Month: December 2013
In the power invested in me as being joyfully alive and amongst all of you, precious and beautiful fellow living, I wish…
For the ones that celebrate the birth of their savior:
For the ones that celebrate for celebrating and in search of a good excuse 🙂
* for those of you who wonder what it is, click here.
For the ones that celebrate simply to go with the flow:
And to all the trispectivists all around the world:
What ever the reason of the celebration let it be happy, merry and full of laughter and delight!!!
Merry Christmas everyone, see and read you next year!
Google Zeitgeist 2013:
“Whether it is your weight, your emotions, your spouse, your children, your paycheck–if you continually find yourself feeling angry, resentful or upset by the events in your life, reflect on who you blame for life’s ups and downs. (…)How a person internalizes a particular point of view about control speaks volumes about their ability to live with a sense of wellbeing and contentment. If your philosophy about control is outside of your conscious awareness then you are essentially a slave to it, repeating the same negative dynamics again and again, all the while feeling at the mercy of circumstance. Over time, repeatedly reenacting the same problematic patterns of behavior causes a self-fulfilling prophesy to manifest. A person comes to believe that they truly cannot impact their own future; thereby sealing their fate as nothing more than a cog in a wheel that goes nowhere.”
The Power of Empathy: A Quick Animated Lesson That Can Make You a Better Person
“RSA (Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce) created a series of distinctive animated shorts where heavy-hitter intellectuals presented big ideas, and a talented artist rapidly illustrated them on a whiteboard. This clip features Dr. Brené Brown, a research professor at the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work, providing some quick insights into the difference between sympathy and empathy, and explaining why empathy is much more meaningful.”
High Emotional Intelligence Dramatically Improves Decision-Making
“A new study finds that people with high emotional intelligence make smarter decisions because they aren’t swayed by their current emotional state. Yip and Côté (2013) ran two experiments to test how different people deal with spurious emotional states that are not related to the decision at hand. In one, participants were made to feel anxious by being asked to prepare an impromptu speech. Then they were asked whether they wanted to sign up to a flu clinic.
The results showed that people with higher emotional intelligence were more aware that the experimentally-induced anxiety they felt was not related to the decision about the flu clinic.
Those with high levels of emotional intelligence are more likely to ignore those emotions that have nothing to do with their decision. For those who find it problematic making sense of their emotions, the easiest solution is simply stated (although not always easy to execute): wait until later.”
TED’s best of the week
Paul Piff: Does money make you mean?
How does being rich affect the way we behave? In today’s talk, social psychologist Paul Piff provides a convincing case for the answer: not well.
“As a person’s levels of wealth increase, their feelings of compassion and empathy go down, and their feelings of entitlement, of deservingness, and their ideology of self-interest increases,” he says in his talk from TEDx Marin. Through surveys and studies, Piff and his colleagues have found that wealthier individuals are more likely to moralize greed and self-interest as favorable, less likely to be prosocial, and more likely to cheat and break laws if it behooves them.”
Book of the week! Ulysses by James Joyce
Ulysses is a novel written by the Irish writer James Joyce. It was first serialized in parts in the American journal The Little Review from March 1918 to December 1920, and then published in its entirety by Sylvia Beach in February 1922, in Paris. It is considered to be one of the most important works of Modernist literature, and has been called “a demonstration and summation of the entire movement”. Joyce’s devoted fans can be seen celebrating June 16th every year, Bloomsday, the day in which all of the action of Ulysses takes place in the spinning clockwork of Dublin in 1904.
The celebrated novel was banned in America until 1934 because of its “pornographic” nature, a comical artefact of the country’s prudishness. The novel was also labeled as dirty, blasphemous, and unreadable.
The two main characters, Stephen Dedalus and Leopold Bloom, go about their separate business, crossing paths with a gallery of indelible Dubliners. We watch them teach, eat, stroll the streets, argue, and (in Bloom’s case) masturbate. And thanks to the books stream-of-consciousness technique–which suggests no mere stream but an impossibly deep, swift-running river–we’re privy to their thoughts, emotions, and memories. As for the result, almost every variety of human experience is crammed into the accordion folds of a single day, which makes Ulysses not just an experimental work but the very last word in realism.
“Think you’re escaping and run into yourself. Longest way round is the shortest way home.”
An interesting documentary about the author and his masterpiece:
10 Simple Things You Can Do Today That Will Make You Happier, Backed By Science
A study in the Journal of Health Psychology found that people who exercise feel better about their bodies, even when they saw no physical changes.
Body weight, shape and body image were assessed in 16 males and 18 females before and after both 6 × 40 mins exercise and 6 × 40 mins reading. Over both conditions, body weight and shape did not change. Various aspects of body image, however, improved after exercise compared to before.
TED’s Best of The Week:
Jackson Katz: Violence against women—it’s a men’s issue
Domestic violence and sexual abuse are often called “women’s issues.” But in this bold, blunt talk, Jackson Katz points out that these are intrinsically men’s issues — and shows how these violent behaviors are tied to definitions of manhood. A clarion call for us all — women and men — to call out unacceptable behavior and be leaders of change.
Jackson Katz asks a very important question that gets at the root of why sexual abuse, rape and domestic abuse remain a problem: What’s going on with men?
“We need more men with guts, with the courage, with the strength, with the moral integrity to break our complicit silence and challenge each other and stand with women and not against them.”
Fearful ‘Memories’ Passed Between Generations Through Genetic Code
“A frankly mind-blowing new study suggests traumatic events that happen to a parent could be passed down through their genes onto their children. The research, published in Nature Neuroscience, was carried out on mice, which were conditioned to become afraid of a particular smell: in fact a smell not unlike cherry blossom (Dias & Ressler, 2013). Even the grandchildren showed the fearful response. So the fearful response towards this smell was passed down two generations. The mechanism for the transmission of this response across generations appears to be through the mice’s sperm.
The reason this study is so potentially exciting is that evolution is thought to occur mostly through random genetic mutations across many generations.”
Top 10 Reasons why Diversity is Good for the Boardroom
1. It reflects the real world – something every company should be sensitive to.
2. Healthy debate can lead to better decisions.
3. Divergent backgrounds mean tackling the same idea in differing ways.
4. Great ideas come from disruption of the status quo.
5. Your clients and customers are diverse.
Read the rest at:
Person of the week! Alfred Hitchcock, Master Of Suspense
Hitchcock’s strength and reputation as a filmmaker was that he was able to visualize his subconscious fears and desires and turn them into waking nightmares on the silver screen. Many viewers share those feelings and emotions, which is why he will remain in the public consciousness for many years to come.
Hitchcock (1899–1980) was nominated for six Oscars throughout his career, receiving best director mentions for Rebecca (1940), Lifeboat (1944), Spellbound (1945) Rear Window (1954) and Psycho (1960). Over three decades after his death, at the age of 81, Psycho, adapted for the big screen from a novel based on the life of American serial killer Ed Gein, remains Hitchcock’s greatest-ever film. Psycho is regarded as the world’s first ‘slasher’ movie, terrifying and shocking the public when it opened in 1960. It contained unprecedented levels of violence and sexuality, and its infamous ‘shower scene’ was later named the ‘Best Death’ in modern cinematography.
But Alfred Hitchcock, in a newly-unearthed interview, says he was ‘horrified’ when spectators took his subversive classic Psycho seriously.
Watch the 1964 sit-down uncovered found in the BBC archives, where the master of suspense says he intended the film to be a dark comedy made ‘rather tongue-in-cheek’.
“I never carry more than I can afford to lose” (Psycho)
Hey Congress! 4 ways to break a stalemate!
Converse. Convince. Compromise. Cooperate
“Partnership is not easy but it requires the continual application of we can call the four C’s – conversing, convincing, compromising, and cooperating. These practices are fundamental to the biggest “c” word in management – communication – open, honest and mutual.
Mutual benefit requires mutual consent.”
Richard Dawkins answers the question: what makes us human? | BBC Radio 2
“Darwin would be fascinated if he could come back and see what is now known. We are very, very unique species. Make the point that other species are unique too. But we are unique in a very special way, in our ability to think, in our ability to place ourselves in universe, understand where we came from. No other species comes close to that.”
Here’s another link about some of the many talks by Dawkins:
Can Long Distance Relationships Work?
About three million Americans have long-distance relationships
“…our culture emphasizes being together physically and frequent face-to-face contact for close relationships, but long-distance relationships clearly stand against all these values. People don’t have to be so pessimistic about long-distance romance. The long-distance couples try harder than geographically close couples in communicating affection and intimacy, and their efforts do pay back.”
None of this research, though, tells us anything about which types of people can cope with long distance relationships. While some people may naturally have the skills required, others may not.
Ted’s best of the week!
iO Tillet Wright thanks to her parents for not asking her to define herself as a child. Her experience of growing up without check boxes like “female”, “male”, “gay” or “straight” thoroughly infuses her art.
“Sometimes just the question ‘what do you do?’ can feel like somebody’s opening a tiny little box and asking you to squeeze yourself inside of it.”
“There are just as many jerks and sweethearts and Democrats and Republicans and jocks and queens and every other polarization you can possibly think of within the LGBT community as there are within the human race.”
Person of the week! Homage a symbol of a century: Nelson Mandela
Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela (1918 – 2013) was born in the village of Mvezo in Umtatu. Mandela was the person that brought peace to one of the most problematic regions in the XXth century. The first black president of South Africa united people, identities of different race, color and culture. All under the same roof and vision. This great man’s funeral will be held on Sunday, December 15, after the emotional 10 days farewell.
“Our family was deeply moved by our visit to Madiba’s former cell on Robben Island during our recent trip to South Africa, and we will forever draw strength and inspiration from his extraordinary example of moral courage, kindness, and humility,” Obama said in a statement.
Mandela ground breaking work was mainly political and social to end the South African apartheid regime. He was most known for his policy and attitude of forgiveness, fostering racial reconciliation while avoiding a failure in empty retaliation out of anger and vengeance. Thus this Rolihlahla (“troublemaker” in colloquial Xhosa) became the most appreciated peacemaker this modern world has even seen.
A short biography:
p.s. – Why Nelson?
“No one in my family had ever attended school […] On the first day of school my teacher, Miss Mdingane, gave each of us an English name. This was the custom among Africans in those days and was undoubtedly due to the British bias of our education. That day, Miss Mdingane told me that my new name was Nelson. Why this particular name I have no idea.”
— Mandela, 1994
Recently I decided to take a course in one of the many MOOCs available. Being a fan of writing I chose a course titled The Future of Storytelling. Today we are at the six week and I have to admit this is a great experience. Every week they offer weekly video material, lessons, interviews and tasks on the following topics (not necessarily in this order):
– Storytelling basics.
– Serial formats (on the TV, web and beyond) – Theoretical lesson, extremely interesting.
– Storytelling in role-playing games.
– Interactive storytelling in video games.
– Transmedia storytelling.
– Alternate-reality gaming.
– Augmented reality and location-based storytelling.
– The role of tools, interfaces and information architectures in current storytelling.
The first Storytelling-MOOC will focus on fictional formats. The goal is to inspire and help understand as well as broaden our horizon of what is and might be possible and what has already been attempted, and what has succeeded or even failed – and why.
And yes, for all of you who are wandering if there are some of those pesky assignments we all loved so much in out toddler years, yes, the task (homework) of the week is indeed given. However, taking under consideration we are all somewhat busy adult.
I have to admit that I didn´t do all of my homework but here’s one for the last week. The task was to take a camera, be it you mobile phone, a webcam… , and introduce oneself to the other StoryMOOCers, telling the viewers which works inspired your interest in storytelling most up to know. In the task you should pick out 1-3 works of art, literature, film, TV, game, a website or else and tell what’s so special about it that you think it might help inspire somebody else anywhere on this planet.
This is my video (which I promise to improve in future posts):
*If you would like to post your personal advice of the books and inspiration and share it with us please send it to me to email@example.com and I´ll upload it. If you don’t want to be in the video, you can simply make it just about your piece of inspiration.