Links for July 31, 2022

What to Read

Escaping the Trap of Efficiency: The Counterintuitive Antidote to the Time-Anxiety That Haunts and Hampers Our Search for Meaning — The Marginalian

Maria Popova shares her experience with a mindfulness teacher who tasked her with imagining she had only a year to live, then only a day and only an hour. How would you spend that time?

As you scale down these nested finitudes, the question becomes a powerful sieve for priorities — because undergirding it is really the question of what, from among the myriad doable things, you would choose not to do in order to fill the scant allotment of time, be it the 8,760 hours of a year or a single hour, with the experiences that confer upon it maximum aliveness, that radiant vitality filling the basic biological struggle for survival with something more numinous.
Escaping the Trap of Efficiency: The Counterintuitive Antidote to the Time-Anxiety That Haunts and Hampers Our Search for Meaning
“Productivity is a trap. Becoming more efficient just makes you more rushed, and trying to clear the decks simply makes them fill up again faster… Since finitude defines our lives… livi…

🏋️‍♂️ We're Always Training Something — Zen Habits

Leo Babauta shares a reminder that our daily practices quickly slip into long-term habits. And by examining how we spend our days, we can retrain ourselves to spend our lives with greater intention.

I’m pointing this out because it gives us an opportunity — we can put awareness and intentionality into what we’re training, every day. This can change how we do everything, which can create a different way we’re showing up for our lives, and a different set of results.
We’re Always Training Something - zen habits
By Leo Babauta Every day, we go through a set of actions that is training our minds in the long term. Sometimes we’re training intentionally: we meditate, practice focus, get ourselves to start a workout, resist temptations, etc. Mostly, though, we’re training unintentionally: when you press snooze…

What to Watch

📦 The Riddle That Seems Impossible Even If You Know The Answer — Veritasium

Derek Muller breaks down the 100 Prisoners Riddle's mind-bending answer in this animated video.

Imagine, for a moment, that there are 100 prisoners numbered 1-100. One a time, they must each enter a room with 100 boxes (numbered 1-100) with slips of paper inside. Those slips of paper have the numbers 1-100 on them and are randomly distributed.

Each prisoner can open up to 50 boxes looking for their number, then must leave the room exactly as they found it.

If every single person locates their number, they all are freed. But if just one of them fails, the group remains inprisoned.

They must leave the room exactly as they found it and cannot communicate, except for strategizing ahead of time.

On the surface, each of them has 50/50 chance of finding their number, which means the group has a (½)^100 chance (that's a decimal with 30 zeroes after it, followed by an eight).

What can they do to improve their odds of success to over 30%?

The answer reminds me of this quote from mathematican Hannah Fry:

Mathematics is about abstracting away from reality, not replicating it. And it offers real value in the process. By allowing yourself to view the world from an abstract perspective, you create a language that is uniquely able to capture and describe the patterns and mechanisms that would otherwise remain hidden.

Via Farnam Street

Tweets of the Week

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