Weekly Head Voices #213: Merry Christmas!

This edition of the WHV looks back at the week from Monday, December 21 to Sunday, December 27, 2020.

Figure 1: View of False Bay from Clarence Drive, a truly beautiful road.

Figure 1: View of False Bay from Clarence Drive, a truly beautiful road.

Merry Christmas

During this week, the most noteworthy happening was of course Christmas.

As a family, we are wholly dedicated to the pursuit and application of Love and Science. However, we do try to respect the religious customs of our fellow humans.

In the light of this, respectfully and retrospectively, I wish you all a very merry christmas!

(I have to say that my kids really adore the gifting-aspect of this particular celebration, if you get my drift.)

Creativity, Inc. book notes published

I finally got around to processing and publishing my notes on the book Creativity, Inc. by Ed Catmull.

There are a number of great nuggets in there if you are at all interested to learn about the care and feeding of sustainable creative organizations.

Even if that’s not your cup of tea, being able to take a look inside a company like Pixar is quite fascinating.

BTW, books are really cheap upgrades for your brain’s operating system.

BTW, I’m planning more book notes.

Body Budgets

On that topic, I have just started reading Seven and a Half Lessons About the Brain by psychologist and neuro-scientist Lisa Feldman Barrett, after listening to another super-entertaining podcast with her and Lex Fridman.

I am planning to write much more about her ideas, but for now I would like to plant this memetic seed:

Our big brains evolved to manage our body budgets.

In short, managing the metabolic needs of a whole human is tremendously complicated.

Throughout the day (every day), that big super-computer in your head is calculating a million inputs and outputs to ensure your survival, and more importantly, the survival of your genetic material.

To me, a truly interesting aspect of this is that social interaction is just another, albeit important, variable in this complicated system of equations.

One of the implications of this realization is that social interaction requires a substantial amount of metabolic energy, an equation your brain will apply quite strictly.

If you’re getting low on energy, your brain could very well cancel that kind interaction you were planning, instead substituting with a quick eject, because it predicts (the brain is a fabulous prediction machine, you’ll see much more of that here in the coming months) that you’ll probably run out of energy a bit later.

Related to what I wrote last week concerning the use-it-or-lose-it principle, this is yet another reason to invest in one’s physiology and its energy efficiency:

Your body needs energy to be nice.