I wrote a bit last time on procrastination. I’m going through a weird phase of change in which my philosophy is evolving rapidly and my general priorities are shifting. I’m pretty sure (well I hope at least) it’s all going in a good direction, but here’s where I am now.
In fall quarter 2011, the Stanford Solar Car team is going to Australia – we’re going to race our car across the Australian outback over the course of about 5 days. The race is awkwardly smack bang in the middle of the quarter, which means skipping either the quarter or two fairly critical weeks. At first I was very much against the idea (going overkill on units, getting high grades, blah blah blah), but now I’m thinking very seriously about doing it. In essence, the two main competing priorities here are academic success and epicness, and in my new view of the world, epicness is high up on the list.
In fact, I think that’s how things should be, certainly for myself: my job satisfaction / utility function has large positive partial derivatives wrt epicness at every value of every other parameter. In the words of one of the Solar Car team guys, ‘it’s either going to be epic win or epic fail. But either way it’s going to be supremely epic’. It seems that utility generally has to do with wealth, power and emotional stability, and I think epicness will somehow find a way of satisfying all of the above. Plus epicness is good for street cred (and the resume…)