Past Talks

Public Policy

by Santhosh Balasubramanian

Why public policy doesn’t always work the way you want it to. An extended analogy between design specs and public policy specs and why there are often differences between the spec and implementation. Why we should be spending more time discussing fundamental value differences that matter instead of getting lost in technocratic weeds.

Video Link

What is colour?

by Nat Smith at Centre for Theoretical Neuroscience

Why are there so many representations for colour? Why are some of the cylinders? Why is RGB and YMC both legit? Nat blows your mind into a billion colours.

Cheffing and the Theory of Change

by Owen Wang at University of Tokyo

Chefs create recipes from the first principles. One of the ways they do this is by looking at the end product they want and combining the ingredients at hand. This is reminiscent of the Theory of Change put forth by Aaron Schwartz. Here we cover both of these while trying to make an awesome bowl of ramen!

Slides Link

Polyamory: Not for Everyone

by Sean Aubin at Centre for Theoretical Neuroscience, WAT

The “mono” in the word “monogamy” means having one romantic partner. Similarly, “poly” in the word “polyamory” means multiple romantic partners. It’s a VERY personal choice that many people make that basically boils down to eschewing cultural norms (with all the challenges that implies) in exchange for greater relationship freedom and versatility.

Slides