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We need to talk about TED | Benjamin Bratton In our culture, talking about the future is sometimes a polite way of saying things about the present that would otherwise be rude or risky. But have you ever wondered why so little of the future promised in TED talks actually happens? So much potential and enthusiasm, and so little actual change. Are the ideas wrong? I write about entanglements of technology and culture, how technologies enable the making of certain worlds, and at the same time how culture structures how those technologies will evolve, this way or that. So my TED talk is not about my work or my new book – the usual spiel – but about TED itself, what it is and why it doesn't work. The first reason is over-simplification. At this point I kind of lost it. So I ask the question: does TED epitomize a situation where if a scientist's work (or an artist's or philosopher's or activist's or whoever) is told that their work is not worthy of support, because the public doesn't feel good listening to them? What is TED? T – E – D.

Plume BigTruths John Tottenham's Anomic Otiosities | Failed Visionary, Reluctant Icon The Writer's Almanac David Byrne: 'The internet will suck all creative content out of the world' Awhile ago Thom Yorke and the rest of Radiohead got some attention when they pulled their recent record from Spotify. A number of other artists have also been in the news, publicly complaining about streaming music services (Black Keys, Aimee Mann and David Lowery of Camper van Beethoven and Cracker). Bob Dylan, Metallica and Pink Floyd were longtime Spotify holdouts – until recently. So, what's the deal? There are a number of ways to stream music online: Pandora is like a radio station that plays stuff you like but doesn't take requests; YouTube plays individual songs that folks and corporations have uploaded and Spotify is a music library that plays whatever you want (if they have it), whenever you want it. Not surprisingly, streaming looks to be the future of music consumption – it already is the future in Scandinavia, where Spotify (the largest streaming service) started, and in Spain. Artists often find this discovery argument seductive, but only up to a point.

jellyfish eleven :: DON'T STOP Charles Bukowski reads The Secret of My Endurance Why have young people in Japan stopped having sex? | World news | The Observer Ai Aoyama is a sex and relationship counsellor who works out of her narrow three-storey home on a Tokyo back street. Her first name means "love" in Japanese, and is a keepsake from her earlier days as a professional dominatrix. Back then, about 15 years ago, she was Queen Ai, or Queen Love, and she did "all the usual things" like tying people up and dripping hot wax on their nipples. Japan's under-40s appear to be losing interest in conventional relationships. The sign outside her building says "Clinic". Inside, she takes me upstairs to her "relaxation room" – a bedroom with no furniture except a double futon. The number of single people has reached a record high. Many people who seek her out, says Aoyama, are deeply confused. Official alarmism doesn't help. Japan's under-40s won't go forth and multiply out of duty, as postwar generations did. Marriage has become a minefield of unattractive choices. Aversion to marriage and intimacy in modern life is not unique to Japan.

The Rumpus.net Learn Portuguese with Fernando Pessoa (Livro do desassossego- 03) Um homem pode, se tiver a verdadeira sabedoria, gozar o espectáculo inteiro do mundo numa cadeira, sem saber ler, sem falar com alguém, só com o uso dos sentidos e a alma não saber ser triste. Monotonizar a existência, para que ela não seja monótona. Tornar anódino o quotidiano, para que a mais pequena coisa seja uma distracção.

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