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Nov. 18, 2023 Weekly Recap & Good Reads
Last week in Random Walk+Good Reads, all in one email
In case you missed it, here’s a recap of this past week’s Daily Datas (short and sweet) and Random Walks at Night (longer and with more feeling).
Plus, some Good Reads.
I hope you had a nice weekend. See you Monday.
Everything reads better in your browser or in the app. The footnotes especially, and Random Walk is really leaning into the footnotes. Plus, if you have the app, you can set delivery to “app only” and then my daily barrage will feel less like a barrage. Alternatively, sign up for Weekly Recap only.
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Random Walk Reads
Some long reads worth reading, longly:
Hanson on Fertility and Hanania on Hanson on Fertility. Wherein Hanson posits and Hanania tests a Kings and Queens theory of fertility decline (and a variant), i.e. having less babies is a maladaptive outcome of otherwise imitating and/or imagining ourselves as elites. Random Walk continues to think that the problem is we don’t consider ourselves elite enough.
‘Figma Took Their Lunch Money’: How a $2B design startup fell apart. Nifty account of how Invision went from a design belle to yesterday’s news in fairly short order. Figma really was that much better, and there was nothing Invision could do to stop it.
Why I Built Zuzalu. Vitalik Buterin reflects on his experiment of building an intentional community or “pop up” city of 200 people in Montenegro. It turns out small groups of reasonably aligned human capital can make a place worth living from scratch (albeit with some challenges and limitations).
Why Real Estate is so difficult to price right now? Lots of anecdotes about the uncertainty in real estate valuations, and the lack of volume, especially (but not only) in office. The answer to the question is mostly “because no one wants to know.”
Palmer Luckey on Military Defense, Israel War, TikTok Ban & US Manufacturing. Luckey is (most recently) founder of Anduril and is generally a smart and irreverent guy. It’s a fun and far-reaching conversation about stuff most people know nothing about (but speculate freely). Presumably that’s not Luckey, but I don’t really know!
ICYMI: Random Walk Recap
I. Daily Datas
Data to inform and delight that you may have otherwise missed.
II. Random Walk at Night
Slightly longer perspectives that you won’t find elsewhere . . . because if there’s nothing new and different to say, then why say anything at all?
I hope everyone had a great week and we’ll see you again Monday.
Random Walk is an idea company dedicated to the discovery of idea alpha. Find differentiated data, perspectives and people, and keep your information mix lively. A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of small minds. Fight the Great Idea Stagnation. Join Random Walk. Follow me on twitter. Follow me on substack: