shakoist Profile picture
Did it all get real? I guess it's real enough.
Mikko Niskanen Profile picture 1 added to My Authors
May 14 32 tweets 5 min read
I always wanted to write about how I learned2code, so this is good prompt to explain my process.

opening scene: age 21, graduated with a degree in econ and political science, doing excel monkey work as a permanent-intern at a 2nd tier asset mgmt firm. I had never written a line of code at this point. I'm generally not thrilled with how my first year out of college is going. On the heels of the great recession, I have a middling job, and it's not even interesting. I realized coding is the tool
May 13 5 tweets 1 min read
Bootstrapping up new systems, whether financial, AI, or policy based, then immediately doing population wide alpha testing, is actually incredibly based, and it's how you learn how to rapidly iterate and improve, despite being painful. Even though it seems like all people know about Popper these days is some lame version of his "paradox of tolerance", his political philosophy was that it's basically too hard to guess what is going to work, so we should just try a ton of small experiments.
May 10 13 tweets 3 min read
so here is sort of a ridiculous way I think of market equilibrium. despite having worked in/done financial asset-pricing research, I keep going back to this cyclical model that I call the Gargoyles of Capitalism. we all know Adam Smith was gesturing at something with the invisible hand. there was some equilibrium process emergent among humans that guided individuals to make certain choices. almost as though it were orchestrated, yet completely decentralized.
Apr 28 19 tweets 4 min read
I want to talk abut my framework for how to evaluate thinkers, since most people are not very good at reasoning through how to do this.

people evaluate ideas from a person independently, rather than as a portfolio. and they get super emotional and personal about it. what if we treat the ideas from intellectuals not only on their own merit, but based on how they contribute to a portfolio of all idea generating thinkers?

e.g. we know Apple is a 'really good' stock, but in a portfolio of assets you benefit from a mixture of uncorrelated assets
Apr 10 5 tweets 1 min read
A few predictions:

The fed will get inflation back under control, and the 5yr5yr won't go above 3.5% [probability 85%]

rationale: fed is still staffed with serious people. even if their predictions were bad, they will adjust course. The murder rate will be in a new regime, and won't go back to 2015-2019 levels over the next 5 years. [70%]

We are in a new equilibrium of violence. The previous equilibrium involved less law enforcement, because there was a credible belief you would get caught for crime
Apr 8 4 tweets 2 min read
Looking to see if I owe taxes on my parental leave.

Washington State parental leave page says "Sorry, we don't know if the IRS considers this taxable, and the IRS won't answer us"

lmao Image @eigenrobot @orthonormalist @william_g_ray what did you do?
Feb 6 5 tweets 2 min read
I've been deeply concerned observing so many of you categorize verbal rotators as wordcels. Or worse, claim that a high SAT math/verbal is isomorphic to rotator/wordcel. My friends, this is *wrong*.

I've attempted to clear it up for you:… @tszzl says he doesn't fully agree with Balaji in this tweet.

If wordcel simply means high verbal IQ compared to math, it's an incredibly boring taxonomy. We don't need to recreate SAT scores.
Dec 6, 2021 6 tweets 3 min read
I was planning on writing some stuff slowly, and bootstrapping up a substack before sharing it. But then @alexandrosM nerd-sniped me on the ivermectin debates, I responded, then @slatestarcodex included it in the latest open thread:… I've stayed out of the melee for the most part, but the tl;dr is I've very much admired @alexandrosM demanding epistemic humility from so-called experts regarding covid (ivermectin being a small, small, part of this)