Don't Have a Will? It's Time to Get Started.

Only 40 percent of full-time working adults in the United States have a will. That's not promising for those folks' loved ones who would be tasked with dividing up their possessions if something awful happens.

If you were to die suddenly, what would happen to your possessions? There are two possible answers to this question. The first is:


"Well, Robert, I was prescient enough to prepare a will so my loved ones won't have to potentially become entangled in an unhappy legal situation."

The second is:

"Well, Robert, I guess my remaining family's just gotta' figure it out themselves because screw them, right?"

Okay, so maybe those aren't the only two answers verbatim, but if you take a precarious step and fall down a manhole tomorrow morning, either your survivors are going to have a head start or they're not.

Ken Gordon of The Columbus Dispatch offers some pretty grim stats that suggest most Americans aren't prepared:

"According to an April 2014 survey by the tax-and-audit company PricewaterhouseCoopers, only 40 percent of full-time working adults in the United States have a will. Even among those 55 to 64, only 51 percent have one."

That's not good. What is good, says Gordon, is that preparing a will isn't difficult:

"A will is simply a legally accepted document that spells out how you want your assets divided upon your death and who will be in charge of dividing them ... The first step, lawyers say, is to make a list of all your assets, such as your house, vehicles, bank accounts, investment and retirement accounts, and life-insurance policies. Next, list any household items or family heirlooms you might want to designate to a surviving relative..."

Take a look at Gordon's full piece to learn all you need about getting started.

Read more at The Columbus Dispatch.

Photo credit: SteveWoods / Shutterstock

Russia sends its first android to space

The Russian-built FEDOR was launched on a mission to help ISS astronauts.

Photos by TASS\TASS via Getty Images
Technology & Innovation
  • Russia launched a spacecraft carrying FEDOR, a humanoid robot.
  • Its mission is to help astronauts aboard the International Space Station.
  • Such androids can eventually help with dangerous missions likes spacewalks.
Keep reading Show less

Human extinction! Don't panic; think about it like a philosopher.

Most people think human extinction would be bad. These people aren't philosophers.

Shutterstock
Politics & Current Affairs
  • A new opinion piece in The New York Times argues that humanity is so horrible to other forms of life that our extinction wouldn't be all that bad, morally speaking.
  • The author, Dr. Todd May, is a philosopher who is known for advising the writers of The Good Place.
  • The idea of human extinction is a big one, with lots of disagreement on its moral value.
Keep reading Show less

this incredibly rich machinery – with Antonio Damasio

Picking up where we left off a year ago, a conversation about the homeostatic imperative as it plays out in everything from bacteria to pharmaceutical companies—and how the marvelous apparatus of the human mind also gets us into all kinds of trouble.

Think Again Podcasts
  • "Prior to nervous systems: no mind, no consciousness, no intention in the full sense of the term. After nervous systems, gradually we ascend to this possibility of having to this possibility of having minds, having consciousness, and having reasoning that allows us to arrive at some of these very interesting decisions."
  • "We are fragile culturally and socially…but life is fragile to begin with. All that it takes is a little bit of bad luck in the management of those supports, and you're cooked…you can actually be cooked—with global warming!"



Keep reading Show less