This Sustainable Life


586: My Kitty Hawk moment, on the way to a Moon Shot

Ep. 586

More continual improvement: the more sustainably I live, the easier each next step. Business people know about continual improvement, also knows as kaizen, the Toyota Way.

How do you go from the Wright brothers' airplane to a 747? Not in one jump. Continual improvement, part of the process I have to convey more.

I share observations on my week without using the electric grid: about food, climbing stairs, timing sleep to use more sunlight, and more.

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Friday, May 19, 2023

686: Gautam Mukunda, part 1.5: Is Technology Necessarily Good?

Ep. 686
In the first part of our conversation, we start by reviewing Gautam's commitment to sailing, which seemed and still seems a good idea to him. but maybe too much for now. We revisit what motivated him and come up with a new commitment.The second part gets more exciting. Gautam expresses that we need to develop technology to help people who aren't living as well as us so we can help them. (I may not have summarized accurately; listen to his recorded words for his precise meaning.) This view is like waving a red flag to me since I used to think things like that but now see otherwise.We engage in different views on technology, progress, how humans used to live versus how we live today, values, and such.In other words, we openly talk about the underlying beliefs driving our culture and individual behavior we don't question or talk about, but that guide our decisions and behavior. If we can only imagine a world working a certain way, we can't change course. If that course leads to billions of people dying, being stuck in beliefs is a problem.I greatly appreciate a civil, productive conversation on topic that many find inflammatory.The paper on human lifetimes: Longevity Among Hunter- Gatherers: A Cross-Cultural Examination, by Michael Gurven, Hillard Kaplan. Michael Guvern was a guest on this podcast. Quoting from the paper:The average modal age of adult death for hunter-gatherers is 72 with a range of 68–78 years. This range appears to be the closest functional equivalent of an “adaptive” human life span.