Friday, May 26, 2017

Elon Musk's First Principles

Elon Musk's First Principles - Business Insider

"Before he was a world-changing entrepreneur, Elon Musk was on track to become a physicist - even starting an applied physics Ph.D. at Stanford University
... it trained him in "first principles thinking," a mode of inquiry that relentlessly pursues the foundations of a problem.

"I think it's important to reason from first principles rather than by analogy," Musk said in an interview with Kevin Rose.

"The normal way we conduct our lives is we reason by analogy," he said. "[With analogy] we are doing this because it's like something else that was done, or it is like what other people are doing. [With first principles] you boil things down to the most fundamental truths … and then reason up from there."

"How is it even possible that Elon Musk could build four multibillion companies by his mid-40s — in four separate fields (software, energy, transportation, and aerospace)?
this article... calls people like Musk “expert-generalists” ... study widely in many different fields, understand deeper principles that connect those fields, and then apply the principles to their core specialty.
Starting from his early teenage years, Musk would read through two books per day in various disciplines according to his brother,"

First, he deconstructs knowledge into fundamental principles
Musk’s answer on a Reddit AMA describes how he does that:

"It is important to view knowledge as sort of a semantic tree — make sure you understand the fundamental principles, i.e. the trunk and big branches, before you get into the leaves/details or there is nothing for them to hang onto."
By looking at lots of diverse cases when we learn anything, we begin to intuit what is essential and even craft our own unique combinations.
What does this mean in our day-to-day life? When we’re jumping into a new field, we shouldn’t just take one approach or best practice. We should explore lots of different approaches, deconstruct each one, and then compare and contrast them. This will help us uncover underlying principles."

Foundation 20 // Elon Musk - YouTube
interview by Kevin Rose

Elon Musk Interview 2017 | TEDTalk - YouTube

Richard Feynman - Wikiquote
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself 
and you are the easiest person to fool.The first principle is that you must not fool yourself and you are the easiest person to fool. - Richard P. Feynman

Monday, May 22, 2017

learning: Spaced repetition, Active recall

Spaced repetition - Wikipedia

"Spaced repetition is a learning technique that incorporates increasing intervals of time between subsequent review of previously learned material in order to exploit the psychological spacing effect."

"In the Leitner system, correctly answered cards are advanced to the next, less frequent box, while incorrectly answered cards return to the first box for more aggressive review and repetition."

computer-assisted language learning software-based solutions

Active recall - Wikipedia

"Active recall is a principle of efficient learning, which claims the need to actively stimulate memory during the learning process. It contrasts with passive review, in which the learning material is processed passively (e.g. by reading, watching, etc.)."

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Ideal Work, Hedgehog Concept, Excellence

Ideal work: Good at + Paid well + Love to do

The order is important!
  • it helps to have some predisposition, but need to put effort, learn to get good at, 
  • find place that pays to do challenging work and learn to get better
  • and the more you learn, the more you love doing what you are doing great (excellent)
Blue Badge - Scott Hanselman

Your images are a virus. They are EVERYWHERE on the Internet - Scott Hanselman

Jim Collins - Concepts Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap and Others Don't (8601300383743): Jim Collins: Books

Good to Great - Wikipedia
  • "Level 5 Leadership: Leaders who are humble, but driven to do what's best for the company.
  • First Who, Then What: Get the right people on the bus, then figure out where to go. Finding the right people and trying them out in different positions.
  • Confront the Brutal Facts: The Stockdale paradox—Confront the brutal truth of the situation, yet at the same time, never give up hope.
  • Hedgehog Concept: Three overlapping circles: 
    • What lights your fire ("passion")? 
    • What could you be best in the world at ("best at")? 
    • What makes you money ("driving resource")?
  • Culture of Discipline: Rinsing the cottage cheese.
  • Technology Accelerators: Using technology to accelerate growth, within the three circles of the hedgehog concept.
  • The Flywheel: The additive effect of many small initiatives; they act on each other like compound interest."
The Hedgehog Concept

"What is the Hedgehog Concept? It’s a similar axiom to the One Thing. Based on the famous essay by Isaiah Berlin, “The Hedgehog and the Fox” describes how the world is divided into two types. 

  • The fox knows many things. The fox is a very cunning creature, able to devise a myriad of complex strategies to sneak attack upon hedgehog. 
  • The hedgehog knows one big thing, rolling up into a perfect little ball thus becoming a sphere of sharp spikes, pointing outward in all directions. 
The hedgehog always wins despite the different tactics the fox uses."

Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World: Cal Newport: 9781455586691: Books

Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World - Cal Newport

"Deep work is the ability to focus without distraction on a cognitively demanding task. It’s a skill that allows you to quickly master complicated information and produce better results in less time. Deep work will make you better at what you do and provide the sense of true fulfillment that comes from craftsmanship. In short, deep work is like a super power in our increasingly competitive twenty-first century economy. And yet, most people have lost the ability to go deep—spending their days instead in a frantic blur of e-mail and social media, not even realizing there’s a better way."

"In this eye-opening account, Cal Newport debunks the long-held belief that “follow your passion” is good advice. Not only is the cliche flawed—preexisting passions are rare and have little to do with how most people end up loving their work—but it can also be dangerous, leading to anxiety and chronic job hopping.

Matching your job to a preexisting passion does not matter, he reveals. Passion comes after you put in the hard work to become excellent at something valuable, not before. In other words, what you do for a living is much less important than how you do it."

"Durant sums up some of Aristotle’s thoughts... from Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics (“these virtues are formed in man by his doing the actions”), Durant sums it up this way:
…we are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then is not an act but a habit.” "

These virtues are formed in man by his doing the actions ... The good of man is a working of the soul in the way of excellence in a complete life. - Aristotle

"Arete (Greek: ἀρετή), in its basic sense, means "excellence of any kind".
The term may also mean "moral virtue"
this notion of excellence was ultimately bound up with the notion of the
fulfillment of purpose or function: the act of living up to one's full potential." Chess Not Checkers: Elevate Your Leadership Game (9781626563940): Mark Miller: Books
"The early days of an organization are like checkers: a quickly played game with mostly interchangeable pieces. Everybody, the leader included, does a little bit of everything; the pace is frenetic. But as the organization expands, you can't just keep jumping from activity to activity. You have to think strategically, plan ahead, and leverage every employee's specific talents—that's chess. Leaders who continue to play checkers when the name of the game is chess lose."

Friday, May 19, 2017

book: So Good They Can't Ignore You

So Good They Can't Ignore You by Cal Newport - YouTube (Brian Johnson / Optimize)

SO GOOD THEY CAN'T IGNORE YOU by Cal Newport | ANIMATED CORE MESSAGE - YouTube (Productivity Game)

Why people love their work?
  • Creativity
  • Control
  • Impact
need "rare and valuable work traits" (skill sets)

scrap "passion mindset" 
  • "what can the world offer me?"
  • problematic, hard
and adopt "craftsman mindset" 
  • "what can I offer to the world"
  • constantly improving, to become uniquely valuable to the team, company and customers
  • love the process of getting better
  • taking on challenging niche projects
  • use "deliberate practice" into daily routine to improve skills (book "Peak")
    • periods of undistracted focus
    • switch between "comfort" and "discomfort"
    • feedback + expert guidance
or as Dainel Pink says in book:
  • Autonomy
  • Mastery
  • Purpose

Sunday, May 7, 2017

metaphor: "Magnet" Leadership

Why Does a Magnet Attract Iron? | Sciencing

"Magnets attract iron due to the influence of their magnetic field upon the iron. Before a piece of iron first enters the magnetic field of a magnet. the polarization of the iron's atoms is random. As it is exposed to the magnetic field, the atoms of the iron begin to align their electrons with the flow of the magnetic field, which makes the iron magnetized as well. This, in turn, creates an attraction between the two magnetized objects. This is why a piece of iron that is exposed to a strong magnet becomes magnetic itself for a period of time afterward."

Why Does a Magnet Attract Iron?

site: Memory Tips ++

Memory Tips — Nelson Dellis
"Learn memory techniques and watch some interviews with the top minds in the world."