Fill that void in your life with a product.

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities

Fill that void in your life with a product.

Postby LazyNihilist » Sun Mar 24, 2013 2:03 pm

This is one of the most simple and at the same time most insightful/powerful videos I've ever seen.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=irornIAQzQY

Hope it helps a few Bogleheads like it did me.
The only problem is Entropy, leading to the eventual heat death of the universe. [Seen on /.]
User avatar
LazyNihilist
 
Posts: 700
Joined: 19 Feb 2011
Location: 5.82% (xirr)

Re: Fill that void in your life with a product.

Postby VictoriaF » Sun Mar 24, 2013 2:24 pm

It's a lovely video, but I am puzzled how I could use it in my life. My shopping is minimal, and so de Botton's main message does not apply to me. As for the Epicurus's principles, my friends (those I would have liked to share a house with) are spread around the world, and collecting them in one place is a non-starter. Eating every meal with friends is also not practical in the modern office environment where meetings are scheduled around the clock and the working day frequently includes the breakfast time, dinner time, or both.

Perhaps, reading philosophy can make one happier, but it seems that the Epicurus's idea is to discuss philosophical ideas with friends and others. In the modern life, at least from my vantage point, it's virtually impossible to convince people to read something that is not already on their list.

Victoria
Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)
User avatar
VictoriaF
 
Posts: 10959
Joined: 27 Feb 2007
Location: Black Swan Lake

Re: Fill that void in your life with a product.

Postby SPG8 » Sun Mar 24, 2013 2:46 pm

1. Only mention of family is by narrator, and a quick look at wiki tells me that Eppy wasn't married and had no kids, in other words, his life was a non-starter for most.

2. There's always a story behind the story. Epp took his friends out to the country. Even back then, the land wasn't free. What I'm left with is the unhappiness that my father didn't save enough to finance a commune for me and my freeloading buddies.

3. I agree that advertising is evil, so shouldn't there be some a priori rule that prohibits one from advertising that idea?

4. Everything is continually independently rediscovered. Rather than the crude hand drawn money chart, we now know that happiness increases up to $75,000 per person, after which there is a diminishing return.

5. Health care was much more affordable.
Last edited by SPG8 on Sun Mar 24, 2013 7:07 pm, edited 3 times in total.
SPG8
 
Posts: 357
Joined: 29 Mar 2011

Re: Fill that void in your life with a product.

Postby VictoriaF » Sun Mar 24, 2013 2:51 pm

SPG8 wrote:5. Health care was much more affordable.


Is getting a surgery without anesthesia a key to happiness? {an attempt at Epicurean black humor}

Victoria
Last edited by VictoriaF on Sun Mar 24, 2013 3:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)
User avatar
VictoriaF
 
Posts: 10959
Joined: 27 Feb 2007
Location: Black Swan Lake

Re: Fill that void in your life with a product.

Postby LazyNihilist » Sun Mar 24, 2013 3:04 pm

SPG8 wrote:3. I agree that advertising is evil, so shouldn't there be some a priori rule that prohibits one from advertising that idea?

It's probably a necessary evil. What I understand is that advertisers try to associate their product as our 'need'. We should be careful to discern between 'needs' and 'wants'.

SPG8 wrote:4. Everything is continually independently rediscovered. Rather than the crude hand drawn money chart, we now know that happiness increases up to $75,000 per person, after which there is a diminishing return.

Agree with this. Once you reach a certain income, if we are able to live comfortably, then recognizing our financial independence will go a long way in helping us being happy. Rather than constantly being worried about if we have enough money.
The only problem is Entropy, leading to the eventual heat death of the universe. [Seen on /.]
User avatar
LazyNihilist
 
Posts: 700
Joined: 19 Feb 2011
Location: 5.82% (xirr)

Re: Fill that void in your life with a product.

Postby VictoriaF » Sun Mar 24, 2013 3:11 pm

LazyNihilist wrote:
SPG8 wrote:3. I agree that advertising is evil, so shouldn't there be some a priori rule that prohibits one from advertising that idea?

It's probably a necessary evil. What I understand is that advertisers try to associate their product as our 'need'. We should be careful to discern between 'needs' and 'wants'.


I like to distinguish pull and push phenomena, and I favor a pull wherever it's possible.
- If I watched the news or a film on TV it would be a push; when I watch the news or a film over the Internet it's a pull. I can only do pulls, because I don't have a TV.
- If a product is advertised to me it's a push; if I identify a need and seek product information it's a pull. Without a TV, I am exposed to very little pushed advertisement.

de Botton's ideas are pushed, and that would seem to imply that I should reject them. However, the substance of his "advertisements" is to read philosophy, and that's something that I am likely to pull anyway.

Victoria
Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)
User avatar
VictoriaF
 
Posts: 10959
Joined: 27 Feb 2007
Location: Black Swan Lake

Re: Fill that void in your life with a product.

Postby LazyNihilist » Sun Mar 24, 2013 3:13 pm

VictoriaF wrote:My shopping is minimal, and so de Botton's main message does not apply to me.

Or may be it still applies, but you already realized it without having to watch the video. :happy

VictoriaF wrote:As for the Epicurus's principles, my friends (those I would have liked to share a house with) are spread around the world, and collecting them in one place is a non-starter. Eating every meal with friends is also not practical in the modern office environment where meetings are scheduled around the clock and the working day frequently includes the breakfast time, dinner time, or both.

I think we have to look in the context of modern day life. At least as long as we are able to communicate easily with our friends around the world. And as for eating meals with friends, I think it's difficult, but we should try to have meals with friends and family as much as possible. And hopefully not while watching TV or doing some other work.

VictoriaF wrote:Perhaps, reading philosophy can make one happier, but it seems that the Epicurus's idea is to discuss philosophical ideas with friends and others. In the modern life, at least from my vantage point, it's virtually impossible to convince people to read something that is not already on their list.

Completely agree, modern life is so hectic, where the time for discussion and reflection is so much less.
Often, when I have the time, I feel lazy and watch something on TV than make the effort to read something. I hope I read more. Or at least take time to reflect on my life etc.
The only problem is Entropy, leading to the eventual heat death of the universe. [Seen on /.]
User avatar
LazyNihilist
 
Posts: 700
Joined: 19 Feb 2011
Location: 5.82% (xirr)

Re: Fill that void in your life with a product.

Postby LazyNihilist » Sun Mar 24, 2013 3:21 pm

VictoriaF wrote:I like to distinguish pull and push phenomena, and I favor a pull wherever it's possible.
- If I watched the news or a film on TV it would be a push; when I watch the news or a film over the Internet it's a pull. I can only do pulls, because I don't have a TV.
- If a product is advertised to me it's a push; if I identify a need and seek product information it's a pull. Without a TV, I am exposed to very little pushed advertisement.


Interesting concept. I never associated advertising as pull/push. I thought all advertising is 'push'.

Let's say I am searching for headphones on Amazon, and an ad is displayed for a certain brand of headphones on the top search result. Would that be a pull?
vs
If that same brand of headphones came up as the ad on a youtube video. Would that be a push?
The only problem is Entropy, leading to the eventual heat death of the universe. [Seen on /.]
User avatar
LazyNihilist
 
Posts: 700
Joined: 19 Feb 2011
Location: 5.82% (xirr)

Re: Fill that void in your life with a product.

Postby retiredjg » Sun Mar 24, 2013 3:25 pm

Thanks for posting the video Lazy Nihilist. It's a good one. And the countryside and ruins were quite beautiful.
retiredjg
 
Posts: 16290
Joined: 10 Jan 2008

Re: Fill that void in your life with a product.

Postby VictoriaF » Sun Mar 24, 2013 3:29 pm

LazyNihilist wrote:
VictoriaF wrote:I like to distinguish pull and push phenomena, and I favor a pull wherever it's possible.
- If I watched the news or a film on TV it would be a push; when I watch the news or a film over the Internet it's a pull. I can only do pulls, because I don't have a TV.
- If a product is advertised to me it's a push; if I identify a need and seek product information it's a pull. Without a TV, I am exposed to very little pushed advertisement.


Interesting concept. I never associated advertising as pull/push. I thought all advertising is 'push'.

Let's say I am searching for headphones on Amazon, and an ad is displayed for a certain brand of headphones on the top search result. Would that be a pull?
vs
If that same brand of headphones came up as the ad on a youtube video. Would that be a push?


When I make non-book purchases on Amazon.com, I go to the list of the most popular products of that type and start from the top. The #1 is usually good enough if it fits my purpose. That's the pull part. As I read about a product, I occasionally get interested in other products displayed by Amazon, and I had cases when I bought those instead. Technically, they were pushed on me, but intellectually I justified it by having already identified the need, having already come to the place where my need could be served, and from that point on, having ignored the pull/push distinction for the sake of getting an optimal product. If I ever paid more for the product pushed on me by Amazon the difference was negligible.

Victoria
Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)
User avatar
VictoriaF
 
Posts: 10959
Joined: 27 Feb 2007
Location: Black Swan Lake

Re: Fill that void in your life with a product.

Postby momar » Sun Mar 24, 2013 3:36 pm

SPG8 wrote:5. Health care was much more affordable.

What do you mean by affordable?

If you mean it cost less, yes. If you mean you got effective care for your dollar, no.
"Index funds have a place in your portfolio, but you'll never beat the index with them." - Words of wisdom from a Fidelity rep
User avatar
momar
 
Posts: 1359
Joined: 13 Nov 2011

Re: Fill that void in your life with a product.

Postby avalpert » Sun Mar 24, 2013 4:58 pm

SPG8 wrote:4. Everything is continually independently rediscovered. Rather than the crude hand drawn money chart, we now know that happiness increases up to $75,000 per person, after which there is a diminishing return.

This has been repeated a lot here recently. As you have said it you left it unclear - note that diminishing return doesn't mean no return, even after 75k happiness increases with increasing wealth. Current research shows no magical number where that ceases to be the case: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23231724

(edit: He was protecting the lane, kid hit a big shot, what can you do? Tough call on the charge. No horse in the race, but if you're not an Ohio St fan and you weren't pulling for Iowa St, hard to argue you're a college basketball fan).


Sure, but that is true for the underdog in every tournament game - like right at this moment anyone who isn't a Hoosiers fan and isn't rooting for Temple isn't a real college basketball fan.
avalpert
 
Posts: 2935
Joined: 22 Mar 2008

Re: Fill that void in your life with a product.

Postby SPG8 » Sun Mar 24, 2013 5:14 pm

momar wrote:
SPG8 wrote:5. Health care was much more affordable.

What do you mean by affordable?

If you mean it cost less, yes. If you mean you got effective care for your dollar, no.


What I mean is that it's almost impossible to flake out nowadays (incidentally, I'll bet a dollar that Epicurus sent the laundry out just like Henry David Thoreau).

You're never completely disconnected from society, and healthcare is the perfect example. You can't even choose not to participate. If you have a heart attack and somebody calls the ambulance, there will be a bill at the end. There should be a badge you can elect to wear which indicates you're a non-participant. That would go a long way towards establishing the ability to pursue true self-sufficiency independent of wealth.
SPG8
 
Posts: 357
Joined: 29 Mar 2011

Re: Fill that void in your life with a product.

Postby SPG8 » Sun Mar 24, 2013 5:24 pm

-----
Last edited by SPG8 on Sun Mar 24, 2013 7:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
SPG8
 
Posts: 357
Joined: 29 Mar 2011

Re: Fill that void in your life with a product.

Postby avalpert » Sun Mar 24, 2013 5:46 pm

SPG8 wrote:
avalpert wrote:
SPG8 wrote:4. Everything is continually independently rediscovered. Rather than the crude hand drawn money chart, we now know that happiness increases up to $75,000 per person, after which there is a diminishing return.

This has been repeated a lot here recently. As you have said it you left it unclear - note that diminishing return doesn't mean no return, even after 75k happiness increases with increasing wealth. Current research shows no magical number where that ceases to be the case: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23231724


One of my guys has a Nobel...


You mean a Sveriges Riksbank - eh, overrated. Besides, what Kahneman and Keaton found was that one type of happiness they measured didn't increase but another (overall satisfaction with life) did.
avalpert wrote:
SPG8 wrote:(edit: He was protecting the lane, kid hit a big shot, what can you do? Tough call on the charge. No horse in the race, but if you're not an Ohio St fan and you weren't pulling for Iowa St, hard to argue you're a college basketball fan).


Sure, but that is true for the underdog in every tournament game - like right at this moment anyone who isn't a Hoosiers fan and isn't rooting for Temple isn't a real college basketball fan.


Nope.

Indiana is on a redemption upswing, Ohio St is still detestable.

Yikes, well Indiana being on an upswing shouldn't take away from an underdog story of Temple and Fran Dunphy.
avalpert
 
Posts: 2935
Joined: 22 Mar 2008

Re: Fill that void in your life with a product.

Postby LazyNihilist » Sun Mar 24, 2013 6:58 pm

Please let's not discuss sport on this thread. I'm not personally against it, but I think the forum Admins had specific policies about it, and I don't want to get this thread locked.
The only problem is Entropy, leading to the eventual heat death of the universe. [Seen on /.]
User avatar
LazyNihilist
 
Posts: 700
Joined: 19 Feb 2011
Location: 5.82% (xirr)

Re: Fill that void in your life with a product.

Postby LazyNihilist » Sun Mar 24, 2013 7:04 pm

retiredjg wrote:Thanks for posting the video Lazy Nihilist. It's a good one. And the countryside and ruins were quite beautiful.


Thanks retiredjg. The contrast to the idyllic country side against a busy city life does make it quite beautiful.

This video is part of a series of 6, here are the links if you want to watch them
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S24FxdvfOko
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=irornIAQzQY
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yuDAfU3uj6o
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BOjDttEtfGI
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6R8NNLQbQNU
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=280Ev9h_C3c
The only problem is Entropy, leading to the eventual heat death of the universe. [Seen on /.]
User avatar
LazyNihilist
 
Posts: 700
Joined: 19 Feb 2011
Location: 5.82% (xirr)

Re: Fill that void in your life with a product.

Postby retiredjg » Sun Mar 24, 2013 8:21 pm

LazyNihilist wrote:This video is part of a series of 6, here are the links if you want to watch them

I think I will! Thanks for the list. :D
retiredjg
 
Posts: 16290
Joined: 10 Jan 2008

Re: Fill that void in your life with a product.

Postby gatorking » Sun Mar 24, 2013 8:45 pm

LazyNihilist wrote:
retiredjg wrote:Thanks for posting the video Lazy Nihilist. It's a good one. And the countryside and ruins were quite beautiful.


Thanks retiredjg. The contrast to the idyllic country side against a busy city life does make it quite beautiful.

This video is part of a series of 6, here are the links if you want to watch them
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S24FxdvfOko
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=irornIAQzQY
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yuDAfU3uj6o
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BOjDttEtfGI
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6R8NNLQbQNU
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=280Ev9h_C3c


I very much preferred the book that these videos were based on - The Consolations of Philosophy (not to be confused with The Consolation of Philosophy).
User avatar
gatorking
 
Posts: 989
Joined: 20 Feb 2007
Location: Burlington MA


Return to Personal Consumer Issues

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: 555, Jack FFR1846, oakfan52 and 63 guests