Is Artificial Light Truly Brilliant?
"Today, artificial light is a constant companion. Darkness implies a situation to be remedied." A new book tells the story of how artificial light has revolutionized our way of life.
"A Faustian bargain seems to have been struck. The twin needs of profit by commercial interests and convenience by consumers drove the expansion of light from the earliest days of the candle to today’s ubiquitous power lines. Curiously, destruction of the natural world seems to walk hand in hand with the evolution of artificial light, and its Siamese twin, electricity. From hunting sperm whales almost to extinction in the 1800s, to polluting the air and killing miners for coal to power yesterday’s gas lamps and today’s 'modern' power grid, the history of artificial light and electricity contain a hidden undercurrent of turning inwards, of staying inside, of looking towards a lit screen, of fear and alienation."
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The Oxfam report prompted Anand Giridharadas to tweet: "Don't be Pinkered into everything's-getting-better complacency."
- A new report by Oxfam argues that wealth inequality is causing poverty and misery around the world.
- In the last year, the world's billionaires saw their wealth increase by 12%, while the poorest 3.8 billion people on the planet lost 11% of their wealth.
- The report prompted Anand Giridharadas to tweet: "Don't be Pinkered into everything's-getting-better complacency." We explain what Steven Pinker's got to do with it.
Moans, groans, and gripes release stress hormones in the brain.
Could you give up complaining for a whole month? That's the crux of this interesting piece by Jessica Hullinger over at Fast Company. Hullinger explores the reasons why humans are so predisposed to griping and why, despite these predispositions, we should all try to complain less. As for no complaining for a month, that was the goal for people enrolled in the Complaint Restraint project.
Participants sought to go the entirety of February without so much as a moan, groan, or bellyache.
- Facebook and Google began as companies with supposedly noble purposes.
- Creating a more connected world and indexing the world's information: what could be better than that?
- But pressure to return value to shareholders came at the expense of their own users.
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