And We’re Back!

It’s been quite a long time (7 months!) since I last posted to Thought Distiller. My hiatus occurred due to a confluence of factors that prevented me from devoting the time and attention that I would have liked to this blog. And I realized that I would rather write nothing at all than to write…

Six Links: Pirates, Moats, Capitalism

Hopefully this edition of Six Links will help you find yet more intriguing content to help you finish January strong. Here goes: The Hijacking of the Brillante Virtuouso by Kit Chellel & Matthew Campbell: Anytime a commercial vessel is lost, the incident is recorded with a quill pen in a leatherbound book at Lloyd’s, a London…

Six Links: Knowledge, Data, Abuse

Here’s the second installment of Six Links! I’ve been neglecting Thought Distiller far too much lately; consulting, unknown to most, is in fact a seasonal business that is light in the summer and heavy in the winter. So with a lot of work in the pipeline for this holiday season, I thought I’d at least carve…

Six Links: Contracts, Options, Brevity

I’ve decided to try a new format of blog post today; I wanted to share some of the more interesting things I’ve been reading, emphasizing those that I believe other people are not likely to be reading. In some sense, I’m trying to curate signal in the midst of all of the overwhelming noise in…

Against the Wisdom of Crowds

The popular phrase “the wisdom of crowds” is derived from James Surowiecki’s 2004 book of the same name. The book contains its premise in its subtitle: Why the Many Are Smarter Than the Few and How Collective Wisdom Shapes Business, Economies, Societies and Nations. Simply put, the opinions of many people are, in the aggregate, more…

The Dunning-Kruger Effect: Knowing Our Own Limits

Perhaps the biggest of my weekly indulgences is watching TV whenever I find the time. Of the few shows I’m committed to, I’m very fond of NBC’s The Blacklist, which focuses on the as yet unknown relationship between wanted criminal Raymond Reddington (James Spader) and rookie FBI profiler Elizabeth Keen (Megan Boone). During the fourth season’s…

How to Memorize Anything Quickly

When I was first starting this blog, I wrote a well-received article about speed-reading. I said that I wanted the power to read at superhuman speeds and have perfect recall of everything I read. I went on to remark that perfect recall was a topic for another day. Today happens to be that day. People can train themselves…

Mediated Knowledge: How Do We Know What We Know?

How do human beings know things? On the surface that seems like a stupid question. We know things because we learn or experience them. For example, I know that Barack Obama was the first African-American president because I was alive for his election. I remember watching the news and reading articles about his victory over…

Speed-reading Nonfiction Books

If I could have any superpower at all, I would want to be able to read at superhuman speeds and have perfect recall of everything I read. At first glance, that seems like a stupid power to have; however, in the film Limitless, Bradley Cooper’s character uses those very abilities to become a successful author, financial…