H.I. No. 8: First World YouTuber Problems
|"First World YouTuber Problems"|
|Hello Internet episode|
Episode 8 on the podcast YouTube channel
|Original release date||March 31, 2014|
Official Description[edit | edit source]
Grey & Brady revisit mandatory language lessons, discuss machine-mind transfers, who is 'we', and working fast and slow.
Show Notes[edit | edit source]
- Malaysia Airlines Flight 370
- Derek of veritasium
- Star Trek Transporter
- Ship of Theseus
- Periodic Videos
- Sixty Symbols
- A Polarizing Discovery About the Big Bang
- Hello Internet #3
Other[edit | edit source]
Grey: I discovered that at this time of night my office turns into a yoga studio.
Brady: Before we start follow-up,-
Brady: -can I ask you a question about follow-up?
Grey: [chuckles] Yeah.
Brady: There's been some, you know, feedback and comments going around that, you know, we always start the podcast with this sort of follow-up and correcting mistakes and re-discussing things from the episode before,-
Brady: -and some people like that, but other people have suggested that it's not the way to start the podcast.
Brady: You do believe it is, you know, and you're kind of the boss in a lot of ways. Why do you think this is-
Grey: Am I the boss?
Brady: Well, I don't know...
Brady: I like- I like you to think- I want you to think you're the boss.
Grey: Okay. [chuckles]
Brady: Why is this the best way to start the podcasts? Do- you know- do you feel strongly about this?
Grey: I do, I do- I do feel strongly about follow-up first, because if someone is listening to the podcasts in chronological order, it makes sense to do follow-up as the first section, because if they're listening to a bunch of episodes in a row, when they finish episode three, the start of episode four follows very naturally from what we were talking about in the previous one.
Grey: So follow-up is- is obviously the next section and, uh, when we- when we started when I was thinking about doing a podcast, I did think, "ooh, maybe,- maybe we'll- we'll record the follow-up first, because that's the thing that makes most sense to talk about kind of chronologically,-"
Grey: "-and then just edit it so it's at the end, and then the main topic is in the beginning", but I don't- I don't think that works, because in all of our podcasts, when we do the main topic we almost always reference something that was in the follow-up in the beginning, so I don't think you can say, rearrange the conversation in- in post.
Grey: I think follow-up has to be first because like any conversation you're going to refer back to it later on, which is exactly what we do.
Brady: I agree, I- I wasn't sure at the start, but I've been- I've become a real convert to it. I think- I think there's a real culture in sort of media and broadcasting and anything to sort of, you know, put your- put your strong stuff at the start and, you know, don't bury the lead and, pull people in from the start and have a hook,-
Brady: I think pod- podcasts are a different creature in that way, they are just like a- like a chat, and I think it's okay, like most chats just start off meandering before they settle on a focus and...
Grey: Yeah. And I- I- I- you know- if people enjoy the podcast, which I- which I hope they do, if they're still listening at this point, what are we, eight episodes in? I think this is number eight.
Brady: It is, it is.
Grey: Uh, presumably they're listening because they still like it, and, I know at least for the podcasts that I listen to, it- it's very much- to me it feels like I get to sit in on a conversation, uh, with people who I would not normally get to sit in on a conversation with. I- I- I like that feeling, and conversations- they have a particular flow, right? When you- when you sit down with your friends, you catch up on- on what's happened since the last time you sat down together, you don't sit down at a table and think "Right, what's my strongest opening story to tell my friends when I sit down. We're gonna lead with a bang, and then later on we'll wrap up with the weather, but right now we gotta lead with the main story." So that's just-
Grey: -that's not how friends talk to each other, and you and I are friends and we're- we're sitting down, so I think it's very natural for follow-up to come first.
Brady: All right. Let's do follow-up!
Grey: [chuckling] Okay.
Brady: What do you got from last time?
Grey: Ah, so I just had to, uh, make a- make a- a reference, for people who have not been on the Reddit, you really should go, it's great there's a lot of very good conversation on the Reddit, but unbelievably, last time when we put our podcast up, we made reference in the middle of that podcast to possibly somebody about to get on an airplane, you know, who may have just downloaded that and you were talking about plane crashes, and-
Brady: Yes, my- my obsession with them.
Grey: Yes, and I could not believe it, but when I put it up, the very first comment on the Reddit mere minutes after uploading, someone said, and I- I- I- I took a little screenshot here, this guy Thomas said "Yay, excellent timing I'm just about to board a plane, and was regretting that the book-" uh, "was regretting the book I brought with me. Now I have two hours of the podcast to listen to." And then it finished with "You guys are too good to me.", right? Which-
Grey: -which was just like the- like a very, very nice comment, but knowing that he was about to go into an episode where we discussed plane crashes for a not trivial amount of time, uh, I just couldn't believe the coincidence that happened there, that the very first comment was exactly the thing that we were- we were suggesting, uh, might occur. So anyway,-
Brady: The best thing about that was, like, in the podcast you made that joke, too, about someone on a plane listening to it, and then you like spoke directly to them for a joke and you said "I hope you're enjoying this, Tim",-
Brady: -and that guy's name was Tom.
Grey: Right, so close!
Brady: It was so close to being- Wow.
Grey: Yeah it would- it would have been, uh, it would have been just perfect. Um, but anyway, so, there's fun- fun things that happen on- on the Reddit, and again I just want to say, I think it's- it's a- it's a really great community and- and we were discussing, uh, before recording now that there's a lot of activity there and- and it's great and I really do look over the discussion, so uh, anytime you want to, uh, talk about whatever we discuss on the podcast, uh, the Reddit is a great place to go and there will be a link in the shownotes to whatever, uh, whatever the link is for this episode, so I'll put that there.
Brady: Did we hear back from Tom after his flight?
Grey: Yeah he was- he was actually okay. We did not cause him a lot of anxiety, but when he landed on the other end he said that he enjoyed it and so I'm- I'm glad that we did not give him a panic attack on the flight- or you did not give him a panic attack on the flight really, I would say that's mostly your fault.
Brady: Do you know what's amazing, Grey?
Brady: Like, we're talking about- we're talking, like, you know, a week later or however long it's been, and we're not really much closer to knowing what happened to that Malaysia Airlines plane.
Grey: Oh yeah? See you have to- you have to follow these things for me, so--
Brady: You must know what's going on though, you- you're not that- you're not that oblivious to the news, are you?
Grey: Uh, well- [laughs] this might actually be something we talk about later, but, no? Last- last headline I saw was something about, uh, presumably a hijacking? Is that, uh, the current state of affairs?
Brady: No, we're no- we're nowhere near that? I don't--
Grey: Oh. See?
Brady: I don't- I don't- I don't think it was a hijacking. The- the latest is, they- they seem to be having all this satellite imagery of possible debris, you know, thousands of kilometers off the coast of Perth in Australia,--
Brady: --so basically it's done a hard left, and then just- if this is- if it's there, it's done a hard left and just flown and flown and flown and then...--
Brady: --maybe ran out of fuel?
Brady: Maybe been crashed into the ocean? Like, in like the most remote- pretty much the most remote place this could happen.
Brady: So, something's going on man.
Brady: It's crazy.
Brady: Maybe next- maybe next week we'll know more but this is going to be a- this is- I keep thinking it's going to be something simple, and maybe it still will,--
Brady: --but this is looking stranger and stranger.
Grey: Hmm. Hm.
Brady: Stay tuned. Stay tuned to Brady's plane crash corner here on Hello Internet!
Grey: That's exactly- yeah. I have a feeling like, I would- I- I would not want it to be, but I feel like you could make this a regular segment, every week talk about some plane crash, or some interesting story from a plane crash, I feel that the- the depth of your love for this topic is quite deep. Uh,--
Brady: At least we're not talking about freebooting anymore.
Grey: Yes, that's true, we're not talking about freebooting anymore. Uh, although I do have a follow-up item about it but probably not today, we'll save it for another time.
Brady: Okay. I'll tell you what,--
Brady: You stirred up a right hornet's nest in the last episode,--
Brady: --with this language education.
Grey: Yes, yes, I do know--
Brady: You- you knew it- you knew it was going to happen too, didn't you?
Grey: I did know that it was going to happen. I did know it was going to happen, and in- in addition to reading all of the Reddit comments, Derek of Veritasium is here in London, and uh, he has taken some time out to see me, and I- and I saw Derek earlier today and the day before and I can say that he probably spent at least eight hours of- of human effort--
Grey: -one-on-one, uh, trying to convince me otherwise from my opinions about dropping language classes from the curriculum, and--
Brady: You got off lightly. You got off lightly, I- when- when Derek decides he's right about something, eight hours is this nothing.
Grey: Well, I think it's only because, uh, he had to fit me in between other appointments of things that he's doing while he's over here,--
Grey: --otherwise, you know, I- I left- I left Derek, uh, just- just a couple hours ago at the pub, and I think he would still be sitting there now with me trying to convince me, uh, if- if- if he hadn't had to go somewhere and we had to record this podcast. So, he's- he was- he was very intense about it, and uh,--
Brady: He's a- he's a- and obviously, if his opinion is different to yours, he's a big advocate of, uh, extensive language teaching in schools, can you sort of summarize his position for us?
Grey: Right. The answer is, I cannot summarize his position for us.
Grey: [laughing] Um, and, I kept- I kept mentioning this to him in the bar because he- he had- he had actually a letter to me, he had written this whole thing on his iPhone that it- that was like--
Grey: --this- this, uh, this, like, bullet pointed argument about all the ways in which I was wrong, and- and all the ways in which I should- I should reconsider my- my positions, and to- to be fair to Derek, I- I cannot, I think, possibly try to summarize his arguments without getting it just- just wrong or making him more infuriated because with eight hours, there's a lot of nuance,--
Grey: --that you can go into. We- we can suffice it to say that I- I was not- I was not moved by Derek. Uh, I have not changed my opinion, uh,-
Brady: In any way? There was nothing he said that made a dent anywhere? No chink in your armor?
Grey: [laughing] If- well, it's not- it's not- it's not chink in my armor, but- but there are a few- there are a few interesting, uh, interesting kind of things to- to bring up about that. I'm not summarizing Derek's argument, what I'm about to say, but I'm going to say a similar thing that came up on the Reddit and in some of the feedback that I got was comments about the benefits of learning languages. Cognitive benefits that are not necessarily the language themself, but things that you get from learning a second language. And I- I always want to be clear, I don't doubt that there are benefits to learning another language,--
Grey: --uh, but my- my point was that I don't think the school system as it currently exists actually produces people who are able to speak another language. So you can talk to me as much as you want about the benefits of learning other languages and I am all on board with that, but the- the current school system just- it doesn't do that. So it's sort of- it's sort of irrelevant how awesome it is to speak a second language, when we're not coming out with kids who actually do speak other languages. So, I would say that that was part of the- part of the feedback that I got.
Brady: Yeah but- but, like, you teach people sport and physical education and they don't come out as athletes at the end, but the process of playing the game taught them things- not only did it have a health benefit, it taught them about teamwork, it taught them things- it improved their coordination it did lots of other things, even though they don't come out as a- a major league baseballer at the end. I mean,--
Brady: --I- I know you realize this, but, you seem to say "I realize this" and then completely ignore it.
Grey: Uh, I guess- I guess I just- my- my thought on this is that the- the- the things that I have seen about the benefits of learning another language are presupposing basic competence in that language, right? "When a person has basic competence in that language, here are the benefits that they also have." And so, uh, my- my position is just that I don't think most language courses, uh, have their students reach basic conversational competence to- to get those benefits. It's like a- it's like a threshold effect. Anyway, I just- I did want to mention that, but I also just, again, want to be clear because Derek will be really angry otherwise that that was- that was not the soul of his argument, and he also had a very different language experience than I did. It sounded like he actually had quite a- a- a successful schooling experience in general, which included (which by the way, language teachers, I think is a good idea) starting teaching French, I- I forget when he said, but in- in primary school, he was very young when they started doing French, which I think if you're going- if you're going to teach language, you might as well start when kids are very young, right? If we're going to do this, let's do it right, and- and start from the very beginning, but yeah, so he had a- he had a very different experience with me, and I am slightly exhausted, but unmoved from our conversation.
Brady: You realize I've- you realize I've got Derek next, he's coming to me for three days now, and we're like, hanging out for ages. Am I- am I just gonna be bombarded with language stuff? Or, I--
Grey: You may be. You may be. I do have- I do have a personal a piece of advice for you,--
Grey: --and anyone else who sees Derek in the next couple of days. I had a- I have a major regret, which is that when I- I met Derek, we met in the, uh, Natural History Museum here in London, I- I gave Derek a hug, to say hello, right? Like a--
Grey: --you know, "haven't seen you in a while" hug, and I really shouldn't have, because Derek was- was sick, but I thought "let me- let me express my great friendship to Derek" nice big hello hug,--
Grey: --and now I'm feeling terrible. I am feeling very sick. Derek gave me a disease from physical proximity, I'm absolutely sure,--
Brady: Oh no...
Grey: --he is now on his way to you, acting as a Typhoid Mary of sorts, I assume,--
Grey: --so, you and the missus may be shortly experiencing symptoms of not feeling very well. So I do also apologize to listeners if my voice doesn't sound absolutely perfect, or if you hear me- if you hear the sound of, like, crinkly unwrapping, like I'm doing now,--
Grey: --I have Halls, and a whole bunch of other medicines that I'm shoving into my face right now to try to sound a bit more normal, so I'm sorry, these sounds are terrible, but you're gonna have to listen to them for the moment.
Brady: We're going- we're sharing a hot tub with Derek so we're in for a world of pain.
Brady: We're going to, like- the- uh, like the spa- the hot spa, in- in Bath here.
Grey: Oh, that's no good. That's- you are definitely- disease vector Derek, that's what's gonna happen to you. Sorry.
Brady: Can I share an email with you I got?
Grey: Oh yes.
Brady: Um, this is about language,--
Brady: --it's actually funny, uh, there's a bit of a trend I've noticed since we've started the podcast,--
Brady: --particularly the one we did about email,--
Brady: --because I've--
Grey: Are you getting more emails?
Brady: Yes, but it's really funny because I'm getting like, short emails like you recommended, but because--
Brady: --because I think we've made our positions clear that you are pretty ruthless with email--
Brady: --in terms of not reading it, and deleting it,--
Brady: --and I was a bit more of a softy, and I say that I sometimes read emails in case--
Grey: Yes, mm-hmm.
Brady: --there's a gem in there I'm getting all these emails that are kind of, almost directed at you,--
Brady: --or- or they are are directed at both of us and they're saying "I know grey won't read my emails, but I--"
Brady: "--I know there's a chance you will, Brady, so can you tell Grey this?" Or, you know, "can you make my argument for me?" so- so anyway,--
Grey: This is great, this is perfect!
Grey: I like- I like this system quite a lot. This way, you can filter out the interesting things, so in- uh, I- I think this should be a policy, right?
Grey: For- for any and all feedback, in the email form, email Brady,--
Grey: --and he will read your message. I think this is great, I really like this. You are basically now, a- a human, Bayesian email filter for me, for the feedback. So, go ahead, tell me, what is the interesting thing that made it through?
Brady: I, uh,--
Brady: --I haven't thought this through. [chuckles] It, uh, if anyone decides that they're going to do that, I don't know, I mean, maybe I've- no, don't email me.
Grey: You know, you're still gonna read 'em. [chuckles]
Brady: Anyway, I did get this email from a chap named Sean... I don't know if I should say his surname, 'cause he might like it being read out, but I'm always really reluctant to use people surnames, um, publicly.
Grey: Uh, yeah, I'd- I'd say the general policy let's stick with- with first names, right? That's what I would--
Brady: Sean, you know who you are, you wrote a long email. It was very good, you made a lot of good points. Some I agree with, some I have no opinion on--
Brady: --uh, but some I didn't make in our discussion.
Brady: I mean, I- like most things in life, I have no really firm position on this whole language-in-school debate. But, I tried to put the other side because... you put- you put your side so strongly, and he made some really good points, and I'd like to share a couple of them with you. One of the points he made, you talked about in the last podcast, how you think, sort of, machine translation is moving along so quickly,--
Brady: --that that's one of the reasons speaking other languages will become sort of, you know, a less important skill--
Brady: --as time goes by.
Brady: He's- he politely but strongly disagreed with that. And he seems- it seems to be an area he knows quite a lot about.
Brady: And he- he thinks were fifty, if not a hundred years away from computerized language translation being really top notch, like reaching a level that, um, is acceptable for, you know, strong purposes.
Brady: I'll send- I'll send you the email,- and you can decide if you want to read it.
Brady: He made a strong case for it.
Brady: So I just want to throw that in the mix. I don't- I don't know if he's right or not,--
Grey: I- I- my- my- my, uh, my thought on that just- just very briefly is, when I talked about the- the language translation, we- we discussed it a little bit last time, but my main thought about that is the scenario of- of utility, right? It is a good enough for most people traveling in a foreign country to communicate with the people around them. And, I think that that is the language scenario for most people. I- I- I imagine, especially, especially if you are ever having to, uh, translate a- a work that has any kind of nuance to it, like if you're translating a novel between languages, I don't- I don't think machine translation is going to be able to do that kind of work for a very long time, because I think that's a- that- that- that is not a question of- of communication, uh, translating something that has style to it. [clears throat] Excuse me. Um, I think--
Brady: We'll blame Derek for that cough.
Grey: Yeah, yeah, I will blame Derek for that cough. What I was just gonna say is- is, uh, I was reading a document a while ago, talking about, uh, the beginning points of- of machine language translation, like, what- "how do you begin to train these algorithms?", and I think to give you a sense of how- of how dry and utilitarian the translations may be, is that the- the starting point for this one algorithm that I was reading about was the European Union Corpus of Laws. Because, uh, for- for those of- of you who are aware, in the European Union (oh god, I should know this off the top my head), but I think it's there's something like twenty-two or twenty-four different official languages,--
Grey: --and what that means is that any document that is issued in the European Union has to have legal copies in all of the other languages.
Grey: Which is, you can find these- these statistics for how many human hours is employed in--
Grey: --uh, in this endeavor, which is- which is quite a lot. For the record, I just want to say I'm totally okay with that, right? If you're going to designate something as an official language, you need to produce documents in that language, otherwise, what's the point?
Grey: But basically, the result is that you end up having just this enormous treasure trove for computer linguistics of data of thousands of documents that have been translated into this twenty-something different languages. And so it's- it's a great training ground. And by- by training I mean, algorithms a little weird, you can actually sort of have them learn on their own. It's- but, the- the result means that, like, your translation style is going to sound probably as dry as a European Union legal memo is going to sound. Uh, so I don't- I don't think that we're going to have translations of poetry that are anything but laughable for quite a long time.
Brady: Well, if that's your- if that's your brief response to that first of Sean's points,--
Grey: Oh god... [laughing]
Brady: --I'll, uh, I'll- [laughing] I'll limit the number of Sean's points I share with you.
Grey: Oh, I'm so sorry.
Brady: And I will point out, I'm only briefly summarizing, I'm not- I'm not pointing out his whole argument.
Grey: Yes, yes.
Brady: Another point he made it was very good though, um, you were saying you're an advocate of coding, computer programming--
Brady: --as something that would be more valuable to teach in schools.
Brady: He rightly points out, computer languages are- change very quickly become outdated very quickly.
Brady: Uh, you know, what- what languages are we going to- what computer languages are we going to teach in school? Are people going to come out fluent in some code that is redundant before they even reach the job market?
Grey: Yeah, so this is- I- I think- it's an interesting point, I actually, uh, discussed this with Derek a- a little bit, uh, tonight. In any future video or any- any, uh, future podcast that we talk about, I mean computer programming languages in a very very broad way. I- I think there are- there are lots of things if I- if I was having a- a computer language course, that I- that I would teach that would not be straight up computer languages.
So, um, for example, when I- when I worked as a teacher, I taught a course in electronics, and that was a 100% hands on practical course no code at all. But what it was was the was kids had to Connect a bunch of sensors and buttons and switches to each other. And they had to make those connections using logic gates. So those are things like, if the heat sensor is active, and the light sensor is active, then make the buzzer sound. So so I think any kind of, of teaching of logic to me falls under this category of what a computer programming languages, just the very idea of how do you talk to computers. And so even though computer programmers in the audience, right, their head will explode when I put this in the same category. But I would be totally happy to have a lot done in say, spreadsheets. There's an enormous amount of stuff you can do with a spreadsheet that is if then else, right, if this number is this, then do that thing. That's what I mean by computer programming, just the idea of teaching, how to communicate with computer In a logical way, I just want to say that that's that's a very, very broad, very broad definition. But to specifically answer his question about the the language, I would just say that the language is in the field seem to turn over very slowly. There are languages that don't move very much. And okay. For example, if you're using and it's, it's 2014. And if you're using an iPhone, those iPhones are still programmed in, basically in in a variant of the language of C. Which God I mean, off the top of my head, I'm going to say C is at least 1970s, kind of old. So that's not I mean, sees not a pretty language I've programmed a little bit and see, sorry, see programmers, it just kind of ugly. Lisp is beautiful for those in the audience who are listening, and I do like Python. But anyway, you can pick languages that don't change very much but much more with computer languages than with say, human languages, the the internal concepts, the logical gates of if then else. And NAND, those things are universal and languages and the syntactic differences between programming languages are not as large as you might think they are. So
Brady 23:16 let me read you something showing, right, which I quite liked. Yeah. And this sort of touches nicely on something you covered a few seconds ago. And maybe this also is where we come to the interesting point where sort of the robot gray versus the human May, but this really appealed to me. Maybe it won't appeal to you. This is what Shawn Right. Yeah. The selling point for teaching language for me is, as you alluded to, in the podcast, the access point to culture, but I would include all human culture in that, more than anything else in our makeup, we are built to understand language. It is literally in our DNA more than physics, math, almost anything else. Language is what distinguishes us evolutionarily from the rest of the animals and as deeply To our cognitive ability,
Grey 24:02 the second part of that is undeniably true, that humans are I mean, especially little humans are just language absorbing machines that's clearly built straight into our DNA. That that's, that's something that kids do. But I, I feel like I'd have to hear that first bit of it again, but I just just because that's the thing that humans intrinsically are good at when they're young. I don't I don't see that as an art as a convincing argument for why we should teach it in this very formulaic way when they're older.
Brady 24:36 Well, let me say that he Sean also made the point that Derek made, which is that he thinks it's really important to start Yeah.
Unknown Speaker 24:44 Yeah, I totally agree. Yeah.
Brady 24:46 And maybe if we started young, we'd be less inclined to give it the flick later on. But something else he said, just because something may be poorly taught is not an excuse for it to not be taught. I mean, I think he's saying there that you're throwing the baby. Hit with the bathwater. Yeah. And if it's being taught poorly at school, don't ditch it. Just teach it better.
Unknown Speaker 25:05 Yeah, I think you mentioned this conversation with Derek because it did go on for forever. I'm wondering if this is a
Brady 25:11 Sean is actually like, you know, Derek trying to sneakily get
Grey 25:15 it to me get more points. Yeah, I would just say that this is this cannot be the topic for stakes. It'll be it'll go on forever. But the language thing is very much connected with my with my opinions of how school in general works in a modern world, which having seen it as a professional in that environment is is generally very poor. I don't think I think the whole education system has it has a whole lot of problems. And so I would leave it at that that's like there are very many things that I would change about the education system, and I just think languages, particularly ill suited for the sit at a desk kind of learning method. But there are many things They're just done terribly as well in that system. But obviously, we still we still send kids to school. So
Brady 26:06 all right, let's let it go. Let's let the language go.
Grey 26:09 Yeah. I have two final points, though. No, I'm not arguing points. It's just a couple quick things. First, if I meant to mention it last time, I didn't mention it. If, if you are a person who does want to learn languages, there's a great little app that I played around with, on the iPhone on the iPad called Duolingo. Or do do lingo. Yeah. And I think that Duolingo is a good example of, of how a well done program can really accelerate learning in an area. So I just played around with it for a little while with my very rusty Spanish. And it's done really well. And I think if you had a dedicated student and you just gave them this, this one little app, they could make a lot of progress in a way faster than they could Just in the classroom on their own. So, again, I'm not against language learning. And if if you are trying to learn language, I would recommend this app, just just from my little experience playing around with it. And the second thing is that just thinking going back to the emails, I have a little note here, which is, again, might make me sound like a total monster. But I did get one email about language feedback from someone. Yeah. And all I'm gonna say about that email is it came on my screen. And I was shocked by how long it was, you know, you see a little scroll bar on the side. Yeah, and it was just like tiny little.of a scroll bar. And it you know, it started right off like, you know, dear CGP Grey, I have some points to make about language now whatever. And a scroll, scroll, scroll scroll, and it's so long. And normally, you know, I delete emails that are very long, but this was so long it caught my attention.
Brady 27:55 Well, we found a new way through the CGP Grey shield. It was
Grey 28:00 So long it caught my attention just long enough to be able to do the keyboard command to pull up a word count, which was 1600 words before I hit the delete button. Hello internets today's sponsor is audible.com, the leading provider of spoken audio information and entertainment, listen to audiobooks wherever and whenever you want. And a great place to listen to audiobooks is when you're sick in bed and just can't do anything else except live air with your eyes closed, all sad and recovering, which is something I know a little bit about. And the iOS app for audible has a little sleep timer so that if you think you're maybe not going to stay awake for the length of your audio book you can have it automatically shut off after a certain amount of time, which is very handy. So yes, this is CGP Grey in the future who's in much worse shape than CGP Grey in the past who was recording the episode that you're actually listening to now and who was just mildly sick from his encounter with Derek but is now alive. worse off. But that brings me to an audio book recommendation for you for a book called The Great influenza. The story of the deadliest pandemic in history by john M. Berry is about the flu epidemic of 1918, which in modern days, we think of flu as a sort of inconvenience in your life and forget how incredibly deadly it used to be. In 1918, seven times more people died of the flu than died in the First World War. And it was just a pandemic of major proportions. And the book Chronicles what we think about how the disease got started and how its spread. And from my perspective, the most interesting thing was also just about how little was really known about effective medicine at the time, basically, pre 1900 going to a doctor was just basically like rolling the dice, maybe he'd make you better, but possibly he would kill you or make you worse. And the great influence that sort of lucky for us as a species came after some very basic medical knowledge was finally into practice, I mean really stuff that you would think any first grade kid would know these days. But at the time, it was the cutting edge of science. So it's a very interesting book. And the audio version is narrated by a guy called Scott brick, who is one of my favorite audiobook narrators and I'm sure I'll mention some stuff of his in the future as well. So give it a listen. And of course, you can listen to that book for free by signing firstname.lastname@example.org slash Hello internet all one word. So if you want to listen to it, audible definitely has it with over 150,000 titles and virtually every genre, you're going to find what you're looking for. So get a free audiobook and a 30 day trial today by signing email@example.com slash Hello internet that's audible.com slash Hello internet or you can click the link in the show notes right now.
Unknown Speaker 30:49 Anything you've been up to lately,
Brady 30:50 I've been pretty busy. I was thinking about this actually like today. A couple of hours ago. I was doing a few chores around the house. I'm just dropping that into you know make me sound like I don't just sit here and read Wikipedia. And I got a paper cut. But it happens, doesn't it? You know, it's a real tragedy. Yeah, this is and I was thinking, ah, and then something else happened. And two or three things happened in a short space of time that were frustrating to me. And I was because I knew we were doing the podcast, I was thinking, I could talk about this or that. And then it made me realize that people want to hear negative stuff in like podcasts and videos like if I'm, if I'm unhappy, or there's something that's annoying me or I don't think people want to hear that. I think, you know, I think they want to hear stuff that's like constructive or interesting, or like relevant, or things that are quite funny and positive, but I don't think they just want to hear moaning. Is there a market for moaning? I don't know. Do you hear podcasts that are just people being miserable.
Grey 31:54 Um, I think people being miserable in interesting ways can be very interesting. Yeah, it all It all depends on. It all depends on how a story is told a story about the tragedy of your papercut could be really great. It'd be really enthralling. I would say this particular version of it was not. It was not suno throttling.
Brady 32:16 I didn't i didn't i didn't i didn't turn into a ripping Yeah, I did. I
Grey 32:20 didn't really sell it. It was just, it was just a random event. But there there isn't just value in positive stuff. There is there is definitely value in negative stuff. And I think particularly in as I did in many of the early episodes in self criticism, I think there is there is there is value to be had there, because sometimes the person who is complaining or self critical is aware of genuine flaws and the way that people who are endlessly optimistic, maybe are not Yeah, I think eternal optimism of the Spotless Mind is sort of by definition slightly diluted or unaware of lots of things, so I don't know if that exactly ties in with what you're talking about. But are you do you want to have like a spin off show that is Brady moans, and
Brady 33:10 no, no, not at all. I just, I was just thinking, like, you know, not in like a new age, happy clappy type way, because I'm not really like that. But I was thinking like, you know,
Unknown Speaker 33:21 you can,
Brady 33:22 you can start getting too negative sometimes, like, you can start seeing the negative and everything and i think i think it can be a problem. And for people like, like us who sort of work alone and you know, get lost in their own minds quite a lot. You know, like you say, I think like self self criticism and an awareness of problems is important, but you can, you can get a bit negative sometimes, and I think it's important to, to realize that we've got a pretty good life. Things are pretty good.
Grey 33:55 Yeah, again, this is this is the podcast of first world youtuber problem. Yeah, exactly. Which I've seen a few people on the Reddit also pick up on and yeah, it's been that kind of a kind of feedback is is also I've seen that go both ways where some people are interested in first world youtuber problems. Yeah.
Unknown Speaker 34:12 But you know, it again it depends on how things how things are told. I think
Brady 34:18 I went to Sheffield this week yeah. And did some sort of public speaking of couple of talks about about YouTube and about my work and things like that. I made sure I mentioned mentioned your videos as well, great. I, I don't just sit there and tell people how great my videos are. I always make sure I give them mentioned to two other good videos. But uh, I quite enjoy it. I quite enjoy going and giving talks. It's I don't know, it's something I like because it's something you have much experience with.
Grey 34:48 giving talks. giving talks can be really good. I think I've sort of obliquely mentioned before that I used to have a sort of time management business before I got into the YouTube world. I gave talks with that on occasion. And yeah, I think I really liked it. I mentioned you'd be a really good public speaker, you know, you got such a syrupy voice that everybody loves for public speaking, it was something I put a lot of practice into. And I can say that I definitely enjoyed it and having been a teacher, it's something that I think you just get very used to talking in front of groups of people. It's obviously something that I haven't done in quite a while. But no, I could, I could see doing something like that possibly in the future.
Brady 35:33 So maybe this podcast thing doesn't work out. We could do some kind of, you know, some sort of show. Yeah.
Grey 35:39 That'd be cool.
Brady 35:41 I think that'd be good fun.
Grey 35:42 Yeah, we get a little caravan tour up and down this island.
Brady 35:45 Can I ask you a question? Yeah. This is something this is like completely unrelated to what we're talking about. It's completely out of left field. Yeah. But I did get what we were saying did just remind me of that. And since we did this podcast, it's become a question I want to ask you. A little It became feasible in this kind of, you know, future technology world that people sometimes talk about to have your kind of consciousness taken out of your body into a computer or into the internet. And you could just be completely remote from your body and live virtually. Does that appeal to you?
Grey 36:21 There are a lot of philosophical questions with that. There. There are a lot of philosophical problems with that question.
Brady 36:27 Yeah. I don't want to turn it into a big discussion about it. And I know there's a world we're coming about it soon. And yeah, there's some I think I saw a preview for some Johnny Depp film that's going to do with that. And there's, we could do a whole and I hopefully, we will talk about it more. But just like on a gut level instinct. Yeah. Well,
Grey 36:43 well, I just mentioned that one of the philosophical issues with this is I I try to be very consistent and very evidence based in my thinking in my life. I don't know if listeners are aware of this, but that's a general philosophy that I have. Yeah. There is there is one, one area of a kind of unknowable question that I'm very aware of. And it is the transporter on Star Trek. So, my wife, she would not describe herself as a big Trekkie. I would say that she is a big Trekkie, and we watch Star Trek together sometimes. And whenever they go in the in the transporter, you know, they beam down to the surface of the planet. I kind of assume that the crew members are dead every time that happens. And the creature that has appeared on the surface of the planet is an exact recreation of them as they were when they stepped in the transporter, but it's not the same person. Kirk gets into the transporter, and he's thinking about whatever. Green aliens probably, and then when the transporter goes, that is the end of his existence. Yeah. on the planet, there's a different living thing that finishes that thought about green aliens. Okay, right. But how would you ever prove that it's a different Kirk? I don't think there's any way to ever prove that. Because you know, if you interrogated him if you had all these questions you did, it's the same person from all external measures. But my guess would be that it's not a consistent consciousness, right? It's a different person who just thinks that they're the same person.
Brady 38:33 I don't know. I don't know how you would prove it, but I'm imagining the method is going to somehow involve tagging of the particles, or it's going to somehow involve quantum entanglement or something like that, there's going to be a way to prove that. Like, he's physically a different person. You know, he's made from different molecules mean that can be your only criteria. It can't be the, the configuration of the brain waves and things like that. Well,
Grey 38:59 we will What we know from physics is that individual atoms are not different from each other. All hydrogen atoms are basically the same hydrogen atom that you can exactly say that there's anything different about the individual atoms. And this also gets into some arguments about how does the transporter work in the first place, which I think are all relevant to the fundamental question, right? Does does the transporter recreate the person from the energy on the surface of the planet? Or is it actually sending their individual atoms in a stream? which I don't think is the official Star Trek explanation, but I'm not sure either way. I imagine if we had transporters now, there would be no way to prove it. And I can imagine that no matter how far science ever got that maybe there just wouldn't ever be a way to demonstrate this. conclusively.
Brady 39:47 You know how you know how you were telling me you know how you were telling me you watch the people vs. George Lucas and it made you feel uncomfortable, because it made the people that really nerdy it's discussions like this. That
Grey 40:03 I love it. Okay, so. And there have been episodes of Star Trek where they end up with duplicate people, which, to me seems like clearly there's upset anyway, this is all a roundabout way to say that. If there was some kind of technology that existed to transfer my consciousness into a machine, I would always be hesitant to use it. Because I would feel I would personally think that this is actually the death of me. And it is the creation of a thing that thinks that it is me, but there might not be any way to ever prove that. So I would in future worlds that I hope exists soon. I am much more a fan of the things with the Ship of Theseus problem, where you slowly argument and slowly change over your physical being a piece at a time. And I think okay, maybe I am more amenable to this idea of augmenting the brain slowly over time. And maybe this feels more like, it's still me,
Brady 41:12 like a person who says, you know, my x is 10 years old and I've changed the handle three times and the blade four times.
Grey 41:18 Yeah. Is it the same x and it's the same, it's the same kind of thing. Oh, you know, my memory is getting a little bit bad. So we're going to put a chip in my brain and slowly the brain becomes more chips than it is actually, you know, squishy, delicate, fragile organic matter. And is that still me at that point? I don't know.
Brady 41:36 I'm surprised I'm surprised I thought you've given me hope in your humanity there.
Grey 41:42 I don't know. If there was a way to know for sure that the the consciousness transfer would not kill me. I would do it
Brady 41:50 but how you define and kill here like, you know, like, this is, this is seems like a wishy washy definition of death even like,
Grey 41:57 yeah, this this gets messy really quickly. I You know, I'm thinking of it as a continuous stream of consciousness. But there are, it's easy to poke holes in that kind of argument as well. Or, you know, have you died every time you wake up in the morning because that wasn't a continuous stream of consciousness. So I'm not sure if it if it gives you hope, because again, I am, I am first on the cyborg train with replacing any parts of my body that I can with superior mechanical ones. I mean, just just without a doubt,
Brady 42:27 what would you replace? First, if I said you could replace something tomorrow?
Grey 42:31 Well, if we're not gonna assume brain enhancements, which are obviously the way to go, because then they let you make better decisions about what parts to replace, right? If we're going to assume that my my brain is limited, okay, the top two things on my list, I would replace my eyes. And that's partly because I have some visual problems with one of my eyes in particular. So already right like I have this this sack of fluid in my face that isn't working perfectly. And so I would like to replace it and I'm just waiting Then the second thing I would have place would be my inner ear drums because I have tinnitus in both ears. So I always hear a ringing sound all the time,
Brady 43:07 and neither.
Grey 43:08 Yeah, it's irritating but it's not you know, certain people have it much worse than I do. I'm I'm relatively lucky that like right now I don't hear it because I'm talking to you and there's there's stuff going on. So it's not as bad as it could be. But if I if I'm in a quiet room, there is there is no such thing for me there was always a high pitched ringing noise if a room gets too quiet, so I'd replace my ears then next on the list, you know, and then that that would be that'd be the top priority but everything as soon as the the machine is better, I mean, obviously just a fool to not you know, upgrade to the newer better model of whatever as soon as possible. Alright, this off topic, that's what you want to discuss.
Brady 43:45 It just it was on my mind talking about talking about current news and and first world YouTube problems. I will talk about something that's been in current news, but in the context of being a YouTuber. Yeah, and that is to My channels, Periodic Videos and 60 symbols which are like, as you know, like chemistry and physics. Yes, they traditionally have been kind of my more newsy channels in terms of if something happens in, you know, in the world, I'm able to react to it with those channels and, you know, the latest news in chemistry and physics traditionally, I've done this very quickly, you know, usually on the same day as possible, like you know, you know, I can, I've always been able to quickly drive to the University of Nottingham where, where I fit where most of my collaborations are. And as you also know, I've recently left Nottingham right if I live quite I live about two to three hours drive from Nottingham now so my, my, my filming there is more strategic and planned and it has taken away my ability to make these fast reacting videos. And obviously, this means absolutely nothing to you who does not make fast reacting videos, but it has been a change My life and I've been very frustrated but just recently because of the, the announcement of the the polarized light they found in the cosmic
Grey 45:11 Mike. Yes, I heard about ground.
Brady 45:12 Yeah, this kind of you know this, this new evidence of primordial gravitational waves. It's very exciting and I've been really keen to make a video about it. And I have finally done the interviews and I would be editing the video now if we weren't talking at the moment, but it's been quite frustrating not having not being quite so close to all my experts anymore. First World YouTube problem. I no longer have instant access to World Class physicists. What a terror What a terrible thing has happened to me For shame
Grey 45:45 as it has it. I've faced this obviously a lot because of my terrible production cycle. Has it changed?
Brady 45:54 Yeah, by the time you make a video about it, the gravitational waves will have let you know
Grey 45:59 sometimes topics are so old that by the time I get around to them, everything has changed. I think boy, I'm glad I didn't do it that you know, the first way that time. Yeah. But has it has it? Has it changed any of the videos that you have done? Or have you just not not uploaded as consistently as you otherwise would have?
Brady 46:16 Oh, no, I think it hasn't affected my production rate because I'm always I'm always behind, you know, I've always got, you know, I must have 20 to 30 videos that if I never fit, if I couldn't film again, I could probably make another 50 or 60 videos just on the material I'm sitting on at the moment and haven't got around to so it hasn't, it hasn't slowed me down in that respect. But it has it does affect me when it comes to making very reactive videos, same day type videos.
Grey 46:45 You know, same day amazing and I
Brady 46:48 with the Nobel Prize was always a fun one because I would always sit there with them. Yeah. Yeah. Several you know, we have a video up within two or three hours and you know, my I guess my background News journalism has, has made that seem very simple thing for me. But now geographically. Anyway, just thought I'd share that because it's newsy. And it's a it's that kind of first world problem that no one will really sympathize with. But obviously, you know, I get all these tweets and emails and messages now, when are you going to do a video about bicep and the gravitational waves? And? And the answer is, well, hopefully, if I start late, I might get it done. But then I got Derek here and you know, to be a host, sunlight, it might not be till next week, Unbelievable.
Grey 47:33 Unbelievable amount of time, and absolutely unbelievable. I apologize. Things are different when you can't react instantly. And I almost I almost look at that as a kind of guiding principle for the way I make a lot of decisions about how I structured my life, is that I don't necessarily want to react to things immediately. With the with the video topics that I choose, I'm almost kind of glad that my production cycle is so slow because it forces me to pick topics that are going to be relevant for a long time,
Brady 48:13 time. Time Time this videos. I mean, that's the great thing about your videos, you know?
Grey 48:16 Yeah. And if I if I was able to make videos faster I could see getting swept up into a much more following the news cycle. Yeah, system. And I mean, you You are a former news man. So obviously, you love the new cycle. But But for me, I feel like that's something I want to stay away from as as much as possible. And, yeah, it's the I don't know if you've heard this phrase called a low information diet, which is consciously making decisions about limiting the number of inputs to your life. And this this is this is something that I definitely consciously do about Trying to limit the number of sources of news that can come into come into my world. And I think it can be really beneficial to slow down the pace of things and to react on a longer time scale if you possibly can, because you know, a lot of news that can come in it's just not necessarily really relevant or or actionable to you, but you can get caught up in a cycle of, of always staying on top of that stuff.
Brady 49:25 So you're not aware that Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin have broken up?
Grey 49:29 I am not aware of that. But I'd say something. So before you know when you said the thing about that the gravitational waves Yeah. And I said, Oh, I heard about that. Yeah, I said that. Because if he's listening now, I hope that for us a moment that made Derek absolutely furious, because when Derek came to visit me in London, that was one of the first things that we talked about. Yeah. And he said to me in a cafe so if you heard about the the electromagnetic waves in the cosmic background radiation, and I said No, I have not heard about this. And he was absolutely apoplectic about how I had not come across this piece of information. And how was the biggest scientific discovery of the year? And he was just horrified that I did not know. But from my perspective, we had a lovely conversation where Derek informed me all about this. And so now when you mentioned it, I can say, Oh, yes, I have heard about that thing.
Brady 50:24 Well, now when someone tells you that Chris Martin and going to potaro breaking up, you can say, yeah, yeah, I did hear about that.
Grey 50:29 Yeah, I heard about that. And this is, this is one of the things about kind of, again, like, I don't follow the news. I don't really read the news. That's very intentional. But it's impossible for big stuff not to find its way to you anyway. Yeah. And, and that's what I think is is the great advantage, right? Like, oh, there's a huge scientific discovery. If it's really huge. I'm going to hear about it sooner or later. Right or if there's if there's a really big thing going on in the news that really matters is going to be impossible. Not to know. But the benefit of filtering out a whole bunch of of the little minor stuff that doesn't matter is I think huge. You just don't occupy your mind with that stuff. And it doesn't it doesn't take up. It doesn't take up your time.
Brady 51:14 Do you know who won the game between manchester united and Manchester City on Tuesday night? Oh, come on,
Grey 51:19 you know, I have no idea. Do you know I couldn't even tell you what I don't even know what sport you're talking about. I don't know what I do. No, wait, wait. Manchester United is is football right? It is. Yes. Okay. soccer, soccer.
Brady 51:37 I envy you not being a slave to sport like, sport is. I'm really into cricket. I have heard Yeah. And when you Yeah. And recently, Australia have been playing some significant cricket series. They had a really big one in Australia against England that I was completely obsessed with. And as you know, there were these five day games and Last eight hours. And so it's this epic thing. And because it was in Australia, and I live in the UK, it was a really bad time for me. And I just couldn't sleep at night, I was sleeping with my iPhone, under my pillow. And naturally waking up every 10 minutes and checking the score. And like my, it was obviously in my subconscious because I couldn't sleep if I fell asleep. I would wake up 10 minutes of addict
Grey 52:22 you're, you're an addict there, man.
Brady 52:24 I know where you stand on addiction to I'm already regretting telling you this now.
Grey 52:28 That is crazy.
Brady 52:30 I just had I just I'm just so passionate about it. I just it just matters so much to me. It affects my mood so much how Australia perform a cricket.
Unknown Speaker 52:41 And this is making me sound worse.
Grey 52:44 I'm glad I'm not married to you. Your mood is affected by the sports. Oh, man.
Brady 52:52 Dude, if that's the only reason you're glad you're not married to me we got problems.
Grey 52:56 But that'd be pretty high on the list. Yeah, if I was gonna make a list of reasons not to vibrating. I don't think we'd be a good capital. He gets grumpy if his sports team is losing.
Brady 53:08 You know, this is, you know, this is common. I know you laugh, like it's a funny little Brady thing. You know, this is really common in the world that like, particularly among men, that their mood is affected by the performance of sport teams. They're passionate about, you know, this is common day.
Grey 53:22 I can understand that that that people get elated when their sports teams win and sad when their sports teams lose that the emotional drama of sports teams can write that. I mean, I guess that's why people follow them. Partly but it sounds like you're just all a big grump around the house because boys didn't didn't pull out a win.
Brady 53:42 They weren't it wasn't like it won't be a long term thing. Like if we lose, you know, within half an hour or so. It's a forgotten thing but
Grey 53:49 like the freezing if we lose that if they lose, if we lose. I find that so interesting. Yeah, yeah, I mean, you know, it's it's a, I do the same thing in other domains. I just that's I think that's a very, very natural human kind of thing to do is to associate
Brady 54:10 with throw me a bone here. What's your domain? Let me laugh at you for a minute. What's something you become unreasonably passionate about?
Grey 54:17 Well, no, actually, that that. I don't think there are things that become unreasonable. Maybe you'd have to ask my wife about things that become unreasonably passionate about I think, from my perspective, I think oh, wow, I'm completely reasonable on all topics. But what I was gonna say that the we thing is, I know, because student pointed out to me once, when I was teaching physics lessons, I would use the we, when talking about scientific discoveries. Yeah, this sort of, we have discovered very many exoplanets in the last five years.
Brady 54:52 And I noticed that most of the scientists I interviewed do that too.
Grey 54:56 Yeah. And I think I'm using that in the This is a collective humanities sense of the word. But it's the same thing as when someone says, Oh, we've won the football, right. I have discovered know, exoplanets, actually will people who got PhDs and who know what they're doing, and put in the hours and the work. They discovered exoplanets,
Brady 55:18 exoplanets and all automated now it's not even humans doing its computers. But that's, that's another story.
Grey 55:24 But you know, even then it's still that's not the way right. It's okay. An algorithm has discovered it. It's still not me in any sense. Yeah, so but but that's the way I remember one of my students wants it. Who do you mean by we? Oh, I guess humanity as a whole is who I mean by we, but yeah, I didn't do anything at all about this, which I think she might have been doing. Is he trying to take credit for this stuff? I don't think he did this.
Brady 55:48 It's an interesting, it's an interesting thing. I mean, obviously, I am as
Unknown Speaker 55:52 well, I don't
Brady 55:52 know. I consider myself Australia. And I've lived in the UK for a long time now. And it It's a real bone of contention in my household with with my other half because I support Australia in sport. She believes I should support England, but I don't. And I'm really really. And it actually goes so far that I'm really, really anti England because in sport Australians are traditionally quite anti England. So it's to a point where I will support against England against all other countries, even if Australia has no involvement whatsoever.
Grey 56:27 And it was nice, nice.
Brady 56:30 Australia will hear me say that and think well, it's completely normal. You know, if Wales beat England at rugby, that's brilliant, you know, if anyone beats England, anything, it's brilliant to me. And it was a funny thing. Actually, I was. I was listening to a radio talk show recently. And they were talking about, they were talking about something where this became relevant, and they encourage people to phone in and I don't find in radio talk shows. But I've because I really like this host, and I was driving along and about to stop for a drink anyway. It was I just started to call in and they put me on the radio station they put me on they love the producer liked what I was going to say. And they put me on and I had a bit of banter and I explained all of this. It was very it was very good fun. Anyway, this in this particular talk show they had like a prize for the person who was the best best color and they ended up choosing me you know, Brady that we're going to give we're going to give Brady the vouchers because it was like a sports type radio show the vouchers were like for a hardware store. So they sent me these hundred pounds worth of vouchers for a hardware store. 50 pounds, I can't remember anyway, they sent it to me. I was so pleased that I won these hardware store vouchers. They were like this this trophy that you know, that was sent to me by my favorite like radio presenter. And the funny thing is, I'm so pleased with them. I refuse to spend the vouchers like I keep them as like a little memento. I know you love memento. Yes
Grey 57:54 goes into the Muslim of
Brady 57:56 your house, along with the expensive casino. A chip that I won at a Monte Carlo Casino. And I was so proud that I went on roulette I wanted to keep the chip as a souvenir and didn't cash it in so the casinos still got my money.
Grey 58:11 You're gonna have a lot of these little trinkets around your house by the time you're 60 Yeah, well
Unknown Speaker 58:16 all around you and you will just be alone in a big cold white room so happy
Grey 58:22 well hopefully I'll have at least somewhat robotic parts by the time I'm 60 actually you really you really put
Brady 58:28 you replace those those liquid sex
Grey 58:31 yeah yeah man i'm i'm really counting on that I got like you know looking at my watch here. Let's hurry this up people
Brady 58:38 get it get it on top of things. What else gonna any news with you? We sort of I think that was supposed to be using my life and I we talked about you being turned into a robot and Star Trek teleporting and
Grey 58:51 yeah, if we're talking if we're talking about first world youtuber problems. I would say that I have. I have, I'm experience Dancing with my current video. What I think is best described as a kind of lateness cascade. How long has it been since your last video? Oh God I don't know if I want to know. I want to look it up. It has been too long. It's been too long. What do you know? We should do you know what the terrible thing is? I can't actually remember off top my head what my last one was, was a jury duty. Was that my last? Yeah,
Brady 59:23 yeah, we should. We should find out and not put it on Reddit or something. How many videos I've put out between your two videos. Now
Grey 59:31 I don't even want to know that could
Brady 59:33 become like a new game. Like
Unknown Speaker 59:35 that needs to become a new game. That would be really I'm going to do that.
Brady 59:39 I know. I know how many of you that have any videos I've had since your last video?
Grey 59:43 God I wish I had not looked at
Brady 59:45 is it the podcast? Is that is that is that become a distraction? Is that a time sink or not?
Grey 59:50 I would say no. And actually,
Brady 59:55 I guess you are moving house as well, aren't you?
Grey 59:57 Yeah. I just I want to should make a note about that. The podcasting I think feeds into a potentially a future thing that would be worth the whole topic about different kinds of energy for different kinds of projects. But I can say basically that that no, the podcast has, has not taken time away from videos because the videos are very different sort of work. Yeah. But so this is this is what I would say is it's a lateness cascade. So I was, I was working on a video, we'll call it topic a. And as I was going through it, I realized about halfway through there's something interesting that I want to do with this, but I know that that is going to take a lot of time to do because I may need help from some other people to actually get it to work the way I want. But but it while I was working on that topic, a I realized oh, because of the move. I'm already kind of late and overdue for my next video, so I don't want to pick a big huge time. Topic to work on now let me switch to a short topic. Yeah. So I shelved video a and moved on to video be this is about halfway probably towards the beginning of March actually. Yeah. And so my whole goal was to try and get this video done by the end of March because there's something in particular that I want to do for April. But now it looks like because of various things like the move like Derek infecting me with his virus and taking up a whole bunch of my time today that was supposed to be working on a video talking to me about languages and then a few a few other things and also just my own taking a long time right I'm not trying to blame this on external factors like I just I'm slow with these videos sometimes right? So it doesn't look like I'm going to make it for the end of March because we are recording this what is today is the 20 what 25th I think 27th My God, okay, yeah, it's never gonna happen. Today's the 27th I was aiming for it to be on the 31st. So that, obviously is not it's not gonna happen. But so now here, here's the problem. And what I was realizing this morning when I thought, oh god, this is just spiraling out of control. I think oh, there's a topic that I want to do in particular for April topic, see that I also think will be relatively short and quick. So do I drop topic be that I've been working on for three or four weeks now at this point, to switch the topic see to hit it for April. Because topic B is doesn't matter what time it is. But topic c should happen in April, if it's ever going to come out. And this is just this is the kind of problem that I run into sometimes of just switching from one to the other when they're not fully complete. And this is, this is a problem in my own workflow and like, trust me, trust me internet. I am constantly trying to improve my own workflow because nobody wants to upload more videos than me. However much you might think you might want to see a new CGP Grey video, trust me CGP Grey once that video more than you do. There are sometimes when I have to make changes, usually it's killing a project because I just realized that a video just isn't working. For whatever reason usually is boring. I realized one day I'm bored by my own script. This is just not interesting. That's not a good sign. When you're reading something, I think God I don't even care. And I'm supposed to be the person who cares the most right now. This is this is a problem sometimes of trying to switch to something quicker. And I think that that is a kind of decision that I should make less probably and this going back to computer talk for a second. I've been reading up on it's a thing called Scrum which developers in the audience will know about, but it's it's It's a methodology for creating computer software, because computer software is
not similar to writing, but it's in the same genre of things where it's a big project. It's a creative project. And it's very hard to put an estimate on how long it's going to take to actually make the thing to a particular standard. So that there are lots of software methodologies that exist. We're pre people try to systematize the process of making something creative. And I've been looking into Scrum and a few others because part of their fundamental philosophy is about pre committing to completion of certain tasks in a certain amount of time, and disallowing changes in that until a certain amount of time has passed. And I've been looking at that and thinking oh, I wonder because I use the very people who Follow me on Twitter know I use a very heavy getting things done based system. But I've been frustrated with that in the past few years and I'm trying to switch to something different. So Scrum and there's also a thing called agile. There's a few software stuff that I'm looking at. But basically, I am also trying to improve my productive output. And I'm very systematic about that. And I think that this is, this is something I'm going to move to try for a little bit to see if I can avoid this switching problem, which I'm fully well aware sometimes ends up in this kind of late in this cascade,
Brady 1:05:37 could I this is my thought. Yeah. And I'll preface it by saying your videos are very, very good. And they're better than my videos and more people watch them and, and that is because, you know, you spend so much time on them. So I will never criticize you for spending a lot of time on many videos. I'm
Grey 1:05:55 feeling a big however or but coming
Brady 1:05:57 however, but Deep, I sometimes begin to wonder, if you become you've become you become so preoccupied with procedures and methods and putting all these things in place to increase your productivity that they actually affect your productivity. And if you spent less time thinking, How can I be more productive and instead spent that time producing? You'd make more stuff?
Grey 1:06:29 Yeah, okay, so I can completely understand how it seems this way from the outside. But because it's not it's something that I talked about and you probably see me I love to talk with other people about how they get work done. This is a perennial topic of conversation when I meet productive people. Yeah, but I think one of the keys to an effective system is it has to be very lightweight on a day to day basis. So on a on any particular day, I am not obsessed with how the system works and all of these various tricks and I think that there's there's a term for that which is productivity porn right that you are reading up about tips and tricks and all this kind of stuff and and it's it's it's like a kind of pornography right you're not doing anything. Yeah, you're just consuming this material and I think there is definitely something to that. But but no in my day to day it is not a driving thoughts. But as I mentioned in one of my videos, I do have a weekly review system and that's when I think about this a lot and
Brady 1:07:36 even the weekly seems too much to me.
Grey 1:07:39 But but but bi weekly review this doesn't. This is not more than a really 15 minute kind of think about how the work week went. scenario. I'm not spending a whole morning pondering and looking into the clouds and thinking oh, I wonder how I could be more productive. Let me watch these clouds float by with us to come into my mind right which would obviously be just terrible. Yeah, sounds
Brady 1:08:02 like you're doing are going to try this alpha beta test. I'm going to try using this for a week and see if it incorrect. And then I'll try that and then I'll read about that. And then it's time for me to completely review the system. You know, just make the video man, I want to watch your video.
Grey 1:08:16 Okay, let's let's talk about let's talk about the thing that I put off later. Let's discuss it now, which is the amount of energy so all productive systems have a kind of bottleneck in them somewhere. Yeah, there's going to be some point that is the the slow point that you that you can't speed up, no matter how much you try. Yeah. And for for me, that is the writing part of it. That's the bottleneck. Everybody always thinks that is the animation that takes a really long time. That's, that's not the killer. It is it is the writing that takes a long time. But it takes a long time. Because, at least in my experience, I can't sit down and just write, say for eight hours in a row, because there's there's a diminishing returns on improving the script. And I definitely know on days there have been days where I overwork of scripts and I can see that like, oh boy, the last two revisions today are worse than when I started I should I should have just stopped an hour ago, because that actually made it worse than then in the beginning was. So the slowness has a lot to do with the writing. It doesn't have a lot to do with just straight up animation or other problems that can happen with the video production. So I guess what I'm trying to say here is is this is sometimes difficult to talk about but I even even heard myself saying it in the I think the third episode and we were discussing work life balance. Yeah. Is It's very easy to talk about a lack of time. Because I think that's a socially acceptable construct. Nobody's gonna argue. If you say like, Oh, I'm too busy to do something. Yeah, right. But time is not the resource. That is really a question. It is about. I wish I had a better word for but it really is about energy management. And you have certain amounts of energy for certain kinds of projects,
Brady 1:10:36 so much concentration.
Grey 1:10:38 Yeah, I think concentration is a is a good way to put it. Because there's, there's there's just a ton of very interesting research about particularly willpower and people's ability to make decisions. And I mean, you can plot that stuff on a graph to show how this is basically like a battery that starts off strong and runs down low as the day goes on.
Brady 1:11:00 Cuz I can spend an hour editing at certain times and get loads done and spend an hour editing at other times and the same thing and not do it as well. And that's just a concentration things and yes, like how, how concentrated is your? Yeah, how intense intensity is another word for
Grey 1:11:18 Yeah, yeah, that's, that's, that's that's a good way to put it. And so this is where I'm very aware of my particularly good writing times putting the scripts together. But I would say on a, on a really great day. I have probably about four hours, tops of very high quality writing. Now, that just means writing I do spend other time doing research and and other administrative stuff. But after four straight hours on a single scripts, there's just nothing that's going to happen. It's like It's like used up for the day and I try and I'm When I talk about messing around with with productivity systems, I have various ways that I'm trying to figure out how to get more quality writing time, out of a day. And I have not successfully done that at this point.
Brady 1:12:18 No, I just this is so you know, I've got to respect it, you know, and I've got to respect you. And you know, your scripts are very well written, but they're short, and your videos are short. And it's hard for me with my background, in newspapers, and television, to comprehend, that you spend so much time writing them when I come from a world where you know, I would go out and spend my day meeting people and interviewing people and making phone calls and finding stuff out and the writing is almost the just the blast you do at the end for like, you know, 20 minutes before deadline to get the thing done, and I A newspaper story that I would write is not as well crafted as one of your scripts.
Grey 1:13:04 Yeah, but But here, but let's, let's not be totally fair here, right? Let's say you spend 2020. Let's, let's make the numbers easy, right? Let's say you spend one hour on a newspaper article. And let's say I spent 100 hours on a script. My script is not 100 times better than your newspaper article.
Unknown Speaker 1:13:26 I wrote some pretty bad ones in my days, but
Grey 1:13:28 hopefully not going to be like it doesn't it doesn't scale linearly with ours input. And I'm very aware of that. And that's also a place where I think I have to be aware of of, of actually constraining possibly the writing time and saying, Look, that's part of why I was looking at Scrum. But I actually actually had it on my on my list here because I know you're a newspaper man. What is your advice about writing fast or how did you write so quickly?
Brady 1:13:56 Well, I guess you had to Like, there was no choice, you had to write quickly because you had to send it to the people at this time, so that it could be printed onto the paper and delivered to people to read it, you know, over breakfast in the morning, and there was just no choice. There was no, you know, you talk about changing your mind and deciding, actually, I'm not going to do that one or, you know, external factors. That just wasn't enough, that just was not an option. You know, right. You would be fired. If you if you took that attitude, and newspapers. And I think that just teaches you like, you know, it just teaches you to write whether you feel that whether you're in the mood or feel the inspiration, or particularly happy with what you did. And that's why, you know, so many newspaper reporters become authors, because they have that discipline to write and finish writing and do the job whereas other people who aren't, don't have that background quite fancy becoming an author will quite often Just spend forever, you know, going back over chapter one and improving it or deciding This is no good. And I want to start again, you know, newspaper journalists Don't think like that.
Grey 1:15:12 I will just I just interject for a second. Because I want to make sure we hit this point, I will just say that I completely agree with you about the waiting until you feel like it. I come across this as well from people, sometimes we want to, we want to be inspired when they write and I know that I'm not writing like a newspaper person, but that is my experience as well is is you got to train your brain, okay, look, you're just writing in the morning. And it doesn't matter if you don't feel like it. And that that is definitely that definitely works. I think a younger version of myself who was way more foolish and tried to write I mean, it's like 10 years ago, tried to write things was waiting around to feel inspired and that is just a loser's game where do you not get it? You're never going to get anything done. That way, right morning times are writing times and that's Just this is the end of it brain. I'm sorry, you're gonna have to, you're gonna have to do this now. So I, I definitely agree with that.
Brady 1:16:07 Yeah. I don't know, maybe you should go work for a newspaper for a few years,
Grey 1:16:11 I would never do that never worked for a newspaper.
Brady 1:16:14 I think you'd enjoy it.
Unknown Speaker 1:16:16 I think I think I would not
Brady 1:16:18 working for a newspaper, I think is a is a brilliant experience. You learn so much about so much like, everyone wants to be on TV and work in TV. And then I used to work in TV and people would say, How can I do it? You know? And I always would say to them, the best thing you can do is go and work for a newspaper. And people in TV who employ new journalists want to take them from newspapers, you learn so much, and it's a real it's a real baptism of fire. But you know, they're also a bit rubbish.
Grey 1:16:53 Well, yeah, but that's it. That's a separate issue. But but so for you, the main thing about writing quickly was just the deadline. Big existed and you will be fired if you didn't hand it.
Brady 1:17:02 Yeah. And when you learn to you learn to maybe maybe you learn to let go. And maybe that's because you don't have to put videos on YouTube, you find out how to let go.
Grey 1:17:17 Yeah, I mean, there is, as we discussed before, there is an implicit deadline of, of a monthly cycle, not hitting a monthly cycle is is not the best.
Brady 1:17:28 But even though you say not the best, you know,
Grey 1:17:30 yeah, that's true. I'm not getting fired from YouTube for not turning in my numbers. But I do know when you do, they do keep track of these kinds of things. And again, I've gotten comments sometimes from from the inside of YouTube about, oh, we see you didn't upload anything this October. So it's being kept track of which is a little funny sometimes like, oh,
Brady 1:17:55 maybe they're just worried that you know, you maybe you know, you've you something's wrong. Yeah, accent seminar engine knock on the door, make sure you're okay. Yeah, maybe, maybe, or maybe they're just worried about advertising revenue.
Grey 1:18:06 Yeah, I think that's that's probably their primary concern. Okay. I was gonna say the only other thing, which just about my routine and one of the one of the reasons why this might be a little slower is that many of the times, you know, I didn't really think about this until now, we were talking earlier about how I used to give talks. And when I, when I was a trainee teacher, and I was trying to prepare for lessons, and I got caught doing this a couple of times, which is a little embarrassing, I would give a lesson to an empty room in the school before giving a lesson to an actual classroom full of kids. So I would I would get up in front and just teach as though this was the way I was going to do it sort of time it for handing out stuff and then Okay, what am I going to talk about here and how is all the rest of us and presentations when I was doing For my time management business, same kind of thing. I did the presentation, sort of over and over again. And I guess when I when I'm doing the writing for the script, because I know it's going to be a YouTube video. Ideally, I want to be in a place where I can talk this script out loud. And so I'll set up my my laptop somewhere where I can stand up, like I'm going to be when I'm recording and I do the whole thing out loud. I'm talking it out as I go through the whole script. And so I'm trying to think of it as how is this going to be said in an actual video? And maybe what that's one of the reasons why i'm just i'm very slow with writing. Maybe it's a different kind of process. But yeah, it doesn't change the fact that I definitely, I definitely do want to make more videos more quickly. But the the writing is by far and away the bottleneck for me and I am always thinking about ways to try and try and squeeze more out without having the quality go down. But yeah, so far not greatly successful on that.
Brady 1:20:14 I am as always astonished by how different you and I is like we're from different planets. Sometimes it is. It is like I would never, like rehearse a talk or presentation or something. I'll just kind of
Grey 1:20:30 what about the talk? I saw you do? Did you did you? Did you rehearse that one? No. No. See that? I don't understand at all. You can't, you can't get up and just by me, obviously, you did. And you did a great, but I couldn't get up and give a talk spontaneously in front of a large group of people. I would have to rehearse that a lot.
Brady 1:20:51 Like obviously, like in that case, you know, I had slides so I knew the order of things. And I knew I knew the points I wanted to hit. And it was just that the slide so was like my bullet point, you know, it's a picture of that, that means I'm going to talk about this, but, you know, I think about it. I do I do most of my thinking in the shower, so I have quite long showers and, and which, you know, gets me a lot of trouble. But so I do think about it. And I think, yeah, I want to do this. And I want to say that and this is where I want to take it, but I would never like rehearse it off, or, you know, pretend to do it. It's amazing. It's interesting, isn't it?
Unknown Speaker 1:21:29 Yeah. I mean, you give you give a good presentation. So I cannot I cannot argue with your method. But
Brady 1:21:34 I mean, thank thank you. But I'm not you know, maybe they would be better or if I if I rehearsed.
Grey 1:21:41 But yeah, but this is this is the same problem, right? Would if you rehearsed for 10 hours, would they be 10 times better? Probably not. Right? So this is a question of, of marginal utility of how much additional time do you want to sink into something before it doesn't make any sense to do so. And so that's, that's one of the reasons again, just going back. That's that's that's one of my thoughts about consciously reducing the amount of time that I spend on writing the scripts to see if that if that has an effect. But
Brady 1:22:14 yeah, anyway, I should say, like we we didn't plan to talk about this at all, obviously.
Unknown Speaker 1:22:20 No, we didn't. And, and I
Brady 1:22:22 know and I know some of these topics are like super, super close to your heart. They are. So I think we need to say for the record, this is, this is not the last word. And you know, there are there's more to be said on this. And I know you would be someone who likes to prepare, I'm sure one day you'd like to prepare and have a few more points about Yes, I don't. So that's it. I know we've kind of stumbled over it. And and you're going to probably agonize now and think, Oh, I didn't,
Grey 1:22:47 I should have said this. I'm going to agonize like you wouldn't believe we have to put Hello Let me see if I can pull this up here. Because where's my where's my review? So we did stumble upon this and Okay, here we go. So, I have been, again, I understand why it sounds like or from your perspective, it sounds like I'm always changing stuff up. And I'm always I'm always tinkering around the edges. But part of it is I've been having this feeling over the last two years, you know, really since I've been self employed, that the, the very robust system that I made for myself as a teacher that worked like a, you know, just a great machine and was was beautiful, has not served me as well, in my self employed time. I've been trying to figure out trying to figure this out. And I have been working on in quotes, a review of the book, getting things done. It's called Getting Things Done 10 years later, because I've been using the system for a decade now. But My book review in quotes is now 2200 words of basically my experience with the system and how I have found over time, it has been less and less effective for me in in this new role where where I'm doing script writing. And so I am this is this is like a big thing in my life that I'm trying to work out by writing down because writing is a kind of thinking and getting it out and saying, okay, where where is where the issues here? How can I get up? How can I get a new system setup, but it really is. From my perspective, it is a very slow, very deliberate process. I'm not always making changes all the time and switching the system up. So anyway, someday that review will be published hopefully soon on my website, but and that that, at the very least will be a much more clear thought through record of my experience. is with this topic. So we'll get there, we'll get
Brady 1:25:03 I'm sure this will come up on multiple occasions. Well, I know there have been some listeners to the podcast who have who don't really like it when we don't like have a set topic that we discuss, and it's a bit meandering. Second, I apologize to those people for this podcast, because you they clearly not gonna like this one. We didn't we were like, normally we have like, you know, we do follow up. And then we have like, what's going on? And then we kind of try and ease into a topic, but we never we didn't get to the topic side of things, which is actually probably a good thing because we hadn't decided on a topic.
Grey 1:25:41 Yeah, that's very kind of you. This is again, we hadn't decided on the topic. It was really my responsibility to come up with something to talk about, and I failed on that very, very spectacularly. So
Brady 1:25:55 that was going to be not our topic was going to be not having topics so We'll have to save the topic of not having a topic for a future episode. Yeah,
Grey 1:26:04 yeah, maybe we were. I was looking over my my desperate list and trying to try to come up with something. But yeah, maybe not having topic is the topic for the future. There is something. There's something we do have to mention that before we wrap up. Yeah. Which was the ending from the previous podcast? Yes. Which I have to give full credit was your genius idea to just cut it off there. And that went that seemed to go down very well. people enjoyed the very abrupt ending.
Brady 1:26:31 Well, actually, it's interesting. You should say that because there's something very important that I'd like to say about that. Yes. That's we should cut.
Grey 1:26:41 I can't do it again, man. I did it once. I'm not gonna do this a second time.
Unknown Speaker 1:26:50 How you can how you gonna end this one then?
Grey 1:26:53 Because, because I'm the first one. When I say, Oh, I had something I wanted to say about that. I really did have something that I wanted to say about that?
Brady 1:27:02 Yeah, but if you tell people now like that, it has to be like, you know? No, tell them tell them you tell me. I tell you what, they better be good. Go. What were you gonna say? What was the thing you wanted to say? But ending the podcast? That's so good. I hope it's well written. This is terrible. No, I don't I don't have anything. That's really what were you going to say? I actually do want to note.
Grey 1:27:30 No, but now now you just you just hear me. No, no, no, no.
Brady 1:27:33 Tell me anyway, even if you cut
Grey 1:27:34 this off, Toby. Okay. The thing the thing that I was going to say is that I too am aware of the of the abruptness of the ending. And all I was all I was going to say was was to say I would really like a little ending jingle sound the same way we have opening jingle sounds. But I have I have never found anything that I Find perfectly acceptable. And so I was just going to say that if in the comments section if we have any audio engineers, among the listeners, that if they wanted to try to come up with a little ending sound, I wouldn't be opposed to that. I would definitely be interested to hear what people but people have
Brady 1:28:17 a song or a jingle.
Grey 1:28:18 Yeah, I guess not the not a song, but just some sort of little sound because it has to be quick, right? Like the podcast is over now. And just some sort of audio marker that it's over in the same way there's an audio marker when the advertising starts. But yeah, but now this feels just terribly. It feels like a terrible
Brady 1:28:37 he's trying throwing it out there. No, we're not gonna have that sound for this podcast. So this one is just going to have to end
Episode List[edit | edit source]
References[edit | edit source]
- "H.I. #8: First World YouTuber Problems". Hello Internet. Hello Internet. Retrieved 11 October 2017.