Thinking in Bets: Book Notes

Tomiwa and the book Thinking in Bets

Thinking in Bets is a book about how to make better decisions when you don’t have all the facts. People often say life is like chess but really it’s more like Poker because there is information asymmetry and luck. Lots of good insights in this book and I would strongly recommend following Annie Duke on Twitter and me @tomiwa1a.

She does such a good job of explaining human behavior using data, stories and humor. My favorite part of the book is that she doesn’t just explain human behavior she also offers practical solutions on how to make better decisions and improve your behavior pattern as you will see in my notes below. I think she could write a really good book on relationships/dating/marriage and it would be popular with both men and women.


Your Primary Job in Relationships is to Increase the Other Person’s Self Esteem

Photo by Cristina Gottardi on Unsplash

If you want to have a happy, healthy relationship, your primary objective should be making the other person feel good about themselves. This idea doesn’t only apply to romantic relationships, it also applies to platonic and professional relationships. 

The idea first came to me from a conversation I had with Laura Desimone on the Atila podcast:


Tomiwa (me): What is one thing you think everyone gets wrong about the education system?

Laura: The number one goal of teachers should be to teach students to love themselves. And that’s it.

Me: But… but… What about grades and getting into a good school or getting a good job???

Laura: That part will come. The only reason why people never reach their full potential is because there’s a part of themselves that they don’t love.

*5 seconds of silence as my mind has just been blown and I pick the pieces off the floor*

Me: *thinks* This sounds great in theory, but how do you actually implement that in practice? 

Laura: Well first you have to teach teachers to love themselves.

*Seconds after picking my scattered brain off the floor. It is promptly blown back up again*


The Soul of Basketball: Book Notes

Tomiwa with Soul of Basketball Book
Tomiwa with Soul of Basketball Book

The Soul of Basketball is about the 2010-11 NBA season from the perspective of Lebron James in Miami Heat, Doc Rivers coaching the Boston Celtics, Kobe Bryant in the Los Angeles Lakers and Dirk Nowitzki with the Dallas Mavericks.

You can find all my book notes here or on my Github book notes repo.

I find the NBA to be such a fascinating league. I have recently become very interested in media, culture and where humans are spending the most attention. The NBA has done such an impressive job of innovating to stay culturally relevant and creating a platform for NBA players to be the most culturally relevant athletes with the most leverage in the modern era.

This is such an important article that I will be writing a full blog post abut it called The Age of The SuperHuman. That URL is currently pointing to an empty space but you can subscribe to my blog to get notified when it’s finished.


The Organized Mind: Summary, Notes and Review

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In a world with so much information how do you sort through all the noise and make sense of what actually matters? Here are my notes from The Organized Mind by Daniel Levitin which aims to answer that question.

For the month of May I read the book The Organized Mind by Daniel Levitin. I actually originally went to the library to read Presuasion but came across this book when I saw the byline/subtitle: “Thinking Straight in an Age of Information Overload”. I sometimes feel like I am bombarded by so much information and keeping my head organized with all this information can be a challenge. I was intrigued to see a book that helped address this issue.


10 Tips to Pay for University or College and Secure the Bag 🤑 💰

Tomiwa and Family at High School Graduation 😁
 before I had over $60,000 in student loans ☹️


Last week Thursday I was at the library doing some work and “somehow” I “mysteriously” ended up on Twitter. I noticed that OSAP was trending and usually when a student loan program is trending, that’s usually not a good sign. 

Sure enough, I clicked on the trending topic and it was trending because student loans were getting cut and people were very upset. People like me were trying to figure out how the heck we were going to be able to pay for school next year. 


Why Andrew Yang Can Become President in 2020

Andrew Yang on Joe Rogan

In February 2019, I was on the Youtube homepage looking for something to watch while eating dinner. Refusing to enjoy the meal until I could find the perfect video to watch, we’ve all been there. When the almighty Youtube algorithm recommended that I watch the most recent episode of The Joe Rogan Experience with Andrew Yang.

I thought to myself: “Yang? Is that an asian name? An Asian man running for president? Has this ever happened before? Interesting, I wonder what he has to say…” and that started my deep dive into the Yang Gang.

First, I should give a couple disclaimers. I don’t really follow politics or read the news and I am not affiliated with any political parties. I am not a Democrat or Republican, neither Liberal nor Conservative. I’m just Tomiwa.

I am also a software engineer and very interested in the technology industry. I try to not just focus on interesting technical and business concepts but also to be very empathetic towards the impact that my work has on broader society. This article is not really about politics but more of an analysis on technology and human nature.


Collision Conference 2019 Review and Is Going to Conferences and Networking Overrated?

Tomiwa (me) at Collision Conference 2019

At the beginning of May my coworker mentioned she had extra tickets to Collision Conference, the “fastest growing tech conference in North America” and asked if anyone would be interested. I messaged her and said yes. So first, I want to thank Jessica for getting me free tickets to the conference. Second, I want to share some of my thoughts on Collision Conference specifically and Conferences and Networking in general.


  • Strong Opinions Weakly Held Disclaimer
  • Are Conferences Overrated?
  • Is Networking Overrated and a better way to Network
  • Why I Respect and Disagree with Ev Williams

Atila Startup Pitch that Won $3,000

3 weeks ago I participated in a pitch competition for Atila hosted by Propel at Western University and LEAP at Fanshawe College.

Here is the pitch for Atila that won us $3,000.

Huge shout out to the team for all their help:

Aurorita, Jotham, Lea and Val , thank you so much.


2018 Year in Review

In Jeff Bezos’ 2016 Annual Shareholder Letters for Amazon, he talks about measuring Amazon’s success as a function of experiments run. Essentially, instead of looking at net income or revenue as a way of tracking progress, you can use the number of new things tried. I think in 2018, I ran the most experiments in my life.

  • In 2018 I finally had the guts to “drop out” of University.
  • Then I decided to come back to University and finish my degree.
  • Started an interview podcast series called Atila TV
  • Travelled through 5 European countries in 10 days
  • Worked an 8-month internship at Properly
  • Started a Youtube channel about software engineering, programming, business and self-improvement

Big Ideas and Lessons Learnt in 2018

The biggest thing I learnt in 2018 was the nuances of human nature and how irrational we can be. I sort of knew that humans can be irrational but seeing how people react in the face of contradicting evidence and how they can create narratives to support their worldview was a bit surprising. Though, in 2019 I would learn that creating these narratives is actually a very important part of human progress, but we’ll get to that in 2019 year in review.


Bain Consulting, RBC Investment Banking, Ivey Business School and Why he declined Goldman Sachs: Paul Okundaye — Atila TV 006

Tomiwa + Paul

Paul is an incoming management consultant at Bain and Company. Before that he was an investment banking summer analyst at RBC after declining an interview at Goldman Sachs and founder of a food delivery company called Dine Easy. He is currently in his final year in the honours business program at the Ivey Business School.

In this episode we talk about why he chose investment banking and consulting and if he was chasing prestige or doing what he genuinely enjoyed. We talked about how he feels when people say “you only got an opportunity because you’re black or because you’re a woman”, why he left banking to join consulting and much more.

Full interview at


  • “You’re doing banking and consulting, the two most stereotypical, cliche business school careers. How much of that is your genuine passion versus doing it for prestige/clout?” — 32:25
  • How do you feel when people say “you only got that because you’re black” or “you only got that because you’re a woman”? — 14:15 [highlights]
  • Why he turned down Goldman Sachs and Moelis interviews to work at RBC — 14:00 [highlights]
  • How he got an investment analyst internship at Scotiabank after just first year in university — 9:36
  • Why he moved into consulting and left banking? — 20:40
  • Banking being a good old boy’s club, having to conform and leave his identity at the door — 20:00