Big Think's Five Sunday Reads

Pour another coffee and cuddle up with some material to round out your weekend.


Niall Ferguson tells us the truth about financial deregulation, in case you thought it was totally for blame for our current straits.

Taking Richard Florida to task, Joel Kotkin says what American cities need is an economically solid middle class, not a high-earning creative class that flits from cool place to cool place.

Do we draw a bit too much from Paolo Friere's Pedagogy of the Oppressed in all the urban savior teacher-ed programs?

Jeff Sachs, Esther Duflo, Geoffrey Canada, Naomi Klein, Malcolm Gladwell and David Remnick speak at the New Yorker Summit 2009.

The unanswered questions about Obama's vision for health care in America get their due at Salon.

LinkedIn meets Tinder in this mindful networking app

Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.

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Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.

No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.

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Radical theory says our universe sits on an inflating bubble in an extra dimension

Cosmologists propose a groundbreaking model of the universe using string theory.

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Surprising Science
  • A new paper uses string theory to propose a new model of the universe.
  • The researchers think our universe may be riding a bubble expanded by dark energy.
  • All matter in the universe may exist in strings that reach into another dimension.
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Your body’s full of stuff you no longer need. Here's a list.

Evolution doesn't clean up after itself very well.

Image source: Ernst Haeckel
Surprising Science
  • An evolutionary biologist got people swapping ideas about our lingering vestigia.
  • Basically, this is the stuff that served some evolutionary purpose at some point, but now is kind of, well, extra.
  • Here are the six traits that inaugurated the fun.
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Why I wear my life on my skin

For Damien Echols, tattoos are part of his existential armor.

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  • In prison Damien Echols was known by his number SK931, not his name, and had his hair sheared off. Stripped of his identity, the only thing he had left was his skin.
  • This is why he began tattooing things that are meaningful to him — to carry a "suit of armor" made up the images of the people and things that have significance to him, from his friends to talismans.
  • Echols believes that all places are imbued with divinity: "If you interact with New York City as if there's an intelligence behind... then it will behave towards you the same way.".