- Started writing nuclear physics posts.
- Working on consistently achieving habits, identifying likely points of failure.
- Energy levels back up after relaxing holidays.
- Looking at developing a more detailed weekly review process.
- Musing about how to capture and track more of my daily data.
“We long to leave a name for our exceptional wisdom and sensibility—but when you think about it, desire for a good reputation is merely revelling in the praise of others.”
—Yoshida Kenkō, A Cup of Sake Beneath the Cherry Trees
Some interesting points raised here:
- Despite vastly different levels of rigor, different fields are treated with the ~same seriousness;
- This is all exacerbated by the huge increase in specialization. Undoubtedly it has benefits, as scientists digging deeper and deeper into smaller and smaller niches allows us to make progress that otherwise would not happen. But specialization also has its downsides: the greater the specialization, the smaller the circle of people who can judge a result. And the rest of us have to take their word for it, hoping that the feedback mechanisms are working and nobody abuses this trust;
- This year, we’ve come to better appreciate the fallibility and shortcomings of numerous well-established institutions (“masks don’t work”)… while simultaneously entrenching more heavily mechanisms that assume their correctness (“removing COVID misinformation”).