The last two sections of this Radiolab podcast are among the most frustrating and amazing things I’ve learned about recently, in that order. The amazing thing is super-geeky reality-redefining cool. The frustrating thing is a bloody waste of time, money, and talent. (For those without Instacast, the segments start at about 21:18).
As I reflected on the content of these pieces, my focus become more personal: I thought about the many decisions both the trader and the scientist had to make in order to get to this particular point in their lives, and the motivations behind those decisions, because one career seems clearly devoted to the acquisition of money and the other to knowledge. I wonder if the trader or the scientist would have made different choices if they could have discerned the arc of their careers early on. I believe the trader would have, but maybe that’s presumptuous. It’s certainly reflective of my own biases.