The world is complex, far too complex for our human brains. And yet, ...
The world is complex, far too complex for our human brains. And yet, we have no difficulty describing what is happening around us, well, at least to interpret these complex realities through ... simple stories.
We tell ourselves these stories, not consciously, but instinctively, mechanically, impulsively. We can't help but find a common thread , link the actors and events into "logic" sequences. And we do this, even when we look at the clouds, "this one looks like a giraffe that is drinking," or when we listen to music "that melody is cheerful!". We even do that instinctively while looking at basic symmetrical shapes moving around! (You can experiment that by watching the fun v ...
Why should we regulate the wood burning in residential areas? (Air pollution)
Those who suffer from such pollution are in the same situation as before the asbestos scandals. The politicians were also telling them: "we can’t do anything, even if it has been the demonstrated that asbestos is carcinogenic, because no law forbids it."
Asbestos has been banned in the (most) developed countries since the 80ies.
If you can see or smell smoke from your wood heater then you are causing a problem for yourself, your family and your neighbors.
The Australian Environment Protection ...
Will Internet create a better education?
Is Internet one of these new technologies supposed to revolutionize education (such as radio, movies and computers were in their time) ... but that will quickly disappoint us because it merely repeats the way teachers deliver their courses, making them more playful, but without real change?
The previous "revolutions of education" have all failed because what limits learning isn't the means used, but what happens inside the student's head.
But if, instead of just mimicking a teacher (as do videos for example), could internet allowed us to create better teachers? Teachers that will be personalized and who would be able to adjust the content to each student's abilities and teach them exactly what they needs to learn when they are ready for it. If so, these fully personalized digital teachers might be ...
Evolution has no goal, it is a blind mechanism that builds on what is already in place.
The mechanisms of evolution can be difficult to understand because evolution does not follow any defined plans and thus gives rise to adaptations whose paths are sometimes surprising. This video shows an example of this "blind" and "imperfect" evolution : the course followed by the laryngeal nerve in giraffe.
This example clearly shows that evolution doesn't follow the most direct path nor the most logical or effective one... Evolution is a blind mechanism which builds on what is already in place. As long as it's working, it's working!
Learn more: watch a short animation that aims to rectify common misconceptions about evolution such as the "survival of the fittest" or evolution's "goal"...
Finding the courage to question our "sacred values"
Did you know that the word "terrorism" comes from the French word terrorisme, and originally referred specifically to "state terrorism" as practiced by the French government during the 1793–1794 Reign of terror?
The Reign of Terror (1793 – 1794) was a period of violence that occurred after the onset of the French Revolution. The Terror was marked by authoritarian regimes and mass executions of the "enemies of the revolution". The death toll ranged in the tens of thousands ; 80 % of the victims didn't belong to the nobility or the clergy.
Deportations and executions of political prisoners:
These execution will be organized methodica ...
Polluted by woodsmoke, or by our traditions, beliefs and lack of concern for those around us?
We all heard about those traditions that hinder the development of individuals and society such as excision or the famous funeral and burial practices in West Africa that spread Ebola.
Seen from outside, from another culture, this "stubbornness to do what has always been done" seems absurd: "what does it cost them to stop their medieval practices?"
But from the inside, it's more complicated...
Let's take, for example, a Western traditional activity: the wood burning for heating or enjoyment — without the technology needed to reduce the emissions of particles (at least, at the level of diesel).Woodsmoke, air pollution & health: some data: