Congratulations, You Are Now Less Dumb
While you might be less dumb than your ancestors, you are nonetheless guilty of backwards thinking all the time.
How did humans, in the course of just a few generations, go from burning witches and drinking mercury to mapping the human genome and playing golf on the moon?
According to David McRaney, author of the new book You Are Now Less Dumb, science intervened, thank goodness. That is to say, scientists intervened and right now continue to intervene on your behalf "for flavors of ignorance you have yet to even discover."
So don't go patting yourself on the back that you are so much smarter than the people who once believed that geese grew on trees. You are merely less dumb. In the video below, McRaney explains how people reached a conclusion that geese grew on trees and then their brains came up with a story to explain it.
This is the same kind of backward thinking that Aristotle was also guilty of, and which you are guilty of all the time. You come up with a conclusion and then "polish and protect that conclusion with biased observations," McRaney points out.
There are, however, tools that can help you break out of this way of thinking, tools that will force you to look for evidence to the contrary. And these are the tools that McRaney provides with a healthy does of humor and wit.
That's a sharp increase from the 1960s when it took the same share of scientists an average of 35 years to drop out of academia.
- The study tracked the careers of more than 100,000 scientists over 50 years.
- The results showed career lifespans are shrinking, and fewer scientists are getting credited as the lead author on scientific papers.
- Scientists are still pursuing careers in the private sector, however there are key differences between research conducted in academia and industry.
We have to practice doing nothing more often.
- Constantly being busy is neurologically taxing and emotionally draining.
- In his new book, Jon Kabat-Zinn writes that you're doing a disservice to others by always being busy.
- Busyness is often an excuse for the discomfort of being alone with your own thoughts.
The bold technique involves surgically implanting a so-called microneedle patch directly onto the heart.
- Heart attacks leave scar tissue on the heart, which can reduce the organ's ability to pump blood throughout the body.
- The microneedle patch aims to deliver therapeutic cells directly to the damaged tissue.
- It hasn't been tested on humans yet, but the method has shown promising signs in research on animals.
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