Thursday assorted links

1. Alice Evans podcast with Daron Acemoglu.

2. The Queen has someone to wear in her shoes.

3. Scott Aaronson explains quantum supremacy to NYT readers.

4. “The other day I was considering the purchase of a double LP when a thought crossed my mind – how many times would I need people to stream my music on Spotify to pay for this double LP?

The estimated answer turned out to be 8,459.”  Link here.

5. Reid Hofman interviews Patrick Collison.

6. Japanese Halloween costumes.


1. I'm always annoyed when someone sends an email about some transaction I'm working on and asks that I call her without including contact information. Is the sender so important I'm supposed to have it? I'm equally annoyed when I'm linked to a web site of somebody who I don't know and the web site has no information about the host. Is the host so important I'm supposed to know? Alice Evans. Who is Alice Evans? The link has lots of information about Acemoglu but nothing about Ms. Evans. Annoying. Why would I listen to an interview by someone I don't know?

5. They don't need an introduction.

If you know Daron, then does it matter if you don't know who the other person is? I don't even know 80% of Tyler's guests but I know and trust Tyler to do a good job.

6. I saw those earlier. via the boredpanda story.

I think I might be "guy who can't decide between small and medium package of unground black pepper."

#4. 95% of blog posts about music are actually about how unfair it is that the writer can't make a living at it. Speculation: if an equal amount of effort was put into the MUSIC ITSELF, might not the other question resolve itself?

Ok boomer.

Performing the music.

Artists never made money from recordings.

Copyright owners of the music sometimes did make a lot for one composition, but most made money only by getting paid modest amounts for writing constantly.

Music is a lot like sports. It's the in the moment, with very little play of interest a day later. But often exciting moments during actual play.

I had to read the linked to understand that he thought 8,549 streams was small. I mean, if there are only 500 people in the world who like the cut enough to stream it 20 times, he's done. Spotify has 250 million active users. He can't find 500 people who like his music enough to stream it multiple times?

"Speculation: if an equal amount of effort was put into the MUSIC ITSELF, might not the other question resolve itself?"

No, Any career where a large amount of people are willing & capable of doing the work for very low wages generally will trend towards low wages. "Do what you love" is lousy advice for people who have mediocre talent and love popular things.

3. The continuing series of Google attempting to convince the rest of us that Google is doing something more important than digital advertising. Here's another NYT article that is less worshiping of Google's accomplishment: I suspect that Google's breakthrough in "quantum supremacy" is like Google's breakthrough in self-driving cars.

I don’t understand the complaint about Spotify royalties. Can you buy an LP if a radio station licenses your song to play once to 17,000 listeners? (I gather the royalty is 6 cents/play for a college station.) Why is it shocking that the royalties to play on 8,459 occasions to an average of 2 listeners (generously) are small (but an order of magnitude larger than 10 plays to 1700 people on a college radio station).

Who gets paid more? A musician on Spotify or the pro-Drumph Russian bots posting on Marginal Revolution?


Re: 4: One thing that has always annoyed me is that the "Streams" which are counted are individuals listening to that song.

When a song is played on radio, it might have 100,000 people listen to it.

When a song is streamed on Spotify, it might have 1 person listen to it.

The two numbers are not at all comparable, so it seems weird for people to compare them.

#6. Not surprised that a boring people would wear boring costumes.

Just in case Cowen doesn't have a blog post about Halloween, it's an important event in developing economic literacy among youth. What? They learn lessons in both value and trade and the cost of doing business: I would trade many candy kisses for one butter finger. I put a high value on butter fingers, a low value on candy kisses. I recall one house that had fresh candied apples. Few went there: candied apples had a high storage cost and a short shelf life.

The Queen's shoes (#2), boring costumes (#6) - Tyler, you are not aiming high today.

Average isn't over!

#2. I thought it used to be common before WW2 for all upperclass gentlemen to have their butlers wear in their clothes and shoes so that they don't look brand new.

#2: Is the Queen to holy to get athlete's foot? Or too old?

What a shame that the interviews and podcast are not in transcript.

These Democrat low-lifes are attacking the president like a bunch of ducks trying to nibble down the Statue of Liberty. Now they are attacking the Ambassador to the European Union! What's next?

3. Scott Aaronson explains quantum supremacy to NYT readers.

Our abstract tree work. QM works on the tree trunk and generates the roots and branches completing the hologram. QM means the tree trunk does it easier and better then if we had to construct the hologram directly.

The Queen's dresser happens to have the same shoe size and so has taken to breaking in the shoes. Her Majesty does not have a dedicated shoe person nor do I believe the dresser was appointed on the basis of shoe size. The Queen still has to do a great deal of work!

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