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Razib Khan's Unsupervised Learning

Feb 20, 2021

This week’s guests made time to chat at a moment’s notice over the last 24 hours as the luckiest of us are just beginning to get back to normal life (though many here remain without water even after power was restored). This is very much a rough draft of history, not my usual evergreen type of content. I’m learning something new daily and I hope you’ll get something out of it, too.

My guests:

  • Jon Stokes, a deputy editor at The Prepared. Jon talks about how and why even he was caught flat-footed, even though he has long been a prepper.

  • Gareth Highnam, a scientist in Austin who managed to lose not one but two roofs over his head in a single day, thanks to condo sprinkler systems bursting.

  • Marina Roberts, of Austin DSA and Homes not Handcuffs, talks about how the crisis has impacted the large population of homeless in the metro area.

  • Lisa Mahapatra, a tech worker who recently relocated to Austin from California talks about what it’s like being a new homeowner in a new city in the grips of a local disaster.

  • Finally, I caught up with two friends for a discussion of power grids, supply chains, and American decline: Josiah Neeley, an Austin-based energy analyst at R Street, and of the Urbane Cowboys podcast, and Byrne Hobart, a recent Brooklyn-to-Austin transplant who writes The Diff, a finance and economics Substack.