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Facebook and Education - Do Opposites Finally Attract?
The education revolution is already underway, but will it utilize the pre-existing network created by Facebook, or will a new, education-specific network spring up?
There is no doubt that Facebook is becoming the dominant social network on a global scale. More and more local players lose ground with their users switching to the US based alternative. I think the same will happen to business networks like the German Xing and the French Viadeo, which will sooner or later admit defeat to their US competitor LinkedIn.
The above brings me to the topic of today’s post. While I believe there will be one dominant player in each vertical of our lives, I don’t think that there will be only one social network to rule them all. Facebook is really strong when it comes to everything friends, family and leisure time, however it (still) feels a bit weird to use it for business even though I recently noticed more people in my social graph started using BranchOut. Having a more playful approach like sending badges to members of your network or picking whom you would rather like to work with, time will show if it will succeed in establishing itself as a serious competitor for LinkedIn.
For the moment, I see LinkedIn in such a strong position and I believe it is going to keep its market share. Let me try and explain why.
Human beings actually like to keep their different “lives” apart. Sure, there are always some intersections where those worlds meet, for example a company dinner you bring your wife or husband to or a colleague you share a hobby with but in general we tend to keep them separated. Sometimes this is even true for our friends.
Since Facebook’s launch there have been a couple of attempts to build education related applications or communities on the platform but none of them actually succeeded in attracting a critical mass of users. The idea though seems to be pretty obvious. Facebook itself started as a closed network for Harvard University.
Only then it has become the world’s largest social network with users visiting the site on a almost daily basis. All the data you need as a developer can be found in the social graph plus you get access to all the friends a user has when signing up for the application you built.
But people did not care, at least not enough to make the applications viable enough. Apparently, learning is something we don’t want to share with our social graph on Facebook, e.g. family and friends. And on the other hand it is pretty clear that managers or other business people won’t share their latest score in English tests or assignments with their network on LinkedIn. That’s one of the reasons why services like the language learning communities I talked about last week in my first post here on Big Think launched outside of Facebook and managed to attract a fair amount of subscribers over the years.
Then things changed again. Zynga came and all of a sudden it became somewhat normal to receive friends’ messages or notifications in the Facebook news stream who found golden eggs or other mystical animals on their farms, a trend the language learning community Busuu realized early on. On their service, people earn berries when completing exercises or correcting other member’s texts. Busuu then connected this feature to Facebook and enabled their members to share their berries / success with their friends on Facebook. It was basically the same as simply writing “I completed an exercise successfully” but using the Busuu berry system it became part of the new social gaming world that has effortlessly been accepted by Facebook users.
The next big thing for start-ups in the education space will be Facebook credits, of course. The potential is huge as it will also open possibilities to get revenue from a younger audience as they can already buy credits directly at the counter in super markets from their pocket money in the US, no credit card needed and I’m convinced that this concept is also going to be successful in the rest of the world.
I am pretty sure that we will see applications linked to communities and other services pop up on Facebook later this year.
There is also one example of a start-up in the education space that is successfully building application directly on the Facebook platform. This company is Inigral. The application was amongst the first that were launched in 2007 when Facebook introduced the developer platform. The application enables freshmen to connect with their future college or university before they actually arrive on campus. They also have the possibility to connect with other freshmen in their year. The twist Inigral is offering is the one of a parallel network based on Facebook but students don’t need to friend their future schoolmates or professors right away. They can of course choose to do so later on but they have also the choice to keep both aspects of their life apart whilst using the same social network, Facebook as entry portal.
Inigral recently received a $2 million funding from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation as program related investment. If you are interested in learning more about Inigral I invite you to watch my interview with the founder and CEO Michael Staton back in February below.
To sum this up, I think it is safe to say that we will see the first successful education applications and games on Facebook coming this year. Nevertheless, those education resources will always have a more leisurely or playful approach, if you will, compared to services outside of the social network. On the other hand we will see more and more applications launched by services outside the Facebook ecosystem trying to leverage the user base and the new monetization options via Facebook credits in particular.
Sallie Krawcheck and Bob Kulhan will be talking money, jobs, and how the pandemic will disproportionally affect women's finances.
Can an orgasm a day really keep the doctor away?
- Achieving orgasm through masturbation provides a rush of feel-good hormones (such as dopamine, serotonin and oxytocin) and can re-balance our levels of cortisol (a stress-inducing hormone). This helps our immune system function at a higher level.
- The surge in "feel-good" hormones also promotes a more relaxed and calm state of being, making it easier to achieve restful sleep, which is a critical part in maintaining a high-functioning immune system.
- Just as bad habits can slow your immune system, positive habits (such as a healthy sleep schedule and active sex life) can help boost your immune system which can prevent you from becoming sick.
How masturbation affects your brain...<p>Orgasms are a very common human phenomenon. The physical and mental health benefits have been researched frequently as a result, and yet, there is still so much to be learned about how our bodies and brains react to the chemicals and hormones released during and after experiencing this type of sexual release.</p><p>"The amount of speculation versus actual data on both the function and value of orgasm is remarkable" explains Julia Heiman, director of the <a href="https://kinseyinstitute.org/" target="_blank">Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender, and Reproduction</a>.</p><p>Masturbation causes a rush of <a href="https://www.webmd.com/mental-health/what-is-dopamine" target="_blank">dopamine</a>, which is a chemical that is associated with our ability to feel pleasure. Along with the rush of dopamine that is released during an orgasm, there is also a release of a hormone called <a href="https://www.livescience.com/42198-what-is-oxytocin.html" target="_blank">oxytocin</a>, which is commonly referred to as the "love hormone."<br></p><p>This concoction of chemicals does more than just boost our mood, it also can play a key role in decreasing stress and promoting relaxation. Oxytocin decreases <a href="https://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/what-is-cortisol" target="_blank">cortisol</a>, which is a stress hormone that is usually present (in high volumes) during times of anxiety, fear, panic, or distress. </p><p>According to BDSM and fetish researcher <a href="https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/therapists/dr-gloria-brame-colbert-ga/278388" target="_blank">Dr. Gloria Brame</a>, an orgasm is the biggest non-drug induced blast of dopamine that we can experience. </p><p>By boosting the oxytocin and dopamine levels and subsequently decreasing our cortisol levels, the brain is placed in a more relaxed, euphoric, and calm state. </p>
Masturbation boosts your immune system and raises your white blood cell count.<p>How do those effects on the brain from reaching orgasm translate to boosting our immune system and making our body healthier?</p><p>The increase of oxytocin and dopamine that causes a decrease in cortisol levels can help boost our immune system because cortisol (well-known for being a stress-inducing hormone) actually helps maintain your immune system if released in small doses. </p><p>According to <a href="https://www.health24.com/Sex/Great-sex/incredible-health-benefits-to-masturbating-20181030-2" target="_blank">Dr. Jennifer Landa</a>, a hormone-therapy specialist, masturbation can produce the right kind of environment for a strengthened immune system to thrive. </p><p><a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15316239" target="_blank">A study</a> conducted by the Department of Medical Psychology at the University Clinic of Essen (in Germany) showed similar results. A group of 11 volunteers were asked to participate in a study that would look at the effects of orgasm through masturbation on the white blood cell count and immune system.</p><p>During this experiment, the white blood cell count of each participant was analyzed through measures that were taken 5 minutes before and 45 minutes after reaching a self-induced orgasm. </p><p>The results confirmed that sexual arousal and orgasm increased the number of white blood cells, particularly the natural killer cells that help fight off infections. </p><p>The findings confirm that our immune system is positively affected by sexual arousal and self-induced orgasm and promote even more research into the positive impacts of sexual arousal and orgasm. </p>
Masturbation can ease and prevent pain, which allows you to achieve the restful sleep that helps your immune system stay strong and healthy.<p>The benefits of masturbation have long been debated, but the more research that is done on the topic the more we understand that there are many positive reactions that happen in our bodies and brains when we orgasm.</p><p>Orgasms can help prevent or mitigate pain, which boosts the immune system, preventing cold and flu symptoms. </p><p>According to neurologist and headache specialist Stefan Evers, about one in three patients experience relief from migraine attacks by experiencing sexual activity or orgasm. Evers and his team <a href="https://www.livescience.com/27642-sex-relieves-migraine-pain.html" target="_blank">conducted an experiment</a> with 800 migraine patients and 200 patients who suffered from cluster-headaches to see how their experiences with sexual activity impacted their pain levels. </p><p>The study showed that 60% of migraine sufferers experienced pain relief after participating in sexual activity that resulted in orgasm. Of the cluster-headache sufferers, about 50% said their headaches actually worsened after sexual arousal and orgasm. </p><p>Evers suggested in his findings that the people who did not experience pain relief from migraines of headaches during their sexual activity did not release as large amounts of endorphins as those who did experience pain relief. </p><p>According to <a href="https://www.sharecare.com/health/chronic-pain/chronic-pain-affect-immune-system" target="_blank">rheumatologist Dr. Harris McIlwain</a>, people who suffer from chronic pain have immune systems that are simply not functioning at full capacity - therefore, alleviating pain (through orgasm, as an example) can help boost the immune system. </p><p>Orgasms can also promote relaxation and make it easier to fall asleep. Serotonin, oxytocin, and norepinephrine are all hormones that are released during sexual arousal and orgasm, and all three are known for counteracting stress hormones and promoting relaxation, which makes it much easier for you to fall asleep.</p><p>There are <a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1233384" target="_blank">several studies</a> showing that serotonin and norepinephrine help our body cycle through REM and deep non-REM sleeping cycles. During these sleep cycles, the immune system releases proteins called <a href="https://www.sleepfoundation.org/articles/how-sleep-affects-your-immunity" target="_blank"><span id="selection-marker-1" class="redactor-selection-marker"></span>cytokines<span id="selection-marker-2" class="redactor-selection-marker"></span></a>, which target infection and inflammation. This is a critical part of our immune response. Cytokines are both produced and released throughout our bodies while we sleep, which proves the importance of a good sleep schedule to a healthy immune system.</p>
Masturbation promotes a high-functioning immune system; a healthy immune system prevents cold and flu.<p>The immune system is a balanced network of cells and organs that work together to defend you against infections and diseases by stopped threats like bacteria and viruses from entering your system. While there are many things we need to do to keep our immune systems functioning at optimal levels, masturbation (or other means of achieving orgasm) has proven to have positive effects on the immune system as a whole.</p><p>Just as bad habits (such as an inconsistent sleep schedule or harmful chemicals in your body) can slow your immune system, positive habits (such as a healthy sleep schedule and active sex life) can help boost your immune system. </p>
The word "learning" opens up space for more people, places, and ideas.
- The terms 'education' and 'learning' are often used interchangeably, but there is a cultural connotation to the former that can be limiting. Education naturally links to schooling, which is only one form of learning.
- Gregg Behr, founder and co-chair of Remake Learning, believes that this small word shift opens up the possibilities in terms of how and where learning can happen. It also becomes a more inclusive practice, welcoming in a larger, more diverse group of thinkers.
- Post-COVID, the way we think about what learning looks like will inevitably change, so it's crucial to adjust and begin building the necessary support systems today.
The coronavirus pandemic has brought out the perception of selfishness among many.
- Selfish behavior has been analyzed by philosophers and psychologists for centuries.
- New research shows people may be wired for altruistic behavior and get more benefits from it.
- Crisis times tend to increase self-centered acts.