My 2019 in review

Projects and Work

  • 😢 I decided to ramp down my time at BlueYard from September. It was a hard choice, as I love both the team and the mission, but I have decided to focus on the climate crisis (more on that below). This year I planned and ran the event “Manhattan Projects against Climate Breakdown” — which I loved, learned a lot, and is very proud of having done. (The whole event here on YouTube 📺.)
  • 🏠 The Ground is really booming — Josefine Hjertström took over from Renée and is a master running the place — both as an organization and as a host making it a second home for rebels, geeks, and people with wild ideas.
  • 👨‍👩‍👧‍👦 Skåne Startups is now at the reign of amazing Vala Zulfiu. It is a gift to have so many great people around!
  • 🤔 I got an award as the “world best investor”… Not taking that title too seriously 😂

Mini-projects & hikes

  • 🍛 I wanted to cook more varied dishes in 2019, and did a great Q1 with 86 unique days. Super-happy and created a sheet to reuse (you can check here for inspiration).
  • 🎧 Did a podcast series, Full Worlds, about world-building as a way to get to talk to amazing sci-fi authors. When I suddenly got to my “end-goal,” and got to interview Ann Leckie (post), I was done and stopped.
  • 🎿 I switched my running for cross-country skiing and signed up for Vasaloppet 2020 (yes — it will be 90 km of love).
  • 🥾 I did some lovely hikes with the kids and wife this year — the super nostalgic was spending a week in my parents' cabin in northern Sweden and hiking the trails I did as a child.

Writing, thinking, and The Climate Crisis

Intellectual endeavors

  1. 🕸️ Lots of AI is just crowdsourcing humans.
  2. 👶 Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) can only happen if AIs are trained in a high-entropy and messy environment because otherwise, it will be specialized.
  3. 🧠 Consciousness feels like an unnecessary evolutionary cost, till you realize the value of stories to gather mass amounts of human (Harari-style), and a story is much more powerful if you are really part of it.

But, then the climate…

Best of the input

  • ⚖️ The Divide was amazing to highlight that the world is not necessarily “getting better” in a Panglossian-Rosling-Pinker way! (I did read Factfullness and liked it as well…)
  • 👂 Permanent Record was a great reminder of the surveillance capitalism that almost had faded from my memory.
  • 🌋 On the same gloomy topic (but not blaming the US for most atrocities) were The Ends of the World, which is a great account of how the world has turned to dust before and how.
  • 🐿️ The review that I wrote that got most highlights were Atomic Habits, and I truly liked it, and it’s tips and tricks (“hacks” I guess it should be called today) on how to get more things done in less time.
  • 🦉 The Second Mountain was a great book about how to find meaning and purpose in the phase of one's life when you have assembled enough skills.
  • 📚 Finally, like the rest of the planet, I loved Educated. I’m not a big reader of biographies or scorning on other’s belief systems, but this book rocked!
  • 🧙‍♂ ️The Name of The Wind (not to be mistaken for Gone with the Wind 🤣)! I am not a big fantasy fan, as I find a lot too archetypical, but this book proved that fantasy can still tell great stories!
  • 🔫 The City of Thieves was like being in a Quentin Tarantino movie, and it was a ride to remember!
  • 🙍🏿‍♀️ Kindred was the only book I forced my wife to read — and she liked it as well.
  • ⛵ And, even if I had to look up so many words (made up or not), I really got caught up in The Scar. (It can be read stand-alone even if it is a steep learning curve.)
  • 🧠 I loved Patrick Collison’s tweet on how to gauge someone’s intelligence and creativity by asking, “What are the best arguments against the principles of your worldview?”
  • 🚶 I agreed with Gurwinder Bhogal’s tweet on how “Human life is gradually turning from a struggle against suffering into a struggle against pleasure.”
  • 🙈 I laughed and agreed with @kramski’s tweet, “I love how being an adult is just saying ‘But after this week things will slow down a bit again’ to yourself until you die.

Endnote

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Hampus Jakobsson

Hampus Jakobsson

Vegetarian, stoic, founder & investor. Father of three. Malmö/Sweden. Twitter @hajak.