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“Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom.” – Aristotle.

But how do you know or ‘find’ your true self? Well, you got travelling the world, reading a book a week, joining a spiritual meditation retreat, or diving into neuroscience. However, for those that, like me, can’t be bothered with any of the above, the answer is closer than you think. Reach deep down, not into yourself but your pocket and just open up your Google Privacy settings. ...continue reading "Finding yourself: A Google sponsored guide"

In no particular order - except for the first, cause it's among equals.

How to do nothing
Jenny Odell: An adaptation of her book on "How to Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy." this 'short' medium article is a refreshing read and approach of the busy digital lives. It isnt a quasi-self-help article as the title suggests, rather it is a delightful exploration of abstract subjects and and pure curiosity of things in our immediate surroundings. [book review]

"Eric Hobsbawm, the Communist Who Explained History."
Corey Robin reviews Richard Evan's biography of Eric Hobsbawn: A life in History. It is the perfect summary of a book too long to read, about a most influential historian & communist. [philosophy]

The Distance Between Us
Micah Meadowcroft Why we act badly when we don’t speak face-to-face. The old message of the flip side of a coin called social media in a pleasing to read sleeve. [technology, philosophy] ...continue reading "April & May 2019: Interesting reads"

Image result for horizon barry lopezA Horizon to most is a flat line, that is observable, but never reachable. More grimmer interpretations are derived from the event horizon; a point of no return. While a horizon can also spell out something new and coming like the morning sun. But this Horizon, with pages full of beautiful imagery, is a coastal storm. And best described in the author's own words; "The coastal storm I’ve been waiting for finally comes, it will bring its musics, the active colors of its pummeled skies, and wind to choreograph the movements of the clouds. It will crack land and sea with its pellets of rain. It will dim the sun. If the response is awe, not analysis, that, really, is all that is needed."

After finishing the first pages I knew this book would be one that would reach the top 5 of this year's reads, and if you are of curious nature then this book will find a place in your list as well. As long as you can step into Barry Lopez' life "with an open mind and an eager heart."

To explore is to travel without a hypothesis."

...continue reading "[Book review] Horizon – Barry Lopez"

Disappearing CuriosityTechnology has become part of our being, or as Alexander Stubb said; “we are already cyborgs, phones just haven’t been officially attached to us yet.” If you would ask me to not use my phone for a month it would severely hinder my life just as much as the next one. It is great, practising my music hobby has never been easier. No waiting in front of a recorder for hours to make your own playlist by taking songs from the radio.

However, as in the example of music, all aspects of life are becoming digital. There are no mechanical parts to objects to be felt, heard, or touched. This brings many advantages, devices are more portable, durable, faster, just to name a few. But the downside is that it has become impossible to understand how things work, and this applies to all life improving appliances. Could this be a case of disappearing curiosity?
...continue reading "The case of the disappearing curiosity"

Technological advancements are being kicked into high gear. Finding someone - centenarians excluded - without a phone and social media app installed on it is as rare as hens’ teeth. All registering with social media are asked to agree with a terms of service and conditions (ToS) agreement that is intentionally long to discourage readers. This can lead to some interesting, yet unsurprising, outcomes- a study in 2016 found that over 500 participants unwittingly agreed to give their first born to the company overlords. Whilst the Rumpelstiltskin-esque demand would never hold up in court, it does show how eager we are to throw away our rights signing online contracts, without bothering to see what we're giving away.

During the Dotcom bubble, Google had to change its revenue source to keep its head above water. The method they chose set the example for all future tech giants and created a very lucrative business model. Before 2002 Google used the data, it gathered from search requests, to improve the search engine itself. With every search, there was a behavioural data surplus that remained unused. This previously "surplus" data now makes up 86% of Google's livelihood, and similar practices can be found at other tech companies. User’s accumulated data over the years has proven to be a gold mine for tech companies, but at what point did they inform users? ...continue reading "The terms and conditions of your Social Contract"