antifragile defn

fragile.. handle with care vs antifragile.. please shake/rattle

there is no one order (basics et al), antifragility keeps us living in that reality. no?

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wikipedia small





Antifragile: Things That Gain From Disorder is a book by Nassim Nicholas Taleb published on November 27, 2012, by Random House in the United States and Penguin in the United Kingdom.

Taleb page

Taleb introduces the book as follows: “Some things benefit from shocks; they thrive and grow when exposed to volatility, randomness, disorder, and stressors and love adventure, risk, and uncertainty. Yet, in spite of the ubiquity of the phenomenon, there is no word for the exact opposite of fragile. Let us call it antifragile. Antifragility is beyond resilience or robustness. The resilient resists shocks and stays the same; the antifragile gets better”.

“Simply, antifragility is defined as a convex response to a stressor or source of harm (for some range of variation), leading to a positive sensitivity to increase in volatility (or variability, stress, dispersion of outcomes, or uncertainty, what is grouped under the designation “disorder cluster”). Likewise fragility is defined as a concave sensitivity to stressors, leading a negative sensitivity to increase in volatility. The relation between fragility, Convexity , and sensitivity to disorder is mathematical, obtained by theorem, not derived from empirical data mining or some historical narrative. It is a priori”.





Published on Jan 9, 2013

Radical philosopher Nassim Nicholas Taleb offers a blueprint for how to live – and thrive – in a world we don’t understand, and which is too uncertain for us to even try to predict.


if you have more upside than downside you are antifragile

become robust by forcing yourself to become poor every morning

your body loves randomness

never ask a dr what you should do, ask what he/she would do if they were you

i don’t want to know what you predict – i want to know what you do

robustness is when mistakes are small

a lot of our policy making is trying to iron out the downside –  Rohan Silva

really getting behind angel investment – ie: tax breaks for angel investors   – –  Rohan Silva

respect for failure – for the sake of all

switzerland as a bottom up – local (neighborhood) dictatorial – most successful for uncertainty – ie: mayors doing better than big govt..

Ben Barber ness

the nation state is something invented to the war

to aim for resilience – to be ok to be safe  – you have to aim for risk taking – that benefits you more







if you’re uprooting religion – better be certain you are replacing it with something better – so far we have been fooled


2013 – at google authors – on antifragile

the opposite of fragile cannot possibly be robust

fragile does not like disorder – opposite is something that does like disorder

fragility and antifragility are things i can measure. i can’t measure risk.

fragile – benefits are small – harm is large

antifragile – harm is small – big variations are positive

once you link fragility to volatility you can do a lot of things

is fragile something that doesn’t like a 2nd order effect

any system based on prediction is going to blow up

if you’re more in up situations than down ones – randomness doesn’t bother you – Seneca – then you’re antifragile

small has more means to survive (local)



















book links to amazon

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antifragile notes


triad: fragile (uncertainty/things break me) – robust (i can endure stuff) – antifragile (uncertainty/things make me)

…we need a mechanism by which the system regenerates itself continuously by using, rather than suffering from, random events, unpredictable shocks, stressors, and volatility.

mechanism simple enough.. and self-organizing/perpetuating/rhizomatic enough

We know more than we think we do, a lot more than we can articulate. If our formal systems of thought denigrate the natural, and in fact we don’t have a name for antifragility, and fight the concept whenever we use our brains, it does not mean that our actions neglect it. Our perceptions and intuitions, as expressed in deeds, can be superior to what we know and tabulate, discuss in words, and teach in a classroom.

apophatic (what cannot be explicitly said, or directly described, in our current vocabulary)

jaron on words


Artificial, man-made mechanical and engineering contraptions with simple responses are complicated, but not “complex,” as they don’t have interdependencies.

.. the crux of complex systems, those with interacting parts, is that they convey information to these component parts through stressors, or thanks to these stressors: your body gets information about the environment not through your logical apparatus, your intelligence and ability to reason, compute, and calculate, but through stress, via hormones or other messengers we haven’t discovered yet.

Had Prozac been available last century, Baudelaire’s “spleen,” Edgar Allan Poe’s moods, the poetry of Sylvia Plath, the lamentations of so many other poets, everything with a soul would have been silenced.

Peter Moskowitz  ness..

..touristification castrates systems and organisms that like uncertainty by sucking randomness out of them to the last drop—while providing them with the illusion of benefit. The guilty parties are the education system, planning the funding of teleological scientific research, the French baccalaureate, gym machines, etc.

If you are not a washing machine or a cuckoo clock—in other words, if you are alive—something deep in your soul likes a certain measure of randomness and disorder.

If every trial provides you with information about what does not work, you start zooming in on a solution—so every attempt becomes more valuable, more like an expense than an error.

story board ness – findings in failings

 The incompressibility of the lag is central and unavoidable. Organisms can only have nonanticipative strategies—hence nature can only be nonpredictive.

lag time

..“volatility” comes from volare, “to fly” in Latin.

..we hurt systems with the very best of intentions by playing conductor.

Where simplifications fail, causing the most damage, is when something nonlinear is simplified with the linear as a substitute. That is the most common Procrustean bed.

line of best fit ness

..having a mechanism for letting it run its natural course,..

..change of regime, from chaos to order, did not take place by removing chaos, but by adding random, ..

.. the thinker lacking a word for “blue” is handicapped; not the doer.

Lanier again..

..costs associated with fixing things that one should leave alone.

..medical error still currently kills between three times (as accepted by doctors) and ten times as many people as car accidents in the United States. It is generally accepted that harm from doctors—not including risks from hospital germs—accounts for more deaths than any single cancer.

Pharma plays the game of concealed and distributed iatrogenics, and it has been growing. It is easy to assess iatrogenics when the surgeon amputates the wrong leg or operates on the wrong kidney, or when the patient dies of a drug reaction. But ..

..when you medicate a child for an imagined or invented psychiatric disease, say, ADHD or depression, instead of letting him out of the cage, the long-term harm is largely unaccounted for.

..we need to avoid being blind to the natural antifragility of systems, their ability to take care of themselves, and fight our tendency to harm and fragilize them by not giving them a chance to do so.

usefully preoccupied ness

Few understand that procrastination is our natural defense, letting things take care of themselves and exercise their antifragility; it results from some ecological or naturalistic wisdom, ..

.. the best way to mitigate interventionism is to ration the supply of information, as naturalistically as possible.

perhaps via giving everyone the luxury of something else to do.. [much like the problem of how to mitigate privacy.. no?]

Governments are wasting billions of dollars on attempting to predict events that are produced by interdependent systems and are therefore not statistically understandable at the individual level.

this is ridiculous. not.

.. not just money wasted but the construction of a false confidence based on an erroneous focus.

why we need to hit the pause button. change could happen overnight.. if we all woke up to this simple need to re-focus.

What makes life simple is that the robust and antifragile don’t have to have as accurate a comprehension of the world as the fragile—and they do not need forecasting.

simple ness. enough already on each heart. all we need. no prep ness.

Not seeing a tsunami or an economic event coming is excusable; building something fragile to them is not.

This entire heritage of thinking, grounded in the sentence “An agent does not move except out of intention for an end,” is where the most pervasive human error lies, compounded by two or more centuries of the illusion of unconditional scientific understanding. This error is also the most fragilizing one.

The rational flâneur is someone who, unlike a tourist, makes a decision at every step to revise his schedule, so he can imbibe things based on new information, ..

The flâneur is not a prisoner of a plan. Tourism, actual or figurative, is imbued with the teleological illusion; it assumes completeness of vision and gets one locked into a hard-to-revise program, while the flâneur continuously—and, what is crucial, rationally—modifies his targets as he acquires information.

Optionality will take us many places, but at the core, an option is what makes you antifragile and allows you to benefit from the positive side of uncertainty.

.. intelligence makes you discount antifragility and ignore the power of optionality.

This kind of sum I’ve called in my vernacular “f*** you money”—a sum large enough to get most, if not all, of the advantages of wealth (the most important one being independence and the ability to only occupy your mind with matters that interest you) but not its side effects,..

luxury ness

.. you will never get to know yourself-your real preferences-unless you face options and choices.

The history of medicine is littered with the strange sequence of discovery of a cure followed, much later, by the implementation—as if the two were completely separate ventures, the second harder, much harder, than the first. Just taking something to market requires struggling against a collection of naysayers, administrators, empty suits, formalists, mountains of details that invite you to drown, and one’s own discouraged mood on occasion. In other words, to identify the option (again, there is this option blindness). This is where all you need is the wisdom to realize what you have on your hands.

implementation: a people experiment.

..the simpler and more obvious the discovery, the less equipped we are to figure it out by complicated methods. The key is that the significant can only be revealed through practice.

the little prince – via heart

..both governments and universities have done very, very little for innovation and discovery, precisely because, in addition to their blinding rationalism, they look for the complicated, the lurid, the newsworthy, the narrated, the scientistic, and the grandiose, rarely for the wheel on the suitcase.

As we saw with the stories of Thales and the wheel, antifragility (thanks to the asymmetry effects of trial and error) supersedes intelligence. But some intelligence is needed. From our discussion on rationality, we see that all we need is the ability to accept that what we have on our hands is better than what we had before—in other words, to recognize the existence of the option (or “exercise the option” as people say in the business, that is, take advantage of a valuable alternative that is superior to what precedes it, with a certain gain from switching from one into the other, the only part of the process where rationality is required).

.. this ability to use the option given to us by antifragility is not guaranteed: things can be looking at us for a long time. We saw the gap between the wheel and its use. Medical researchers call such lag the “translational gap,” the time difference between formal discovery and first implementation, which, if anything, owing to excessive noise and academic interests, has been shown by Contopoulos-Ioannidis and her peers to be lengthening in modern times.

lag/gap time

.. it is downright irrational if one holds on to an old technology that is not naturalistic at all yet visibly harmful, or when the switch to a new technology (like the wheel on the suitcase) is obviously free of possible side effects that did not exist with the previous one. And resisting removal is downright incompetent and criminal (as I keep saying, removal of something non-natural does not carry long-term side effects; it is typically iatrogenics-free)

dear Ed (and all other sectors) … time for another way

.. few want to jeopardize their jobs and reputation for the sake of change.

we can’t not. revolution. Brand.

With every trial one gets closer to something, assuming an environment in which one knows exactly what one is looking for.

rather than obsessing the bettering of efficiency..

We can, from the trial that fails to deliver, figure out progressively where to go.

pivots via findings in failings.. esp if in the shadows and can keep focused.

Nobody discusses the possibility of the birds’ not needing lectures—and nobody has any incentive to look at the number of birds that fly without such help from the great scientific establishment.

So the illusion grows and grows, with government funding, tax dollars, swelling (and self-feeding) bureaucracies in Washington all devoted to helping birds fly better.

this is ridiculous.. ness

With astonishing regularity, greed is seen as something (a) new and (b) curable. A Procrustean bed approach; we cannot change humans as easily as we can build greed-proof systems, and nobody thinks of simple solutions.1

another way. getting back a culture of trust. money/credentials as tech/trees keeping us from seeing the forest.

We are suckers for the sophisticated.

.. let us call the green lumber fallacy the situation in which one mistakes a source of necessary knowledge—the greenness of lumber—for another, less visible from the outside, less tractable, less narratable.

People with too much smoke and complicated tricks and methods in their brains start missing elementary, very elementary things. Persons in the real world can’t afford to miss these things; otherwise they crash the plane. Unlike researchers, they were selected for survival, not complications. So I saw the less is more in action:

The difference between a narrative and practice—the important things that cannot be easily narrated—lies mainly in optionality, the missed optionality of things. The “right thing” here is typically an antifragile payoff. And my argument is that you don’t go to school to learn optionality, but the reverse: to become blind to it.

As Yogi Berra said, “In theory there is no difference between theory and practice; in practice there is.”

Accordingly, wisdom you learn from your grandmother should be vastly superior (empirically, hence scientifically) to what you get from a class in business school (and, of course, considerably cheaper). My sadness is that we have been moving farther and farther away from grandmothers.

Experimentation can make people much more careful than theories.

There is a body of know-how that was transmitted from master to apprentice, and transmitted only in such a manner—with degrees necessary as a selection process or to make the profession more respectable, or to help here and there, but not systematically. And the role of such formal knowledge will be overappreciated precisely because it is highly visible.

shiny ness – the little prince

The process remained self-directed and unpredictable at every step. And the great fallacy is to make it sound irrational—the irrational resides in not seeing a free option when it is handed to us.

Roger Martin – what is ridiculous ness

.. the players somehow lost the zest for bricolage, the hunger for trial and error.

.. uninhibited doer..

Visibly the money should go to the tinkerers, the aggressive tinkerers who you trust will milk the option.

..since you cannot forecast collaborations and cannot direct them, you cannot see where the world is going. All you can do is create an environment that facilitates these collaborations, and lay the foundation for prosperity.

spaces of permission with nothing to prove

.. if you can say something straightforward in a complicated manner with complex theorems, even if there is no large gain in rigor from these complicated equations, people take the idea very seriously.

oh my math..

..the more nonlinear the response, the less relevant the average, ..

ie: people’s curiosities.. so why spend 7 hrs a day, 12+ years – averaging that..

knowledge grows by subtraction much more than by addition

one small observation can disprove a statement, while millions can hardly confirm it, ..

Steve Jobs: “People think focus means saying yes to the thing you’ve got to focus on. But that’s not what it means at all. It means saying no to the hundred other good ideas that there are…”

Paul Valéry once wrote: que de choses il faut ignorer pour agir—how many things one should disregard in order to act.

.. if you have more than one reason to do something …. just don’t do it. it does not mean that one reason is better than two, just that by invoking more than one reason you are trying to convince yourself to do something.

Everything in nature is fractal, jagged, and rich in detail, though with a certain pattern. The smooth, by comparison, belongs to the class of Euclidian geometry we study in school, simplified shapes that lose this layer of wealth. Alas, contemporary architecture is smooth, even when it tries to look whimsical. What is top-down is generally unwrinkled (that is, unfractal) and feels dead.

fractal thinking —-> mindfulness

Again, we have the machine-organism dichotomy: to her the city is an organism, for Moses it is a machine to be improved upon.

Jane Jacobs

.. no one becomes a prophet in his own land..

.. and the same punishment inflicted on those able to understand things others don’t.

Recall the inability we saw in Chapter 2 to learn from past behavior. The problem with lack of recursion in learning—lack of second-order thinking—is as follows. If those delivering some messages deemed valuable for the long term have been persecuted in past history, one would expect that there would be a correcting mechanism, that intelligent people would end up learning from such historical experience so those delivering new messages would be greeted with the new understanding in mind. But nothing of the sort takes place.

.. if you believe that what will work and do well is going to be a new idea that others did not think of, what we commonly call “innovation,” then you would expect people to pick up on it and have a clearer eye for new ideas without too much reference to the perception of others. But they don’t: something deemed “original” tends to be modeled on something that was new at the time but is no longer new, so being an Einstein for many scientists means solving a similar problem to the one Einstein solved when at the time Einstein was not solving a standard problem at all.

..the very idea of being an einstein in physics is no longer original. … scientist trying to be new in a standard way…. focus on evidence.. (which means not ne)

a different experiment

Metric-lowering drugs are particularly vicious because of a legal complexity. The doctor has the incentive to prescribe it because should the patient have a heart attack, he would be sued for negligence; but the error in the opposite direction is not penalized at all, as side effects do not appear at all as being caused by the medicine.

.. there is a marked bias in favor of treatment, even when it brings more harm, because the legal system favors intervention.

.. bureaucrats (whether in govt or large corps) live in a system of rewards based on narratives, “tawk,” and the opinion of others, w/ job eval and peer reviews – in other words, what we call marketing.

.. institutions block evolution with bailouts and statism.

our mission is to make talk less cheap.

my childhood role model was the french adventurer and writer andre malraux. he imbued his writings with his own risk taking: malraux was a school dropout – while extremely well read – who became an adventurer in asia in his twenties…….. he just could not bear the idea of a writer being an intellectual. but unlike hemingway, who was mostly into image building, he was the real thing. and he never engaged in small talk..

the system does not give researchers the incentive to be a malraux.

i believe that forcing researchers to eat their won cooking whenever possible solves a serious problem in science. take this simple heuristic – does the scientific researcher whose ideas are applicable to the real world apply his ideas to his daily life? if so, take him seriously. otherwise, ignore him.  … more sufficient evidence than thousands of citations.

Anything one needs to market heavily is necessarily either an inferior product or an evil one. And it is highly unethical to portray something in a more favorable light than it actually is. definition, what is being marketed is necessarily inferior, otherwise it would not be advertised.

.. marketing beyond conveying information is insecurity.

.. never trust the words of a man who is not free.

.. my experience is that most journalists, professional academics, and other in similar phony professions don’t read original sources, but each other, largely because they need to figure out the consensus before making a pronouncement.

The fooled-by-data effect is accelerating. There is a nasty phenomenon called “Big Data” in which researchers have brought cherry-picking to an industrial level.

Science must not be a competition; it must not have rankings—we can see how such a system will end up blowing up. Knowledge must not have an agency problem.

Departments need to teach something so students get jobs, even if they are teaching snake oil—this got us trapped in a circular system in which everyone knows that the material is wrong but nobody is free enough or has enough courage to do anything about it.

.. i am convinced that a single person with courage can bring down a collective composed of wimps.

it is hard to find people knowledgeable and confident enough to like to extract the essence of things, instead of nitpicking.

Education, in the sense of the formation of character, personality, and acquisition of true knowledge, likes disorder; label-driven education and educators abhor disorder.

tony gives nero 20 mill to spend at his discretion on was to be a secret mission; noble of course, but secret. and, or course, vague. and dangerous. it was the best compliment nero ever got from tony: trusting that nero would be able to read his mind.  – which he did.

from notes:

Agency and iatrogenics: Just a random example: “Surgeons do more operations if they’re on the board of surgery centers,” June 22, 2012, “The Daily Stat,” Harvard Business Review.

.. if antifragility is a built-in process that permits some individual entities to stand out from the bulk in a challenging situation, thereby improving the fate of the whole, it would illustrate the implementation of a process that gathers and utilises information.

.. like pronouncing that someone who has just spent a decade in a sterilized room is in “great health”—when he is the most vulnerable.

Ed ness. on losing our gut wisdom. Munir Fasheh ness.

city states: .. Ben Barber et al.. semiautonomous cities.. mayors are better than presidents at dealing with trash collection – and less likely to drag us into war.

Something that is obvious to cabdrivers and grandmothers disappears inside university hallways.

The obsession with measurement started with the right places, and progressively invaded the wrong ones.

When measurement errors are prohibitively large, we should not be using the word “measure.

maps: via jean -louis, … as a mapmaker, i learned a long time ago that the key to good mapmaking is precisely the info you choose to leave out. i have made numerous clients notice that if a map is too literal and precise, it confuses people.

smd – koran – property of god as perfection. only imperfect mortals can improve, therefore need antifragility to try to improve.

Gladwell (2009): if you totted up all his hospital bills for the ten yrs that he had been on the streets – as well as substance – abuse-treatment costs, doctors’ fees, and other expenses – murray barr probably ran up a medical bill as large as anyone in the state of nevada. it cost us one million dollars not to do something about murray, obryan said.

simplicity and steve jobs: simple can be harder than complex: you have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. but it’s worth it in the ed because once you get there, you can move mountains. – business week, may 25, 1998

math heavy from notes (as i’m about to lose access to the book):

if these parameters need to be estimated, with an error, then the derivations need to be written differently and, of course, we would have no paper—and no Markowitz paper, no blowups, no modern finance, no fragilistas teaching junk to students.… Economic models are extremely fragile to assumptions, in the sense that a slight alteration in these assumptions can, as we will see, lead to extremely consequential differences in the results. And, to make matters worse, many of these models are “back-fit” to assumptions, in the sense that the hypotheses are selected to make the math work, which makes them ultrafragile and ultrafragilizing.

Say a government estimates unemployment for the next three years as averaging 9 percent; it uses its econometric models to issue a forecast balance B of a two-hundred-billion deficit in the local currency. But it misses (like almost everything in economics) that unemployment is a stochastic variable. Employment over a three-year period has fluctuated by 1 percent on average. make small errors, design makes large ones. So the imposition of Ricardo’s insight-turned-model by some social planner would lead to a blowup; letting tinkering work slowly would lead to efficiency—true efficiency. The role of policy makers should be to, via negativa style, allow the emergence of specialization by preventing what hinders the process.

As a generalization of the deficit/employment example used in the previous section, say we are using f, a simple function: f(x|ᾱ), where ᾱ is supposed to be the average expected input variable, where we take φ as the distribution of α over its domain , . The philosopher’s stone: The mere fact that α is uncertain (since it is estimated) might lead to a bias if we perturbate from the inside (of the integral), i.e., stochasticize the parameter deemed fixed. Accordingly, the convexity bias is easily measured as the difference between (a) the function f integrated across values of potential α, and (b) f estimated for a single value of α deemed to be its average. The convexity bias (philosopher’s stone) ωA becomes:1

The central equation: Fragility is a partial philosopher’s stone below K, hence ωB the missed fragility is assessed by comparing the two integrals below K in order to capture the effect on the left tail: which can be approximated by an interpolated estimate obtained with two values of α separated from a midpoint by ∆α its mean deviation of α and estimating Note that antifragility ωC is integrating from K to infinity. We can probe ωB by point estimates of f at a level of X ≤ K.. which leads us to the fragility detection heuristic (Taleb, Canetti, et al., 2012). In particular, if we assume that ω´B(X) has a constant sign for X ≤ K, then ωB(K) has the same sign. The detection heuristic is a perturbation in the tails to probe fragility, by checking the function ω´B(X) at any level X.


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Nassim tweets – just as i finish antigragile:

@michaelpollan Hi there; finally our Precautionary Principle with Application to GMOs is on arXiv.

We present a non-naive version of the Precautionary (PP) that allows us to avoid paranoia and paralysis by confining precaution to specific domains and problems. PP is intended to deal with uncertainty and risk in cases where the absence of evidence and the incompleteness of scientific knowledge carries profound implications and in the presence of risks of “black swans”, unforeseen and unforeseable events of extreme consequence.


9) #recalibration : The business case for mindset as competitive advantage v @ribbonfarm HT @petervan  deep thinking

Original Tweet:

The plot device that unfolds is a common trope in sci-fi: the problem (or in this case, crime) can only be solved by a particular personality, a unique configuration of beliefs, memories, perspectives, and quirks that can be virtualized, but never simulated.

not even w/in person… ie: bravery to change mind everyday..  this is our ps in the open ness.. via idiosyncratic jargon as encryption ness et al

Both these stories hint at an idea found in both sci-fi novels and current artificial intelligence debates: that subtle shades of subjective consciousness are the only irreducible, indivisible things in the universe —  the quarks out of which souls and narratives are built. Regardless of where you stand on the issue, the implications of this idea can shed light on a much more immediate problem: productivity, from the day-to-day “checking of boxes” kind all the way to the “living a generative life” variety.

Productivity as we know it is based on delayed gratification, which described a world that was predictable and structured. It was clear what you had to do and in what order — it was just a matter of scheduling and pain tolerance. But delayed gratification is obsolete in a world dominated by VUCA, because the pain you’re pulling into the present might not even be necessary, and the gratification you’re pushing into the future might never materialize. It is not at all clear what must be done and in what order; in fact, it becomes ever more clear that most of the tasks we execute don’t make much of a difference, while a tiny percentage randomly and dramatically influence the course of our work and our lives. It makes sense to invest more and more resources in making that distinction, because the absolute fastest way to complete a task or reach an objective is to realize you don’t have to

almost didn’t read this article because of tweet calling for competitive advantage…

perhaps we call out competitions/advantages as @fortelabs calls out delayed gratification ie: as irrelevant if living antifragile

irrelvant quote vinay

hoping my prob w patience.. ie:why wait.. ness

productivity \ supposed to’s

States of mind drastically influence the amount of energy it takes to complete a given task, which gives them leverage.


The key words there are “feeds itself.” Learning new facts and gaining new perspectives is valuable as raw material, but the moment of creative breakthrough is almost always driven by a mysterious internal process variously called the Muse, the Resistance, and the Gift. Only internal feedback loops can reach the speed and internal coherence necessary for the act of synthesis.


My point here is that I believe states of mind are not just cool trips, but concrete competitive assets.

ugh… why.. competitive assets..?

we are actually different selves across time, and reaching our goals requires getting them to cooperate.

or perhaps.. letting go of goals… the it is me ness

This excellent paper on “Self-Organization in Communicating Groups” by Francis Heylighen at the Free University of Brussels (which I’ll be borrowing from liberally) describes the *four requirements for any group of independent “agents” to reach a goal. I want to use this framework to ask the question: What if we thought of our different selves as literally completely different people, with different priorities, skills, and attitudes? How could we use principles of self-organization to get them to work together toward common goals, assuming they are driven primarily by ephemeral states of mind?

*four req’s – again – what if a goal isn’t the essence of living.. of being human..?

**get them to work toward goals – what if this is against the grain of us ness… ie: it shows lack of trust that the dance will dance. thinking we must engineer it. what if that mindset is what’s getting in the way of us dancing.

the true purpose of note-taking is transporting states of mind (not just information) through time. This is why pictures, sketches, and diagrams often work better than text. We don’t usually think of them as notes, but songs, smells, and tastes work even better.


There is one bright side to all this hard work: the only way to *crystallize a state of mind is to use affective triggers to decide what to take notes on and keep. Instead of making a mini-outline of each book and article and podcast you consume, trying to preserve the logical structure of the argument, just wait in low-power mode for reactions like surprise, delight, intrigue, and outrage. This System 1 processing is much faster, less energy intensive, and more intuitive than the more analytical System 2. To take this approach means **your notes will not be neat and ordered, like a Dewey Decimal system for the mind. They will be dominated by the contrarian, by paradoxes, by the inexplicable. Which is exactly the point. Contrarianism is the fastest method for discovering the paradox at the heart of every inexplicable phenomenon.

*crystallize – like this paragraph – esp toward antifragile/uncertain/chaordic documentation.. but the word crystalize sounds death like..

**notes will not be neat .. but contrarian/paradoxical/inexplicable – back to idiosyncratic jargon ness

Aggregation is necessary to turn all these diverse efforts into a *final product. Having access to more diverse states of mind allows you to create more diverse definitions of success — a crucial skill for shaping and moving into zones of expanding possibility. If you’ve endured just a taste of Kafka’s maddening bureaucracy, you can be ok with a little extra paperwork. This is Waitzkin’s first level of high-performance — flowing with whatever comes.

*final product.. what is that..? ..

perhaps tech’s best use can get us past even a little extra paperwork/b.. by listening w/o agenda to our self-talk as data…

What would you pay to experience child-like wonder for a day?

1 yr to be 5 ness

don’t think we have to remember past so much (he writes about in last couple paragraphs) but remember to check in with our hearts/curiosity …like we did as a child.. and we can forever.. if we rid ourselves of ie: manufacturing/perpetuating consent et al


revolution of everyday life ness – whimsy listeners