Ideas

A Beautiful Modernist Techno-Utopia Landed In New York In 1939 And ‘Opened A Whole New World’ [VIDEO]

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“It’s hard to imagine what a marvel the 1939-1940 New York World’s Fair would have been to its visitors. Still living in the heavy shadow of the stock market crash of 1929, the many people who flocked to the big exhibition found not only bounteous luxuries such as free Coca-Cola and grand spectacles of entertainment, but the unveiling of unthinkable new technologies that promised that a better world lay ahead.”

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Can God Lie? The Scientific Revolution Changed The Answer To That Question

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“‘Can God lie?’ proved an important question for more than 1,000 years because it compelled theologians to consider in the starkest terms the nature of God’s relationship to the world. … These are important questions, but they also proved difficult to answer because the evidence seemed to contradict itself. … Far from being a mere curiosity of the past, concerns about God’s deceptions proved central to the Scientific Revolution and therefore to the modern world.”

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Artifical Intelligence Conquers The Video Game Arcade (This Is Actually A Big Deal)

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“Whipping humanity’s ass at Fishing Derby may not seem like a particularly noteworthy achievement for artificial intelligence” – think of Deep Blue beating Garry Kasparov at chess and Watson walloping Ken Jennings on Jeopardy! – “but according to Zachary Mason, a novelist and computer scientist, it actually is.”

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Hard Feelings: Science’s Struggle To Define Emotions

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“The debate over the nature of emotion has been reinvigorated in recent years. While it would be easy to paint the argument as two-sided – pro-universality versus anti-universality, or Ekman’s cronies versus his critics – I found that everyone I spoke to for this article thinks about emotion a little differently.”

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Beyond The Turing Test: Artificial Intelligence Will Never Be Human Intelligence

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“Some insist that ‘hard A.I.’ (with human-level intelligence) can never exist, while others conclude that it is inevitable. But in many cases these debates may be missing the real point of what it means to live and think with forms of synthetic intelligence very different from our own. … A mature A.I. is not necessarily a humanlike intelligence, or one that is at our disposal.”

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Are Humans Smarter Than They Were 100 Years Ago? Here’s The Evidence

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“Our improved ability to reason abstractly may also be the result of the spread of scientific thinking-reason, rationality, empiricism, skepticism. Thinking like a scientist means employing all our faculties to overcome our emotional, subjective, and instinctual brains to better understand the true nature of not only the physical and biological worlds, but the social world (politics and economics) and the moral world (abstracting how other people should be treated) as well.”

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Fifty Years Ago, Britain’s Only White Paper On The Arts Suggested Daily Engagement – Did It Work?

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“The good news is that the arts are a significant contributor to the economy; the bad is that culture and creativity are being erased from the classroom, and that audiences for the arts are substantially white, middle class, affluent and well educated. Worryingly, there is a downward trend in participation.”

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What Is Acting, Really?

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“Certainly impersonation has long been part of the acting tradition, and the skill required in building a character from the outside in is equal to the skill that builds a character from the inside out. My question instead is why the outside-in version, particularly when it involves miming an extreme ailment or an actual person, has become the default for Oscar voters.”

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Dear Movie Studios: How About Bundling All Of The Oscar Nominees Into One Streaming Package?

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“It isn’t hard to imagine someone downloading a best picture bundle and plowing through two or three movies a night the week leading up to the Oscars. The proposition has the added bonus of heightening interest in the broadcast, thus driving viewers to it and perhaps sparking their interest in other nominees, creating a theoretical virtuous cycle.”

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Clinging To Timelessness In A Changing Cosmos

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“Traditional science has little to offer our longing for permanence, leading many to disenchantment, says commentator Marcelo Gleiser. Can we be scientific and satisfy our desire for transcendence?”

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Why Does The Idea Of Multiple Universes Get Any Credibility From Scientists Whatsoever?

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“[The hypothesis] is unlikely to be true, … [and] since no one knows how to test it, the idea is perhaps not truly scientific at all. Those are valid criticisms, but the main reason we should hold out is that it is incoherent, both philosophically and logically. There could be no better contender for Wolfgang Pauli’s famous put-down: it is not even wrong. And yet, it attracts both publicity and extraordinarily confident endorsement.”

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Werner Herzog Motivational Posters

Werner Herzog Motivational Posters

“Tired? Jaded? Lacking motivation and energy? Who better to provide you with a pep talk than cinema’s foremost exponent of positivity and general joie de vivre, Mr. Werner Herzog?!”

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Here’s How Your Brain Lights Up On Celebrity Gossip

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“While the students claimed there was nothing especially entertaining about the negative celebrity gossip, a part of their brain known to be involved in the experience of pleasure (the caudate nucleus) was extra active when they heard stories of movie stars doing naughty things.”

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Exploring The Metaphysics Of Love

exploring the metaphysics of love

“Is love an emotion? An experience? Is it a kind of desire? Is it possible to love a fictional person? To love more than one person? Is romantic love fundamentally different from other kinds of love?” A Vancouver philosopher is investigating these questions.

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The Terrifying Neuroscience Of Love

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“Though falling in love is associated with anxiety and stress, this state—in combination with the belief that there may be reciprocation—is also at times accompanied by intensely pleasant emotions. These emotions arise from an underlying brain chemistry that resembles those triggered by cocaine use.”

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Scientists Wonder: How Does The Brain Figure Out How To Read (Here’s What We Know So Far)

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“You know where the color of your eyes came from, your facial features, your hair, your height. Maybe even your personality — I’m stubborn like mom, sloppy like dad. But what we’re trying to do is find out, by looking at brain networks and accounting for everything in the environment, is where your reading ability originates.”

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Study: Taking Art Lessons Alters The Brain

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“Taking an introductory class in painting or drawing literally alters students’ brains. What’s more, these training-induced changes didn’t only improve the fine motor control needed for sophisticated sketching; they also boosted the students’ creative thinking.”

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