Recent quotes:

Is diversity the key to collaboration? New AI research suggests so -

The team wondered if cooperative AI needs to be trained differently. The type of AI being used, called reinforcement learning, traditionally learns how to succeed at complex tasks by discovering which actions yield the highest reward. It is often trained and evaluated against models similar to itself. This process has created unmatched AI players in competitive games like Go and StarCraft. But for AI to be a successful collaborator, perhaps it has to not only care about maximizing reward when collaborating with other AI agents, but also something more intrinsic: understanding and adapting to others’ strengths and preferences. In other words, it needs to learn from and adapt to diversity.

Rafat on managing as an Indian

In terms of who my inspiration is, there’s a book that just came out called the “Made-In-India Manager,” about people who grew up in India, came here for college, and are now doing very well—the CEO of Google, the CEO of Microsoft. The book is about how the training provided by the complexity of India, and all of the challenges and chaos, and at the same time being very rooted in culture and family, makes you empathize more and helps you excel in a more efficient work culture like the U.S. That’s the theory of the book, at least, and in many ways I agree.

How to feed your gut | Life and style | The Guardian

If you were to view your microbiome as a garden, fibre would be your fertiliser. Spector reckons that most people need to double their intake. Foods containing the best fibre types for your microbes – AKA prebiotic foods – include artichokes, jerusalem artichokes, leeks, celery, chicory, onions and garlic. Variety is the top priority. “So, it’s not just focusing on one or two of these examples,” warns Spector. “Our latest research is showing that it’s not necessarily someone who calls themselves vegetarian who has the most healthy gut – it’s the person who eats more diversity of plants in a week. Having the same salad every day isn’t going to be as healthy as eating a rich diversity of food with occasional meat.” This could just as easily be a way of describing the Mediterranean diet, with its kaleidoscope of fruit, veg, nuts, grains and legumes.

Diversity Makes You Brighter

When participants were in diverse company, their answers were 58 percent more accurate. The prices they chose were much closer to the true values of the stocks. As they spent time interacting in diverse groups, their performance improved. In homogeneous groups, whether in the United States or in Asia, the opposite happened. When surrounded by others of the same ethnicity or race, participants were more likely to copy others, in the wrong direction. Mistakes spread as participants seemingly put undue trust in others’ answers, mindlessly imitating them. In the diverse groups, across ethnicities and locales, participants were more likely to distinguish between wrong and accurate answers. Diversity brought cognitive friction that enhanced deliberation.

Platforms demand difference

The first thing you notice when you spam your content across platforms is that it’s rare, in 2015, for one thing to do extraordinarily well in more than one or two venues without significant modification. The next thing you learn is that the best way to succeed on a given platform is to write/film/record/aggregate with that platform explicitly in mind. The next thing you learn is that doing so makes that content extremely weird when taken out of context, which makes it incompatible with other venues. A Vine video might work on Facebook, if you’re lucky, but a Facebook video probably won’t work on Vine. Quizzes that explode on Facebook seem strange on Twitter. A tweet might seem powerful and informative in the Twitter timeline, but look small and pathetic embedded in a website; a tweeted joke might do decently on Twitter but function better as a screen-cap on Tumblr, if at all. The article or video or object that functions well across all contexts is either transcendently newsworthy or shocking—and therefore rare—or extensively adapted.

In Venture Capital, Birds of a Feather Lose Money Together (Success Defined as IPO)

They found that the probability of success decreased by 17 percent if two co-investors had previously worked at the same company—even if they hadn't worked there at the same time. In cases where investors had attended the same undergraduate school, the success rate dropped by 19 percent. And, overall, investors who were members of the same ethnic minority were 20 percent less successful than investors with different ethnic backgrounds.
I do think we have a lot of diversity, for four white guys. Believe it or not, we’re pretty different people, with a lot of common ground between us. Diversity with a shared core we think is the most powerful thing that exists, and we would love to add to that on multiple dimensions and would love nothing more than that. I think the group of people we have, we are always looking for a new Benchmark partner all the time, every day. The group of people we have to look at that are the people who have demonstrated leadership in the industry, and it is what it is.
37.1% of the freshmen are U.S. citizens or permanent residents who identify themselves as students of color.