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Consuming Questions


Image by Ludovic Migneault


Sometimes you can generate more ideas with problems than with solutions

Taking my cue from Sam Hinkie (ex GM of the Philadelphia 76ers) and the Houston Newsletter, I wanted to write down ideas, questions, and problems that I am thinking about on the side. These are separate from my immediate research goals and range from the valuable to the frivolous but are Questions that I find myself returning to and trying to solve

Image by Matt Walsh

How Do You Quantify Skill?

We all want to be better at what we do. However, in many areas of life how we improve, or even what success looks like can be hard to identify, quantify, and understand. I am interested in developing new metrics to quantify life around us.


A couple of attempts I have made are:

Fantasy Football

I have written extensively about data-based ways to improve how we manage our fantasy football teams

Settlers of Catan

I have started to quantify how to play the game, but it is still early days and a lot of work can be done here.


I've done some work trying to analyze course evaluations, but there are definitely better ways to do so.

How do we communicate
scientific consensus?

With the growth of the internet and more recently chat bots, all of a sudden, all of scientific discourse and thought is available to anyone. However, all that has done is create and encourage people to cherry pick the studies and results that confirm what they already believe. Instead what we need is a way to communicate the consensus of science, where is there debate, and what level of confidence do scientists have in their ideas.

One way that I am interested in exploring is creating decision making tools which are based on automated meta analyses. Meta-Analyses are one way of statistically synthesizing multiple scientific studies around a single topic, allowing for broader comparisons and stronger claims.  However, the process of producing these is still mostly manual, with humans going through each paper and copying the relevant details for their analysis.  If these were made machine-readable, this process could be expedited and automated.  One great example of this has been done with research on cooperation, but expanding this to all fields of science would greatly improve the scientific process.

What does education look like in the age of the internet and AI?

We now have access to more information within a few seconds than we will ever be able to read, listen too, or watch. We have to change the way we teach to give our students the best educational experience possible. It is arrogant and naive to assume that we are the best in the world at explaining a particular concept and, as more explanations become available online, this raises the question of what is the purpose of the in-person teacher.

I am currently thinking about 2 purposes to in-person teaching, curation and support.  Good modern teachers should curate the internet to make finding the right information easier for their students.  They should also support their students.  This can take many different forms including academic (answer questions), emotional (encouragement), directive (you should look into X), or accountability (why haven't you done X).  I do not think the internet will remove in-person teaching, but how it is done can and should change for maximum effectiveness

How do we document and share our Information Diets?

Historically, educated individuals maintained vast libraries.  These acted both as a reference point for information and as an symbol of the information and topics from which to make pleasant conversation.  This method of displaying media continued with vinyl records, CDs, and DVDs, allowing for guests to peruse titles in books, music, and movies to understand the media the host is consuming.  However, the shift towards cloud-based forms of media has left us without a means to display and share what information we are consuming. This leads to the question of what does the next version of the personal library look like? 

I've made one (admittedly preliminary) attempt at a physical digital bookcase, which you can read more about below:

If you are interested or have ideas around these Questions
please reach out!

I'd love to hear from you


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