Summary of “Let’s hear it for the four-hour working day”

How much proper brainwork – not zoning out in meetings, or reorganising the stationery cupboard, but work that involves really thinking – should you aim to get done in one day? It sounds like a trick question.
Plus there are so many kinds of white-collar work: why assume the same answer for lawyers, academics, investment bankers and engineers? But the answer isn’t some sophisticated version of: “It depends.” The answer is four hours.
That, anyway, is the persuasive conclusion reached by Alex Pang in his book Rest: Why You Get More Done When You Work Less.
This column has evangelised before about the truth of that subtitle, what with the nine-to-five being a relic of the industrial revolution with no relevance to modern “Knowledge work” – but what’s so striking about Pang’s argument is its specificity.
Charles Darwin worked for two 90-minute periods in the morning, then an hour later on; the mathematician Henri Poincaré from 10am till noon then 5pm till 7pm; the same approximate stretch features in the daily routines of Thomas Jefferson, Alice Munro, John le Carré and many more.
The point isn’t that the world would be a lovelier place if nobody felt forced to work long hours, though that’s true.
Adam Smith had it figured out: “The man who works so moderately as to be able to work constantly not only preserves his health the longest but, in the course of the year, executes the greatest quantity of work.” And Leonard Woolf, describing his and Virginia’s work habits, testified to the vast power of “Little and often”: “It is surprising how much one can produce in a year, whether of buns or books or pots or pictures, if one works hard and professionally for” – wait for it – “Three and a half hours every day.”
Crunching numbers from Africa and Australia, he calculated the average number of hours hunter-gatherers must work per day, to keep everyone fed.

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Summary of “How running saved me from boozy lunches and obesity”

When you announce you are taking up running your friends turn into health freaks.
I would not write now about the pleasure I have found in running were it not for two factors.
The little thing that has given me the greatest pleasure has been running.
A typical routine will have the instructor telling you to run repetitions of 60-second runs then 90-second walks in your first week.
By your fourth, you will be running in five-minute bursts.
Running for three minutes caused the shooting pains to return, but after eight weeks I managed 5km. Nearly everyone can.
Taking running further means intensive runs to increase your speed and long runs where you just go as far as you can for as long as you can.
In his beautiful memoir, What I Talk About When I Talk About Running, the Japanese novelist Haruki Murakami thinks about different types of creativity when he runs.

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Summary of “Steve Jobs’ 1 Sentence That Will Boost Your Motivation, Productivity, And Clarity In Life”

Ask one-hundred people what they think of him and you’ll most likely get one-hundred unique answers.
After reading a quote about death when he was 17, he asked himself each morning in the mirror “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I’m about to do today?”.
Often times, our biggest barrier to pursuing our dreams, passions and taking action toward those things we want is the fear of what others will think or say.
Even worse, it’s often times the people closest to us who we’re worrying about the most.
At the end of the day, worrying about what outside opinions think of you isn’t serving you.
If today is your last day, would you really be concerned about outside opinions?
You would be focused on making the most out of the day along with leaving the biggest impact possible.
There’s no worrying about a future filled with “What ifs” nor is there worrying about a past filled with “What ifs”.

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Summary of “Andrew Ng’s Next Trick: Training a Million AI Experts”

Rew Ng, one of the world’s best-known artificial-intelligence experts, is launching an online effort to create millions more AI experts across a range of industries.
Ng, an early pioneer in online learning, hopes his new deep-learning course on Coursera will train people to use the most powerful idea to have emerged in AI in recent years.
Deep learning involves teaching a machine to perform a complex task using large amounts of data along with a large simulated neural network.
Several years ago, Ng was also the founding director of the Google Brain project, an effort to deploy deep learning across the company.
Even though a lot of the buzz in AI has been around large tech companies-and clearly the large tech companies are creating huge amounts of value with AI through better Web search, online advertising, better maps, better payment systems, and so on-if you look across an entire economy, really any Fortune 500 company can create a lot of value with AI as well.
Even though universities are ramping up their teaching capacity, there are so many people who are already out of the university system that need to learn these new systems.
Could deep learning help automate education itself?
One is just bringing a lot more people into deep learning.

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Summary of “How to Conquer the Admissions Essay”

Here’s a tip: Choose a topic you really want to write about.
While the personal essay has to be personal, a reader can learn a lot about you from whatever you choose to focus on and how you describe it.
One of my favorites from when I worked in admissions at Duke University started out, “My car and I are a lot alike.” The writer then described a car that smelled like wet dog and went from 0 to 60 in, well, it never quite got to 60.Another guy wrote about making kimchi with his mom.
A car, kimchi, Mom’s upsizing – the writers used these objects as vehicles to get at what they had come to say.
THE EPIGRAPH Many essays start with a quote from another writer.
Some beginning writers think the present tense makes for more exciting reading.
SOUND EFFECTS Ouch! Thwack! Whiz! Whooooosh! Pow! Are you thinking of comic books? Certainly, good writing can benefit from a little onomatopoeia.
Replace “Was” in “The essay was written by a student; it was amazing and delightful” and you’ll get: “The student’s essay amazed and delighted me.” We’ve moved from a static description to a sprightlier one and cut the word count almost in half.

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Summary of “The Difference Between Amateurs and Professionals”

One aspect is mindset-specifically, the difference between amateurs and professionals.
Professionals understand their circles of competence.
Professionals see failure as part of the path to growth and mastery.
Professionals focus on their strengths and on finding people who are strong where they are weak.
Professionals understand when outcomes are the result of luck.
Professionals make decisions as individuals and accept responsibility.
Professionals feel like they are capable of handling almost anything.
In what circumstances do you find yourself behaving like an amateur instead of as a professional? What’s holding you back? Are you hanging around people who are amateurs when you should be hanging around professionals?

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Summary of “Design Thinking for Doctors and Nurses”

“Design thinking is useful for when we need a paradigm shift, for instance when something is fundamentally broken about a service,” said Thomas Fisher, one of the authors of the report and the director of the Minnesota Design Center at the University of Minnesota.
At Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, where Dr. Bon Ku serves as director of the Jefferson Health Design Lab, medical students, nurses, doctors and other hospital personnel are given the freedom to design, manufacture and prototype their ideas, which they can then present back to the hospital.
The group is using design thinking to develop a digital mapping tool that uses GPS-like software to understand how patients, doctors and nurses move about and interact in the emergency room, with the aim of improving communication and decreasing wait times.
A design thinking approach was used by a group of researchers at McGill University in Montreal, who found that the closer a sink was to a patient with Clostridium difficile, a hard to treat and highly contagious hospital infection, the more likely hospital workers were to wash their hands after seeing the patient.
At the University of Michigan, Dr. Joyce Lee, a designer turned physician, is a co-leader of an interdisciplinary collaborative called Health Design By Us. The group supported a patient-designed mobile system for diabetes management that grew out of the work of one young patient’s father who was looking for easier ways to monitor and report his child’s glucose levels.
Dr. Diana Anderson, an architect who went on to get a medical degree, was a co-founder in 2016 of Clinicians for Design, an international network of health care providers.
The group offers online discussions as well as workshops and digital resources, with a focus on improving health care delivery and the hospital’s physical layout.
By fostering simple innovations through design thinking in hospitals, we can tackle many challenges in the hospital in new ways, saving both dollars and lives.

The orginal article.

Summary of “William Gibson Talks ‘Archangel,’ Apocalypses, and Dystopias”

Few authors have crafted more vividly realized future worlds than William Gibson.
As part of Vulture’s Dark Futures week, we caught up with Gibson to talk about Archangel, but also about dystopian and apocalyptic literature in general.
Why do you think we, as a culture, are so endlessly obsessed with stories about last-ditch attempts to stave off the end of the world?The end of the world is universal shorthand for whatever we don’t want to happen.
We have very little control over anything much at all, individually, so fantasies of staving off the end of the world are fairly benign fantasies of increased agency.
What grim future do you fear most? A brutal dystopia? A nuked-out wasteland? A chaotic world war?I don’t think of those as very distinct states.
To what extent do you see World War II as a real-life apocalypse? We think of it as a victory, but nothing in human history can match its devastation, after all.
If you were, say, a tiger, and you knew what’s about to happen to your species, wouldn’t it be realistic to have a pessimistic view of things? I think it’s realistic, as a human, to have a pessimistic view of a world minus tigers.
What are some of your favorite works of apocalyptic and/or dystopian fiction?Pavane and The Chalk Giants, both by the British writer Keith Roberts, both post-nuclear; and The Alteration by Kingsley Amis, a Catholic world in which the Reformation didn’t happen.

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Summary of “8 Proven Performance Practices from Billionaires and Elite Athletes”

Perhaps, to most people pursuing my aims, it is an ugly move.
Although people think they perform better on caffeine, the truth is, they really don’t.
Although most people avoid limitation and constraints, they end up being the very thing needed to get a breakthrough.
When most people hear this, they initially think, “Of course, they are billionaires.” However, the truth is that this is why they are billionaires.
There are many people out there who will work for you.
Give the control to other people and watch as they build your vision better than you ever could.
The people who truly do matter in your life will support you.
What about focus, for example? When was the last time you pushed your mental/focus muscles to fatigue? If you’re like most people, you barely flex your focus muscles - the equivalent of doing one rep of an exercise then taking a break.

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Summary of “9 Hard Things You Have to Do to Move Forward with Your Life”

Maybe it’s the life lessons I was forced to learn the hard way, or the toll of loss and failure I had recently endured, but a decade ago, in the midst of a panic attack on my 27th birthday, I had to admit to myself right then and there that the youthful world of possibility I once felt now seemed dead inside me.
You have to admit, you’ve spent a lot of your life subconsciously belittling yourself.
Being able to distinguish needs from wants is essential in every walk of life.
Never let go of an outcome you truly need in your life, but be reasonably flexible on the outcomes you want but could live fine without.
Constantly criticizing yourself is just as counterproductive as doing nothing, because you will never be able to build new positive changes into your life when you’re obsessively focused on your flaws.
Yes, being grateful seems simple enough, but a grateful state of mind is unbelievably hard to maintain when life disappoints us.
Thus, thinking about others instead of oneself helps solve feelings self-consciousness and inadequacy, which in turn makes you feel a lot less broken and alone when you’re struggling to move your life forward.
What else would you add to the list? What’s one hard thing you do that has helped you move your life forward? Leave a comment below and share your thoughts.

The orginal article.