Latest Notes 🍃

In knowledge work we barely recognize the difference between immersive and process time. We actually tend to overvalue immersive time (sometimes called “deep work”), because that is when it feels l... ➞

You can buy a bank’s attention to bespoke needs by bringing it deposits, but it takes a lot more money than I have. Or you can buy a trivial number of shares of the bank and call Investor Relations... ➞

Infrastructure undergirds society; failures of it are a per se emergency. Anyone who cheers an infrastructure failure because of the first order consequences of it will find themselves negatively s... ➞

Regulators then heard the numbers, did a bit of modeling in Excel, and then went into wartime execution mode. Regulators have, of course, not declared this war, because it is a war on the public’s ... ➞

The three bank runs which already happened had idiosyncratic causes, but “if accounted for accurately, the bank is insolvent” is the sort of thing which, if one stipulates to it, one would suggest ... ➞

The decision to sharply manage down the price of eggs was, indirectly but inescapably, also a considered decision to cause large notional losses to all holders of financial assets. That includes ev... ➞

All prices embed an interest rate derivative [[Banking in very uncertain times by Bits about Money More: Readwise URL ::wrap]] ➞

when interest rates rise, all asset prices must fall [[Banking in very uncertain times by Bits about Money More: Readwise URL ::wrap]] ➞

CAP theorem is perhaps the best-known statement of the tradeoffs in distributed systems, between consistency, availability, and "partition tolerance." Normally we think of the CAP theorem... ➞

The truth is, nearly every attempt to design a hierarchy-free, "flat" control system just moves the central control around until you can't see it anymore. Human structures all have le... ➞

(The book Radical Candor by Kim Scott has some discussion about how to handle great engineers who just want to build things. She suggests a separate progression for "rock solid" engineers... ➞

Financial systems help us overcome a collective action problem. In a world of investment projects whose costs and risks are perfectly transparent, most individuals would be frightened. Real enterpr... ➞

Nick Rowe memorably described finance as magic. The analogy I would choose is finance as placebo. Financial systems are sugar pills by which we collectively embolden ourselves to bear economic risk... ➞

Thompson’s argument in that post is that Silicon Valley used to be an iterated game among repeat players: Venture capitalists had long careers and made many investments and would benefit way more f... ➞

I’ve been thinking of a kind of article I commonly write: Here’s some examples of something . I am going to give that thing a name. Now that we have a name, let’s discuss it as its own topi... ➞

To write about something hard to explain, write a detailed letter to a friend about why it is so hard to explain, and then remove the initial “Dear Friend” part and you’ll have a great first draft.... ➞

Separate the processes of creating from improving. You can’t write and edit, or sculpt and polish, or make and analyze at the same time. If you do, the editor stops the creator. While you write the... ➞

What we are trying to do influences what becomes salient to us. If you are looking for a friend in a crowd, faces become salient to you, faces that would have otherwise passed you by. If you are ma... ➞

Something I've been framing to myself and my team is 'momentum' on decisions/problems. A decision is most likely to get made when the context is fresh and people feel like it's a pr... ➞

Philanthropy is often conflated with charity, a sort of blank-minded "giving back" to those less fortunate, but these are actually two distinct areas of work. Charity refers to direct ser... ➞

Most organizations run these twice a year, which is a reasonable amount. If you want a more principled way to determine the right frequency, consider how much time you’re willing to invest into add... ➞

Executives are rarely held accountable unless they expose themselves to accountability, and this is a valuable opportunity to hold yourself accountable to your team. As you hold yourself accountabl... ➞

Once you acknowledge that leadership is inherently non-deterministic you can move away from the self-defeating notion that you’re always doing a bad job. Instead I think it’s more useful and health... ➞

But I think the modern bank-regulatory view is that the point of a bank deposit is that you shouldn’t have to worry about it , and that it is a failure of bank regulation if depositors of any size ... ➞

Potential SLIs for different types of components Type of SLI Description Request-driven Availability The proportion of requests that resulted in a successful response. Request-driven Latency... ➞