Monday, June 29, 2020

Podcast Episode 34: Self Awareness

Accept and love yourself

Don’t take things personally take them as suggestions (facts)

Listen to what others say, even if they’re joking there can sometimes be truth to what they say

Step back and imagine that you are an outside observer watching your speech and actions. What would you think of yourself?

Pay attention to what things bother you in other people and chances are, they bother you because your subconscious knows that you do those same things.

Come at it from a desire to learn and grow, not to feel bad about yourself. None of us are perfect but we should always try to be better.

If someone gives you feedback about yourself that you don’t agree with, listen anyway. They’re not always going to be right but they are more likely to be right then you are.

Friday, June 26, 2020

Podcast Episode 33: How I Fixed my Knee

I don’t know a ton about different herbal remedies but I had this product recommended to me.

Growing up I played a lot of soccer. A little during high school but mostly after I started having sharp pains in my knees. One knee would hurt pretty bad so I would wear a brace on that one and then the other one would start to hurt so I would switch.

In addition to the sharp pain while playing, they would also ache quite often making it hard to sleep sometimes.

I had this product recommended to me because it is able to help your body to reproduce cells faster, including your bones and other deep issues.

I was a little dubious but I started putting it on whenever my knees hurt. They seemed to have a small pain relief effect in the short term but I started to notice that I was using it less and less as my knees stopped aching. I also stopped wearing the knee brace while playing. In the last year I have probably only used it once.

My boss uses for cracked hands

My mother-in-law uses it for cracking feet

Also good for small cuts and bruises

Don’t use for deep cuts

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

Podcast Episode 32: Finding everyone a Good Job

Currently it’s all about who you know. Getting connections is the key to getting a good job. If you are just sending in resumes then you are going to have a hard time finding a new job.

This makes it difficult for people that don’t have connections to get ahead in life.

We could help teach people how to make valuable connections

We could create companies that do it for us

Companies want employees and are willing to pay

Employees want jobs and are willing to pay

There is incentive on both sides to solve this problem.

Headhunters keep a list of people that they know are good employees and they are always looking for opportunities to connect their people with good jobs. Why not have a scalable version of this.

Tinder for jobs

Counselors to help you find interesting jobs

Schools help with learning specific skills

Monday, June 22, 2020

Podcast Episode 31: Junk Food for the Brain

I was listening to a podcast and the host asked the guy, “Why are people so addicted to the news?”. The guy responded quickly and almost dismissively, “It’s junk food! It’s just junk food for the brain. Anything shocking or anything like that, it’s junk food.” They moved on to a new subject but for whatever reason his quote stuck with me.

What is easier to sell, cookies or vegetables?

What will have people coming back again and again because they crave it?

I feel like over time the news has just gone more and more towards the “junk food” and less and less towards healthy foods.

So to take this analogy further:

Junk food:

Quick high - shocking news gives you a jolt

Bad for you short term and long term - in the short term it makes you anxious and emotional, in the long term it makes you cynical, depressed, numb.

Healthy food:

Not as exciting up front - almost boring sometimes

Leaves you feeling good - learning something new

Gives you more energy - Leaves you feeling positive about the world

Allows your body to heal.

Friday, June 19, 2020

Podcast Episode 30: EDC (Everyday Carry)

Every day carry

Wallet - Grip6 Wallet v1 (not for sale)

Keychain - Carabiner clip


Gerber Dime -

Knipex Pliers -

Wednesday, June 17, 2020

Podcast Episode 29: Kidney Donation Market

Kidney Donation Market

Is it ethical to allow people to sell their kidneys?

Potential issues

Poor people could be manipulated into selling their kidneys because they feel they need the money or even as collateral for a loan.

Is this a bad thing? I’m not sure... probably

The purpose of a market is to  allow supply and demand to work out the optimal distribution of a scarce resource

Money is a great way to run a market because it is fungible, easily transferable and allows people to make good decisions.

But a market doesn’t have to be monetary.

Other solutions:

Kidney paired exchange programs

If you want to donate to a friend or family member but you are incompatible, you can donate to someone else in the same situation and you can swap the kidneys.

Preferred status for organ donors

People who have signified their intent to be organ donors if they die are given a preference if they ever need an organ transplant.

My idea:

Why haven’t I donated a kidney? Partially because I want to save it in case someone I care about needs it. But what if no one I care about ever needs it? What if I could donate now and then receive a voucher that I could give to anyone in the future that gets them first on the list for a new kidney?

This would allow me to donate now, helping someone who needs it, and then in the future if a friend or family member needs a kidney, I can give them my voucher which would be equivalent to giving them my kidney.

In fact, you could probably do this for all organs, but instead of you getting a voucher when you die, you could specify in your will who gets the vouchers for any organs they are able to use when you die.

This would incentivise people to donate organs now, when they are needed but still be able to get some benefit from them in the future.

Monday, June 15, 2020

Podcast Episode 28: Get Off Your Phone!!

Most mobile phone users check their phones up to 63 times daily.
Americans spend an average screen time of 5.4 hours on their mobile phones daily.
Currently, there are 272.6 million smartphone users in America.
Social media is responsible for 2 hours and 24 minutes of global internet time spent online by an average user daily.
13% of millennials spend over 12 hours on their phones daily.
Most people check their phones around 63 times a day.
Baby Boomers spend 5 hours using their phones.
Millennials spend 48 minutes texting every day.

Being on your phone isn’t a bad thing in and of itself

This really is a time management issue. There are lots of ways that we waste time doing things that don’t really make us happier

The problem with phones is that they are especially addictive

Push notifications:

This is a big one. If you haven’t disabled push notifications then your apps will send you little alerts every once in a while begging you to come back.

Disable all push notifications by default and only enable ones that you truly want to be notified of immediately. For the rest of your apps, you can check them when you want to on your schedule, not whenever the app maker wants to distract you.

variable ratio schedule - Excitement of seeing new things, sometimes something new sometimes not. Same as slot machines

FOMO - What if you miss out on some tidbit of information? This is what the app makers want you to think.

This is especially common for social media and news apps

To cure yourself of it, don’t check the app for a while and see if you really missed out on as much as you thought. I bet you won’t.

Infinite Scrolling - If there’s no bottom then you will never get the mental que or satisfaction from finishing so you will just keep scrolling forever.

Make a stopping point for yourself. Setting a timer is a good way to do this.

Autoplaying videos -

This is common in video streaming services as well as social media

When your show finishes the next one starts playing automatically, this means that if you don’t take initiative then you could sit there forever.

If possible, disable this feature so that if you want to watch the next show you’ll have to physically push the play button. This gives you a minute to decide if you really want to watch another show or not.

Remember that you are in a constant battle for your time, the only resource that you can never get more of. We only have so much time, how are you going to spend it? The app makers want you to give it to them so that they can sell your time to advertisers. They will do whatever they can to make that happen. If you don’t want that then you will need to fight back against them.

I talked about it in my first show but make sure that you are paying attention to others and not ignoring them because of you are addicted to your phone.

Ask yourself, am I making myself happier, becoming a better person, helping others?

Friday, June 12, 2020

Podcast Episode 27: Windshield Wiper Replacement Trick

If both of your windshield wipers are the same size you can apply this trick

When you feel like you need new windshield wipers just buy one new one and put it on the driver’s side.

When that one gets worn out, get a new one, put it on the driver’s side, and take the old driver’s side one and put it on the passenger side.

The passenger side one doesn’t need to be as good so your old driver’s side wiper should be fine on the passenger’s side

I look for when my wiper goes on sale and buy one so that I always have an extra one.

Extra tip

Consumer reports says that pretty much every windshield wiper will last about 6 months no matter how good it is. The better ones just do a better job before they get worn out so you don’t have to worry too much about trying to buy high quality to last longer.

Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Podcast Episode 26: Taxing Corporations

Each corporation's true purpose is to give profits to the shareholders. There is a going rate for how much it is worth it to risk creating a business in an area. This number rarely changes. If the expenses go up then costs must be cut elsewhere or prices for the product must go up.

Shareholders expect a certain rate of return

When you tax corporations they simply pass on the cost to the customer

Of course, the tax code is so messed up that it isn’t necessarily that simple.

Which of course brings us to our conclusion that the tax code is too complicated and probably immoral

What would a moral tax code look like?

Property taxes

States pay federal

Counties pay states

Cities pay counties

People pay cities

Each city can decide how to tax for services

This allows for the most competition between different tax ideas

Fees for services





Monday, June 8, 2020

Podcast Episode 25: Survivor Bias

Survivor bias is a form of selection bias

Selection bias is when you are doing a statistical analysis but you don’t get a good random sample because of your poor selection criteria

"They don't make 'em [them] like they used to"
it is inevitable that only those items which were built to last will have survived into the present day. Therefore, most of the old machinery still seen functioning well in the present day must necessarily have been built to a standard of quality necessary to survive. 
Everything that has failed over the intervening years is no longer visible to the general population as they have been junked, scrapped, recycled, or otherwise disposed of.

Same with old buildings

Success in sports or acting or business

During World War II, the statistician Abraham Wald took survivorship bias into his calculations when considering how to minimize bomber losses to enemy fire.[10] Researchers from the Center for Naval Analyses had conducted a study of the damage done to aircraft that had returned from missions, and had recommended that armor be added to the areas that showed the most damage.[citation needed] Wald noted that the study only considered the aircraft that had survived their missions; any bombers which had been shot down or otherwise lost had logically also been rendered unavailable for assessment. The holes in the returning aircraft, then, represented areas where a bomber could take damage and still return home safely. Wald proposed that the Navy reinforce areas where the returning aircraft were unscathed[10]:88, since those were the areas that, if hit, would cause the plane to be lost. His work is considered seminal in the then-nascent discipline of operational research.[11]
As another example, when the brodie helmet was introduced during WWI, there was a dramatic rise in field hospital admissions of severe head injury victims.[citation needed] This led army command to consider redrawing the design, until a statistician remarked that soldiers who might previously have been killed by certain shrapnel hits to the head (and therefore never showed up in a field hospital), were now surviving the same hits, and thus made it to a field hospital.

So how does this help us

It’s important to remember that just because you see someone that is successful doesn’t mean that if you do what they did that you will be successful. You need to look at all the people that followed that path and see what happened to them

Success in college

Many studies show how college graduates are more successful, make more money, etc

Usually this is shown to argue that everyone should go to college, and more dangerously, that any debt you have to go into to go to college is worth it for the payoff at the end.

The problem is that it only shows graduates and doesn’t include the people that went to college but didn’t graduate. People who get into a lot of debt and then don’t graduate end up in really bad situations.

It also doesn’t take into account the different majors. Someone who gets a degree in engineering or medicine is obviously going to make more than someone who gets a degree in gender studies or communication.

If you just follow the story given you might go to college by taking out a large student loan and then either not graduate or get a degree in a field that doesn’t pay you enough to pay off your student loan.

What you should do is recognize the survivor bias and instead decide what you want to do and then figure out what you need to do to get there. Then you can estimate what you can expect to be paid and then you can figure out how much it is worth paying to get that job. 

If you had to pay $100,000 to get a degree where you are going to be a teacher, you might want to find a cheaper way to get the degree.

Another takeaway

Kids playing sports hoping to play professional.

If they listen to the professional players and do what they do hoping to get the same results they will hear things like “Practice all the time”, “always push yourself to be better”, etc.

Well guess what, there are thousands of people that do that and most of them never become professionals.

So is it worth it to spend much of your life practicing one skill that has so little chance of a payoff?

Maybe, maybe not, but don’t be fooled by survivor bias.

When evaluating a course of action, look at the outcomes of everyone who followed that path, not just the survivors.

Friday, June 5, 2020

Podcast Episode 24: How to Tie your Shoes

Best way to tie your shoes

How to Lace - 

Evenly tighten all the way down

Over-under (x-marks the spot)

Double Helix

Ukrainian style

This simply turns the laces upside down so that you have a pre-made starting knot and two loops even when your shoes are untied

How to Tie - 

Fast and Secure

Fastest shoelace knot is the “Ian Knot”  

More secure is the “Secure Ian Knot”

Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Podcast Episode 23: What to do about harmful and addictive substance abuse

Allow people to sue for addiction recovery

How can we handle dangerous and addictive substances?

Current problems:

Making substances illegal:

Creates black markets that lead to crime and abuse.

Funds criminal gangs

Addicts are criminalized

People who are addicted are at the mercy of the dealer with no recourse

Costs a lot of money to enforce

Difficult to enforce

Creates privacy issues


Moral? I think it is immoral to make substances illegal

I think we can all agree that illegal substances generally do a lot of harm so if we don’t make them illegal then how will society handle it?

Many people argue that from a moral perspective if people want to take addictive substances it is up to them.

But as I’ve thought about the issue and listened to debates from different experts I think that is only true when the person is able to make the decision themselves.

For example, we generally don’t allow children to make their own decisions until they become adults.

I would argue that when people are addicted they have lost the ability to make a rational decision and therefore are no longer truly making the decision themselves.

I think this is proven by the fact that many people try to quit but can’t. If they are trying to quit isn’t it their decision to not do it?

I think that they should be treated less like adults making a rational decision and more like a child that is not liable for their decisions as much.

So who is liable? Well if an adult/company influenced a child to do something, the adult/company is held at least partially liable for the outcome. I think the same could be applied to addictive substances.


Legalize all substances

Allow addicts to sue the seller of the substance for rehabilitation costs

Also apply to gambling/pornography/etc

Will this work?

I imagine that companies selling drugs would have to be very careful to not allow their customers to be addicted. I can only guess as to how they would handle this but off the top of my head I have a few predictions

Creating/breeding for less addictive substances

Monitoring of Customers, if they suspect that a person is getting addicted then they might require a doctor or specialist of some kind to sign off on letting them purchase more

Go out of business all-together


Enforcement would be basically non-existent

Black market would be greatly reduced

Potentially helpful drugs that are currently illegal could help more people (cannabis)

People that do get addicted would be helped

No need for the government to violate privacy. If you buy drugs from someone you know who they are if you need to sue them.

Another benefit would be that companies that make addictive pharmaceuticals would also be able to be sued. If this had been in place the opioid crisis I believe would’ve been much less. And at least the companies responsible wouldn’t have made a killing off of the problem that they caused.

Monday, June 1, 2020

Podcast Episode 22: How to Handle Your Inbox

Many people have issues handling their email.

I think the biggest problems come when people use their inboxes as a type of to-do list.

This allows anyone to add things to your to-do list by simply emailing you.

Email is really a communication and information sharing tool.

You could use it to give you ideas of what to put on your to-do list but your to-do list should be separate.

Method 1 - Inbox 0

Idea, you must sort your email before you read any of them, clear out the clutter!

Unsubscribe from recurring emails
Search for all emails from the same place and delete them all at once
Archive all your important emails like bank statements and such. It might be worth creating an automatic filter to archive these
At this point you should only have emails that you actually want to read and because you’ve seen all of them you can go ahead and start reading/replying to the most important ones.
Remember that just because someone emailed you does not mean that you have to respond or take any action. Guard your time by guarding which tasks you decide to do otherwise others will quickly fill your time with things that are important to them

Method 2 - Ignore method

Idea : If I’m not paying you or you’re not paying me then I’m not going to respond to your email

Use your email as more of a reference. If someone wants to get a hold of you they can call or text. If they then send you attachments or more information in an email then you can quickly find it and use the information

On the whole you just ignore your email. Think of it more as like a facebook newsfeed, you could scroll and scroll and never get to the bottom.

Check your email once a day and only reply to people that are paying you or that you are paying
Ignore everything else

My method - Hybrid

I generally ignore my email most of the time but then once or twice a month I will go in and get to inbox 0.

This works well for me because most of the time my emails aren’t urgent and if they are I just take care of them as they come. (either by responding or adding them to my to-do list) and then once or twice a month I go through all my emails and get to inbox 0. This way I can find anything interesting that might not have been important enough at the time to worry about but that I would like to put on my to-do list.