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Old 12-27-2012, 10:33 PM   #2566
jamal99
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Default Re: What are you reading?



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Old 12-27-2012, 11:47 PM   #2567
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Default Re: What are you reading?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SourPatchKids
My classmate did this for first semester independent reading. For you, it's probably nothing but for that particular 14 year old indian boy not so much.
You'd be surprised, while I enjoy reading.. its not an easy task for me. It can become like a chore for me, but I try to read regardless.
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Old 12-28-2012, 04:21 PM   #2568
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Default Re: What are you reading?

Neil Gaiman - The Sandman



Just finished the first chapter and I'm in awe. The style is so mind-blowing, I'm still picking pieces of my brain off the desk.
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Old 12-28-2012, 04:28 PM   #2569
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Old 12-28-2012, 05:20 PM   #2570
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Default Re: What are you reading?

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You're in for a real treat
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Old 12-28-2012, 05:23 PM   #2571
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Default Re: What are you reading?

This Is How You Lose Her by Junot Diaz
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Old 12-30-2012, 05:04 PM   #2572
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Default Re: What are you reading?



Cool book. Steven Levitt is kind of my hero as an economist lol
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Old 12-31-2012, 03:57 AM   #2573
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Default Re: What are you reading?

Just finished Life of Pi - Gotta admit, it blew me away. Not gonna lie, the ending made me emotional. What an incredible novel.


Now onto this:

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Old 12-31-2012, 05:11 AM   #2574
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Default Re: What are you reading?

The Death of Commonsense : How Law is Suffocating America. By Philip K. Howard. It was one of my Dad's books. Sounded interesting.
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Old 12-31-2012, 06:06 AM   #2575
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Default Re: What are you reading?

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Originally Posted by irondarts
Just finished Life of Pi - Gotta admit, it blew me away. Not gonna lie, the ending made me emotional. What an incredible novel.



Definitely one of my top 5 favorite books just so beautifully written without skimping on meaning.



Honestly, I have ADD on almost everything, and I can rarely finish something before moving on to another thing. Currently reading this along with the last book I posted here (The Intelligence Paradox). First few chapters/pointers and I'm already taking a lot of things from the book.
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Old 12-31-2012, 07:32 AM   #2576
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Default Re: What are you reading?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jailblazers7


Cool book. Steven Levitt is kind of my hero as an economist lol

The second freakonomics book came in for a lot of criticism for its climate change chapter.

Quote:
“Obviously, provocation is not last on the list of things we’re trying to do,” Dubner told me the other day. This time, the urge to provoke has driven him and Levitt off the rails and into a contrarian ditch.
Their breezy take on global warming unleashed a barrage of highly detailed criticism from economists and climate experts, including a scientist who is misrepresented in the book.
Dubner wonders why everyone is so angry. In part, it’s because the book’s blithe remedies -- “We could end this debate and be done with it, and move on to problems that are harder to solve,” Levitt told the U.K. Guardian newspaper -- are an insult to the thousands of scientists who have devoted their careers to this crisis.
One of the injured parties is Ken Caldeira, a climate scientist at Stanford University who is quoted (accurately) as saying that “we are being incredibly foolish emitting carbon dioxide.” Then Dubner and Levitt add this astonishing claim: “His research tells him that carbon dioxide is not the right villain in this fight.”
Provocative, Untrue
That’s provocative, but alas, it isn’t true. Caldeira, like the vast majority of climate scientists, believes cutting carbon dioxide and other greenhouse-gas emissions is our only real chance to avoid runaway climate change.
“Carbon dioxide is the right villain,” Caldeira wrote on his Web site in reply. He told Joe Romm, the respected climate blogger who broke the story, that he had objected to the “wrong villain” line but Dubner and Levitt didn’t correct it; instead, they added the “incredibly foolish” quote, a half step in the right direction. Caldeira gave the same account to me.
Levitt and Dubner do say that the book “overstates” Caldeira’s position. That’s a weasel word: The book claims the opposite of what Caldeira believes. Caldeira told me the book contains “many errors” in addition to the “major error” of misstating his scientific opinion on carbon dioxide’s role.....

Multiple Villains
“SuperFreakonomics” never identifies the “right villain,” so I called Dubner and asked. “I don’t think anybody knows for sure,” he told me. Then he acknowledged that the chapter’s most newsworthy claim “could have been better phrased, as ‘carbon dioxide is not the only villain.’”
That’s a huge admission. No climate scientist believes carbon dioxide is the only villain: methane, nitrous oxide and other gases need to be reduced too. But that basic truth wouldn’t have drawn attention. It wouldn’t have given Levitt a bold contrarian line for NPR.

I just also looked at the Freakonomics blog and it has a couple of posts from when the fake scandal "Climategate" broke, but no follows up from when all the scientists were cleared of wrongdoing and the narrative pushed by the theives who hacked and then selectively released their emails fell apart as bullshit. To me, no followup after you pushed a false story is damning.

At best, the climateparts of superfreakonomics show how easy it is to get it wrong if you do work outside of your specialty. My favorite response was this open letter from a University of Chicago climate scientist who pointed out that Levitt could have avoided a lot of the errors he made by taking ten minute walk across campus.


Quote:
May I suggest that if you should happen to need some friendly help next time you take on the topic of climate change, or would like to have a chat about why aerosol geoengineering might not be a cure-all, or just need a critical but informed opponent to bounce ideas off of, you don’t have to go very far. For example…
The University of Chicago

But given the way Superfreakonomics mangled Ken Caldeira’s rather nuanced views on geoengineering, let’s keep it off the record, eh?

Your colleague,
Raymond T. Pierrehumbert
Louis Block Professor in the Geophysical Sciences

Last edited by KevinNYC : 12-31-2012 at 07:51 AM.
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Old 12-31-2012, 07:55 AM   #2577
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Default Re: What are you reading?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jailblazers7


Cool book. Steven Levitt is kind of my hero as an economist lol

there's some resentment towards Levitt in the profession. And it's not all just groundless envy lol, a lot of his work eschews rigor for the splashy results and headline

check out this note:

http://gemini.econ.umd.edu/jrust/res...e_comments.pdf
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Old 12-31-2012, 08:29 AM   #2578
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Default Re: What are you reading?

Quote:
Originally Posted by heyhey
there's some resentment towards Levitt in the profession. And it's not all just groundless envy lol, a lot of his work eschews rigor for the splashy results and headline

check out this note:

http://gemini.econ.umd.edu/jrust/res...e_comments.pdf

Yeah, part of me really admires the hell out of his creativity and approach but another part of me thinks his work can be amateurish. I guess I admire him because I identify with him a lot (I don't consider myself all that talented mathematically) which is why I'm sure a lot of young economists love him so much. I do agree with a lot of what that comment had to say tho. I find it disturbing that Levitt can win the 2nd most prestigious prize in economics whenever some of his most well-known work has been proven to contain some damning math errors.

I think he provides a good example of how economic analysis can be used creatively to solve interesting questions but I also think people should be cautious about accepting his approach.

edit- btw I sent you an email about a paper I recently wrote and about grad schools

Last edited by Jailblazers7 : 12-31-2012 at 09:03 AM.
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Old 12-31-2012, 11:38 AM   #2579
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Default Re: What are you reading?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jailblazers7
Yeah, part of me really admires the hell out of his creativity and approach but another part of me thinks his work can be amateurish. I guess I admire him because I identify with him a lot (I don't consider myself all that talented mathematically) which is why I'm sure a lot of young economists love him so much. I do agree with a lot of what that comment had to say tho. I find it disturbing that Levitt can win the 2nd most prestigious prize in economics whenever some of his most well-known work has been proven to contain some damning math errors.

I think he provides a good example of how economic analysis can be used creatively to solve interesting questions but I also think people should be cautious about accepting his approach.

edit- btw I sent you an email about a paper I recently wrote and about grad schools

yup, saw ur email. end of semesters and apps have kept me pretty busy but I will definitely respond with some reflections and thoughts once this season is over.

I think there is inherent appeal to Levitt's work in its applicability that's missing from much academic literature but there's some superficiality to it. And I wouldn't fret about math, it's just a skillset for research. economic intuition is ultimately what matters. There's been litany of famous economists both past and present whose work doesn't rely on too advanced math.

I'll throw out an econ related book recommendation real quick Kicking Away the Ladder by Ha Joon Chang as well as his other work. he's a heterodox economist that does a lot of quasi marxist historical analysis of development. He's also very controversial but I think broadens the scope of discourse.

Last edited by heyhey : 12-31-2012 at 11:41 AM.
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Old 12-31-2012, 11:44 AM   #2580
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Default Re: What are you reading?

Quote:
Originally Posted by heyhey
yup, saw ur email. end of semesters and apps have kept me pretty busy but I will definitely respond with some reflections and thoughts once this season is over.

I think there is inherent appeal to Levitt's work in its applicability that's missing from much academic literature. And I wouldn't fret about math, it's just a skillset for research. economic intuition is ultimately what matters. There's been litany of famous economists both past and present whose work doesn't rely on too advanced math.

I'll throw out an econ related book recommendation real quick Kicking Away the Ladder by Ha Joon Chang as well as his other work. he's a heterodox economist that does a lot of quasi marxist historical analysis of development. He's also very controversial but I think broadens the scope of discourse.

Yep, the applicability of his work is a reason why applied micro can be so appealing.

Yeah, I definitely agree with you about economic intuition being the key. I've noticed a lot of my peers already having their intuition being silohed into one philosophical brand of economics (Austrian, which gets pushed heavily in my undergrad program) which disturbs me. Some economic research takes a very unscientific approach because of how politically involved economists can be. That is why I'm not so worried about math because a lot of the best research uses the most simplisitc mathematical techniques. I'll just never fool myself into believing I'll be published in Econometrica or something lol.

And no rush on getting back to me. That paper will be on the backburner for a while.
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