The Münchhausen trilemma is a thought experiment used to demonstrate the impossibility of proving any truth there are only three options when providing proof in this situation: circular arguments, regressive arguments, and regressive arguments.
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Cities, community groups, and businesses are using classical music to repel loiterers and homeless. “Baroque music seems to make the most potent repellant.”
The Flat Earth Conspiracy is alive and (doing surprisingly) well.
Scientists are growing lentil-sized Neanderthal brain organoids to find out if there were meaningful differences between human and Neanderthal brain biology.
In 1840, almost every river had a dam, and many rivers had dozens. In total, the twenty-six states that made up the United States at the time had around 65,000 dams. With a population of only 17 million at that time, the United States had one dam for every 261 people.
Thoughts from Andrew Elman on why Social Psychology is getting all the attention for Science’s ‘replication crisis’.
A detailed description of why Stuxnet worm was perhaps the most sophisticated piece of code ever written.
Ragdoll cats have been breed since the 1970s to be floppy and docile like dogs. The sell for about $1000 and are considered a status symbol in China at the moment.
Authors of academic papers with middle initials in their names have higher perceived performance and perceived status.
Deep learning is being used to predict heart and breathing rate of individuals from a video feed.
Ongoing experiments with universal basic income world wide show mixed results. Scaling positive results to society at large appear unrealistic with current models.
Takeaways from Mary Meeker’s 2018 State Of The Internet report: 2017 was the first year in which smartphone unit shipments didn’t grow at all. China is catching up as a hub to the world’s biggest internet companies. Currently, China is home to nine of the world’s 20 biggest internet companies by market cap while the U.S. has 11. Mobile payments are becoming easier to complete. And, more.
At least 98 settlers would be needed assure success in a space journey from our solar system to our nearest neighbor, Proxima Centauri. Proxima Centauri is 4.2 light-years from Earth, a distance that would take about 6,300 years to travel using current technology.
ARTS & CULTURE
When’s the last time you heard someone called a “sellout”? Is the concept of a sellout still relevant today?
“The Gig Economy” — a short dystopian fiction by Zero HP Lovecraft, reminiscent of Borges, White Noise, The Matrix (and obviously Lovecraft). “If we summon a daemon in a virtual plane for any purpose, it will act in its own interest, and it will have no choice but to seek power.”
From “Cash me Outsside” viral fame to Bhad Bhabie viral fame.
The National Safety Council reports that choking is the fourth leading cause of accidental injury deaths in the U.S., and accidental injury deaths are the third leading cause of deaths overall. Here’s what to do if you find yourself choking and nobody is around.
Michael Pollan discusses bringing guided trips hallucinogenic trips into the mental health mainstream.
Is ‘brieing’ — groups of women taking MDMA wrapped in cheese — the Tide Pods?
Many Japanese train stations have installed LED blue light panels designed to calm agitated passengers as a suicide-prevention measure.
Amid America’s swelling opioid epidemic, some state-subsidized treatment facilities have been exploiting patients in court-mandated recovery programs for free labor.
A study suggests that heat “directly reduces the productivity of learning inputs.” Each 1°F increase in school year temperature reduces the amount learned that year by one percent.
Starbucks, which has operated its own mobile payments service since 2011, is the market leader in terms of mobile payments users, beating out Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Samsung Pay.
Japan is running out of single malt and aged-designated whiskeys. Many producers are pulling remaining inventory from the shelves and releasing more clear, non-aged spirits.
Apple has paid out $100b to developers via the App Store.
A Canadian dentist purchased John Lennon’s tooth in 2011 for about $30K and is now offering DNA tests for people who believe they may be the illegitimate son of the late Beatle in exchange for a ‘finder’s fee’ when a legitimate heir is awarded their percentage of Lennon’s estate.
Featured insights from McKinsey’s report on the future of workplace automation. Only about 6% of European and American companies expect their workforces to shrink as the result of automation and artificial intelligence.
How and why and when to get a patent. “Getting patents is a lot like branding. The trick is to call old things new names.”
Indian Horse Relay racing gains traction a new form of extreme sport.
About half of US household income is derived from wealth. And 60% of that wealth is inherited.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics released its first in-depth look at nontraditional work since 2005. Roughly 10 % of American workers in 2017 were employed outside a traditional employment relationship, actually a decline from 11% in 2005. Separate data released by the Federal Reserve this month found that nearly a third of adults engaged in some form of gig work, either as a primary job or to supplement other sources of income.
Some small towns are offering ‘scholarships’ for young people to move back. (Vermont is offering people $10k to move there and work remotely.)
A man allegedly filed a change of address request with the US Post office and changed the address of UPS’ Atlanta headquarters to his Chicago apartment which enable him to deposit checks forwarded to his address.
The Institute for Policy Studies calculated that, setting aside money invested in “durable goods” such as furniture and a family car, the median black family had net wealth of $1,700 in 2013, and the median Latino family had $2,000, compared with $116,800 for the median white family. According to a 2017 study, 38 elite colleges—among them five of the Ivies—had more students from the top 1 percent than from the bottom 60 percent.
For US adults in their 30s, the chance of earning more than their parents has dropped to 50% from 90% just two generations earlier.
Rising vanilla prices have led to violent clashes in Madagascar between villagers, conservationists and gangsters.
Lots of interesting demographic and opinion data comparing urban and rural Americans from Pew: About 60% of rural Americans say the values of urban dwellers don’t align with theirs; 53% of urban residents say the same about the values of those in rural areas. Both rural and urban residents see drug addiction as a top-tier problem in their local community. About four-in-ten U.S. adults live in or near the community where they grew up. Across community types, relatively few say they feel very attached to the community where they live.
China’s new social credit system has so far blocked people from taking 11.14 million flights and 4.25 million high-speed train trips, many of the individuals blocked are among the 8.8M debtors publicly listed by the Supreme People’s Court.
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