1 min read

Suggested readings week 34/2023

Everyone wants to control the world's most important company

A large part of the microchips (semiconductor electronic components) in the world are made by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, Limited (also known as TSMC). This is a public company with heavy investments from the local government, and production plants located in Taiwan, China, United States, Singapore, with plans for opening in Europe.

TSMC's clients are corporations producing huge quantities of high-tech devices (Apple), and traditional semiconductor companies. Controlling TSMC means having full control of a range of key elements of our modern life. Stopping production altogether at TSMC would mean going back to at least 100 years ago for a large part of humanity, until alternate solutions might be setup in a hurry.

Here's the history of how this company become so important and its position in the modern world from the economics and geopolitics points of view.

Against Automaticity

An explanation of why tricks like priming, nudge, the placebo effect, social contagion, the emotional inception model of advertising, most cognitive biases, and any field with behavioral in its name are not real

This is a long and not so easy essay on advertising, social and personal brain behaviour, and citing from the author the idea that:

perhaps those phenomena that popular media and official science explain with mysterious psychological effects on weak brains – automaticity – might actually be better explained by rational processes.

There's an amount of criticism in the comments following the essay. But reasoning and citations are indeed great resources on these topics centered around brain and priming.

Reducing inequality

Reducing inequality benefits everyone. So the simple question that this Nature editorial tries to answer is: why isn’t inequality reduction happening?

Earth’s hottest month

The planet has warmed 1.2 degrees on average (July 2023).