David Goggins
Former Navy Seal
Career Development
Bryan Cranston
Critical Thinking
Liv Boeree
International Poker Champion
Emotional Intelligence
Amaryllis Fox
Former CIA Clandestine Operative
Chris Hadfield
Retired Canadian Astronaut & Author
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Reclaim Your Life: Whose Orders Are You Following, Anyway?

Organization expert Carson Tate suggests taking a good hard look at all the things you assume you "should" do and question why they're so important. By seeing beyond the veneer of our "shoulds" we can better understand when it's best to say "yes" and when it benefits us to say "no."

Carson Tate: So often for many of us there are these scripts or these tapes that are going through our mind and I call them "the shoulds." Shoulds lead us to overcommitment and a calendar that is over stuffed because you feel guilty and guilt is what's really behind the should. You feel like you have to do something either because this is your vision of what a successful manager does or because it's a script, an old script that you've heard throughout your life. And so you are listening to voices or to cultural expectations that might or might not be true and ultimately might or might not be in alignment with who you are and your goals and objectives. You should say yes to this, ask to be on this board. Should bake cupcakes from scratch? You should do this; it's all of these shoulds. Well, the problem with the shoulds is that they become a runaway train and before you know it, you've said yes and overcommitted to so many things that might or might not be in alignment with your goals and how you want to live and run your life. So, whenever you feel like you've been hooked by the shoulds, I would suggest that you address them by using an acronym I call the POWER no. And by using the POWER no you step through the P and the O and the W and the E and the R and get really clear on: Is this a should that you should say yes to or you should say no to?

So the first one is the purpose question. So, what is the purpose behind this should? Who really is driving it and what is the should getting at? And then the O stands for the opportunity because sometimes a should could be shining a light on an opportunity. So you could be asked to work in a stretch assignment. This could be a real opportunity for you, so you want to listen and is there an opportunity potentially in that should that's going through your head? Then the next one is to think about the who; who is behind this should or who is making this ask of you? Is it your boss? Is it your manager? Or is it this old script that's your mom in your head? Who is this should kind of being generated from? And then think about the expectations. So what expectations are coming with this should? Is it an expectation that the star performer at work always does this or this is what a manager should do? Just really think about those expectations. Are they yours? Are they societies? Whose are they and are they really in alignment? And then the last thing I would challenge you to think about is: Is it real? So is it really true that you have to bake cupcakes from scratch? That's not true. There are much better cupcakes that are store-bought, for most of us. So you're questioning is: It real for you and is it real in your organization? Because every time you say yes to something you're saying no to something else. And the shoulds we overcommit, we say yes more than you say no and so at the end something suffers, it's either or work or our personal life.


Organization expert Carson Tate suggests taking a good hard look at all the things you assume you "should" do and question why they're so important. By seeing beyond the veneer of our "shoulds," we can better understand when it's best to say, "Yes," and when it benefits us to say, "No." Tate's debut book Work Simply is now available.

Does conscious AI deserve rights?

If machines develop consciousness, or if we manage to give it to them, the human-robot dynamic will forever be different.

  • Does AI—and, more specifically, conscious AI—deserve moral rights? In this thought exploration, evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins, ethics and tech professor Joanna Bryson, philosopher and cognitive scientist Susan Schneider, physicist Max Tegmark, philosopher Peter Singer, and bioethicist Glenn Cohen all weigh in on the question of AI rights.
  • Given the grave tragedy of slavery throughout human history, philosophers and technologists must answer this question ahead of technological development to avoid humanity creating a slave class of conscious beings.
  • One potential safeguard against that? Regulation. Once we define the context in which AI requires rights, the simplest solution may be to not build that thing.

A new hydrogel might be strong enough for knee replacements

Duke University researchers might have solved a half-century old problem.

Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images
Technology & Innovation
  • Duke University researchers created a hydrogel that appears to be as strong and flexible as human cartilage.
  • The blend of three polymers provides enough flexibility and durability to mimic the knee.
  • The next step is to test this hydrogel in sheep; human use can take at least three years.
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Hints of the 4th dimension have been detected by physicists

What would it be like to experience the 4th dimension?

Two different experiments show hints of a 4th spatial dimension. Credit: Zilberberg Group / ETH Zürich
Technology & Innovation

Physicists have understood at least theoretically, that there may be higher dimensions, besides our normal three. The first clue came in 1905 when Einstein developed his theory of special relativity. Of course, by dimensions we’re talking about length, width, and height. Generally speaking, when we talk about a fourth dimension, it’s considered space-time. But here, physicists mean a spatial dimension beyond the normal three, not a parallel universe, as such dimensions are mistaken for in popular sci-fi shows.

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Predicting PTSD symptoms becomes possible with a new test

An algorithm may allow doctors to assess PTSD candidates for early intervention after traumatic ER visits.

Image source: camillo jimenez/Unsplash
Technology & Innovation
  • 10-15% of people visiting emergency rooms eventually develop symptoms of long-lasting PTSD.
  • Early treatment is available but there's been no way to tell who needs it.
  • Using clinical data already being collected, machine learning can identify who's at risk.

The psychological scars a traumatic experience can leave behind may have a more profound effect on a person than the original traumatic experience. Long after an acute emergency is resolved, victims of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) continue to suffer its consequences.

In the U.S. some 30 million patients are annually treated in emergency departments (EDs) for a range of traumatic injuries. Add to that urgent admissions to the ED with the onset of COVID-19 symptoms. Health experts predict that some 10 percent to 15 percent of these people will develop long-lasting PTSD within a year of the initial incident. While there are interventions that can help individuals avoid PTSD, there's been no reliable way to identify those most likely to need it.

That may now have changed. A multi-disciplinary team of researchers has developed a method for predicting who is most likely to develop PTSD after a traumatic emergency-room experience. Their study is published in the journal Nature Medicine.

70 data points and machine learning

nurse wrapping patient's arm

Image source: Creators Collective/Unsplash

Study lead author Katharina Schultebraucks of Columbia University's Department Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons says:

"For many trauma patients, the ED visit is often their sole contact with the health care system. The time immediately after a traumatic injury is a critical window for identifying people at risk for PTSD and arranging appropriate follow-up treatment. The earlier we can treat those at risk, the better the likely outcomes."

The new PTSD test uses machine learning and 70 clinical data points plus a clinical stress-level assessment to develop a PTSD score for an individual that identifies their risk of acquiring the condition.

Among the 70 data points are stress hormone levels, inflammatory signals, high blood pressure, and an anxiety-level assessment. Says Schultebraucks, "We selected measures that are routinely collected in the ED and logged in the electronic medical record, plus answers to a few short questions about the psychological stress response. The idea was to create a tool that would be universally available and would add little burden to ED personnel."

Researchers used data from adult trauma survivors in Atlanta, Georgia (377 individuals) and New York City (221 individuals) to test their system.

Of this cohort, 90 percent of those predicted to be at high risk developed long-lasting PTSD symptoms within a year of the initial traumatic event — just 5 percent of people who never developed PTSD symptoms had been erroneously identified as being at risk.

On the other side of the coin, 29 percent of individuals were 'false negatives," tagged by the algorithm as not being at risk of PTSD, but then developing symptoms.

Going forward

person leaning their head on another's shoulder

Image source: Külli Kittus/Unsplash

Schultebraucks looks forward to more testing as the researchers continue to refine their algorithm and to instill confidence in the approach among ED clinicians: "Because previous models for predicting PTSD risk have not been validated in independent samples like our model, they haven't been adopted in clinical practice." She expects that, "Testing and validation of our model in larger samples will be necessary for the algorithm to be ready-to-use in the general population."

"Currently only 7% of level-1 trauma centers routinely screen for PTSD," notes Schultebraucks. "We hope that the algorithm will provide ED clinicians with a rapid, automatic readout that they could use for discharge planning and the prevention of PTSD." She envisions the algorithm being implemented in the future as a feature of electronic medical records.

The researchers also plan to test their algorithm at predicting PTSD in people whose traumatic experiences come in the form of health events such as heart attacks and strokes, as opposed to visits to the emergency department.