One of my favorite questions when I meet somebody new is “what are your favorite Wikipedia topics”?
I’m not really a “researcher” per se, but that’s kinda what I mean by “research interests”.
Humanity at scale
I am fascinated by “humanity at scale”, in other words how people organize themselves, collaborate, and communicate. I frame a lot of human history this way – civilization, markets, etc. I think a lot about how incentive structures affect social structures, and am particularly interested in organizing models that try to manage the accrual of power instead of amplifying it. In this light I have a particular interest in “structure without hierarchy”, and take inspiration from the open source movement.
I believe the biggest variable underpinning progress is how quickly ideas spread.
Perhaps the Wiki subject I spend the most time on is biology. I’ve spent hours reading about things like the evolutionary lineage of ducks, monoamine neurotransmitters, the inflammatory immune response, etc. If I could travel to the future, the first thing I’d want to look up is the human brain.
My head is always in the clouds. I gravitate towards abstract questions and philosophy. I have a particular interest in ethics and epistemology.