Why you won't do the granny shot
Welcome to the Hurt Your Brain internet playlist from July 17, 2016. It's a collection of podcasts, videos, and other links for people who love to learn online and are fascinated by the world. Click here to get playlists emailed to you as they come out.
Wilt Chamberlain is one of the greatest basketball players of all time, and he would have been even greater if he stuck with the "granny" shot.
Yes, he actually did the granny shot and dramatically improved his foul shot percentage for part of a season, which seems incredibly bizarre to me–both in that this actually happened and in that I somehow had never heard of this. Hear the full story and why social thresholds are to blame for why he stopped in an all around excellent episode of This American Life.
Including This American Life, there have been some great podcasts and videos recently that have touched on psychology and what makes us who we are. I highlighted some of the best below as well as a few things about the UK to help wrap your head around Brexit even more.
YouTube episodes of Crash Course and Sci Show are also recommended viewing for this week, and to get up to speed on what those are and the fantastic creators behind them, check out this Hurt Your Brain blog post: A Crash Course on the Learning Empire of John and Hank Green
This American Life 590: Choosing Wrong, Jun 24, 60 min Learn about: relationships and work from Alain de Botton (who is excellent and runs the School of Life YouTube channel recommended below), why Wilt Chamberlain actually did the granny shot for a bit and then abruptly stopped, and why Trump being so against the typical mold made his rise so difficult for 538 to predict. First quote: Ira Glass -"What's your wife say about all of those?" Alain de Botton- "Look, she's very funny. She's a pessimistic realist. On our tenth wedding anniversary, she dressed in black, and she said it was a funeral for many of her hopes." Second quote: Malcolm Gladwell on Rick Barry- "He doesn't care. The kind of person who would let bad things be said about him in his own autobiography, is the kind of person who would shoot a free throw that other people think looks ridiculous."
Invisibilia Frame of Reference, Jul 8, 60 min Learn about: how your frame of reference on life will change how you look at everything, what it's like to get a brief glimpse into the world of nuanced emotion as someone with Aspergers, and what it's like to process modern racism when you have a parent who grew up in much more extreme circumstances. Quote: "This is the story of how Kim was given a window by that magnet into the world that she couldn't see and how that changed her. Now, it was a small window - an only-90-minutes-long window. But it turns out that 90 minutes is more than enough time to unsettle a life because all you need to do to unsettle a life is expose it to a new frame of reference."
99 Percent Invisible 220- The Mind of an Architect, Jul 12, 24 min Learn about: how in the 1950’s, the Institute of Personality Assessment and Research (IPAR) at the University of California, Berkeley, laid the foundation for how creativity is studied today, with it’s pinnacle research being done on a group of the world’s most successful and creative architects. You’ll also learn what the common traits of successful, creative people are. Quote: "Today, there are thousands of self help books and counselors and consultants and websites that promise to help you find your creative essence. They teach you the habits of successful, effective, and creative people. But this idea, that you can study something as elusive as creativity, and learn step by step how to be more creative; it was unthinkable back in the 1950’s."
Planet Money Episode 710: The Brexit Break-Up, Jul 8, 19 min Learn about: what some people who happily voted for the U.K. to leave the EU were thinking. Quote: "I really wanted to hear from the people who voted leave, who voted to ditch the European Union once and for all. And everyone said, oh, well, in that case, you should go out to the seaside."
Crash Course Philosophy #20: Arguments Against Personal Identity, Jul 11, 10 min Learn about: what some hugely influential philosophers like Hume and Parfit thought about what makes you actually you. Quote: "Think about what you do when you catch up with an old friend. The first thing you do is ask what's happened since the last time you spoke. What you're doing, without really thinking about it, is recognizing that both of you have changed. If the changes are big enough, then your friend could seem like a stranger at first. So when it's someone you care about, you take the time to reacquaint yourself with this new person, because you recognize the need to always know the most updated version on that person."
The School of Life What is an Existential Crisis?, Jul 6, 5 min Learn about: a distilled down and animated explanation of what an existential crisis is, as taken from the thoughts of Kierkegaard, Camus, Nietzsche, Heidegger, and Sartre. Quote: "The regret free life exists only in movies and songs. The way to diminish our anxiety and panic is to alleviate the sense that one had the option to choose correctly, but failed. A degree of disappointment is, as the existential philosophers so beautifully admitted, simply the human condition."
CGP Grey Brexit, Briefly, Jul 15, 7 min Learn about: how much the Brexit leave decision will actually be followed through with, from the YouTube master of videos on British politics, CGP Grey. Also, check out this hilarious look at what it means to be English from YouTuber exur1a. Quote: "The UK stands at a path that splits into many futures. Maybe the EU burns herself to the ground due to all her problems and Wales rises from the ashes a mighty Phoenix, maybe the UK gets the worst of everything. Maybe literally nothing changes. Which leads where? Which is the best? It's impossible to know. The U.K can only stand in the fog, speculate, and pick a path."
Sci Show Is Science reliable?, Jun 29, 9 min Learn about: things like p-values, effect size, reproducibility, fraud, and how these all are key understanding how scientists are self correcting towards better research results. Quote: "So yes, there is a replication crisis, and it's been highlighting a lot of problems with the scientific research and publication process, but scientists are doing their best to solve it."
Psychology Today The Golden Age of Autodidacts Learn about: what it means to be a self-directed learner and how to maximize this ability in this age of unlimited information. Quote: "There are several components, but the real shocker is that more of us aren't embracing the current age of access to mastery of any topic. But that may not be so surprising—most of us were taught to be passive learners, to just "get through" school. It's easy to be lazy. The rewards of becoming an autodidact, though, include igniting inner fires, making new connections to knowledge and skills you already have, advancing in your career, meeting kindred spirits, and cultivating an overall zest for life and its riches."
That's all for this week!