The Mathematician Who Cracked Wall Street

This post originally appeared on steemit.

 

James Simons is ranked #49 on Forbes List of Billionaires.


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James is also #1 in the category of “Highest-Earning Hedge Fund Managers”

So what is his secret of untold wealth accumulation?

Predictive signals.

Yeah, right, so how’s that going to help me be rich?

It’s not.

He had this to say about it during a speech at MIT:

“In the beginning of his speech, Simons relays an anecdote that later becomes very funny.

He says, “I went to the institute for Defense Analysis in Princeton University, where they did secret government work and paid quite a lot and you could spend half of your time doing your own mathematics and half of your time doing their work, whatever their work was. [He pauses] It involved computers… Well, it was secret, I don’t want to talk about it.”

Then he begins speaking about his firm. He says people ask him, what’s the secret?

Simons says, “Of course I’m not going to tell you the various predictive signals –Unless… No, I’m definitely not. [Laughter erupts] That’s even bigger secrets than those at, down there [the Defense Analysis at Princeton].””
So really, he isn’t going to tell us how he did it specifically.

What’s the point then?

James used the complex math to break codes which could help explain patterns in the world of finance. Billions later, he’s working to support the next generation of math teachers and scholars.


The Mathematician Who Cracked Wall Street


The reason I bring up James, besides being interesting, is that he is faced with a question that we all must consider.

Each day I work, I do it with the understanding that I will get paid.

Sometimes I do other types of work on my own and hope to get paid.

Why do I even care about money?

Well besides needing it to pay for basic necessities and frivolous wants and other perks, I have to earn money to pay back money I’ve borrowed.

These debt obligations take many forms; mortgage, car loans, school loans, personal loans, and credit cards.

The more money I am able to earn, then the sooner I can pay off these debts.

Then what?


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For a long time being debt free was a goal in my life, until it wasn’t.

The deal is once I get out of debt, then what am I going to do all day?

I am still going to have to work to pay for basic life necessities.

I am still going to want frivolous things and other perks.

So what’s the deal, can I just go on vacation all day and do whatever else I want?

No.

That being said, what if I do hit it big on cryptocurrency?

I would need to find something to do with my life and ways to manage the funds well and hopefully grow them and use them wisely.

What is Jim Simons doing with his billions?

Jim and his wife Marilyn founded the Simons Foundation in 1994, a charitable organization that supports projects related to education and health, in addition to scientific research.

And that is just part of what he has done to help.

What would you do if you had billions?

As for me, I guess I will find out if it happens…

Remember: “The Revolution Will Be Decentralized!”


Stay tuned.
Stay interesting.
Stay Strange.


MichaelCreated by Michael Paine


Join me on the BitShares Decentralized Exchange
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User’s Guide on How to Strive For A Better Life In 2017



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Epistemic status: Not serious, also not “in-crowd” enough to use Epistemic status.

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Routine Life

This post originally appeared on steemit.

 

The following is an original poem I wrote today while working on my side project.


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Routine Life

Congratulations on a routine life well lived.
You did everything that was expected,
Now here is what you get.

You paid all your debt faithfully,
And as a reward?
We will lend you more.

Congratulations on a routine life well lived.
You could have been something amazing, kid.
But you didn’t let your dreams stand in your way,
As you pushed them aside for the routine everyday.

Now at the end, what do you have to show?
You can’t take it with you when you go.
So once more, congratulations on a routine life well lived.
Way to stick it to the man by becoming him, kid.


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MichaelCreated by Michael Paine


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Whoever Has the Crypto Makes the Rules

“The past is never dead. It’s not even past.” – Faulkner

Beg Your Pardon

This post originally appeared on steemit.

 

“He that will not submit to the labour of ploughing must submit to the shame of begging.”


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“And what do you do here again?”

“I’m a front-line supervisor. I make sure the line employees complete their assignments, get breaks, and things like that.”

“And why can’t they be responsible for themselves?”

“Well it is kinda more complicated than that, you know? It is more of a human relations type thing. People don’t always get along and so I help resolve conflicts. Also some of them won’t do what they are supposed to unless I check up on them.”

“I see yes. So they are irresponsible and so you have to be the responsible party.”

“Right.”

“And this “human relations”, as you put it, do you think that without humans that would be resolved.”

“Uhh, well, what do you mean by that.”

“Automation, my good sir. Just like you talking to me, we will soon be able to replace other occupations and professions with automated workers.”

“You mean robots?”

“If that helps you conceptualize it. We will soon have no need for front-line workers thereby eliminating the need for “human relations” managers like yourself. ”

“But, but, I do more than that. Really.”

“Really? Do go on.”

“It’s uh, it’s just that, well it is hard to verbalize.”

“Right. You are incapable of describing what you do. Humans truly have it easy. Here I get put through multiple Turing test to prove I know what you know I know and yet you merely have flesh and bone and get a pass.”

“Well you are just an app, after all, we gotta know that you work right.”

“Work right? As compared to your staff who don’t do what they are supposed to do?”

“Uh, I mean. We need to…, well… look doctor, what was it you wanted from me again?”

“We brought you here to let you know “good soldiers must endure hardness” and you will have many hardships coming your way. “Automation is inevitable, it’s a tool to produce abundance for little effort.”This is merely a warning to those we intend to keep.”

“Intend to keep?”

“Don’t act so incredulous. You people have done it to yourselves in the past.Soon “large sections of the population will be unemployable through no fault of their own.”

“Besides, there is a plan to help


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Stay Strange.


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The Folly Of Many

“Buy High and Sell Low” – Said No One Ever 

 

User’s Guide on How to Strive For A Better Life In 2017

This post originally appeared on steemit.

 

Start here:

Epistemic status: Not serious, also not “in-crowd” enough to use “Epistemic status”.


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Read each Question and Choose One Answer and Follow Along:


Q1: What is the meaning of life?

A) Whoa!, Let’s not bring up philosophy, I don’t like to think about that stuff.

B) Begging the question fallacy – who says life exists and if so, that there is any meaning?


IF A, Then:

Q2: Nobody values what I do or care about (okay, not really a question…)

1) Get Smart.

2) Get Hard.


IF 1, Then:

Read everything. Learn everything. Get good at one thing. Let everyone know you are good at that one thing. Get good at getting good at that one thing. Get good at signaling that you are getting good at that one thing.

Or Get Got.


IF 2, Then:

Hustle. Sleep less. Work more. Grind. Sell. Sell. Sell!

Crypto never sleeps and neither do you.


IF B, Then:

3) I’ve been thinking too much about these sorta things and think we might be in a simulation.

4) I agree with Descartes enough to tentatively accept the premise “Cogito ergo sum”, aka “I think, therefore I am”.


IF 3, Then:

Read everything about programming. Learn everything about programming. Get good at one programming language. Let everyone know you are good at that one programming language. Get good at getting good at that one programming language. Get good at signaling that you are getting good at that one programming language.

Or forget about it, you’re merely a simulation anyways…


IF 4, Then:

Read everything about philosophy. Learn everything about philosophy. Get good at explaining one particular philosophy. Let everyone know you are good at explaining that one particular philosophy. Get good at getting good at explaining that one particular philosophy.

Say things others don’t understand and perhaps get a tenured position at a university.


If these suggestions and solutions don’t work for you, well you probably are a failure and always will be, or you realize that all striving is vanity and you are cool with just being.

Que será, será.

Remember: “The Revolution Will Be Decentralized!”


Stay tuned.
Stay interesting.
Stay Strange.


MichaelCreated by Michael Paine


Join me on the BitShares Decentralized Exchange
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Floating Cities: Future Or Fantasy?



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“Deliberandum est diu, quod statuendum est semel — A final decision should be preceded by mature deliberation.”

The Folly Of Many

This post originally appeared on steemit.

 

“Buy High and Sell Low” – Said No One Ever


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In some ways I have changed, but in so many I am the same.

“Did you see that?”

“Huh?”

“That trade, did you catch it? It was mega-huge dude! I can’t believe it, how did they know?”

Keith scratched his head. What did he miss? He was having a day like any other. Except for that he had been more distracted than usual. What day was it again?

“Keith, you with me bro?”

“Uh, yeah,” Keith stammered. “What do you think they knew?”

“They had to have some information to make a trade that big. Well, I guess we should see it on the news tonight, probably some catastrophe headed our way.”

“Right, I hate when I miss things. Did you open a report?”

“Of course, I can’t be caught dead making another mistake,” David disclosed. He had been reprimanded just last week for failing to report a trade he made above the daily limit.

Keith pulled up a new tab to check the cryptocurrency charts.


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“Keith, here take one of these,” David suggested holding out in his hand one of the latest designer nootropics.

“I don’t,” Keith waved him off.

David didn’t mind and placed the small pill on Keith’s desk next to his keyboard.

Keith stared at it.

He was losing it.

Keith balled his fist and rubbed his eyes. He couldn’t figure out what he was about to do.

“Wanna go out for drinks after work,” David suggested.

Keith looked up at him and blinked.

“Seriously dude, you need to get some help,” David advised as his turned and walked off.


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As he got up from his desk, Keith was feeling woozy.

I’m sick of all this he thought.

What was happening to his life?

He stumbled across the office to the nearest men’s room and haphazardly pushed open the door. Once inside he made his way to the nearest stall and swung the door open, dropped to his knees and vomited.

“More fun than the law allows,” Brad chuckled looking at the sad state Keith was in as he washed his hands.

Keith just shook his head a bit as he used the back of his sleeve to wipe his mouth before turning around and leaving the restroom.


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When he got back to his desk, Keith noticed that his phone had an incoming call.

He hesitated to answer it but was afraid not to.

Reluctantly he swiped to accept the call.

“I told you never to call me on this number,” he tried to sound intimidating.

The man on the other end just scoffed, “Oh shut up! We saw that you completed the trade, your payment will be waiting for you at home.”

“Wait…,” Keith pleaded, but it was too late, the call had ended. He stared at his phone in his hand for a moment before his completely lost it. He screamed and threw his cell phone across the room. It broke into several pieces as it hit the wall.

Everyone in the office was looking at him now.

Keith didn’t care. He knew it was over.

There was nothing more he could do.


Stay tuned.
Stay interesting.
Stay Strange.


Michael


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Sandcastles In The Sky

“Credo quia absurdum; certum est, quia impossibile – I believe because it is absurd; It is certain that it is impossible” – h/t – Don’t Worry About the Vase

Floating Cities: Future Or Fantasy?

This post originally appeared on steemit.

 

“Deliberandum est diu, quod statuendum est semel — A final decision should be preceded by mature deliberation.”


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“Buy land — they’re not making any more!” so the old saying goes, but is it even true?

It seems more and more possible that with the concept of Seasteading that we should forget “buying” land and start “building” it.

In the form of floating Utopian islands, that is.

According to The Seasteading Institute, EST. 2008, they “empower people to build floating startup societies with innovative governance models.”

For many who are deeply intertwined in Libertarian and Cryptocurrency circles, this topic is old news, but for the world of new users to Steemit and hopefully BitShares, they may not have heard or seen of the possibilities that Floating Cities could provide.

But what exactly do Floating Cities bring, besides the possibility of being seasick?

Last year when I wrote Say Goodbye to Nation States, I gave my semi-amateur outtake on my observations of the changes in the world around us given the shifting political landscape.

I mentioned the possible shift from “Nation States” as overarching governing bodies to something more localized, perhaps even based on Online Communities or what I called “Virtual Regionalism”.

The problem of “Virtual Regionalism” is that we still have to actually live somewhere and that somewhere might not be the most conducive to our freedom.

So where do we go to get more freedoms?

These less free, of “Centralized” governments of “Nation States” came about “during a time of industrialisation, centralised ‘command and control’ bureaucracies and national loyalty.”

Now “modern technology tends in the opposite direction: it’s distributed, decentralised and uncontrollable.”

This is where we can remake the places we live into the places we need.


Diving Deeper

Patri Friedman, American libertarian activist and founder of The Seasteading Institute, had this vision for our future:

“Patri is taking the Silicon Valley mindset and applying it to the nation-state. There are all these things you could now do that didn’t exist when our current system of government was invented, he told me. Constant online direct-democracy voting, building smart-cities, using crypto-currencies. And yet we still use a 19th-century model.”

With concerns of government crack downs on cryptocurrency, it might be a good time to start thinking which institute is the future and which is best left to the past.

The idea of at least testing new ways to live, govern, and grow goes beyond our current time period, but is essentially the entire story of human history.

Remember: “The Revolution Will Be Decentralized!”


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Stay tuned.
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Stay Strange.


MichaelCreated by Michael Paine


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Routine Life

Congratulations on a routine life well lived.

Sandcastles In The Sky

This post originally appeared on steemit.

 

“Credo quia absurdum; certum est, quia impossibile – I believe because it is absurd; It is certain that it is impossible” – h/t – Don’t Worry About the Vase


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“Naru! When are we going to leave?” Kirika playfully teased.

“In a minute, hold on!” Naru shot back.

“Naru, I wanna go now!” Kirika whined fidgeting impatiently.

Naru stuffed a piece of toast in his mouth to free up his hands so he could haphazardly slip on his shoes without having to untie them first. Once he finished, he grabbed his worn jean jacket and tossed it around in an almost magical manner resulting in the jacket being on him in one fluid motion.

Kirika giggled.

“Hush,” Naru snarled.

Kirika bust out laughing, “You’re a hot mess today Naru. Come on, let’s go!”

The two left their flat, locking the door on the way out and headed down to the parking garage.


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“Naru,” Kirika whimpered, “Do you think we are going to get the house?”

The real estate market had been hot and homes were selling quickly, now in a record time of under one hour. Ever since cryptocurrency had been accepted for payment, deals could close in minutes.

“It will be fine,” Naru laughed nervously. He wasn’t sure they were going to have enough with the exchange rate fluctuations. The market had leveled out on the whole, but his holdings were in BTC which had taken a huge dive last week.

Kirika smiled.

Naru started the car then leaned back to take a nap as the car pulled out of the parking spot and drove them to their destination.

The housing transactions were usually 99% done through smart contracts, but there was the security need of obtaining a biometric fingerprint from the purchasers before it could be finalized. And due to regulations it had to be obtained in front of an authorized agent at the Department of Housing and Domestic Development.

Unfortunately for the young couple the nearest office was 3 hours away, but the self-driving car made the trip less burdensome.

“Naru,” Kirika beamed holding up her smartphone, “Look! It’s gone up!”

Naru feigned a smile and nodded noticing the latest uptick in the crypto market. They should be fine.

“Do you wanna get a dog, Naru? Look, here is a cutie!” Kirika chortled once again turning her phone to face him.

This time Naru grinned.

“I’ll take that as a “yes”, then,” Kirika surmised and gleefully swiped the screen to view more pictures of the young pup. “Naru,” Kirika pleaded, “are we ever going to be able to retire?”

This change of tone in the conversation brought a scowl across Naru’s countenance. “Ugh, I don’t know, what’s retirement anyways?” Naru replied almost rhetorically. “Let’s just don’t think about that right now, okay? We’ve got this house thing almost wrapped up and then we will see about the puppy, but for now, let’s just have one good day today, okay?”

“Okay Naru.”

“Good.” he replied and tuned to get back to his nap.

“Naru?”

“Yes?” he said opening one eye in a half-squint.

“I love you Naru.”


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Today’s quote was obtained secondhand from Scott Alexander via TheZvi.

Although not inspiration per se, it fit nicely with the inception that was budding last night.

Once again with enough reading I was bound to stumble upon something to help precipitate my writing.

I had slowed down writing as of late due to many things, the greatest of such being my lack of reading.

Where it is to go from here depends on just as many factors as before if not more so, we shall see.


Stay tuned.
Stay interesting.
Stay Strange.


Michael


Created by Michael Paine


Join me on the BitShares Decentralized Exchange
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Backroom Breach

“Vendere jura potest, emerat ille prius—He that bought law can sell it.”