12 Great New Podcasts I Discovered In 2017


     

     

I love podcasts. They’re one of my favourite ways of learning. They’re also incredibly efficient as you can listen to them while you’re walking or on the subway. I have my favourites, but I’m still scouring the world for new podcasts. This year has been great in that regard, and while there have many duds, these 12 are excellent: Continue reading “12 Great New Podcasts I Discovered In 2017”

The (Comic) Difference Between “Western” and “Eastern” Mindsets

I’ve often tried to pin down the difference between the western and eastern mindsets. I’ve now found the simplest and best description of the difference. It wasn’t from a philosophy book, but rather a book on comics! Scott McCloud’s classic “Understanding Comics” has a section contrasting American and Japanese comics, which sums it all up. Continue reading “The (Comic) Difference Between “Western” and “Eastern” Mindsets”

3 Things You’re Not Supposed To Talk About (8 min read)

The Tactical Assault Light Operator Suit, or TALOS will be made of liquid armor that can solidify on command.

I recently gave a speech at my bank’s Megatrends conference in Madrid. This is what I said:

1. The US Military

(Who’s the biggest of them all?)
Let me start by asking you:

“What is the largest organization in the world by revenue?” Continue reading “3 Things You’re Not Supposed To Talk About (8 min read)”

My 6 Best Travel Purchases Of 2017 (so far)


I’m on the move a lot whether the commute to work or flights to other countries, so I’m constantly looking for ways to “upgrade” my travel experience. Here are 6 purchases this year that have made a difference: Continue reading “My 6 Best Travel Purchases Of 2017 (so far)”

A Love Affair With the English Language

You may not think that was the best way of describing Vladimir Nabokov’s controversial novel, Lolita, but that it was how he himself describes the book in its epilogue. I read it for the first time recently and I can see why. The language is mesmerising. In fact, it’s so mesmerising that forget the story is about a middle-aged man,a Humbert Humbert, pursuing a 12-year old girl. It is this dissonance that makes the novel shocking to this day.

In the book, Nabokov is able to describe the minutiae of American life in a way few authors have been able to match. He can also be very funny: Continue reading “A Love Affair With the English Language”

Developing Your Five Minds For the Future

There are some ways of thinking that I keep coming back to. One is what the Harvard educationalist, Howard Gardner, calls the “Five Minds For the Future” These are the types of thinking/minds we all need to develop in the modern post-industrial world. The five minds in his own words are: Continue reading “Developing Your Five Minds For the Future”

Every Age With a Famous Writer

I love this beautifully produced book: 100 Years by Joshua Prager. Every age from 0 to 100 years is featured with a quote from a famous writer. Here’s a selection.

14 Even though I’m only fourteen, I know what I want, I know who’s right and who’s wrong, I have my own opinions, ideas, and principles… (Anne Frank, The Diary of Anne Frank)

Continue reading “Every Age With a Famous Writer”

My 5 Measures To Protect Personal Data

There’s so many stories of hacks that lead to major data breaches. The latest is Equifax, the US consumer credit score company, who revealed that hackers accessed 143 million customer account details this year. The data included customer’s names, social security numbers, drivers licences, and credit card numbers! But there have been many more this year including in Europe. I’ve been fairly blasé about these risks, but now I’ve decided to take steps to protect my data. Here are my big  five: Continue reading “My 5 Measures To Protect Personal Data”

My Advice For Twenty-Somethings

I recently gave a speech to new graduates joining my bank. Rather than given a dull speech on the economic outlook, I thought I’d talk about transitions they are facing in the world, in banking and in their lives. The excerpt below is the part on their transition from being students to becoming workers. It could apply to twenty-somethings in any industry. Oh, and if you want the full speech, let me know and I’ll email it over. Continue reading “My Advice For Twenty-Somethings”

My Smartphone Was Resurrected!

There I was thinking whether I should buy a new smartphone or stay with my ancient Nokia when the repair shop called to say my I-Phone was fixed! I had mixed feelings. As my recent blog showed, I was quite enjoying a smartphone detox. But there are some things I really do need a smartphone for.

One is checking train times and Continue reading “My Smartphone Was Resurrected!”