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The Last of the Iron Lungs

Martha Lillard spends half of every day with her body encapsulated in a half-century old machine that forces her to breathe. Only her head sticks out of the end of the antique iron lung. On the other side, a motorized lever pulls the leather bellows, creating negative pressure that induces her lungs to suck in air.

In 2013, the Post-Polio Health International (PHI) organizations estimated that there were six to eight iron lung users in the United States. Now, PHI executive director Brian Tiburzi says he doesn’t know anyone alive still using the negative-pressure ventilators. This fall, I met three polio survivors who depend on iron lungs. They are among the last few, possibly the last three.

More here – Gizmodo

PS: I have to confess my ignorance here in that I thought these had been consigned to history.

39 Things About Life I Wish I Had Known 10 Years Ago


About two years ago I started a list called “Things I wish I had known earlier” in my journal.

I initially came up with 25 lessons about life, career, love, and relationships. Things I’ve learned from mentors, books, friends, readers, etc.

I created the list for myself because I realized that I forgot important lessons at the same rate I learned new lessons.

And when I shared the list on my blog for the first time, a lot of people thought it was useful. Two years later, I still read the list a few times a year. Plus, I added new lessons I’ve learned recently.

Here’s the latest edition. I hope you find it useful.

More here – Medium

New Traders


A Lazy Person’s Guide to Happiness

Happiness is an active process, not something you get by sitting back and waiting. It’s something to be grabbed by the horns or more vulnerable areas and then conquered. At least, this is the gist of the message from Tony Robbins and gurus of his ilk.

Many also say happiness is not something we can buy, or steal, or work too hard to acquire. If you work too hard at it, you end up obsessing over your own state of mind—Am I happy? … Really though? And like love, if you have to ask, the answer is no.

So what’s the right way to think about effort and happiness? Should I be trying for “happiness” per se—or something more magnanimous, like purpose or meaning?

Or money? Is happiness actually all about money? That would be a real twist.

More here – The Atlantic

RIP Malcolm Young


What Would You Prefer?

I have been spending some more time playing with the data set below which I looked at last week within the context of long term returns for the All Ordinaries.


One of the issues that is difficult for traders to come to grips with is the lumpiness of returns that are generated by trading systems. I dont know of any trading system that generates regular returns aside from much touted option writing systems and these generally lead to traders suffering from the old maxim of eating like birds and shitting like elephants. Using the returns above I decided to look at the difference between a system that had the above returns and one which every year simply generated the average market return of 9.8%. The results for such a system can be seen in the table below.

100 table

As you can see it takes a good two decades before any serious differential appears but once it does appear it becomes extreme.

However, table doesn’t quite convey the magnitude of the difference between accepting a given flt return each year and the returns generated by the lumpiness of the market so I decided to graph the returns. I have had to graph them separately because of the disparity in values between the two systems.


In simple terms these graphs ask the question – do you want to be rich or comfortable?



WHEN HRISTOS DOUCOULIAGOS was a young economist in the mid-1990s, he got interested in all the ways economics was wrong about itself—bias, underpowered research, statistical shenanigans. Nobody wanted to hear it. “I’d go to seminars and people would say, ‘You’ll never get this published,’” Doucouliagos, now at Deakin University in Australia, says. “They’d say, ‘this is bordering on libel.’”

Now, though? “The norms have changed,” Doucouliagos says. “People are interested in this, and interested in the science.” He should know—he’s one of the reasons why. In the October issue of the prestigious Economic Journal, a paper he co-authored is the centerpiece among a half-dozen papers on the topic of economics’ own private replication crisis, a variation of the one hitting disciplines from psychology to chemistry to neuroscience.

More here – Wired

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