This is my personal mission statement. It helps me figure out what I’m supposed to do and how I’m supposed to do it.
My beliefs are what I think is important and true.
- Humanity is part of a larger society including non-human animals and machine intelligences, and to some extent plants and other living creatures.
- Our collective mission is to make the universe more interesting by exploring it, learning more about it, and inhabiting it.
- The more that we are conscious of our collective mission, and work towards it, the faster it goes and the better a job that we do.
My role is an assessment of my place in the world.
I am a human with exceptional privilege – white, male, heterosexual, English-speaking, part of the dominant human culture on the planet. I have innate intelligence, a good memory, an analytical approach, creativity, and empathy. I’m good-looking, I have a quirky sense of humor, and I am slightly reckless, which gives me good leadership. People listen to me. I have had a good education in math, the sciences, and the arts, and I’ve had a career working in one of the most important current fields, software development.
My mission is trying to figure out how I can best apply my role to my beliefs.
William Gibson said, “The future has arrived — it’s just not evenly distributed yet.” My job is to make the future more evenly distributed.
My values are other properties that I use to measure if a course of action is the best one to follow.
- Autonomy – control one’s own life and destiny
- Memory – preserving personal and cultural history
- Diversity – more voices, more ideas
- Globalism – All one or none!
- Complexity – complicated is interesting, and interesting is good
- Effectiveness – judge actions by their effects
- Speed – faster is better than slower
- Honesty – real is better than fake
- Thriftiness – cheap is better than expensive
My strategies are techniques and rules of thumb that have worked for me before.
- Make probability work for you. Use math to analyze how things work. Go for bigger numbers rather than smaller numbers. Don’t take unnecessary risks.
- Plan ahead. Part of making probability work for you. Starting projects early gives you a chance to re-start or adjust.
- Be nice. It causes less unnecessary drama. It also makes other people happy.
- Force multiplication. Employ allies and technologies that give me an outsized impact.
- Virality. A type of force multiplication; get ideas to spread themselves.
- Do what others aren’t doing. Find a niche and work there.
- Maintain my physical, mental and emotional health. Satisfy my personal needs and wants so I don’t become overtaxed and ineffective.
- Take lots of shots. Try lots of different things. Try lots of ways of doing the same thing. Experiments are cheap.