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Jeff Kaufman
Works at Google
Attended Swarthmore College
Lives in Cambridge MA
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Jeff Kaufman

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Looking at how we've been spending our money over the last couple years.
I haven't posted a spending update in a while, and we've had several big changes in our life: we bought a house, and we have two young children. Our lives are getting more complex financially, but I think it's still useful to describe where our money is going. I'm going to start at the beginning of 2014, since that's where the last update ended. We were trying to buy a house, going to open houses...
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"It's common to hate on open plan offices as a shortsighted way for employers to save money, on paper, by packing more people in the same amount of space, but that actually end up making employees distracted, interrupted, and miserable. Everyone hates open offices, they're a terrible fit for anyone who needs to focus on their work, and their spread is just another indication that our society is horribly broken. Except I actually like them."
It's common to hate on the open plan office as a shortsighted way for employers to save money, on paper, by packing more people in the same amount of space, but that actually ends up making employees distracted, interrupted, and miserable. Everyone hates open offices, they're a terrible fit for anyone who needs to focus on their work, and their spread is just another indication that our society is...
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"As someone who has never lived with AC and is excited about whole house fans, it's easy for me to read things like this and feel virtuously smug. I'm so much better than those selfish people who keep themselves cool at the expense of the planet, go me! But my carbon footprint isn't actually lower than someone's in Orlando, because of heating. Heating emits less CO2 per degree than cooling, but in places where people live it typically requires many fewer degrees of cooling to get into the comfortable range."
Air conditioning is wrongfully maligned. People who make do without AC while living in parts of the country where it only rarely gets above 90F like to write and share pieces like this one: Air conditioning has become a necessity but not a solution. It's like an ice bath for a patient suffering an extreme fever, treating the symptom while leaving untouched the underlying cause—in this case...
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You know the paradox of EA being both obvious and new? Here's how it worked out when people tried it a hundred years ago.
A group of relatively well-off people apply ideas from science to charity, trying to improve efficiency and end poverty. It doesn't turn out well. Sounds like something I should read up on. There was a movement, starting around 1870, to replace municipal and religious aid to the poor with a system of Charity Organization Societies. They said a lot of things that feel pretty similar to what someon...
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"Here are some examples of situations where our safety team might be able to help:

* You notice someone keeps staring at you in a way that feels creepy and predatory.

* Someone has abused you, physically, verbally, or emotionally, and you're worried they might be dangerous to you or other dancers.

* You're dancing follow and your partner keeps holding your wrist too hard and pushing you into flourishes you don't want.

* You're dancing lead and your partner keeps initiating flourishes, and twisting your hand as they do so.

* You feel creeped out by someone and you've told them to stop asking you to dance, but they keep asking you anyway.

* Someone dips their partner, whose feet come dangerously close to your head."
Prompted by the Standing up for Safer Spaces pictures and other conversations in the dance community, I've been thinking about codes of conduct. I read through a lot of them (helpful list) and tried to synthesize my thoughts into a a document. Here's an idea: — At [event] we want everyone to be able to have a good time together at our dances, but sometimes people act in ways that make others...
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1. Run lots of outside air through your house overnight.
2. In the morning, shut the windows and draw the curtains.
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Have them in circles
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Jeff Kaufman

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Why I'm not interested in funding +Intentional Insights
Gleb Tsipursky has been raising money for his organization, Intentional Insights, which he views as an EA-aligned organization. At EA Global someone asked me whether I had considered funding them, and I said I wasn't willing to, based on a discussion I had participated in with Gleb in the comments on LessWrong. It's a little hard to read in that format, so here's a condensed version that highlight...
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"Earning to give is a career path that is well suited to people who are good at earning money, who are still exploring cause areas, who prioritize interventions that are funding-limited, who are early in their careers and want to build their skills, or who want to balance altruism against other things in their lives. I find that it suits me well, but I also can imagine myself doing something else five years from now."
I gave a talk on Earning to Give at the 2016 effective altruism conference. It wasn't recorded, but here's a transcript. Eight years ago I was working for my first full year after graduating. I was still spending money at student rates, but I now had a programmer's income. This disparity made it clear I was earning more than I needed for myself, and easier to accept the argument that I should be ...
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"You don't have to prove you're disabled to bring a wheelchair on the bus or tell a restaurant that you're allergic to something, but if lots of people followed Ozy's recommendation I think that's the most likely outcome. Instead of the current low-friction honor system way of handling eligibility we would need a system for proving to the government that you did actually require the accommodation. That system would have some error rate, where not everyone who actually needs the accommodation would end up with a permit, and it would be a big hassle even for the people who successfully get their permits."
A while ago Ozy wrote a post on the curb cut effect. They claim that when people without disabilities use things intended to benefit people with disabilities it's generally positive. For example, curb cuts and closed captioning were initially created for people in wheelchairs and people with hearing disabilities, but there's no harm in other people using them and having more people that benefit fr...
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Jeff Kaufman

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How to set up 32-bit chroot environments on Ubuntu 12 LTS and Centos 5
Because operating systems are generally backwards compatible, to build binaries that work on several versions of Linux it's best to build them on the oldest version of the OS that's still supported. For Ubuntu this is currently LTS 12, and for CentOS it's 5. While I can get a VM for either of these on Rackspace etc, at this point I can only get 64-bit versions and some people still need 32-bit bin...
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Price gouging laws still generally allow passing on your increased costs, and even keeping up your normal profit margin when you do.
When a business raises prices in response to increased demand after a disaster, that's price gouging and is often illegal. New Jersey famously enforced this after hurricane Sandy, issuing stern warnings and then suing them after the fact. I recently read a response to this enforcement that argued these laws were clearly harmful: If New Jersey gas stations were allowed to sell gas at $20, the pric...
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Jeff Kaufman

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visualizing the composition of the BIDA board

http://www.jefftk.com/p/bida-board-over-time
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People
Have them in circles
1,065 people
Sofia May's profile photo
Patricia J Hawkins's profile photo
Jacqueline Schwab's profile photo
ifeola crown's profile photo
Molly Bledsoe's profile photo
Garth Griffin's profile photo
Manish Yathnalli's profile photo
Ekaterina Lopez Grinenko's profile photo
Eric Astor's profile photo
Work
Occupation
Programmer
Employment
  • Google
    Software Engineer, 2012 - present
  • Adverplex
    Software Developer, 2010 - 2012
  • BBN Technologies
    Associate Scientist, 2008 - 2010
  • Pinewoods Camp
    Dishwasher/Dining Hall Manager, 2008 - 2008
Places
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Currently
Cambridge MA
Previously
Medford MA - Swarthmore PA - Somerville MA
Contact Information
Home
Mobile
617-871-0237
Email
Address
West Medford MA 02155
Work
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Story
Introduction
I work at Google on mod_pagespeed (an open-source Apache module that helps make the web faster), play for dances with the Free Raisins, help organize the BIDA contra dance, and blog about all sorts of things.
Education
  • Swarthmore College
    Computer Science, Linguistics, 2004 - 2008
  • Commonwealth High School
    2000 - 2004
Basic Information
Gender
Male
Birthday
January 29
Relationship
Married
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Other profiles
Jeff Kaufman's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
Free Raisins
market.android.com

An energetic dance band from Boston, the Free Raisins fuse New England roots with a modern groove. Provided by artist representative

Chrome
market.android.com

Search and browse fast with Chrome on your Android phone and tablet. Sign in to sync your personalized Chrome experience from your computer

South Carolina & Gingrich, Egypt & the Muslim Brotherhood
feedproxy.google.com

Juan | Democracy, Egypt, Elections, Uncategorized, US Politics

absonant: little moment of compulsion #1*
feedproxy.google.com

N and I buy plain white printer paper by the box. We use it for everything from grocery lists to problem sets; I'll spare you the enumer

absonant: Faith and Apologetics
feedproxy.google.com

The Story of Vedanta, courtesy of Wikipedia: Once in a tree there were two birds, one at the upper branch, serene, majestic and divine, and

GiveWell — Marginal Revolution
feedproxy.google.com

GiveWell, by far the best charity evaluator working today, has a new top ranked charity, the Against Malaria Foundation. Why is VillageReach

Things to Percolate Next to Your Beverage of Choice
www.contrasyncretist.com

_ Pause For many people, 'tis the season for parties and celebrating. Frequently, it is also a time of year where you're hurry-up-and-waitin

Free Raisins
plus.google.com

Boston area contra dance band playing energetic New England dance music

Rooting For Your Home Team | Giving What We Can
www.givingwhatwecan.org

There's a gap between charity evaluators and charity workers* Look at any article on effective charity, and you're likely to see responses f

GiveWell — Marginal Revolution
marginalrevolution.com

GiveWell, by far the best charity evaluator working today, has a new top ranked charity, the Against Malaria Foundation. Why is VillageReach

Radiant Things: Crazies
jdwise.blogspot.com

Crazies. Last week, my dad and I were talking about the uproar about someone letting her nine-year-old son ride the New York subway alone. “

Very good work. Repointed our whole foundation and fixed an area where it was starting to fall apart. No problems in the six months since: very happy!
Public - 8 months ago
reviewed 8 months ago
2 reviews
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