Models of My Life

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jacob
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Models of My Life

Post by jacob » Sat Jun 08, 2019 8:27 am

https://www.amazon.com/dp/026269185X/

Autobiography of a polymath (and also polyglot). Most (auto)biographies by far focus only on the "what" [they did] but this also has some discussions of the "how" and occasionally the "why" which makes it worthwhile to read for those of us who tend to get interested in everything we come across.

Fish
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Re: Models of My Life

Post by Fish » Tue Jun 11, 2019 11:16 am

Still reading, but I liked this quote:
I advise my graduate students to pick a research problem that is important (so that it will matter if it is solved), but one for which they have a secret weapon that gives some prospect of success. Why a secret weapon? Because if the problem is important, other researchers as intelligent as my students will be trying to solve it; my students are likely to come in first only by having access to some knowledge or research methods the others do not have.
The author straddles a fine line between insightful and pedantic (for example I thought it was excessive to write about age<21 in the third person) but overall very well thought out.

A part that relates to personal finance:
He calculated that if someone were to endow him with $50,000, he could live quite comfortably for the rest of his life doing what he did best---learning.
This was when Herbert Simon was graduating high school in 1933, at the age of 17. $50k then is about $983k now. Still, it is amazing that he was capable of such long-range thought at a young age.

chenda
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Re: Models of My Life

Post by chenda » Tue Jun 11, 2019 3:01 pm

@fish I've noticed that a notable number of 19th/early 20th century greats had independent income. Perhaps that's unsurprising.
Last edited by chenda on Wed Jun 12, 2019 2:37 am, edited 2 times in total.

chenda
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Re: Models of My Life

Post by chenda » Wed Jun 12, 2019 2:35 am

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