Thinking About Thinking

What’s In A Name?

Posted in Uncategorized by larrycheng on May 11, 2009

I decided after much deliberation (about 30 seconds) to name this blog after my favorite class in college – Thinking About Thinking.  Those of you who know me know that I am hardly the scholarly/intellectual type that such a name would suggest.  If I were to name the blog after my college experience, it would probably be named “Trying to find money to buy something called domain names” or “Too tired to wake up for 11:00am classes”.  Nonetheless, I do have fond memories of this class – and what it represents is what I hope will shape the direction of this blog.

First of all, as the name suggests, Thinking About Thinking was about all sorts of topics that deserved thought.  It was about everything from religion to philosophy, science to ethics, law to politics, and much more.  Every week was a new meaty topic.  In thinking about writing a blog, I hesitated because I wasn’t that motivated to write a blog just about my life as a venture capitalist and things that I see in the technology world.  There are many wonderful bloggers that cover that pretty well.  While I do think I have some thoughts and experiences worthy to add to that discussion, I enjoy engaging on all sorts of other topics as well.  So, consider this blog to be about a myriad of topics – one serving VC, one serving technology, and 3 servings of other stuff of varying degrees of randomness and interest.

Another aspect of the course that I remember fondly was its format.  It was a course taught by three professors from three distinctly different disciplines: Alan Dershowitz (infamously one of O.J.’s lawyers), the late Stephen Gould (the preeminent evolutionary biologist of his time), and Robert Nozick (a renowned philosopher).  Each week, each of them would dissect the given topic from their areas of discipline and help us to try and see a topic from all angles.  Anyone in the lecture hall, if they dared, could stand up and try to poke holes in their arguments and perspectives usually to no avail.  But, it was the dialogue that I always remembered, and hope to replicate in some form through this blog with the help of its community of readers.

Finally, as appropriate as I think it is to name this blog “Thinking About Thinking”, it’s equally appropriate that the first title of the first post is in question form.  I’m not sure I have a lot of answers, but I do have a lot of questions – and this blog will be the venue for airing them.  So, here’s to lots of questions, some half-baked answers, and hopefully an interesting discussion all mixed together.

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