Saturday, September 18, 2021

ArtsJournal: Arts, Culture, Ideas


Is Social Media Like Alcohol Addiction?

To me, it sounds like alcohol—a social lubricant that can be delightful but also depressing, a popular experience that blends short-term euphoria with long-term regret, a product that leads to painful and even addictive behavior among a significant minority. - The Atlantic

Science Works On Explaining How Much Sleep We Need

Although great progress has been made in developing sophisticated models and explaining phenomena such as circadian rhythms, jetlag and details of EEG recordings of the sleeping brain, these advances are belied by the difficulty of developing a general quantitative theory for why we sleep. - Aeon

Researchers Explore What Juices The Echo Chamber

“You really don’t know whether this person making a good-sounding argument is really smart, is really educated, or whether they’re just reading off something that they read on Twitter.” - NiemanLab

Our Notions Of Privacy Are Ancient. Do They Fit In Our Modern World?

The evolutionary biologist E O Wilson once said of the source of human challenges in the 21st century that ‘we have palaeolithic emotions; medieval institutions; and god-like technology’. - Psyche

Reframing Disinformation

“It turns a huge question about the nature of democracy in the digital age – what if the people believe crazy things, and now everyone knows it? – into a technocratic negotiation between tech companies, media companies, think tanks, and universities.” - Irish Times

Are We Looking In The Wrong Places For The Sources Of Disinformation?

The Commission on Information Disorder is the latest (and most creepily named) addition to a new field of knowledge production that emerged during the Trump years at the juncture of media, academia, and policy research: Big Disinfo. - Harper's

The Developing World Is Collapsing Under COVID And Its A Danger To All

Unless the Western world wakes up, and helps out the developing world with vaccines and treatments, we may be facing a situation in which millions, or even billions, of people will feel compelled either to embrace Chinese authoritarianism or to migrate. - spiked

An “Epochal” Decline For NYC?

New York City, the financial and business capital of the world, and until very recently a hub for tourists, may well be the canary in the coal mine that predicts a decline in the very idea of the megacity. - The Baffler

No, Not All Judgments Or Opinions Are Equal

Popular dogmas such as “judgments of artistic value are subjective” and “all judgments of artistic value are equal”, university literature departments have undercut aesthetic education, and given power to the market to decide what is good art. - PopMatters

Our Classrooms In Crisis

At this moment of ferocious contestation over the meaning of the classroom, we might a closer look at what actually goes on there. - Boston Review

Problem: Making AI Addicts

When we look to concrete problems in present-day AI systems, we see other — stranger — ways that things could go wrong with smarter machines. One growing issue with real-world AIs is the problem of wireheading. - The Conversation

Blowback On Productivity

If you accept that increased productivity helps the common good, the question becomes how to reliably achieve these increases. Until recently, the answer to this largely involved optimizing systems. - The New Yorker

Dante’s Purgatory In A Time Of Global Uncertainty

The concept of Purgatory was relatively new when Dante was born. Dante’s conception of Purgatory is remarkably like a wilderness boot camp. Its terrain is forbidding—more like an alp than like a Tuscan hillside. - The New Yorker

How We Learn To Know What We Want

Capitalism promises an endless series of alterations —tiny changes that... don’t amount to change at all. Aesthetic education, where “one suspends one’s current values in the expectation of acquiring better values,” can lead to more authentic transformations. - Commonweal

The Case For All Art Being Ecological

 Works of art are not merely representations of the way things are but function to reveal and evolve a community’s shared understanding. Each time a new artwork is added to any culture, the meaning of what it is to exist is inherently changed. - 3 Quarks Daily

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