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Tag / Decision-making

True Differentiation

Jack Welch offered lots of great advice as the celebrated CEO of GE but one particular bit stands out: If you don’t have a competitive advantage, don’t compete. In other words, don’t step onto a level playing-field. At least when it comes to business. But I think this is true for many things. Government programs, […]

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Strengthening Our Free Will

Some people argue that there is no such thing as free will. I suppose they just can’t help but think that. When taken to the fullest extent, the idea can be very difficult to grasp. It’s easier, instead, to consider free will as a light switch. We can turn it on and off. Sometimes deliberately. […]

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The Best Book For Starting A Data-Driven Practice

Lean Analytics Rating: 9/10 Best Line #1: Analytics is a necessary counterweight to lying, the yin to the yang of hyperbole. Best Line #2: Relying on wisdom and experience, rather than rigid analysis, helps us get through our day. You don’t run A/B testing before deciding what pants to put on. Many years ago, I […]

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Good Measurement and Bad Mimicry

Theodore Roosevelt captured of fundamental truth in the human condition when he shared the following: Comparison is the thief of joy. But comparison isn’t the problem, of course. Envy is. The act of comparison is just an information-gathering exercise. Our response to that information is where the joy-stealing really happens. This effect is heightened when […]

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Go Ahead. Move The Goalposts.

There is one particular logical fallacy that children use to great effect whenever they’re in an argument. It always makes for a good laugh. To illustrate, imagine a scene on the playground: an adolescent looks up at the sky and says, “It won’t rain today.” A schoolmate says, “It will, too.” “No it won’t.” “Yes […]

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Blind Values, Empty Metrics

Nothing compares to great data. Nothing does more to help me clarify situations, develop solutions, or make changes. And when data is woven into an honest narrative, it makes for some of the most beautiful, compelling expressions of thought we can find. It reminds me of a great line from Steven Pinker in his seminal […]

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Love Your Data At A Distance

I have a deep love for data. It has an incredible ability to unmask the hidden truths of reality. So many discoveries come from the observations recorded in data and shared with the world. Consider its power to advance public health, as it happened with the world’s first epidemiological analysis in 1854. Then there’s the […]

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The Best Book for Becoming Decisive

Algorithms To Live By By Brian Christian and Tom Griffiths Rating: 10/10 Best Line #1: Life is full of problems that are, quite simply, hard. And the mistakes made by people often say more about the intrinsic difficulties of the problem than about the fallibility of human brains. Best Line #2: … being aware of […]

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Bayes, Crime, and “Big Enough” Data

It’s funny how words, when used in different contexts, take on completely different meaning. Same spelling but different context. Thus a different meaning. Technically speaking, these are called homographs. For example: The term “axes” can mean either … (a) a plurality of a certain hand tool, or (b) a plurality of fixed reference lines for […]

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How To Fix Overthinking

The legendary football coach Vince Lombardi had his shares of wins and loses. Or so you would think. But he way of viewing such things. When asked about games where his team “lost”, he was fond of saying, “We didn’t lose the game. We just ran out of time.” This is a really great sentiment […]

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