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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  1. Jeremy Levine said, on May 11, 2009 at 10:39 pm

    Love the name and the reasoning behind it… I’m looking forward to what you have to say.

    • larrycheng said, on May 11, 2009 at 11:46 pm

      Thanks for following. As you can see, I decided to use WordPress – I know you asked me on twitter. The twittersphere was pretty unanimous about using WordPress. It’s not the easiest to get going with, but it’s the most full featured.

  2. FN said, on May 11, 2009 at 10:43 pm

    If I named my blog after a class from undergrad that I remember, it probably would have been called, “Sports in Daily Life in Ancient Rome.” Sounds like you were at picking classes than I!

    Welcome to the blogging world…I look forward to reading and commenting.

  3. Michael Weiksner said, on May 11, 2009 at 11:19 pm

    Ambitious concept for a blog. Perhaps you should reach out to other great thinkers to help contribute, since you’re reaching for a high standard by mentioning Dershowitz, Gould and Nozick!

    Good luck and looking forward to seeing what you come up with.

  4. RogerC said, on May 11, 2009 at 11:46 pm

    Hey Larry. Glad you decided to dive into the blogosphere. I look forward to your posts and the dialogue!

  5. Pierro Marie said, on May 11, 2009 at 11:58 pm

    I just can say the same like Michael Weiksner and RogerC :
    -> “I look forward to your posts”

  6. Cory Armbrecht said, on May 12, 2009 at 12:18 am

    I can’t wait to see the mix of things that you have on here. I love open ended discussions especially. I’m always interested in what goes on in a VC’s world, and if you plan on bringing a broad array of topics into the equation, it could be a very fun read! Looking forward to it.

  7. Apolinaras Sinkevicius said, on May 12, 2009 at 12:23 am

    I am glad you chose to start a blog. Hoping the subjects will not be the standard fare and you will look to cut through BS and deliver the meaty essence.

  8. Dan Shin said, on May 12, 2009 at 1:21 am

    “Thinking about Thinking”… I’m not sure how much of that went on during college, but I know we sure did a lot of “Thinking about Studying . . . Nah.”

  9. Stephen J said, on May 12, 2009 at 7:05 am

    I look forward to the debate, I enjoyed our time blogging together at FV, this should be fun. You have setup a great forum.

    • larrycheng said, on May 12, 2009 at 1:53 pm

      Should be fun – do you have a blog?

      • Stephen J said, on May 12, 2009 at 2:08 pm

        Tracy and I have just installed WordPress at exit-12 dot com and are getting ready to go

  10. Franz Wiesbauer said, on May 12, 2009 at 8:02 am

    Just subscribed to your Blog after TC recommended it on Twitter. All the best.


  11. Ryan Buchholz said, on May 12, 2009 at 8:40 am

    Looking forward to your thoughts, Lawrence. I took that class in part because you had talked it up so much. Indeed it was one of my favorites as well. My seldom-updated blog (see link) also uses WordPress.

  12. Richard Kang said, on May 12, 2009 at 1:44 pm

    Great concept! Looking forward to reading about the various topics and your thinking around them.

    Btw, did you get into the Univ of Michigan?

  13. Alok Verma said, on May 12, 2009 at 9:48 pm

    Larry — looking forward to interesting debates! Should be fun..

  14. Vince Lau said, on May 12, 2009 at 10:21 pm

    Check out my blog …

  15. Ian Smith said, on May 13, 2009 at 9:25 am

    Always interested in insightful conversations, Boston based Software entrepreneur

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    The style of writing is very familiar to me. Have you written guest posts for other blogs?
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  19. 1+1 = ? « Thinking About Thinking said, on September 29, 2009 at 11:52 am

    […] = ? Posted in Philosophy, Pop Culture by larrycheng on September 29, 2009 True to the name of this blog, I had the random thought of how many unique and legitimate answers there are to the […]

  20. […] Thinking.  I’ve written 54 posts in that time, so about 2 per week.  This blog was named after my favorite class in college – which was a multidisciplinary class on philosophy, science, […]

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