“The lines are going to blur, between therapy and enhancement. Between treatment and prevention and between need and desire.” This is a quote by biophysicist and best-selling author Gregory Stock in his Ted Talk ‘To Update is Human’ from 2003. Eleven Years later we arrived to that predicted level with the habit forming device Pavlok. It is a bracelet that gives you electric shocks if you don’t achieve the set goal. The designer, Maneesh Sethi, pledges an enhancement of your daily life by zapping yourself and changing thereby your old habits.
Then and now. Peculiar image of the week.
Handwriting or keyboarding? The personal touch of pen and ink VERSUS the efficiency and productivity of digital word processors.
According to scientist, writing by hand carries particular cognitive benefits by stimulating parts of the brain that key-clicking doesn’t touch. But many educators think handwriting doesn’t matter that much.
For centuries, racial differences have defined the borders between tribes and classes, feeding discrimination and xenophoby. But with the arrival of the global village, interracial relationships are becoming norm rather than exception.
In a matter of years we’ll have mingled ourselves into one giant amalgamated mega-race. But what will we look like? National Geographic built its 125th anniversary issue around this very question, calling on writer Lise Funderburg and Martin Schoeller, a renowned photographer and portrait artist, to capture the lovely faces of our nation’s multiracial future. Meet the people beyond race.
Look at these incredible images of native Africans shopping in a supermarket in Opuwo, Namibia.
Two merging realities, different worlds overlapping inside that modern jungle we call supermarket. The situation is disorienting and absolutely fascinating.
Researchers confirm that modern society technologies and comforts caused the decline of our overall strength.
We don’t need science to realize our lifestyle is sedentary and not active enough. What we didn’t know is that, compared to our ancestors, our body became weaker and less fit than it used to be 7.000 years ago.
The omnipresence of electronic devices makes them more and more important in daily life. The Thomas Lab of the University of St. Thomas designed a new educational tool, called Squishy Circuits, to play and learn with electric circuits.
In 1983 the video game company Atari sent loads of unsold E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial boxes into the New Mexico desert to be buried in a landfill site. The video game, an adaptation from Spielberg successful movie, was an epic flop. So, Atari decided to destroy any evidence of this infamous video game, hoping nobody would ever find it again.
After 31 years, on April 26, these modern fossils were found in a dumpsite in Alamogordo, US. And of course, there was a film crew there, shooting for a documentary to be shown exclusively on Xbox.
An unsuccessful piece of gaming history became an archeological record.
The premise made by imagined artifacts, such as the Gameboy Bricks and the Modern Fossils Shop, became true: the fossil record of our species will not be distinguished by our bones, but by our technologies.
New technology may revive ancient impulses. In this TED talk Seth Godin argues the Internet has ended mass marketing and that it brings us back to the tribe.
Founded on shared ideas and values, tribal structures may give ordinary people the power to lead and make big change. He urges everyone to start a tribe today.
Inspired by temporary huts of nomadic tribes, designer Abeer Seikaly created a disaster shelter for refugees using patterned fabric. The project, called Weaving a Home, is based on ancient traditions of intertwining fibers and materials to make complex three-dimensional shapes for functional and social needs.
With a series of portraits, called Divine Nature, photographer Holly Wilmeth seeks to capture the encounter between women and nature, symbolized into animal form. “There’s a long history in shamanic traditions and ancient cultures where humans have imbued themselves with the special qualities that animals have and their relationship to the world. Eating a part of the animal, or wearing a part of the animal, or using the animal as a totem deeply permeates us with their special powers. We want to come back to that state of grace where we are aligned with nature as animals are in the right relationship with their environment”. Peculiar picture of the week.
Source: National Georgaphic
While in old nature people build shelters to protect themselves from natural forces like wind and rain, today one has to protect oneself from nextnatural forces like electromagnetic signals, cellphone tracking, closed circuit television, drone attacks, radiation, etc.
The Faraday tent is a personal space that protects you from all electromagnetic signals in your surroundings. The nextnatural shelter was developed by Sarah van Sonsbeek. She also made a handy Faraday bag, which blocks all calls if you drop your phone in it.
Nowadays most people know more logos and brands than bird or tree species.
Go test your own knowledge. Take a look at the leaves and logos above and see how many you can identify without looking them up.
1. How many logos do you know?
2. How many leaves do you know?
3. Which 2 logos were the most difficult?
4. Which two leaves were the most difficult?
Answers after the jump. Read more »
For most of history, poliomyelitis was a relatively unremarkable disease – it caused paralysis and occasionally death, but only in a tiny fraction of those infected. It was essentially unknown in infants and adults, and usually only caused mild symptoms in children. This all changed in the early 1900s, when the disease mysteriously transformed into an epidemic, killing many and maiming many more, even among the supposedly ‘protected’ populations of adults and babies.
Deadly recurrences of polio became a fact of life in developed countries, particularly in cities during the summer. Movie theaters, beaches and swimming pools were closed; families fled to the countryside when the weather got warm. Clearly something had changed, but what could cause a mild disease to turn into a killer all but overnight? The secret lies, paradoxically, in our better understanding of sanitation.
It’s an old axe that you are what you eat, but a growing body of evidence suggests that, in terms of our gut bacteria, it’s really true. Recent research shows that the standard ‘Western’ diet high in animal fat, sugars, and refined carbohydrates fundamentally alters the bacterial ecosystem in our intestines. The bacteria that thrive in the house that McDonald’s built are not only associated with obesity, but may actually excrete waste compounds that cause obesity.
A battle is underway between designers and engineers; at stake is the design of our technological future. It rages subtly like a moorland fire. Koert van Mensvoort adds fuel to the flames, but also offers a solution.
The impact of new technology on our lives is hard to overestimate. These days, design begins at the level of bits, atoms, neurons and genes. 3D printing has become common property, it’s the new bamboo. Augmented reality drapes a layer of information over our existence. Social media are reprogramming the fabric of our society. Your bathroom scale communicates with your smart phone. And the first lab-grown hamburger has been served. Researchers are working on a 3D organ tissue printer to tackle the shortage of donors. The ‘made’ and the ‘born’ are fusing. Nano-, bio-, and information technology generate a new kind of aesthetic and provide new construction kits for our living environment. Meanwhile the vanguard of cultural design is boiling Brussels sprouts.
Before the advent of broadcast sports or animal rights legislation, a night at the pub used to mean one thing: watching small terriers snap the spines of dozens, if not hundreds, of rats. Sporting men placed bets on how many rats a dog could kill in a set period of time. Nowadays, dog breeds bred to hunt rats, rabbits, badgers don’t get much of a chance to exercise their killer instincts. The Ryders Alley Trencher-fed Society (RATS) in New York, however, have figured out how to harness their dog’s inborn talents in order to make a (small) dent in the city’s rodent problem.