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No one is actually average

I studied Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University, one of the toughest CS schools in the country, and I remember what one of the professors said at orientation.

“Most of you were in the top 10% of your class in high school, most of you won’t be 10% of your class anymore.”

Numbers are funny that way huh?

Our year started at around 150 and I believe we lost 30-40 in the first semester. I’m not sure about the size of my graduating class but by merely surviving, I think I was about average. 🙂

When U.S. air force discovered the flaw of averages [The Star] – “… these pilots had already been pre-selected because they appeared to be average sized. (If you were, say, six foot seven, you would never have been recruited in the first place.) The scientists also expected that a sizable number of pilots would be within the average range on all 10 dimensions. But even Daniels was stunned when he tabulated the actual number.

Zero.” As it turns out, no one is average in every way.

My trip down memory lane about college pushed me to visit a friends’ website. He’s one of the few people from my CS class that I still keep in contact with from time to time and he’s still involved in software. His post, lightly COVID related, his home because I run a small enterprise too.

Businesses Should Have 3 Months of Savings? It’s Not as Simple As You Think [DaedTech] – He gets into why these memes comparing personal finances and business finances (and also U.S. Treasury finances) is inaccurate. It’s a relatively deep dive that includes discussion about accrual accounting (and when companies don’t pay) and other aspects that add complexity to the comparison – then he shares his business’ own evolution to provide color.

My personal belief is that businesses exist to make money for their owners and when they stop, they cease to exist. Human beings need to make money to exist and they cease to exist when they stop making money and, as a result, are unable to support themselves. That’s why people need emergency funds and businesses, largely, do not. If a business can make money but just needs a loan, it’ll get the loan. People only get loans when they can show they are able to pay it back.

And before you go, here’s a bit of free entertainment if you don’t have a Netflix account.

Netflix has put some of their educational documentaries on Youtube for free including many of their episodes of Our Planet, Babies, Explained, and other series. It’s not meant to be watched by any particular age group so don’t plop down your 8-yo expecting them to be entertained. There’s a doc on the stock market, racial wealth gap, and others. It’s a good playlist to pick through to see if anything catches your eye.