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News is bad for you – and giving up reading it will make you happier | Media. In the past few decades, the fortunate among us have recognised the hazards of living with an overabundance of food (obesity, diabetes) and have started to change our diets. But most of us do not yet understand that news is to the mind what sugar is to the body. News is easy to digest. The media feeds us small bites of trivial matter, tidbits that don't really concern our lives and don't require thinking. That's why we experience almost no saturation. Unlike reading books and long magazine articles (which require thinking), we can swallow limitless quantities of news flashes, which are bright-coloured candies for the mind. News misleads. We are not rational enough to be exposed to the press. News is irrelevant. News has no explanatory power. News is toxic to your body.

News increases cognitive errors. News inhibits thinking. News works like a drug. News wastes time. News makes us passive. News kills creativity. Society needs journalism – but in a different way. A New Theory of Distraction. “At painful times, when composition is impossible and reading is not enough, grammars and dictionaries are excellent for distraction,” the poet Elizabeth Barrett Browning wrote, in 1839. Those were the days. Browning is still right, of course: ask any reader of Wikipedia or Urban Dictionary. She sounds anachronistic only because no modern person needs advice about how to be distracted. Like typing, Googling, and driving, distraction is now a universal competency. We’re all experts. Still, for all our expertise, distraction retains an aura of mystery.

It’s hard to define: it can be internal or external, habitual or surprising, annoying or pleasurable. Another source of confusion is distraction’s apparent growth. The second big theory is spiritual—it’s that we’re distracted because our souls are troubled. Needless to say, not all distractions are self-generated; the world is becoming ever more saturated with ads. “The World Beyond Your Head” is insightful and, in parts, convincing. The Moral Bucket List. Photo ABOUT once a month I run across a person who radiates an inner light. These people can be in any walk of life. They seem deeply good. They listen well. They make you feel funny and valued. You often catch them looking after other people and as they do so their laugh is musical and their manner is infused with gratitude.

When I meet such a person it brightens my whole day. A few years ago I realized that I wanted to be a bit more like those people. It occurred to me that there were two sets of virtues, the résumé virtues and the eulogy virtues. We all know that the eulogy virtues are more important than the résumé ones. But if you live for external achievement, years pass and the deepest parts of you go unexplored and unstructured. So a few years ago I set out to discover how those deeply good people got that way. THE HUMILITY SHIFT We live in the culture of the Big Me. But all the people I’ve ever deeply admired are profoundly honest about their own weaknesses. A color-coded map of the world’s most and least emotional countries. By Max Fisher November 28, 2012 A map of the world's countries by most and least emotional.

Click to enlarge. (Max Fisher) Since 2009, the Gallup polling firm has surveyed people in 150 countries and territories on, among other things, their daily emotional experience. Their survey asks five questions, meant to gauge whether the respondent felt significant positive or negative emotions the day prior to the survey. Gallup has tallied up the average "yes" responses from respondents in almost every country on Earth. Singapore is the least emotional country in the world. The Philippines is the world's most emotional country. Post-Soviet countries are consistently among the most stoic. People in the Americas are just exuberant. English- and Spanish-speaking societies tend to be highly emotional and happy. Africans are generally stoic, with some significant exceptions. The Middle East is not happy. What am I missing? 25 Greatest Austin Bands of All Time | Arts+Labor Magazine. First a word about the elephant not in this room. I love the late Doug Sahm, the musician who best epitomized the Austin scene because he grew up in clubs and could play it all, but you won’t find his name in this list because his two greatest bands–the Sir Douglas Quintet and Texas Tornados–were based in San Antonio, not Austin.

This is a ranking of bands, not solo artists and the musicians who backed them up, so although Sahm, guitar whiz Eric Johnson, songwriter Butch Hancock, and other true Austin trailblazers fronted some terrific groups, none made this 25-band salute. When you think about the thousands of bands that have made Austin home since the 1940s, a lot of very good groups did not make the list. While ranking these bands, innovation was an important consideration, as was national prominence. But maybe most of all, these groups were chosen on the basis of how much they contributed to the lovin’ cup of Austin sounds we still drink from. So there was a lot to mull. 1. 3. 4. 5.

Groundbreaking Idea Of Life's Origin. Why does life exist? Popular hypotheses credit a primordial soup, a bolt of lightning and a colossal stroke of luck. But if a provocative new theory is correct, luck may have little to do with it. Instead, according to the physicist proposing the idea, the origin and subsequent evolution of life follow from the fundamental laws of nature and “should be as unsurprising as rocks rolling downhill.” From the standpoint of physics, there is one essential difference between living things and inanimate clumps of carbon atoms: The former tend to be much better at capturing energy from their environment and dissipating that energy as heat.

Jeremy England, a 31-year-old assistant professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, has derived a mathematical formula that he believes explains this capacity. Kristian Peters Cells from the moss Plagiomnium affine with visible chloroplasts, organelles that conduct photosynthesis by capturing sunlight. Courtesy of Jeremy England Wilson Bentley. My First Experiment in Non-Monogamy | Kevin Thornton. The_dimka: codex seraphinianus. In the late 70s italian architect, illustrator and industrial designer luigi serafini made a book, an encyclopedia of unknown, parallel world. it’s about 360-380 pages. it is written in an unknown language, using an unknown alphabet. it took him 30 month to complete that masterpiece that many might call “the strangest book on earth”. codex seraphinianus is divided to 11 chapters and two parts - first one is about nature and the second one is about people.btw five hundred years ago there was another book somewhat like that - voynich manuscript. take a look at some pages (click on image to see a bigger version) amazon sells those for 500 bucks or more you can read about it in wikipedia.i can’t even tell you how much i like stuff like that phat a?

Update 2 i ordered the book and it arrived. it is gigantic in size, thick and large. print, paper and binding quality is superb. they also insert a booklet - decodex, but it is in italian and i have not mastered that one yet. The Brain on Architecture. Looking at buildings designed for purposes of contemplation—like museums, churches, and libraries—may have positive measurable effects on mental state. At a particular moment during every tour of Georgetown’s campus, it becomes necessary for the student guide to acknowledge the singular blight in an otherwise idyllic environment. “Lauinger Library was designed to be a modern abstraction of Healy Hall”: a sentence that inevitably trails off with an apologetic shrug, inviting the crowd to arrive at their own conclusions about how well it turned out.

Much of the student population would likely agree that the library’s menacing figure on the quad is nothing short of soul-crushing. New research conducted by a team of architects and neuroscientists suggests that architecture may indeed affect mental states, although they choose to focus on the positive. I spoke with Dr. Making a cheap tent work. Statistic Brain | Numbers  |  Percentages  |  Financials  |  Rankings | Statistic Brain. First Official Climate Change Refugees Evacuate Their Island Homes for Good. Update: Please note that this story is from 2009. For more recent news & articles, follow us on Facebook. Thank you! The day has finally come, and a critical landmark in the saga of global climate change is occurring as we speak—and hardly anyone has noticed.

The Carteret Islanders of Papua New Guinea have become the world's first entire community to be displaced by climate change. They're the first official refugees of global warming--and they're packing up their lives to move out of the way of ever-rising waters that threaten to overtake their homes and crops. The island they call home will be completely underwater by 2015. This story first broke a couple years ago, when it was first suggested that these islanders could become climate change refugees. On the Carterets, king tides have washed away their crops and rising sea levels poisoned those that remain with salt. The men climbed silently from the boat and into the shallows. Don’t believe the hype – 10 persistent cancer myths debunked. Google ‘cancer’ and you’ll be faced with millions of web pages. And the number of YouTube videos you find if you look up ‘cancer cure’ is similarly vast. The problem is that much of the information out there is at best inaccurate, or at worst dangerously misleading.

There are plenty of evidence-based, easy to understand pages about cancer, but there are just as many, if not more, pages spreading myths. And it can be hard to distinguish fact from fiction, as much of the inaccurate information looks and sounds perfectly plausible. In this post, we want to set the record straight on 10 cancer myths we regularly encounter. Myth 1: Cancer is a man-made, modern disease It might be more prominent in the public consciousness now than in times gone by, but cancer isn’t just a ‘modern’, man-made disease of Western society.

While it’s certainly true that global lifestyle-related diseases like cancer are on the rise, the biggest risk factor for cancer is age. Myth 2: Superfoods prevent cancer Comments. Ramin Shokrizade's Blog - The Top F2P Monetization Tricks. The following blog post, unless otherwise noted, was written by a member of Gamasutra’s community. The thoughts and opinions expressed are those of the writer and not Gamasutra or its parent company. [UPDATE: Alex Dale, the CMO of King.com, has graciously taken his time to clarify a few points related to CCS, and I have edited this paper in a few places using italics to show the updates] Coercive Monetization A coercive monetization model depends on the ability to “trick” a person into making a purchase with incomplete information, or by hiding that information such that while it is technically available, the brain of the consumer does not access that information. Research has shown that putting even one intermediate currency between the consumer and real money, such as a “game gem” (premium currency), makes the consumer much less adept at assessing the value of the transaction.

This additional stress is often in the form of what Roger Dickey from Zynga calls “fun pain”. Skill Games vs. 35 Things Everyone Should Do In Austin, Texas, Before They Die. How K-Cups Might Damage Your Metabolism, Reproductive Health, and Cause Cancer | The Mommy Illuminati. Brew a fresh, steaming cup of plastic This subject has been a big ol’ bee in my bonnet for a long time, especially since the Keurig style coffee systems are now ubiquitous. Much focus in recent years has revolved around the studies of potential dangers of BPA, or bisphenol A, but what about the myriad of other chemicals commonly used in plastics, demonstrated to also have damaging effects in the body?

Now that BPA has been in the spotlight, many companies in the U.S. have been obliged to remove it from their products so that they can market them as “BPA free” and use alternate plastic ingredients instead. However, other chemicals in food-grade plastics have been shown to have even greater estrogenic and disruptive effects than that of BPA. Here is an interesting NPR article and audio concerning how estrogenic chemicals are found in the majority of plastic items found in food and beverage packaging. . -02/18/14 Update- In Canada? . Author: Dr.

Like this: Like Loading... The Vanishing of Sombrero Man - Robert Isenberg. Before he disappeared, Sombrero Man was legend. Now, he lives only in the mind. He was an old man. A flabby man. In summer, he sat on the sidewalk, legs folded beneath him. In winter, he stood beneath one awning or another, shaking a single maraca.

His doll’s eyes stared straight ahead. And he wore a vast black sombrero. He was Sombrero Man. Was he homeless? Then, sometime in 2004, he disappeared. Some say he moved to “warmer climates.” The stories are endless. Oakland is a panhandler’s paradise – if there can be such a thing – and there are plenty of other characters to substitute for him. Not to mention Bill Dorsey, the blind gospel singer who sits on a crate, rocks back and forth, and blasts the Lord’s Song from his organ-like vocal chords. But nobody could replace Sombrero Man.

For that special generation of Oaklanders, Sombrero Man still comes up in conversation. Says one former student: “I still sing his song to myself sometimes. Hicks remembers him being “kind of surly.” I Crashed a Wall Street Secret Society. Recently, our nation’s financial chieftains have been feeling a little unloved. Venture capitalists are comparing the persecution of the rich to the plight of Jews at Kristallnacht, Wall Street titans are saying that they’re sick of being beaten up, and this week, a billionaire investor, Wilbur Ross, proclaimed that “the 1 percent is being picked on for political reasons.” Ross's statement seemed particularly odd, because two years ago, I met Ross at an event that might single-handedly explain why the rest of the country still hates financial tycoons – the annual black-tie induction ceremony of a secret Wall Street fraternity called Kappa Beta Phi. “Good evening, Exalted High Council, former Grand Swipes, Grand Swipes-in-waiting, fellow Wall Street Kappas, Kappas from the Spring Street and Montgomery Street chapters, and worthless neophytes!”

On cue, the financiers shouted out in a thundering bellow: “DUM VIVAMUS EDIMUS ET BIBERIMUS.” I wanted to break the streak for several reasons. The Logic of Stupid Poor People. We hates us some poor people. First, they insist on being poor when it is so easy to not be poor. They do things like buy expensive designer belts and $2500 luxury handbags.

To be fair, this isn’t about Eroll Louis. His is a belief held by many people, including lots of black people, poor people, formerly poor people, etc. One thing I’ve learned is that one person’s illogical belief is another person’s survival skill. My family is a classic black American migration family. We had a little of that kind of rural black wealth so we were often in a position to help folks less fortunate. I remember my mother taking a next door neighbor down to the social service agency. I internalized that lesson and I think it has worked out for me, if unevenly. I do not know how much my mother spent on her camel colored cape or knee-high boots but I know that whatever she paid it returned in hard-to-measure dividends. Why do poor people make stupid, illogical decisions to buy status symbols?

Like this: 4 Habits Of Punctual People.