FAQ

How would the SF Bay Area be different today if they'd used some of the gold-rush money to build a dike, reroute the rivers, pump out the water and fill it with dirt up to ground level?
So many problems with this question.First: Scale. Do you have any idea HOW LARGE the SF Bay is? 1,600 Square Miles! How on earth do you fill all that in?Second: Flooding. The bay is there because three major rivers (Sacramento, American and San Joaquin) come together here. That plus innumerable other smaller waterways means that you have millions of gallons of water coming into the bay every day. Where would all that water go?Third: The port. The real reason why San Francisco exists is because of the bay. There is really nothing terribly interesting about San Francisco during the gold rush. Except for the fact that it was on the way to the gold fields. The Bay made this possible. In this time period, water was the major transportation mode. Filling in the bay would have been a disaster for them economically.Fourth: Environmental impact. There are several major ecosystems represented by the bay. We did huge damage to them during the first part of the 20th century and are just starting to set them right again.Fifth: Aesthetics. The bay is beautiful and our lives revolve around it. Why on earth would we fill it in?You get the idea.Filling in the bay would have pretty much ended San Francisco as we know it. Perhaps the city would not be there at all.BTW, the opposite of what you ask actually happened. During the ice age you could walk to the Farallons because the sea level was so much lower:
How can you increase your IQ?
The easiest change that is likely to improve cognitive performance is in the area of diet. In particular, a proper ratio of omega 3 to omega 6 fatty acids in the diet is needed for proper cortical brain function. While these benefits have been proven in clinical trials only in young children - incidentally likely accounting for part of the 7 IQ point advantage of breastfeeding, which has also been proven - they likely apply to adults as well.The ideal ratio of omega 3s to omega 6s is about 1:1 or 1:2. These days, most people get most of their dietary fat from vegetable oils which have an unbalanced ratio in the range of 1:20 or 1:30. Getting rid of the vegetable oils in favor of animal fat from pastured animals is ideal. Failing that, getting some omega 3s from fatty fish, the best source, can partially offset the poor fatty acid balance of vegetable oils.For people older than the onset of metabolic syndrome, typically in the 40s, excessive blood sugar levels and swings tends to become an issue. A reduction in dietary carbohydrate intake - less sugar and starch - can help avoid this issue. There may be some additional benefit to going to a ketogenic diet, which provides an alternative source of energy to the brain - ketones instead of glucose - especially as ketones provide more usable energy per unit of oxygen.The next easiest change is exercise. For older adults - again, roughly those of us past the onset of metabolic syndrome - exercise is useful, probably because it helps burn off excessive blood sugar levels and stores. Anaerobic exercise is especially effective since it burns blood sugar less efficiently, and thus uses more of it.Then, there are changes in intellectual habits. In particular, it’s likely worthwhile to do a lot of reading. This is partly because reading builds vocabulary, which contributes to most peoples’ definition of intelligence and also is an element in many IQ tests. In addition, though, critical reading - thinking about what is read and its implications - helps one practice logical and rational analysis. Don’t worry about reading things that you think are good for you, just read what you enjoy enough to think about analytically. Find quiet, undisturbed time to do your reading.Learning math through calculus is probably also useful. Math at these levels - arithmetic through algebra to calculus - is applicable to all sorts of everyday issues. Do you have enough money to make it through payday? Arithmetic. What combination of potluck dishes do you need to make sure everyone has enough main course and dessert at that party? Algebra. Can you make it through the yellow light before it turns red? Calculus. I’m not saying you should break out the pencil and paper and write down equations for all these things, but if you’ve fully learned the math, you should be able to apply the concepts to these and many other everyday problems, even if your goal is not an exact numerical answer.Edit: Finally, there are other people. The more time you spend in the company of people smarter than you are - but not so much smarter you can’t understand them - the more opportunity you have to learn things from them, including thinking habits. Perhaps this one should have been first.Don’t expect an overnight change. Even babies take years to demonstrate the benefits from that initial year of breastfeeding. Keep up the good habits year after year, though, and you’ll likely see some benefits.
How many helium-filled party balloons would it take to lift a 180 pound man?
helium’s buoyant force is 0.0807 lb/(1)ft^3. so if you want to lift 180lbs you need (180/.0807) ~2230.5 ft^3 of helium . thankfully google considers a party balloon to be 1 ft^3 so that 2,230 mark doesn't need conversion. last thing important to think about is the mass of the balloons themselves. at this point. If you use one big balloon you’ll need a little bit more helium, If you use those 1 cubic foot balloons you’ll need a lot bit more.That being said, don’t do it. The FAA will not be happy and only gave the first guy who succeeded a pass because he was first.
If I get a 2bd apartment by myself in SF, how hard is it to find roommates to fill the spots?
This is a great way to find an apartment as long as you factor in at least a couple weeks to find a good roommate.  Although you're going to get a lot of interest, dealing with logistics and compatible personalities is easier said than done.  Another potential obstacle is that you'll be the only one on the lease-- meaning you have to sublease everyone and be on the hook if anything goes wrong.  That said, it's by far the best way to make sure you get an apartment you like.A great alternative to the Craigslist-roommate-search is to attend an A-List Happy Hour, hosted by Apartment List.  It's a weekly open bar in SF with 30+ roommate/apartment seekers all hanging out, having fun, and meeting new people.  Check out The Best Way to Find Roommates for more info on the events and the mobile app!
How does one get invited to the Quora Partner Program? What criteria do they use, or is it completely random?
I live in Germany. I got an invite to the Quora partner program the day I landed in USA for a business trip. So from what I understand, irrespective of the number of views on your answers, there is some additional eligibility criteria for you to even get an email invite.If you read the terms of service, point 1 states:Eligibility. You must be located in the United States to participate in this Program. If you are a Quora employee, you are eligible to participate and earn up to a maximum of $200 USD a month. You also agree to be bound by the Platform Terms (https://www.quora.com/about/tos) as a condition of participation.Again, if you check the FAQ section:How can other people I know .participate?The program is invite-only at this time, but we intend to open it up to more people as time goes on.So my guess is that Quora is currently targeting people based out of USA, who are active on Quora, may or may not be answering questions frequently ( I have not answered questions frequently in the past year or so) and have a certain number of consistent answer views.Edit 1: Thanks to @Anita Scotch, I got to know that the Quora partner program is now available for other countries too. Copying Anuta’s comment here:If you reside in one of the Countries, The Quora Partner Program is active in, you are eligible to participate in the program.” ( I read more will be added, at some point, but here are the countries, currently eligible at this writing,) U.S., Japan, Germany, Spain, France, United Kingdom, Italy and Australia.11/14/2018Edit 2 : Here is the latest list of countries with 3 new additions eligible for the Quora Partner program:U.S., Japan, Germany, Spain, France, United Kingdom, Italy, Canada, Australia, Indonesia, India and Brazil.Thanks to Monoswita Rez for informing me about this update.
As a developer in SF, how do I figure out the best place to be employed at?
Great Question. My advice is always to follow what you feel you are most passionate about, and in that you will succeed (yes cliche, but I truly believe it)For me personally, the most rewarding things are:1. Working with smart individuals2. Potential to Learn New Technologies3. Responsibility and Potential for Accomplishment (and sense of accomplishment)4. Proper leadership and visionNow, take an honest second and decide what your motivations are, what your desires are, and use these as guides for your search.The best thing you can do is talk to people.Why don't you take the most straightforward step, and email or linkedin friend/message some of the CTO's / CEOs of the companies, asking them these questions directly? Even better, why don't you meet with them for 20 minutes for coffee before work, and see if you are impressed? Why don't you ask former employees what the company was like, why they left, and what they thought?Don't rush the process, find somewhere you can flourish, but don't be afraid to take a position if it feels great.Going through the interview process is often a terrible way to find out about the company, because its a sell both ways, and often pretty tense, and before you get time to make a decision you either have an offer or not and the game is up.As far as salary and equity go, by being proactive and meeting with CTOs / CEOs you drive demand for yourself moreso than jumping in line in the interview process, so it doesn't hurt in that department.Also, take a look at angel.co and see what different startups are offering as far as compensation / equity, its not exact but may give you an idea.Good luck.
How can I get more people to fill out my survey?
Make it compellingQuickly and clearly make these points:Who you are and why you are doing thisHow long it takesWhats in it for me -- why should someone help you by completing the surveyExample: "Please spend 3 minutes helping me make it easier to learn Mathematics. Answer 8 short questions for my eternal gratitude and (optional) credit on my research findings. Thank you SO MUCH for helping."Make it convenientKeep it shortShow up at the right place and time -- when people have the time and inclination to help. For example, when students are planning their schedules. Reward participationOffer gift cards, eBooks, study tips, or some other incentive for helping.Test and refineTest out different offers and even different question wording and ordering to learn which has the best response rate, then send more invitations to the offer with the highest response rate.Reward referralsIf offering a reward, increase it for referrals. Include a custom invite link that tracks referrals.