To juice cleanse, or detox, or not?

Monday, 26 January, 2015

Go into, say, Sydney’s Centennial Park on the first work day of the year, in the early evening, and see how many people are out running. Go back a week later, and see how few there are. Hmm, behold the fickle sway of new year’s resolutions…

If then, by chance, one of your resolutions for the new year, was to try out a detox, or juice cleanse, you ought to read this BuzzFeed piece on the subject… assuming that particular undertaking hasn’t already gone by the wayside.

“I don’t know why someone would do a juice cleanse,” Dr. John Buse, M.D., Ph.D., chief of the division of endocrinology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, told BuzzFeed Life. “There’s very little evidence that it does anything good for you.”

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“Back to the Future”, we’re taking you back to the past, not the future

Monday, 26 January, 2015

Being twenty-fifteen, we’re probably going to be hearing about Back to the Future Part II, since part of the story is set in this/that year. And some of that chatter is likely to focus on the accuracy, or otherwise, of the predictions, if you like, made in regards to the way the world would be today.

But doing so is pointless, says Tim Carmody, writing at Medium:

I’ll tell you a secret: the Back to the Future movies aren’t about the future. They’re obsessed with the past.

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Andromeda, our clearest view to date

Friday, 23 January, 2015

Andromeda galaxy section, by NASA, Hubble

A copy, assembled from photos taken by the Hubble Space Telescope, of the sharpest large composite image of a section of the Andromeda galaxy. Enjoy the view while you can, eventually, as in four billion years time, Andromeda will merge with our galaxy, the Milky Way.

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Do more by focussing on your system rather than your goal

Friday, 23 January, 2015

Accomplishing goals, doing things, ticking stuff off the to-do list… not always easy. It might be though that we focus too much on the goal, rather the way we intended to achieve said goal, according to entrepreneur, weightlifter, and travel photographer James Clear.

For example, I just added up the total word count for the articles I’ve written this year. In the past 12 months, I’ve written more than 115,000 words. The typical book is about 50,000 to 60,000 words, so this year I’ve written enough to fill two books. That’s a huge a surprise, since I never set a goal for my writing. I didn’t measure my progress in relation to a benchmark. I never set a word-count goal for any particular article. I never said, “I want to write two books this year.”

I’d say there’s something in that. I’ve written, by now, well over one million words here on disassociated, yet to do so was never a goal, it just happened because I had be writing in the first place. Something to consider, look more at the systems that make things happen, rather than what it is you’re hoping to achieve.

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What’s in your name, an indication of your profession?

Friday, 23 January, 2015

If your given name determined one’s career or job, then I would be a golfer or a race car driver… sort of, that would likely be the case if I went by the name Johnny. How about you? Does your name match with your occupation?

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There’s self-employed, then there’s reluctantly self-employed

Friday, 23 January, 2015

Are you working in your own business because you want to, or because you had no real choice?

Seemingly the number of so-called “necessity entrepreneurs” is on the rise, as regular nine-to-five, cradle-to-grave jobs, slowly continue to evaporate. It could be that in the next couple of decades the ranks of the reluctantly self-employed, which includes contractors, freelancers, and part timers, will form a large proportion of the workforce.

Kathleen Christensen, who directs the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation’s Working Longer program, suspects many aren’t starting their own businesses because they’ve been seized with a vision or a solution to a problem, as the mythologized version of the entrepreneur supposedly is. “From the research I’ve conducted,” she says, “they often lack other options.” Many are conscripts in self-employment rather than volunteers. There’s now even a term for such workers: “necessity entrepreneurs” (rather than “opportunity entrepreneurs”). Though not a whole lot of work has been done examining the difference between these two groups, what little there is suggests that necessity entrepreneurs aren’t always as successful – or as happy.

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The art of the Sun and the wind

Thursday, 22 January, 2015

Shade, an installation by Dutch artist Simon Heijdens, projects sunlight, in kaleidoscopic fashion, onto its facade, according to the speed of the prevailing breeze.

A cellular glass facade that filters natural sunlight into a moving kaleidoscope of light and shadow, directly choreographed by the elements passing outside, to restore the unplanned natural timeline of the outdoors to the interior of the building.

Via prosthetic knowledge.

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Turning a buck on the spare space on your hard disk

Thursday, 22 January, 2015

If we’re happy to rent out the spare room to travellers, and ferry strangers about town in our cars, why shouldn’t we then offer any excess space on our hard drives to people who need somewhere to store their files?

Enter Storj, a decentralised, encrypted cloud storage facilitator. So, security and legal concerns much? Such a service seems open to numerous avenues of abuse, but these issues appear to have been thought through though:

When someone uploads a file to our network (i.e. using MetaDisk) the file itself gets shredded (sharded) in lots of different small chunks (shards) on the client side and each one gets encrypted before it even goes out on the internet and our network. These file shards then get distributed all over the network and hosted on DriveShare nodes all over the world. So even if someone has access to one of the DriveShare nodes HD the data hosted on it is meaningless as it will only be composed of small file chunks which are also encrypted.

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Could you fall in love instantly if you passed the love quiz?

Thursday, 22 January, 2015

Could you fall in love, and establish a lasting connection, with someone if, first up, you could both offer – I guess – compatible answers to a thirty-six question quiz, and then secondly, gaze into their eyes for two to four minutes?

I’ve likely cut all the meat off the bone of the concept as it were, but I say forget the questions, I couldn’t possibly answer them instantaneously, but the two to four minutes of eye contact, now that I can go for.

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Looking busy at work, easier to say than to do

Thursday, 22 January, 2015

Yes, there has been the very rare, excessively rare, occasion, when working for an employer, that I may have spent a little time looking busy, rather than actually being productive. Such carry on is pointless these days, but looking busy, as in really looking busy, is, you should understand, not in the least bit simple.

It turns out that slacking off is serious business: “‘Doing nothing’ while at work can be a very demanding activity requiring planning, collaboration, risk calculation, and ethical consideration,” Paulsen observes. Some subjects turned shirking into a game they found more meaningful than their actual jobs.

On the topic of looking busy, check out Forgotten Employee, something I found a while back, seemingly about a worker at a US company who had been laid off, but continued turning up for work, and on full pay, for years afterwards. If that’s not trying to look busy, what is?

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