Digestion

Archive for the ‘science’ Category

“How does time perspective shape our lives?” is the question…

Thanks, Adam for this video from @GoogleTalks, through the Authors@Google series.

In The Time Paradox, Drs. Zimbardo and Boyd draw on thirty years of pioneering research to reveal, for the first time, how your individual time perspective shapes your life and is shaped by the world around you. Further, they demonstrate that your and every other individual’s time zones interact to create national cultures, economics, and personal destinies.

I’m bored so I’m running through the latest RCRDLBL free downloads. Here’s what I’m adding:

“Shampoo [Alternate Version]” / Elvis Perkins

“Slow Burning Crimes” / East Hundred

“The Echo” and “Why Not” / Voxhaul Broadcast

“Round N Round [feat 77Klash]” / Bosco Delray

“Pine On” / Obits

And speaking of music – today I was at the bookstore and came across This Is Your Brain on Music: The Science of a Human Obsession by Daniel Levitin. Levitin, a musician turned neuroscientist, reveals the science behind our preferences for music, among other topics such as:

  • Is there a cutoff point for acquiring new tastes in music?
  • What do PET scans and MRIs reveal about the brain’s response to music?
  • Is musical pleasure different from other kinds of pleasure?

This is yet another book I’m adding to my ‘must read’ list!

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I love this image.

Spied on WIRED by Josh McHugh. By the Swiss graphic designer Martin Woodtli. The image accompanies a story on Harvard biologist E.O. Wilson’s forth-coming book, The Superorganism. Given the color and intensity of the image, my first thought was that this WIRED story was specifically about art, a new technology, or music (something visually or tangibly creative). So I was a bit intrigued to read that it was about evolution and the idea of ‘superorganisms’, which, until five minutes ago, I’d never heard of. In a previous book also by Wilson and also Bert Hölldobler, The Ants, it is explored whether “large groups of animals [could] function together as a single entity with distributed intelligence? Did evolution work through such groups, selecting at the group level rather than the individual?”

Aside from sparking controversy and conversation in the biological world, it got web geeks and thinkers talking.

“Cybervisionaries saw in the superorganism an ideal way of describing the networked global brain that they were just beginning to imagine…Wired‘s Kevin Kelly drew on Wilson’s theories for the conceptual framework of the Hive Mind, humanity’s emerging cognitive interconnectedness. Even today, Kelly is writing about the One Machine and the Technium, a neologism he defines as “a superorganism of technology.”

This brings to mind the communication ‘processes’ and power of social networking communities when working as an entity across and outside of the web. Thoughts? I need to read up more on this idea…

Oh yeah. And now maybe I see relevancy of this colorful image. It sort-of symbolizes many (different) strands merging (converging?) into a single mass.

Would love to attend this – 6th Design & Emotion Conference: Dare to Desire. (It’s in Hong Kong, too far for my wallet.)

via future perfect

Yesterday I spotted Mygazines.com via PSFK. This seems like a great resource for people who:

  • are magazine junkies (like myself) – Perhaps you can’t give up any more space in your office/home/bathroom to another stack and it pains you to toss out your 2005 VOGUE collection. Though the physical experience of reading a magazine is lost, Mygazines.com offers the content, including ads (benefit to advertisers!)
  • work in advertising, marketing, media, etc – though the quality isn’t perfect, this might be a handy tool for quick competitor reference (if you work in print)

Basic features of Mygazines include:

  1. browse – choose from 17 categories (arts & culture, home & garden, travel, etc.) And, for specific titles, try searching the sub-categories.
  2. upload – not necessary in order to browse, but helpful for sharing purposes
  3. archive – save an article, entire magazine, or bookmark (Del.icio.us, Digg, Technorati, etc.) However, there seems to be a bug with the saving option. At least, that is my user experience thus far.

When reading a story, actions you can take:

  • zoom (only once)
  • rate
  • comment
  • send/share

I’m using Mygazines.com on Firefox and the magazines pop up in a new window. Zooming is helpful, though sometimes it isn’t the best quality (even when enlarging text, it’s fuzzy). Depending on how careful users are when uploading magazines, the pages may or may not be cut off a bit (or crooked). One very smart feature is the “pages” option, which can be found on the right vertical toolbar, third icon down (specific direction for those of you, like my dear mother, who have difficulty turning on a laptop). “Pages” allows you to go straight to the articles you want to see, versus paging through the entire magazine including ads.

In reference to legality, PSFK writes that though it’s questionable, there is potential. “Mygazines could really provide a useful alternative outlet for publishers looking to reach more readers. When it’s free, your’e going to attract an audience.”

Overall, in my second day of browsing, Mygazines feels useful and fairly user-friendly. As far as the experience goes, it may greatly differ for users who are looking for visual stories (fashion/design inspiration) versus those needing a financial reference in a cut-and-dry article. But, you be the judge, as always.


Image of the day:

a supernova (per Wikipedia, a stellar explosion that creates an extremely luminous object) in our galaxy

supernova

color key:

  • oxygen
  • silicon and sulfur
  • magnesium

Even after a star dies, it leaves a beautiful imprint for us all to see. Thank you, Chandra X-ray Observatory and Wired.com for sharing.


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