June 2024

This newsletter is a collection of things I have found in the last month that I enjoyed, found interesting, or simply wanted to share.

You can follow me more closely at my personal website or if you or someone you know is looking to buy or sell a home, you can point them to my real estate website.

My Goodness, My Guinness

How the Guinness Brewery Invented the Most Important Statistical Method in Science

The Guinness brewery has been known for innovative methods ever since founder Arthur Guinness signed a 9,000-year lease in Dublin for £45 a year. For example, a mathematician-turned-brewer invented a chemical technique there after four years of tinkering that gives the brewery’s namesake stout its velvety head. The method, which involves adding nitrogen gas to kegs and to little balls inside cans of Guinness, led to today’s hugely popular “nitro” brews for beer and coffee.

But the most influential innovation to come out of the brewery by far has nothing to do with beer. It was the birthplace of the t-test, one of the most important statistical techniques in all of science. When scientists declare their findings “statistically significant,” they very often use a t-test to make that determination. How does this work, and why did it originate in beer brewing, of all places?

Learning Lines

How Actors Remember Their Lines

Actors face the demanding task of learning their lines with great precision, but they rarely do so by rote repetition. They did not, they said, sit down with a script and recite their lines until they knew them by heart. Repeating items over and over, called maintenance rehearsal, is not the most effective strategy for remembering. Instead, actors engage in elaborative rehearsal, focusing their attention on the meaning of the material and associating it with information they already know. Actors study the script, trying to understand their character and seeing how their lines relate to that character. In describing these elaborative processes, the actors assembled that evening offered sound advice for effective remembering.


The Drinking Fountain Button is Tragically Misunderstood

When your thumb pushes that metal disc inward, you’re also pressing a button beneath the button that uncaps a spout inside the spout. There’s a seal inside that blocks the flow of water when the button’s sticking out and releases it when you press down. Pushing down moves the seal that normally covers a tiny waterspout inside the mechanism, letting the water through. Then, it’s free to move, fill up the inside of the faucet, and shoot out the fountain at around 0.4 gallons per minute. 

Sounds simple, right? But the genius of the drinking fountain button is that it’s modularly repairable. That whole mechanism is part of a self-contained cartridge that’s easy to remove and swap out.

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Thanks for reading. Have a great month,


Hi, that's me!

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A bit about me: I can be interested in anything, for better or worse. I love photography, travel, golf, and baseball. My latest pursuit is learning the guitar. I write a rad newsletter that I publish monthly.

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