What Skills Will You Need To Thrive In The New “Maker” Economy?

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“The consensus answer was that the emphasis should be on collaboration (learning with others, working with others—both keys to much of the advancement of the maker culture), learning how to think (specific subject matter is less important, with an important exception noted below), and being able to think in a systemic way (seeing how things fit together).”

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A French Philosopher Who Has Happiness (!) Figured Out

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Frédéric Lenoir: “It’s difficult to get what you want. Even if we desire something, most of the time we don’t take the right steps to get it – that’s the problem with pleasure. We want to be happy, but we prefer pleasure. But pleasure and happiness are quite different.”

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Eight Possible Alternatives To The Turing Test

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“The Turing Test, which is intended to detect human-like intelligence in a machine, is fundamentally flawed. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be improved or modified. Here are eight proposed alternatives that could help us distinguish bot from human.”

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Why People Like Food Porn When They Can’t Eat The Photos And May Never Cook With The Recipes

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On a basic level, the appeal of any sort of porn is what scientists call supranormal stimulus, “[an] exaggerated imitation [that] can cause a stronger pull than the real thing.” But food porn “is a visual experience of something that other people can smell and taste … something that, at its best, should manufacture a desire that it can’t satisfy.” So what happens in the brain that keeps people hooked on it?

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Could Artificial Intelligence Help Make Us More Intentional In Our Decisions?

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“Can technology—especially AI—help humans reverse eons of irrational behavior and bad habits that seem hard-coded in our DNA? Ariely believes it can, and believes that it will start with AI-oriented software and tools that can create what he calls an “intention genome” for every individual—tools to help align our unlimited aspirations and goals with our very limited time on earth.”

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Can The Earth Be Conscious? Have We Built Teilhard de Chardin’s ‘Noosphere’?

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Evolution, he claimed, was taking us toward what he called the Noosphere (“nous” is greek for mind) – a global unity of consciousness, a ” ‘thinking’ sphere circling the Earth above the biosphere, which [would comprise all] human reflection, conscious souls, and love.” But “a funny thing happened on the way to the New Age. Humanity ended up building an actual Noosphere (or at least its first draft). It was called the Internet.”

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Do Smart People Worry More?

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“The idea that worriers are cannier than average may just seem to make sense—a worried mind is a searching mind, and smarter people may have the cognitive agility to examine multiple angles of any situation, for better or worse.”

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Study: Creativity Can Be Boosted By Artificial Stimulation

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Artificially activating “cortical oscillations in the alpha frequency band”—a type of brain wave that has previously been linked with creativity—leads to higher scores on a standard test measuring innovative thinking, according to researchers from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill.

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Is This How To Spot Suicide Bombers Before They Bomb?

Is This How To Spot Suicide Bombers Before They Bomb

A team of Montreal researchers “identified the personality traits of those with a ‘psychological readiness to suffer and sacrifice’ his or her life for a cause. The result, a Self-Sacrifice scale, could be a boon to anti-terror operatives across the globe.”

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Unschooling, Or Something Like It, Makes A Return To U.S. High Schools

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“Now, teachers function more as coaches than lecturers and the students are active collaborators. Initially limited to the high school, the framework is now being phased in at the middle school, too. And while the extended-learning program, now five years old, predates the student-centered initiative, officials say it has been key to the turnaround.”

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Building Europe’s New Capital Of Kitsch

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“Walk along the river towards the heart of Skopje, the Republic of Macedonia’s capital, and you’ll quickly find yourself among a host of gleaming, neo-classical buildings, complete with ornate columns and rooftop figures of nymphs. The buildings weren’t there five years ago.”

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Do We Need ‘Hot Takes’ On Issues? Slate Says Yes

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“We’ve experienced ‘take’ creep. The definition has expanded. What first meant a moronic gloss of opinion, slapped carelessly on cheap news aggregation to make it more shareable came to mean any opinion writing, argument, or analysis, or really, any piece of journalism I don’t like.”

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The Cultural Difficulties Of Universal Instant Translators

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“What I’m interested in with these technologies is whether they can get to a place where they become so transparent that it doesn’t feel like there’s a layer of something happening between you and the other person who you’re trying to build a relationship with.”

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Even Five-Year-Olds Can Sense That It’s Sometimes Better To Tell White Lies To People

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“One of the best (and, sometimes, worst) things about being around young kids is how honest they are. A 3-year-old I know, for example, recently (and very sincerely) asked a visiting relative why he has such a fat belly. But at what age do kids start to realize that saying exactly what they think can hurt other people’s feelings?”

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How Artificial Intelligence Is Changes The Ways We See The World

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“Over the last five years, processing power and huge corpuses of teaching data have given computers the ability to detect emotions and moods. Soon, perhaps, they will be able to recognize a sideline scuffle or a player’s shift in attitude. Combine that with sensors gathering crowd reactions, the movement and changes in velocity for players and passes, historical statistics that provide context for the game and a player’s performance—and now AI is starting to encroach on analysis as well.”

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What Does ‘New Age’ Really Mean? And How Did It Spring Up In The Age Of High Tech?

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“It’s worth noting at the outset: New Age is not so much a discrete collection of beliefs as it is a Venn diagram (or a mandala, if you like) of intersecting interests, objectives and motifs. The New Age ‘movement’ is not a single movement at all. The term contains multitudes. … The aesthetic is one of unabashed pastiche. So, too, are the beliefs undergirding it.”

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These 20 Buildings Point To The Future Of Architecture

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“There’s a tremendous variety. Some, like Jeanne Gang’s Aqua Tower, are feats of form—her 82-story Chicago skyscraper is elevated to the realm of massive sculpture by the addition of curving balconies that jut out from the rectangular base. Others, like Neri Oxman’s pavilion made from silkworm thread, give us a sense of how new materials and digital fabrication techniques could be used to build tomorrow’s structures.”

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‘Memetics’ – Towards A Theory Of Internet Memes

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“In an age where politicians campaign through social media and viral marketers ponder the appeal of sneezing baby pandas, memes are more important than ever – however trivial they may seem. … What has happened to the idea of the meme, and what does that evolution reveal about its usefulness as a concept?”

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Why Our Presence On Earth Matters

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“A cognitive scientist and a German philosopher walk into the woods and come upon a tree in bloom: What does each one see? And why does it matter? While that may sound like the set-up to a joke making the rounds at a philosophy conference, I pose it here sincerely, as a way to explore the implications of two distinct strains of thought – that of cognitive science and that of phenomenology, in particular, the thought of Martin Heidegger, who offers a most compelling vision of the ultimate significance of our being here, and what it means to be fully human.”

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Can We Save The Universe From Certain Death?

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“Should life surrender to its sad, entropic fate, or should we (for ‘we’ are the only entities we know of who might be able to make a difference) at least begin to think about postponing – perhaps indefinitely – the death of the only home we have?”

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