Dear friend,

Simple question:

What is your dream in life, and what are you willing to sacrifice in order to achieve it?

Why dreaming is good.

For some silly reason, we are no longer encouraged to dream. We are told to be ‘rational’, ‘responsible’, and we must optimize our lives in order to make lots of money and accumulate power, prestige, etc.

This is my idea:

Your life is short — why NOT dream?

From a rational perspective, I don’t see any good or compelling reasons why one should NOT dream in life.


Is there any downside to dreaming?

Question:

Is there any downside to dreaming?

I think not. With dreaming — it is all upside, no downside. And the upside is infinitely high, and the downside is zero. Thus, from a rational perspective, it is very smart to dream (big!)

Now perhaps a downside to dreaming is this idea of ‘fantasizing’. To me, a fantasy is bad– a fantasy is something divorced from reality, and leads us to having false hopes and dreams.

Now, one man’s dream might be seen as another man’s fantasy. For example, it was Elon Musk’s dream to build an electric car company (TESLA). Another perhaps more ‘rational’ person would say that Elon was delusional and had a silly ‘fantasy’. But Elon did it — he turned his dream into a reality.

First principles thinking

I think one of the most powerful physics concepts which exists (which goes back to Aristotle) is the concept of ‘first principles thinking‘. The concept is this:

Don’t ask what is probable or not, simply ask what is possible from a physics perspective.

For example, it is POSSIBLE for us to travel to Mars. Now whether it will be ‘affordable’ or ‘practical’ or not is another story. But first principles thinking tells us, “Yes, from a physics perspective, almost anything is possible.”

Physics is optimistic

This is why I like to study and think about physics a lot — it empowers us! Physics is naturally optimistic, and forward-looking. Physics tells us,

Anything is possible (in the physical realm). All you need is some ingenuity, hustle, and the ambition to dream big!

What makes human intelligence unique?

The great thing with human intelligence is this:

We have the ability to dream up of things which don’t yet exist.

Robots and AI are unable to dream (even of electric sheep). Thus, I think it is our duty as human beings to dream big, and to hustle hard to turn our dreams into a reality.


ERIC KIM’S DREAM

In the past, I had a lot of dreams, and I accomplished all of them. My dreams included traveling the world, buying a Leica camera, making a living from my passion (photography and blogging), and meeting the love of my life (Cindy).

Now, I am at a bit of a cross-roads; I no longer have any (immediate) dreams. So perhaps the goal I need is to come up with new dreams!

So for now, this is my (big) dream:

To build a productive, meaningful, and empowering social media network.

This is my dream for ARS — for us to ‘crowd-source’ all of our taps, swipes, and clicks into social good. For us to not just be slaves to Facebook and Instagram for likes. But rather, for us to thrive in a “post-like society” in which we make art for personal empowerment, and to empower other humans (and the future of humanity).

I think social media has the ability to empower, but like in Elon Musk (and my) words,

Social media is ever-so thirsty, yet provides no relief.

Social media is like Tantalus — we are seeking true gratification from the internet and the opinion of others– but the more we reach for it, the further it goes away from us.


What would a productive and empowering social media network look like?

1. Get rid of likes

Well, first of all, we would eliminate the concept of a ‘like’. A “like” doesn’t give you any meaningful feedback — it is like giving your friend a pat on the back without any substance.

I like ARSBETA.COM right now, because it gives real feedback (although still elementary) in the concept of ‘keep’ or ‘ditch’. At least if you upload a photo, you can get honest feedback from others what people really think of your photos.

2. Constructive critiques

I also like the concept that we can provide meaningful feedback (constructive critiques).

In the next few weeks (for the launch of ARS BETA, Version II) we will implement a constructive critique feature. Because while it is good to give a ‘keep’ or ‘ditch’ feedback, many of us want to know WHY others want us to keep or ditch.

3. Meetups in real life

The last part of a productive and empowering social media network:

Meetups in real life (IRL).

It don’t matter how much social interaction we get on the web. It is all vain and empty unless we use social media networks to serve as a bridge to the real world.

I like video games that bind people together in real life. I still think fondly of all the times I spent with my friends going on adventures to the “PC BANG” (PC cafe) where we played Counter-Strike 1.6 together, and Starcraft. We talked shit in real life, but ultimately, we valued the “real life social time” — instead of the virtual time. The video game was just the glue for real life.


Never stop dreaming

Anyways I’m getting off topic.

What is your dream? Dream big. Be foolish. Stay hungry in the words of Steve Jobs.

Never give up on your dream.
ERIC

Curious what others really think about your photos? For real and honest feedback, upload your photos to ARSBETA.COM to find out >


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