Why Is Finance So Complex ?

Financial systems are sugar pills by which we collectively embolden ourselves to bear economic risk. As with any good placebo, we must never understand that it is just a bit of sugar. We must believe the concoction we are taking to be the product of brilliant science, the details of which we could never understand. The financial placebo peddlers make it so.

→ Interfluidity

Reaching My Autistic Son Through Disney

Then both of them turn to Owen. “You can do it, Owie,” Walt whispers. “I know you can.” Owen looks evenly at his brother and Merlin, and then steps to the anvil and lifts the sword true. Did he understand what Walt was saying? Did he just imitate what he saw his brother do? What the hell difference did it make? Today, in the sunlight, he’s the hero of his imagination.

→ The New York Times

The Science of Marginal Gains

Most people love to talk about success (and life in general) as an event. We talk about losing 50 pounds or building a successful business or winning the Tour de France as if they are events. But the truth is that most of the significant things in life aren’t stand-alone events, but rather the sum of all the moments when we chose to do things 1 percent better or 1 percent worse. Aggregating these marginal gains makes a difference.

→ Buffer

The Secret Science of Stock Symbols

We separated stocks with pronounceable ticker symbols from those with unpronounceable symbols. Across both markets, stocks with pronounceable symbols enjoyed a bigger post-I.P.O. boost than their unpronounceable counterparts. The effect was strongest during the first few days of trading; over time, it weakened, but never quite vanished.

→ The New Yorker