Consumption Week 6

My notes from some of the media I consumed this week.

  • A study published on Jan. 26 in Nature Energy reported that these prior versions of yarns dubbed twistrons were highly elastic and could generate electricity by being repeatedly stretched and released or twisted and untwisted.

  • Researchers at the University of Adelaide say they have a solution. According to a report published January 30 in the journal Nature Energy, the team has succeeded in making hydrogen directly from seawater in a process that uses cheap, plentiful catalysts like cobalt oxide with chromium oxide on its surface as the catalyst.
  • “We have split natural seawater into oxygen and hydrogen with nearly 100 per cent efficiency, to produce green hydrogen by electrolysis, using a non-precious and cheap catalyst in a commercial electrolyser,”

  • This allows it to be self-cleaning and repel dirt with the basis of a substance known as crystalline titanium oxide. It is placed on the glass through a roll-to-roll process to allow the solar panels to turn into a super-hydrophilic surface from hydrophobic after it is exposed to ultraviolet light.

  • Enhanced Rock Weathering (ERW) is a promising new method of CDR, in which silicate rocks are pulverized and spread onto farmland soil. The rock particles react with water and CO2 in the soil to form dissolved bicarbonates, which eventually wash away through water systems and river streams into the ocean. Here, they are deposited as carbonates on the ocean floor to be sequestered in the form of sediments for millions of years.

  • Spoiler: China wins.


  • I love this series, imaging the world in 2050 based on the advancement of coming to market of modern technologies. It’s like “how it works” from the future.
  • This covers loads, including future airframes (e.g. blended wing) and fuels (e.g. SAFs).
  • 5/5
  • Can read it in an evening, and incredibly thought-provoking.

  • How to change from the defined benefit pension Ponzi scheme (as the UK is) to a personal contribution style one (similar to Australia), as you can’t change overnight without a generation of unfunded pensions - the Swedish model.
  • At early stage investing, the entrepreneur is more important than the idea. It’s not bad to pivot if the original idea doesn’t work and you have a better one. Investors are more focussed on the return.
  • Luck plays a larger role than most people expect or admit.
  • The paradox of skill: the higher the skill level, the more parity between top performers, so the larger the influence of luck.
  • Had industry experience and interest before starting his company.
  • SBA loan (UK: Start Up Loan) to get started.
  • Followed trends to stay popular, focussed on keeping costs low.
  • For multiple choice questions, the order of options dramatically changes what is picked. The first option is most likely.
  • 3/5
  • Massive Silicon Valley vibes. Build an app, don’t make profit, sell it.
  • Cheap ones are 90% as good as expensive ones.
  • In general, ibuprofen > paracetamol> aspirin.
  • Some painkillers don’t work for some people (e.g. only ~25% of people get good relief from aspirin).