  (Fix attention on laptop… visualize the woosh.  Nope, laptop isn’t here yet: repeat!)[2]

I’m going to call this process “Attempted telekinesis”.

It seems to me that something like “attempted telekinesis” underlies a large set of stress / shame / worry / etc., and that learning to vanish it has been super-useful for me and several others.  I’ll start with several examples of what I’ll be calling “attempted telekinesis”, and then go into some techniques for vanishing it.'
Related to: Compartmentalization in epistemic and instrumental rationality; That other kind of status. Summary:  I’d like to share some techniques that made a large difference for me, and for several other folks I shared the...
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Have them in circles
417 people
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Work
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Software Engineer, PhD student, and Circle Curator
Employment
  • Space Monkey
    Software Engineer, present
  • Instructure
    Software Engineer
  • Mozy
    Software Engineer
  • Google
    Software Engineer
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Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Currently
Sandy, UT
Previously
Minneapolis, MN - Saratoga, CA
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Tagline
I suck on prepositions.
Introduction
Education
  • University of Utah
    present
  • University of Minnesota
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Other names
John, John Timothy
JT Olds's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
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Why nerd culture must die
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Spark Breaks Previous Large-Scale Sort Record – Databricks
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Move Fast and Break Nothing
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Writings, screencasts, and talks by Zach Holman. Zach works at GitHub and enjoys consuming cherry pies.

On Beginners and Burning Out
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[Unfinished version of this ended up on Facebook earlier, because blogging during class is hard to do. Second half wanders into more specula

Love Is All You Need: Insights from the Longest Longitudinal Study on Me...
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Why do two men from very similar socioeconomic and educational backgrounds sometimes take very different life paths? Is nature or nurture mo

Why startups fail
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Why startups fail. 29 Jan 2014. There is a lot of cultural wisdom on why startups fail. No one wants the product. The market is tiny. The te

44 engineering management lessons
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44 engineering management lessons. 03 Oct 2014. Welcome to engineering management. It's fun, it's exhausting, it's rewarding — but most impo

I Can Tolerate Anything Except The Outgroup
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[Content warning: Politics, religion, social justice, spoilers for "The Secret of Father Brown". This isn't especially original to me and I

The Elon Musk interview on Mars colonisation – Ross Andersen – Aeon
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Elon Musk argues that we must put a million people on Mars if we are to ensure that humanity has a future

Shellshocked: A Future Of 'Hair On Fire' Bugs
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Most computers affected by Bash will be updated within 10 years. The rest will be vulnerable for the lifespans of all humans now living. Thi

Mental cryptography and good passwords
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Good passwords are hard to remember. A pattern that makes a password memorable is likely to make it vulnerable to attack. If remembering one

How our botched understanding of 'science' ruins everything
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Intellectuals of all persuasions love to claim the banner of science. A vanishing few do so properly.

Akrasia, hyperbolic discounting, and picoeconomics
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Akrasia is the tendency to act against your own long-term interests, and is a problem doubtless only too familiar to us all. In his book "Br

Five Years and One Week of Less Wrong
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[content warning: will be boring for non-LWers] I. Last week was the fifth birthday of Less Wrong. I thought I remembered it was started Mar

Deep Habits: Jumpstart Your Concentration with a Depth Ritual - Study Ha...
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In Search of Depth Aaron is a PhD student. This requires him to spend a significant fraction of his time thinking about hard things. To acco

The Taste of the Day – Rands in Repose
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Think of this. You have a job where, whenever you need to, you can find the absolute truth. When someone asks you, “Phil, why is this happen

The Myth / The Reality
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It’s very easy to become obsessed with the supposed glamour of running a company instead of actually doing the work – the unglamorous, tedio

Why the tails come apart
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[I'm unsure how much this rehashes things 'everyone knows already' - if old hat, feel free to downvote into oblivion. My other motivation fo