Thinks 876

Timothy Lee: “Computers and smartphones have become ubiquitous across the economy. But this has led to only modest changes for established industries like health care, education, housing, and transportation…Most of the American economy is not information-focused: It’s focused on delivering physical goods and services like homes, cars, restaurant meals, and haircuts. It will be hard for AI to have a big impact on these industries for the same reasons that it’s been hard for Internet startups to do so…Software didn’t eat the world and AI won’t either.” [via Arnold Kling]

Mint: “The fundamentals of India’s economy are less dynamic than often assumed. India’s poor are mostly concentrated in rural parts, and especially in the poorest (and most populous) states whose per-capita income growth has continued to lag behind the top five richest states of India. The share of India’s rural population reduced by a mere three percentage points between 2011 and 2020 and at present stands slightly below two-thirds of total population. In nearly every country where poverty has been eradicated by industrialization, we usually observe a sharp and continuous reduction of the share of agriculture in GDP. In India, the share of agriculture declined sharply from the early 1990s through to 2004 but has remained stuck at 16-17% ever since. The decline in share of agriculture in the total labour force has also been modest—it stands at 43% at present, starting with just around 50% in 2011. Among other fast-growing emerging economies in Asia (China, Bangladesh, Vietnam), India’s agricultural share of GDP is the highest.”

Token Dispatch: “Just like Bitcoin and Ethereum are changing the way we think about money, we can use the same principles to revolutionise social media. By decentralising content, we can create a public pool that no one entity controls. Think of it like a big public park: everyone can come and play, but no one person owns it all. That means more innovation, more competition, and more control for us, the users and creators. To shift from a traditional social media platform to a decentralised blockchain platform, significant changes are required. This includes developing and deploying new technology infrastructure based on decentralised technologies like blockchain, changing the business model from selling services to using cryptocurrencies for generating revenue, providing users with more control over their data, and complying with data privacy and blockchain technology regulations.”

Andy Matuschak: “Books are surprisingly bad at conveying knowledge, and readers mostly don’t realize it…Books are static. Prose can frame or stimulate readers’ thoughts, but prose can’t behave or respond to those thoughts as they unfold in each reader’s head. The reader must plan and steer their own feedback loops…Let’s reframe the question. Rather than “how might we make books actually work reliably,” we can ask: How might we design mediums which do the job of a non-fiction book—but which actually work reliably?…How might we design mediums in which “readers” naturally form rich associations between the ideas being presented? How might we design mediums which “readers” naturally engage creatively with the material? How might we design mediums in which “readers” naturally contend with competing interpretations? If we pile together enough of these questions we’re left with: how might we design mediums in which “reading” is the same as “understanding”?”

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Rajesh Jain

An Entrepreneur based in Mumbai, India.

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