Since some folks have read this as me being against illegibility - I really wasn't arguing that, as much as saying we should help those who work in such illegible jobs to hopefully have a more legible career track record.

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"measured any way you like"

This does seem to be the challenge, no? considering how difficult counterfactuals are...

Would thay have made it regardless of funding? what if applying for a grant for X kept someone doing X long past the time they realised it wasn't a good idea? etc.

Maybe the existence of track records makes everyone much more conservative, and less open to illegible talent. But then we just come back to "random funding", which I grow more and more sympathetic to each day.

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