Is Our Brain Hard-Wired To Be Optimistic?
Psychologists have found that 80% of people have, what they define as an optimism bias and that’s regardless of whether they believe themselves to be more pessimistic or realistic. The optimism bias is our tendency to underestimate the likelihood of negative events and overestimating the likelihood of positive events.
We are on the verge of perhaps the greatest innovation in the history of our species — a genetically altered future in which many of us will conceive our offspring in labs. If we want to control this future, now is the time to question what we want it to be.
The Soul-Expanding Value Of Difficulty
You must think that something is happening with you, that life has not forgotten you, that it holds you in its hand; it will not let you fall. Why do you want to shut out of your life any agitation, any pain, any melancholy, since you really do not know what these states are working upon you?
Escape From The Matrix
The fear of missing out, a spawn of technological advancement and proliferating social information, is the feeling that we’re missing out on something more exciting, more important, or more interesting going on somewhere else. FoMO haunts our social networks and our real lives alike. But there is a way to break free.
Building A ‘Doomsday Vault’ To Save The Kangaroo And Koala From Extinction
Incredible feats of genetic engineering and frozen biobanks could prevent Australia’s iconic marsupials from disappearing for good. If that sounds far-fetched, it isn’t. In fact, it’s already happening.
The Rail Industry’s Secret, Decades-Long Fight Against The Climate
For nearly 30 years, America’s four biggest rail companies—which move the majority of the country’s coal—have spent millions to deny climate science and block climate policy. They have joined or funded groups that attacked individual scientists and rejected reports from major scientific institutions.
The Music In You
The more psychologists investigate musicality, the more it seems that nearly all of us are musical experts, in quite a startling sense. You might not be a virtuoso, but you have remarkable music abilities. You just don’t know about them yet.
How Political Opinions Change
A powerful shaping factor about our social and political worlds is how they are structured by group belonging and identities. For instance, researchers have found that moral and emotion messages on contentious political topics, such as gun-control and climate change, spread more rapidly within rather than between ideologically like-minded networks.
The Deep Ocean Is The Final Frontier On Planet Earth
Only three people have ever reached the bottom of the deepest part of the ocean. The deep is a world without sunlight, of freezing temperatures, and immense pressure. It’s remained largely unexplored until now. Cutting-edge technology is enabling a new generation of aquanauts to go deeper than ever before.
Studies Shoot Down Tech’s Harmful Effects on Kids—So Now What?
It looks like grownups can disregard the fear-mongering about the ill effects of digital media on kids. A 2017 study in Child Development found “little or no support for harmful links between digital screen use and young people’s psychological well-being.”
Can One Earthquake Trigger Another On The Other Side Of The World?
It’s well known that natural disasters can cause others in their immediate vicinity, for instance, hurricanes are often accompanied by flooding, and earthquakes are followed by aftershocks. But what about longer distance interactions? Could one earthquake trigger another on the other side of the world?
Deep In The Ocean’s Trenches, The Legacy Of Nuclear Testing Lives
Evidence of Cold War nuclear testing has made its way to the deepest reaches of the Pacific Ocean. The discovery of “bomb carbon” miles below the surface shows how deep human impact goes.
How To Grow Old: Bertrand Russell On What Makes A Fulfilling Life
An individual human existence should be like a river — small at first, narrowly contained within its banks, and rushing passionately past rocks and over waterfalls. Gradually the river grows wider, the banks recede, the waters flow more quietly.
How To Grow From Your Pain
Trauma and hardships are too often a part of life. Most of us live through at least five or six traumatic events in our lifetime. Here’s how to persevere.
Defeated Chess Champ Garry Kasparov Has Made Peace With AI
For almost two decades after becoming world champion in 1985, Garry Kasparov dominated the game with a ferocious style of play and an equally ferocious swagger. In 1997, at the height of his powers, Kasparov was crushed and cowed by an IBM supercomputer called Deep Blue.
Water-Resistant And Biodegradable Plant-Based Plastic
A group of researchers at Japan’s Osaka University has developed an alternative type of plastic which is not only biodegradable in seawater but is also water-resistant under normal use. The plastic is made from cellulose nanofibers and starch, both of which were extracted from plants.
How To Be Productive According To Ancient Philosophy
Productivity has been a topic of discussion ever since ancient eastern and western philosophy started. It’s a universal theme. I believe it’s in our nature to make better use of our time. Let’s start by learning the following 7 productivity lessons from the most well-known philosophers in history.
How Not To Care When People Don’t Like You
When you’re not wasting energy molding your personality to someone else’s to be accepted, you’re more likely to find people who genuinely like you for you, and those relationships are far less exhausting to keep up. Still, it sucks to feel disliked. Here’s how to get through it without falling down a rabbit hole of sadness.
What Fruits And Vegetables Looked Like Before Humans Intervened
The fruits and vegetables we know and love are a lot more complicated than you’d think. They didn’t always look like they do. In fact, it took decades of human intervention to transform them into the delicious, nutrient-rich morsels they are today.
Scientists Found Ancient, Never-Before-Seen Viruses In A Glacier
Researchers have recovered evidence of ancient viruses in the glacier ice, including 28 viral groups that are new to science. As our planet undergoes climate change, these frozen records can inform predictions about which microorganisms will survive, and what the resulting environment will look like.
Why Speaking To Yourself In The Third Person Makes You Wiser
Scientific research suggests that you should adopt an ancient rhetorical method favoured by the likes of Julius Caesar and known as ‘illeism’ – or speaking about yourself in the third person — the term was coined in 1809 by the poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge from the Latin ille meaning ‘he, that’.