Reprogramming my inner computer 

Mirrorgirl

Our mind is a wonderful mystery. We still know so little about it, even if we slowly are starting to reveal its secrets. Normally it works effectively, like a brand new computer, but sometimes it stops working. In a computer, programming mistakes slow an a otherwise perfect system. When that happens, the programmer must find the mistake and fix it. When he does, the computer must be left in peace. The programmer must focus must be on one issue at a time. If the programmer is exhausted, it will take longer time before he can do his job.

Our body is a fine-tune system perfected through evolution. When something goes wrong, we notice it immediately. Genetic abnormalities or disarray in the brain can manifest itself in many forms. When our body produce problems for us, we try to fix it. Sometimes we manage to do this by ourselves, by doing…

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Mass suggestion: A way to save the world? 

Mirrorgirl

Psychological research has had a tendency to study negative effects of behavior both on the individual and cultural levels. The recent years, however has started to focus more on what makes something work. I like this shift, as I think it will be more effective for society as a whole. A TED talk I watched, for example, was about scientists interested in studying genetic superhumans. That is, people with genetic ‘flaws’ that has proven to give these people abilities normal peple don’t have. By getting more knowledge about these ‘superhumans’ we are also a step closer to knowing what environmental, psychological and biological factors contribute to their genetic make-up.

Mass suggestion

If we are in a huge mass, we are all inclined to think the same thoughts as the mob, and to have the same emotions aroused within us as sway the masses of the people. It is difficult for…

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Part of Nature by Stuart Mcmillen

Wonders for the mind, reality for the dreamers.

Mirrorgirl

Part of Nature cartoon

This cartoon is heavily influenced by the books Natural CapitalismPaul Hawken, Amory Lovins and Hunter Lovins (1999) and Mid-Course CorrectionRay Anderson (1998). It is also in the same vein as the flash animation “The Story of Stuff” by Annie Leonard, which I watched when I was about 90% of the way through the drawing process.

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YANSS 051 – How Google uses behavioral science to make work suck less

You Are Not So Smart

From Dilbert to Fight Club to Joe Versus the Volcano, the world of white-collar drones and managerial ineptitude has long been a goldmine for parody.

The soul-sucking details are so ubiquitous and familiar that in addition to the British and the American versions of The Office, there are also versions in Chile, France, Germany, Israel and Sweden – there’s even a version just for French-Canadians. Each is shades apart, reflecting the differences in culture, but each is also broadly similar in making light of the drudgery and silliness that comes from spending your waking hours hovering near a computer and taking your lunch at your desk.

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How Did Pluto Get Its Spots?

Lights in the Dark

Color image of Pluto and Charon from June 27, 2015 (NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute)Color image of Pluto and Charon from June 27, 2015 (NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute)

As New Horizons continues to close the gap between itself and Pluto more details are being revealed in images of the planet and its (comparatively) giant moon. Some of the latest images are showing some particularly intriguing features just below Pluto’s equator: a row of somewhat evenly-spaced dark spots, each about 300 miles (480 km) wide.

The New Horizons team combined black-and-white images of Pluto and Charon from the spacecraft’s Long-Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) with lower-resolution color data from the Ralph instrument to produce the image above.

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Ten ways to feel better when depressed

For those that are down and need a picker upper.

Mirrorgirl

Depression is like a heavy, black blanket where no light comes in. It is hard to breathe, as if someone put a candle inside a glass-jar with no oxygen. It is even hard to see any light, any hope as the blackness surrounding you hides what could have been positive and uplifting. Luckily, there are ways to throw the blanket away, even if it`s heavy and you feel like the energy to lift it just isn`t there. Here are ten things you can do if you feel depressed or hopeless.

  1. Try to figure out what used to make it happy. Write it down and read it when you feel sad. Try to do some of the things that were good for you before you got depressed. This can be small things, like eating something you like. For someone it can be meeting a trusted friend, or playing your favorite music
  2. Find…

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Are You Ready For Pluto?

New endeavors in space and beyond, with good ole’ friend Pluto.

Lights in the Dark

Pluto and Charon as seen by New Horizons' LORRI camera on June 25, 2015 Pluto and Charon as seen by New Horizons’ LORRI camera on June 25, 2015 (NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute)

New Horizons sure is! With just over two weeks to go before the first-ever (and I repeat: EVER!) visit to Pluto and its family of moons the excitement has really ramped up exponentially, especially considering the increasingly detailed views of Pluto and Charon that the spacecraft has been capturing on approach. No longer just a couple of bright pixels against a background of stars, the two worlds now show actual detail that can be easily discerned. In other words, things are getting REAL!

It’s only going to be getting better from here – and quickly. As Principal Investigator Dr. Alan Stern said, “There’s only one Pluto flyby planned in all of history, and it’s happening next month!”

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