I am a little ambivalent about podcasts. I have heard of these being spoken as hyper-productivity tools by Type A personalities- “when I am changing my baby’s diapers and planning an alumni dinner, am also listening to podcasts on the stock market“.

This kind of multi-tasking goes against a zen koan that I subscribe to “when I eat, I eat“. Also, have you noticed how often podcasts just become that white noise when you are doing something else? So the jury is still out on this one.

Sergey (Brin)…came out with a concept called 70:20:10 rule- 70% of our time on our core business, 20% on adjacent business and 10% on other. And he proved mathematically, of-course he’s a brilliant mathematician, that you needed that 10% to make the sum of the growth work.

Eric Schmidt in conversation with Lex Fridman

However, I recently came across this series of podcasts by Lex Fridman, where he talks to leading tech & science innovators. These are mostly discussions on AI and I have to be honest, my understanding of most of the talks is restricted to the non-technical aspects 🙂 But there are so many more things you can learn that it’s worth the effort.

Three reasons why you should listen to these great minds

1 Listen to scientific and technical minds while you drive to work, or shell peas…because they show such crystal-clear logic & reasoning. As bonus, they discuss concepts like consciousness , machine-learning, philosophy and occasionally, even the meaning of life (dramatic peal of thunder in the background).

2 Or just get blown by how these geniuses have pushed their natural curiosity to the distant frontiers of human imagination. So many of these great minds also have a very open-source philosophy and while many have had runaway commercial success; their ideas almost always came from trying to find solutions to large-scale collaboration.

3 Sometimes it’s just good to hear them reach the same conclusions about life that your grandparents had back in the farm.

Below is one conversation with Google’s Eric Schmidt. Amongst other things, he reiterates how true happiness is not bought by wealth. He talks about finding what matters to you, and doing it. More often than not, he says, it’s about finding happiness when you serve others. What is sustainability if not exactly that? Doing things that make a positive impact on people far beyond yourself.

Every one of us, from large corporations to individuals are in a position to invest more time and money on making things around us more sustainable. Happy fallowing!

Eric Schmidt in conversation with MIT’s Lex Fridman

Posted by:Dechen

Hi! I write on sustainability, books and simply lying fallow. I've worked for 14 years in various industries, but nothing will mean as much as making a real difference through the advocacy of Sustainability. This is a topic that I think is critical in developing economies like India/South Asia.