Web Miscellany: Compilation #3

Hello friends, and welcome to another week of web miscellany! How is the weather where you are? We’re hitting record temperatures, so I’m planning to pick up some fresh watermelon from the farmer’s market and then stay indoors as much as possible.

Check out my favorite articles, videos, and links from around the web this week, and feel free to discuss whichever interest you or share some of your favorites findings in the comments!

  1. Add a few extra years onto your life with five simple habits: follow a healthy diet, manage your weight, regularly exercise, drink in moderation (or not at all), and avoid smoking.
  2. If anyone you know has severe allergies, check out this generic Epipen. I picked up a two-pack for $60 at CVS. You do need a prescription for epinephrine, but it’s far more affordable than the $650 cost for a single EpiPen.
  3. 13 Life-changing habits to try and do every single day from Ryan Holiday.
  4. The bosses we remember from Farbod Saraf on Twitter. I’ve only had one great boss during my working career, but he checked off everyone one of these boxes.
  5. My undergrad degree was in pre-med psychology, so I am enamored with The Sushi Scientist‘s Instagram account, where she explains complex neuroscience topics using sushi. Yum!
  6. My boyfriend went to school for fine art with a specialization in animation sketching. His work blows my mind, but he swears it’s nothing more than technique and practice. Thus, I’m fascinated by Ralph Ammer’s short and looping animated sketches which really simplify previously complex ideas. Sketching classes, here I come!
  7. Naturally following from that thought, I am in love with this temporary tattoo capturing the silhouette of a seated women. Beautiful!
  8. Lifefaker.com is a fictitious website where you can purchase social media packages to create a veneered filter of your life to present to others. Packages include: “Look At My Holiday And Cry,” “My Unachievable Body” , “I Just Happen To Live Here” and many more. It’s meant to highlight unhealthy behaviors on social media and their negative impact on mental health.
  9. An argument that we can’t afford the current internet advertising business model. The price of free is actually too high. This model is literally destroying our society, because it incentivizes automated systems that are ingrained with these inherent flaws. “We are getting a first taste of how difficult it is for a world in which humans and computers are intrinsically linked.” I dig deeper into this here.
  10. Speaking of technology, Google just announced an AI product called Duplex, which is capable of having uncannily human-sounding conversations. Listen to samples here. “For now, it’s probably the ethical thing to do make sure machines sound like or otherwise identify themselves as artificial. But when the machines cross the AGI threshold, they’ll be advanced enough to decide for themselves how they want to sound and act.”
  11. Quote I’m pondering from Michael A. Singer’s The Untethered Soul: “People tend to burden themselves with so many choices. But, in the end, you can throw it all away and just make one basic, underlying decision: Do you want to be happy, or do you not want to be happy? It’s really that simple. Once you make that choice, your path through life becomes totally clear.”
  12. Time-lapse video of a kidney bean growing over 25 days. I’m currently watching my bean stalk grow like mad in the backyard, so I enjoyed seeing all of the fascinating details.
  13. Was 2017 really the “worst year ever,” as some would have us believe? In his analysis of recent data on homicide, war, poverty, pollution and more, psychologist Steven Pinker finds that we’re actually doing better now in every area when compared to 30 years ago. The news would have us believe otherwise because they sensationalize everything to keep up hooked and boost their bottom line.
  14. Is our current education model working? “Sixty-five percent of the eighth graders in American public schools in 2017 were not proficient in reading and sixty-seven percent were not proficient in mathematics.” It would seem not.
  15. I’m not a parent, but enjoyed this fantastic review of John Holt’s How Children Learn by Austin Kleon. From Holt: “All I am saying in this book can be summed up in two words—Trust Children. Nothing could be more simple—or more difficult. Difficult, because to trust children we must trust ourselves—and most of us were taught as children that we could not be trusted. And so we go on treating children as we ourselves were treated, calling this ‘reality,’ or saying bitterly, ‘If I could put up with it, they can too.'”

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