Swiss cows and the environmental future – Veronique Greenwood – Aeon
“The market supports to local agriculture would end, yes. But the farmers would be paid directly by the government for something else. They would be paid for, among other things, keeping the mountain pastures clear of trees, keeping the forests clear of the cows, and keeping the water clean. They would be paid for keeping land in agriculture, for treating their animals well, and for maintaining the social structure in rural areas. It is a way of thinking about the use of the land that environmental scholars and policymakers call ‘payments for ecosystem services’. In essence, the Swiss government rewards farmers for the maintenance of the landscape — both environmental and cultural.
For Billions of People, “Wasting Time” Makes Little Sense – Facts So Romantic – Nautilus
“The idea that “time is money” is taken for granted in many clock-time cultures, including North America. When we want to get something done we budget our time carefully. We read books and download apps to help with time management (which turns out to have similarities with financial management). And if we make an investment of time, we hope for good returns. (See the related Nautilus article by Greg Beato, about how wasting time can actually increase your creativity.)
Event time is very different. Time is not so tangible, and certainly not equivalent to money. Attending to relationships is more important than attending to the clock. Life is allowed to be more spontaneous. Events generally do not begin and end at specific times; they get underway when all of the relevant people are assembled, and they end when they reach an organic conclusion. Event time is standard in most of South America, Africa, and South Asia.”
More than anything, there’s this: it is not merely… – more than 95 theses
More than anything, there’s this: it is not merely the academic job market that is broken. Schuman may be appropriately cynical towards the tenure track job market, but in constantly gesturing towards other kinds of employment, she shows insufficient cynicism towards the broader world of employment. It is not just the academy that is broken. The fundamental system of trading work for material security is slowly dying in a world of capital-biased technological change and automation. But our people, even brilliant, political people like Schuman, have refused to address the fundamental brokenness of our system, because they have been busy identifying chumps, identifying other people who they feel are making bad choices. I think that’s a reflection of a profound anxiety about the future of work and the future of stability. Because before, the factories at the edge of town closed, and the textile mills, and so many good jobs disappeared and never came back. And the travel agents and the photographers, the session musicians and the beat reporters– all “disrupted.” Tomorrow it will be waiters and taxi drivers. Maybe further down the line, doctors and nurses and elementary school teachers. Or, more likely still, the army of people who work bullshit jobs they hate in cubicles across America, unsure of what they’re really doing or why, in constant fear of the next popping bubble, which will result in their destitution. We are all chumps now.
Turns out laughter is more like alcohol than medicine.
Amusing any way you opt to look at it but DO NOT laugh.
“A review of the benefits of laughter in patients by Oxford University has found that far from being the best medicine, it can lead to heart ruptures, asthma attacks and incontinence.”
Turns out laughter is more like alcohol than medicine. Amusing any way you opt to look at it but DO NOT laugh. … http://t.co/is0zASvN6E
— Tom Woodward (@twoodwar) December 19, 2013
The Documented Life – NYTimes.com
Like most things, shades of gray.
“Technology doesn’t just do things for us. It does things to us, changing not just what we do but who we are. The selfie makes us accustomed to putting ourselves and those around us “on pause” in order to document our lives. It is an extension of how we have learned to put our conversations “on pause” when we send or receive a text, an image, an email, a call. When you get accustomed to a life of stops and starts, you get less accustomed to reflecting on where you are and what you are thinking.
Neatline.org | plot your course in space & time
“Neatline allows scholars, students, and curators to tell stories with maps and timelines. As a suite of add-on tools for Omeka, it opens new possibilities for hand-crafted, interactive spatial and temporal interpretation.
Why facts matter — Inside MATTER — Medium
“For me, what’s worse was the fact that so many other websites pointed to the stories, or reported on them, without bothering to check the basic question of whether they were real. The sites I linked to above (Gawker, The Daily Mail, and Mashable) even got to have their cake and eat it too: they published the original unverified reports and then published stories calling them into question.
How Connectedness—Not Distance—Predicts the Spread of a Pandemic – Popular Mechanics
“Effective distance focuses on airports to redefine what it means to be close. Airports are effectively near to one another if the flow of traffic between them is dense, Brockmann says. For example, plenty of people travel from New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport to London, he says, but fewer people fly from JFK to Albany. Effectively, London is closer to New York City than a small city in the same state. The same is true for Chicago. A small fraction of traffic is equivalent to a large distance between locations, and vice versa.
“That’s an intuitive idea, right? But how do you translate that into math? That’s what we had to do,” Brockmann says.
How Connectedness—Not Distance—Predicts the Spread of a Pandemic – Popular Mechanics “Effective distance focuse… http://t.co/vJrkmwN7lk
— Tom Woodward (@twoodwar) December 15, 2013
Skin Deep – Futility Closet
“During the filming of Planet of the Apes in 1967, Charlton Heston noted “an instinctive segregation on the set. Not only would the apes eat together, but the chimpanzees ate with the chimpanzees, the gorillas ate with the gorillas, the orangutans ate with the orangutans, and the humans would eat off by themselves. It was quite spooky.”
Might play into the whole avatar as persona idea . . . .
Education Outrage: OECD should stop pushing math in the name of reasoning and do its job
“I have this odd idea that one should have evidence for statements one makes, especially statements that large organizations make that affect everyone.
Where is the evidence that math teaches problem solving and reasoning? It doesn’t exist.”