📗 The Code Breaker, by Walter Isaacson

Walter Isaacson in A Spur to the Biotech Century Ahead (WSJ oped) The coronavirus plague will hasten our transition to the third great innovation revolution of modern times. These revolutions arose from the discovery, beginning just over a century ago, of the three fundamental kernels of our existence: the atom, the bit and the gene. […]

🎓 L’energie au XXIe siècle – Jancovici – Part III

The third & final part of the Janco masterclass… (Part I, Part II if you missed them) Here are the notes from the last lecture, which basically covers the bolded part below: What is energy and why is it so important? What are the main problems we’ll face in the 21st century as a result […]

🎓 L’energie au XXIe siècle – Jancovici – Part II

Welcome back. These red pills were pretty strong, eh? 😨 Help yourself in Part I if you missed out. We saw how the industrial revolution, powered by cheap fossil fuels (80% of global energy today) propelled billions of us to comfortable lives in the service sector, with holidays and leisure time, consumerism and all that […]

🎓 L’energie au XXIe siècle – Jancovici – Part I

Welcome. This course delivers some serious red pills on: What is energy and why is it so important? What are the main problems we’ll face in the 21st century as a result of our growing energy consumption? How can we resolve these problems? (The bold sections are the ones I cover in this post, part […]

🎓Notes on Ethereum

This week I spent some time learning about how Ethereum works, what its governance and monetary policies are, what the key upcoming updates to it are, etc. I checked Udemy & Coursera but couldn’t find any course that looked good (they seemed either super high level bordering on “get rich quick with Ethereum” or very […]

Crypto’s Environmental Cost: It’s Complicated

I think a lot of the outrage about proof-of-work-based blockchains’ energy usage lack nuance, data points, and a step back to look at what these system could achieve for the world (and what price we should be willing to pay for this) My bias I’ve been holding various coins since 2013. I am financially incentivised […]

🎓Build a blockchain prototype using Python

I’ve completed the first course of my DIY-MBA! 💥 This was a nice, pretty short Udemy course in which an instructor takes you through: A few blockchain fundamentals (which I mostly knew already so went over quickly) Building a mini prototype of a blockchain using Python, with a client and nodes (“miners”) implementing For the […]

Humanity’s Largest Art Project

Which art project have we spent the largest amount of cumulative time on? The one thing we can look at or experience and think: “wow, nothing else has taken as much effort as this to make me feel this way”. Let’s define “art project” broadly as anything that is designed to make people feel rather […]

Can we save the open internet by moving it to space?

The Internet is being split into very large private networks. The beautiful vision of 1 global network in which any 2 computers can communicate in the lingua franca of TCP/IP, enabling anyone to publish content to anyone else in the world, is dying. China has had the Great Firewall for 20 years, deciding which communication […]

Who to ignore (3 bullshit filters)

By Gabriel and Ernest Oppetit Unforseen shit happens. 9/11, the 2008 crash, Brexit, Trump, COVID-19… you know the story.  These events surprised us because our information diets are dominated by people who didn’t see them coming. Many of these people are paid for sounding good (or protecting a certain interest), not for being right, so […]

My first podcast appearance (on Product Squad)

I spoke with my friend and ex-colleague Axel Sooriah on his podcast Product Squad. I listen to a sh*t ton of podcasts (around 4 hours per week), so it was fun to be a guest on one for the first time. We did the recording over Zoom a couple of months ago, then Axel worked […]

Smilebot: Transform Amazon Links to AmazonSmile on Twitter

TL;DR: Smilebot is a Twitter bot which, when mentioned, will transform amazon.com links in the mention (or original tweet if it’s a reply) and reply with the smile.amazon.com links. If you shop through the latter, you pay the same but Amazon gives 0.5% of your order to a charity of your choice. What’s AmazonSmile? From […]

LessNoise: Unfollow Recommendations for your Twitter Feed

Bucking a long running trend of starting but never completing side-projects, I’ve kind-of “completed” LessNoise! LessNoise shows you unfollow recommendations for your Twitter feed. I’ve followed way too many people over the years, and my feed feels super noisy (particularly in the chronological view which I prefer). Here’s the idea (described on the homepage): 👉 Check it […]

We Need to Start Celebrating our Progress on Climate Change

Climate change news coverage is predominantly doom & gloom and finger-pointing. Real progress towards decarbonisation is being made: we need to widely share and celebrate it! This will create positive reinforcement and help us shift the debate from fear, confusion, and apathy to understanding, possibility, and action. “They didn’t know it was impossible, so they […]

Where are the personalised UIs?

Isn’t it crazy, in an age of abundant contextual data and AI breakthroughs, that we all use the same user interfaces? I don’t mean personalised content — there is plenty of that going on in the form of ads, commerce, video recommendations — I mean that everyone using a given app on a given platform has the same UI […]

Autonomous Vehicles and the End of Privacy

Everything, everywhere, will soon be continuously recorded and uploaded to the internet. This will start with dense, urban areas, but over time every single square meter of every part of the globe will be recorded. Advances in computer vision & AI mean this data will be usable at scale, which will revolutionise advertising, law enforcement, […]

First Principles Entrepreneurship, à la Elon

Most founders and companies subscribe to the Wayne Gretsky school of business: they skate to where the puck is inevitably going. Rare are those who figure out where the puck should be in the future, and shoot it in this direction through unchartered terrain. Elon Musk and a few others do this. (There will be […]