A little bit of history was made on Nantucket on Sunday.
Julian Assange, the co-founder of Wikileaks, has been holed up in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London for over two years in order to avoid extradition to Sweden on sex crimes charges. Assange is also facing possible prosecution for leaking classified government documents. For this reason, many view him as a political prisoner.
Assange made a brief virtual escape from his virtual prison Sunday by appearing at The Nantucket Project in the form of a hologram. The Nantucket Project is a festival of ideas that attracts some of the most influential thinkers and visionaries in the country.
The documentary filmmaker Eugene Jarecki joined Assange onstage as an interlocutor. "It crosses my mind," Jarecki wrote in The Guardian, "I may be abetting a crime or violating international extradition laws. But I reassure myself that, in this regard, the worldwide web remains a kind of wild wild west, and the virtual escape of a person is not (yet?) a crime."
So what's the significance?
According to Hologram USA, the company that provided the technology, this is the first major use of "telepresence" capabilities in the U.S. that allows "an individual to transcend distance, borders, and even legal restrictions to get their message across in a visceral, urgent way."
Step inside the unlikely friendship of a former ACLU president and an ultra-conservative Supreme Court Justice.
- Former president of the ACLU Nadine Strossen and Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia were unlikely friends. They debated each other at events all over the world, and because of that developed a deep and rewarding friendship – despite their immense differences.
- Scalia, a famous conservative, was invited to circles that were not his "home territory", such as the ACLU, to debate his views. Here, Strossen expresses her gratitude and respect for his commitment to the exchange of ideas.
- "It's really sad that people seem to think that if you disagree with somebody on some issues you can't be mutually respectful, you can't enjoy each other's company, you can't learn from each other and grow in yourself," says Strossen.
- The opinions expressed in this video do not necessarily reflect the views of the Charles Koch Foundation, which encourages the expression of diverse viewpoints within a culture of civil discourse and mutual respect.
Scientists make an important discovery for the future of computing.
- Researchers find a new state of matter called "topological superconductivity".
- The state can lead to important advancements in quantum computing.
- Utilizing special particles that emerge during this state can lead to error-free data storage and blazing calculation speed.
Erik Verlinde has been compared to Einstein for completely rethinking the nature of gravity.
- The Dutch physicist Erik Verlinde's hypothesis describes gravity as an "emergent" force not fundamental.
- The scientist thinks his ideas describe the universe better than existing models, without resorting to "dark matter".
- While some question his previous papers, Verlinde is reworking his ideas as a full-fledged theory.
As tempting as it may be to run away from emotionally-difficult situations, it's important we confront them head-on.
- Impossible-sounding things are possible in hospitals — however, there are times when we hit dead ends. In these moments, it's important to not run away, but to confront what's happening head-on.
- For a lot of us, one of the ways to give meaning to terrible moments is to see what you can learn from them.
- Sometimes certain information can "flood" us in ways that aren't helpful, and it's important to figure out what types of data you are able to take in — process — at certain times.