Since studying the brain extensively during my neuroscience degree, I’ve had a particular curiosity about the extent of which it is possible to improve cognition. But now as an over-worked medical student getting closer and closer to finals, I’ve taken a more practical interest in this topic rather than purely curiosity! As such, I thought I’d share a few of my personal techniques to get the most from your cognitive abilities!
Here, I explain my preferred nootropics and review piracetam and the uses of combining l-theanine and caffeine.
Welcome, Sebastian, to SETT, and hats off and kudos to Tynan, the creator of SETT, for creating a new blogging platform that will allow the communities of our three great blogs to explore and learn about each other.
Ever since Tynan first told me about SETT, I've been a fan. I always wanted my blog, DanielOdio.com, to be about more than just me sharing my thoughts with my readers. I wanted it to be a conversation we could all have together, so we could all learn from each other.
Now that Sebastian's blog is joining SETT, readers will have easy ways to pique their curiosities around the things we all write about and share thoughts and expertise with each other. And that's amazing.
Tynan's blog is about world travel, good habits, freedom and minimalism. I'd also add that it's about self optimization, and being proud of who you are, and what you accomplish -- and doing it in really fun ways.
My blog is a sanctuary for entrepreneurs to learn from each other. A place to learn about angel fundraising, about how to build yourself as a brand, how to get massive amounts of press for your startup, about why you should productize your expertise , a place to learn from startup mistakes and how to be uber efficient with a computer and much more.
A note to self, that turned out to be a near universal truth to all young entrepreneurs.
No, I am not ahead of the game.
I do not have ample time.
Nothing is guaranteed.
Sometimes learning happens more easily than other times, and it's useful to understand why. There are many factors involved, and one is the regularity with which you think about the topic that you're learning.
Learning is essentially the process of forming sufficient links in the brain between related ideas, and so while learning anything complex it's important to be able to hold a large amount of information in memory ready for processing.
Our short-term memory is limited, so for complex tasks it's essential to use medium and longer-term memory to assist with the learning process. Think how an expert in anything improves - whether it's a professional tennis player, a musician or a businessman: each refinement in their skill is based on lots of previous experience, mostly held in longer-term memory.
Information gets placed into medium/longer-term memory when there are enough neural connections that involve it. This sometimes happens by random chance, but usually it requires deliberate repetition. It also fades from there quite quickly without rehearsal (which would link it to other information).
The implication of this is that if you are trying to learn a skill by occasional practice (rather than frequent practice) then rather than slow progress, you may find that you make almost no progress at all. You never have enough information stored in medium-term memory to make meaningful progress, because much of it evaporates between successive practices. You need to keep up the momentum when learning in order to make meaningful progress.
I'm currently learning Python and C++. My university, Whitworth, kind of forced me to learn C++, whether I liked it or not. It seems like a really strict language to me. From what I've learned (I've only had one semester of C++) it's a very mathematical language and can handle math based algorithms really well. So it would seem to me that C++ is really good at physics engines. My older brother, who is pretty successful in the world of computer science, showed me this website: http://roberthodgin.com/eyeo-2012/. I don't know if you can click that or not. But you wont be disappointed when you look it up. The C++ source code on that website is all on git hub. It's a physics engine that Robert Thodgin, Andrew Bell, Hai Nguyen and Steven Schieberl wrote and played around with. It seemed like a really cool project to me.
I'm learning Python on my own. From what I understand, it is a dynamic language. I seems very freeing compared to C++. I like it because you don't have to use >"! It just seems a lot easier to write more code with python than it would with C++. As I've mentioned, I'm learning python through Learning Python The Hard Way. It's kind of interesting that im learning python this way. In school, I'm getting exercises and I'm suppose to write all the code from scratch to do what the exercise is telling me to do. In LPTHW I'm copying all of the code and running it and then I change some of it to see what certain things do. Im curious to see which way is better for me to learn. The classroom/exercise way seems to be a lot more frustrating because you can make a stupid mistake and be stuck on it for quite a while. But of course you can make a copying error in LPTHW, which I have done a couple times. It gives you an error but you know that the code should run perfectly.
So, in the end, I was kind of forced to learn C++. It's definitely not a bad thing. I think it's and awesome language and I'm going to keep it up. I chose to learn Python because i think it's a lot different than C++. I didn't want to learn a language on my own that turns out to be basically the same thing as C++. Just in general I didnt want to learn a C based language as my second language. I'm still not well versed in either language but I think over the next year I'll actually be able to start cool projects! I'll probably post them on Github. I like the idea of open source code, and I want to promote that.
I live in Vancouver, Washington. I think that it is a perfect place to live. It's not extremely busy like a huge city but it isn't real quiet like a small town out in the middle of no where. One of my favorite things about living in the Couve isn't Vancouver itself though. Its living twenty minutes away from Portland that is the fun part.
As a College student, I dont exactly have the biggest cash flow. Unfortunately (or fortunately, who knows) I have to be creative on what I go do for fun. The thing about living by P-Town and being able to hang out there is that you get to experience it but not be overwhelmed. One of my favorite things to do, it to just go down town and people watch.
The Darth Vader, kilt wearing, unicycle riding, bagpipe playing man can be spotted quite often around the city. I think it is great. You can meet some very interesting people in Portland.
If you like interesting food, then Portland is the place to be! I love Thai food and Portland has a least 4 good Thai places you can eat. From Voodoo doughnuts to La Montage Bistro, you can't get tired of the food there. Not to mention all the random food carts!
I'm teaming with Zach and some folks to get to together a league. Are you interested?
If you have no idea what is this, take a quick look: http://www.nfl.com/fantasyfootball/fantasy101. If you like NFL, it should be fun. It's my first year too.
If you know what it is, those are the rules Zach said:
(1) two quarterbacks per team
(2) not ppc - points per catch
The way I see it (let me know if you agree or have a good argument)....
I only want to have kids if it will be a win-win-win.
A win for me, in that I will enjoy it. A win for them, in that I can raise them wonderfully and in a wonderful reality. And a win for existence, in that their existence will significantly improve the ratio of awesome to crappy.
Last month, the book club tackled Alexander the Great. An impressive military leader, he nearly had the whole world under his rule before dying at a young age. A supreme strategist, Alexander conquered many territories and tribes that were considered impossible to take over.
The Macedonian ruler would do anything to advance his life's goal of world domination. His one-track mind had many consequences with his family, soldiers, and even ancestors that were allies of his in previous generations. Alexander was most likely gay, although sexual orientation was not a distinction made in those times.
This month, we will read about Augustus, the first emperor of the Roman empire. By a lucky coincidence, the etymology of the word (and current month) August:
eighth month, 1097, from Latin Augustus (mensis), sixth month of the later Roman calendar, renamed from Sextilis in 8 B.C.E. to honor emperor Augustus Caesar, literally "Venerable Caesar" (see august (adj.)). In England, the name replaced native Weodmonað "weed month."
Let's tie in Augustus to Alexander the Great.
A couple of months ago I came across this post: http://slatestarcodex.com/2013/03/03/reactionary-philosophy-in-an-enormous-planet-sized-nutshell/ which offered a critical introduction to something called Reactionary thought. As the name suggests, it's basically about resurrecting old-world beliefs and values.
Through that post I came across blogs like this: http://www.xenosystems.net/ and this: http://moldbuggery.blogspot.co.uk/ which explain their ideas in more depth.
They have some very interesting perspectives but their ideas are way, way outside the mainstream for modern political discussion. I'm still undecided what to think of them.
I've noticed some overlap between these guys, the Lesswrong/rationalist crowd, the libertarian/passive-income guys, and the manosphere/self-improvement blogs - so I doubt I'm the only SM reader who's come across them before. What do you guys think?