Scouts, Framers, Long Life and Personal Change

10th May, 2021

A brief history of Extra Life: I’m interviewing Steven Johnson about his new book “Extra Life” – all about how life expectancy has grown so dramatically over the last century or so. As you’d expect from Steven the book is fascinating – do drop in (5pm ET Monday 17 May at Politics & Prose, online).

How to be a different person – for some reason I’ve been reading books about changing the way you think (Julia Galef’s very original and thought-provoking The Scout Mindset), changing your habits and temptations (How to Change by Katy Milkman, which is practical and evidence-based although did not contain anything that surprised me) and even changing your personality (Christian Jarrett’s Be Who You Want, whose very premise was surprising, and made me reflect that I do not really want to change my personality). It is great to see what might once have been called “self help” occupied by writers who are precise and care about evidence.

Me on the radio: I was interviewed by Constant Wonder.

Artificial intelligence and mental models: I did an event with the excellent Kenneth Cukier recently; he and his co-authors have a new and fascinating book out called Framers – about the relationship between humans, artificial intelligence, and mental models.

If you missed the FT Weekend, do try to find a copy (or go online). I interviewed Danny Kahneman and wrote a cover story about magic, misinformation and misdirection.

If you bought a copy of How To Make The World Add Up in paperback publication week – thank you so much. I appreciate it.

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