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Sophie Wrobel has been at 2 events

HostFollowersTitleDateGuestsLinks
Eric Enge21,396@115620878851836664537 @107022061436866576067 and I are looking forward to discussing the rapid advances in semantic search. Google, Siri, and Cortana are all making advances, but Google is the clear leader in this space. Here is the YouTube link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=paQ7qq4ddag  @115515796589038584989 has documented that in a study that will publish in the Digital Marketing Excellence Blog on Tuesday morning.  David is about to publish a post on a "reconciliation of identities across different social networks". Join us on Tuesday October 7th at 1 PM ET to talk about these new papers and more.  Say YES to get access to the video for live or later viewing.  I will also share the YouTube link here for mobile viewers. Please *reshare the event* or *invite others*.  Thanks for your help!Scaling the Semantic Web2014-10-07 19:00:00294  
Yifat Cohen74,419*How Do You Rise To The Top?* In 2008, at the age of 24, @111509959619736677567 took all of the Bar Mitzvah money he'd saved up and started a television show in St. Louis, Missouri on ABC with *literally zero experience writing, producing or hosting a television show.* The Rise To The Top TV show focused on entrepreneurship and aired for 36 episodes. *HOW DID HE DO IT, AND HOW CAN YOU DO IT TOO?* How did a kid with no experience managed to interview The Millionaire Matchmaker Patti Stanger, Two-time New York Times Best Selling Author @113217646903708244617 and creator of Wine Library TV @111310990991240556038, among others? *YOUR 30 MIN. WITH DAVID* In the tradition of my What's Your Story? Entrepreneurial Interviews, you get the last 30 minutes to engage in conversation with David and fill in your own gaps so that you get the answers you need to reach the same level of success. *RSVP FOR EARLY INVITATIONS* And to make sure I get your questions answered - start typing them here. *FUN FACTS ABOUT DAVID* David is the Creator/Host of The Rise To The Top: The #1 Badass Show, Resource & Community For Mediapreneurs. *Author of Smarter, Faster, Cheaper* and super passionate about helping mediaprenuers (entrepreneurs who create media) grow their biz like a weed and dominate online. (Grab it here: http://amzn.to/P5g11D) David's interviews have been viewed over 6,000,000 times in over 100 countries. Creator of *Create Awesome Interviews* the #1 program to help folks create their own interview-based web show with hundreds of graduates creating shows on everything from NASCAR to healthy living.How to create and profit from your own interview-based web show?2012-09-13 18:00:00106  

Sophie Wrobel has been shared in 188 public circles

You can see here the 50 latest shared circles.
If this is your profile, you can check your dashboard to see all shared circles you have been included.

AuthorFollowersDateUsers in CircleCommentsReshares+1Links
Ruta a la Patagonia27,777┊ ☆ ┊☆ ┊ ☆ ┊Patagonian Gems v23 CIRCLE  ┊ ☆ ┊☆ ┊☆┊_________________________________________________●❈●❈●❉●  Please Share From The Original Post! ●❈●❈●❉●▼▼▼▼ CLICK READ MORE FOR FULL CONTENT ▼▼▼▼*This is the Patagonian Gems v23 Google Plus CircleIf you want to participate please kindly frollow the following rules::-)1. Add me to your circles if you haven´t done it already2. Share this circle to Public3. Plus or coment this post so we know you wish to participate in upcoming circlesPlease note: ● You must be an active Google+ user and shares useful content.● Your posts must be family-friendly. No adult, gambling, controversial, politics, religion blogs.Have a nice day!Your blogging friends of: +Ruta a la Patagonia  De camino al Sur el mejor hotel  para alojarte sobre ruta 5, antes de Santa Rosa La Pampa, esta en Trenque Lauquen: +Hotel Howard Johnson Trenque Lauquen Sobre ruta, con amplio parque, pileta climatizada, estacionamiento, wifi, restobar y mucho mas. Ya sea que vayas de camino a Bariloche, San Martin de los Andes, Villa la Angostura o cualquier otro destino de la cordillera o de la costa de la patagonia (por ruta 33).Consultanos en: www.hjtrenquelauquen.com.ar2015-04-14 13:59:17500181824
Allan watson25,572Active users on Google+. Circle ShareIf you received a notification, please reshare to your #circlesIf you’d like to be added to the next circle share: • +1 this circle • Share this circle to PUBLIC • Include me in your circles • Comment on this post#small #communities #other #parts #of #especially #Southeast #Confucianism #found #predominantly #Mainland #South #Korea #Taiwan #overseas #Chinese #populations #confrontationThe #Bangladesh #Liberation #WarThe #Yom #Kippur #WarThe #Iranian #RevolutionThe #Soviet #war #AfghanistanThe #Iran–Iraq #W #Indonesian #occupation #of #TimorThe #Cambodian #Killing #Field2015-04-14 07:41:14424000
Daniel Gibbs24,387If you received a notification, please reshare to your #circlesIf you’d like to be added to the next circle share: • +1 this #circle • Share this circle to PUBLIC • Include me in your circles • Comment on this post#honorary #Asian #Nobel #laureate #having #spent #considerable #time #as #daughter #of #missionaries #based #many #of #her #novels #namely #Good #Earth #Mother #as #well #as #biographies #of #her #parents #of #their #time #Exile #Fighting #Angel #all #of #which #earned #her 2015-04-13 10:36:224447713
Robert Best2,685Google+ Relevance CircleWhat people of "relevance" do we have in common? Care to share?This big shared circle contains my most "relevant" circles according to G+. It also only contains people/profiles who post publicly (Either occasionally or prolifically).Do you recognize others in the list? (I think the probability is high)As far as I know, the visual beside the "Add people" button below shows you the 8 people from this circle who are most "relevant" to you. Also, if you click that add people button, the list inside is ordered by "relevance".Some people in this circle I know very well... others I haven't met at all (Besides interfacing with what they share publicly on G+) I'm curious, what circles do we share of high relevance? Give a few people shout outs! Let's have a random chat.You were likely notified of this post... I normally don't share to any of my specific circles, so as to avoid sending out unwanted notifications... But since I have you and your attention here... HELLO! Have we talked before? Why do you think I have you circled? What's of relevance for you? (Besides people on G+) If we do know each other... Have we been in touch lately? If not, let's please catch up!2015-03-03 01:03:39455111
Clarence Divas397The Refollow Circle#socialmedia  #media  #circles   #circleshare   #circlesharing  #circlecircle   #beckyscircle   #sharedcircles   #sharedpubliccircles2015-02-27 18:41:06172000
Harry Day14,317If You recieve this message You are included in circle !!!To get in, and to ensure you stay in #thebestfriends  circle you need to do the following:1. Include me in your circles...!!!2.  Add the circle if you can, if not try again later.3. Plus this post...!!4. Publicly share this circle...!!5. Leave a comment on this circle so I know you have done the three steps above...!!!*#photography  #circlesharingforthepeopleplc #sharedcircles #sharedpubliccircles #ireland #ireland #cork #ireland #dublin #italy #italy #florence #italy #milan #italy #naples #italy #rome #italy #venice #latvia #latvia #riga #lithuania #lithuania #vilnius #netherlands #netherlands #amsterdam #netherlands #rotterdam #norway #norway #bergen #norway #oslo2015-02-06 11:00:264938053110
RuMuZ NeYiMe1,336good morningadd friends list..#addcircle #addcircles #addpeople #awesomecircle #awesomecircles #awesomepeople #besharable #besocial #bestcircle #bestcircles #bestengagers #circleadd #circleall #circleme #circlemenow #circlemeup #circlenetwork #circleplus #circlesdiscovery #circleshare #circleshares #circlesharing #circleup #circleyoushare #coolpeople #engagerscircle #engagerscircles #findcircle #findcircles #follow4follow #followback #followme #fullcircleshare #influencermarketing #internetmarketing #morefollowers #networkcircle 2015-01-12 08:56:27466107
John Sean10,506This circle contains people who really are interesting and active people on Google Plus.If you would like to be included in the next Circle Share, you only have to do these simple steps:1 - Include me in your circles2 - Share the circle (Publicly)3 - Add +1 to the post.4 - Leave a comment if you like.I will thankful if you plus and share this circle!#publiccircle #circleshare #circlesharing #philadelphia #phoenix #san_antonio #san_diego #san_francisco #san_jose #seattle #tampa #washington #american_samoa #american_samoa #pago_pago #fiji #fiji #nadi #fiji #suva #argentina #argentina #buenos_aires #argentina #cordoba #argentina #iguaza #argentina #mendoza #argentina #rosaio #argentina #san_carlos_de_bariloche #bolivia #bolivia #cochabamba 2015-01-12 06:41:19465171632
Jason Ryckman0 Hey this is jason I'm a follower of your page, I think you might really enjoy my #health    #fitness   and  #weightloss    #review     page, Please head over and check it out, I just added you to one of my circles could you please add me to your circles in returnThese followers are currently active and many will add you back when you add this circle to your circles.#circleshare #circlesharing   #circleshares  SIMPLE STEPS1. Please add me to one of your circles2. Please comment and reshare this post to public3. please comment on the original post or i may miss it4. If you would rather not receive these posts or be in my circle shares please shoot me a message and i will remove you from the List2014-12-12 01:49:47466000
Jason Ryckman0 Hey this is jason I'm a follower of your page, I think you might really enjoy my #health    #fitness   and  #weightloss    #review     page, Please head over and check it out, I just added you to one of my circles could you please add me to your circles in returnThese followers are currently active and many will add you back when you add this circle to your circles.#circleshare  #circlesharing   #circleshares  SIMPLE STEPS1. Please add me to one of your circles2. Please comment and reshare this post to public3. please comment on the original post or i may miss it4. If you would rather not receive these posts or be in my circle shares please shoot me a message and i will remove you from the List2014-12-09 20:12:54467000
Webtasarim Gardentr104Web design #seo #circle #bosmol #BosmolCircle   #GrowthCIrcle     #GooglePlus   #CircleShare   #sharedpubliccircles   #sharedcircles   #circlesharing   #circleshared   #publiccirclesproject   #publicsharedcircles   #circleoftheday   #google  #circle #circles #publiccircle #sharedcircles   #sharedcircle #morefollowers #sharingcircles #circleshare #sharedpubliccircles #sharedpublicircles  #sharedcircle #AddCircle #FindCircles #addcircle  #circlemeup #circlesdiscovery #circleshare #circlesharing  #publiccircle   #publicsharedcircles #SharedCircles   #circlesharing   #circl2014-11-07 10:04:23485237
Becky Collins18,305Project Management Interest Circle :Circle of very #social #engagerspeople and companiesTo be included in my shares (#sharedcircle), be so kind to:1 - Do +1 t the post2 - Comment the post and specify your "category" (job or interest) Ex: Fashion, SEO, Companies, Social Media Marketing, Sailing, Photography, Bloggers/Writers, Web graphics and design, Italy, Artists, Sport, Finance/Economy ...3 - include the circle among your circles4 - share the circle (include yourself)Improve your popularity, be social be cool !Keep yourself updated, enjoy the Shared Circles Hellenic Alliance, you can share your shared circles inside the upcoming Community:https://plus.google.com/communities/112552559573595396104  #socialmedia  #media  #circles   #circleshare   #circlesharing  #circlecircle   #beckyscircle   #sharedcircles   #sharedpubliccircles  #sharedcircleoftheday  +Becky Collins ?2014-10-29 05:09:31430002
Adel de Meyer2,802This #googlepluscircleshare  is a great group of people I love to have a part of my community. They are active engagers, share fun and interesting posts and can help to make your #googleplus  experience better :)I want to thank them all for being so awesome - thanks peeps! Please feel free to add them all to your circles too.Please +1 this post and share and comment - I will be sharing #elitecircles  with my community regularly, so if you want to be in it get sharing! :) #circleshare   #topsharedcircle   #socialmedia  2014-09-17 12:27:01380153101143
Jack Humphrey21,216Here's a great little circle of Engagers shared by +martin shervington.  It's always a great service to share your best engaging followers and I appreciate Martin's continual sharing -  we should all do it often to help each other have an optimal experience here at G+! #sharedcircles  2014-08-22 17:38:5064003
Mike Elgan3,464,700Follow the Blogs of August!1. Click "Add people" then circle this shared circle (even if you did it before)2. Share with your circlesThe Blogs of August are bloggers who are either trying or have already decided to blog on Google+ exclusively for the month of August (or permanently). 2014-08-06 12:34:462215525
Mike Elgan3,437,756Behold! The new League of Extraordinary Circle Friends!My League of Extraordinary Circle Friends is my hand-picked group of super charming super-sharers! I want you to do three things: 1. Click the "Add people" button below and circle this group (especially if you've circle this group previously -- doing this will update the group without duplicates). 2. Share this post with all your circles. 3. Share this post with people who are looking for awesome people to circle on G+. I've added four new people to the League.+Amira Elgan! Yes: She's my wife. And I've been trying to avoid adding her for a year. But her stream is perfect for the League so I've added her. +Noble Ackerson is a super nice and interesting guy, a super nerd and consummate glasshole -- he uses Google Glass to great effect to bring you into his world. In fact, the only bigger glasshole I know is... +Cecilia Abadie and Noble work at the same company, and Ceclia is another Glass user with a wonderful Google+ stream. +Andreas Katifes gives you a window into Greek scenes and Greek food that's so compelling you might accidentally quit your job and move to Greece. Welcome to the League, everyone! 2014-07-27 23:39:2625111240
Aman Singh2,014Circle of the dayYour re-share is appreciatedPlease re-share this circle in your stream.To be added:1- Add +Circles Circles Circles to your circles2- Write the URL of your blog in the comments section below3- Your blog must be an active blog (posts must be current)2014-07-16 12:15:324990719
Ryan Johnson9,485Hi friends! This is a great circle created with an important selection from all circles. The most important engagers are reshared because only that way can we grow our circle and have the people of google circle us.To get in, and to ensure you stay in this circle you need to do the following:1. Add me to your circles, if you haven't done so already!2. +1 this circle!3. Publicly share this circle to public, your circles and extended circles.4. If possible, leave a comment on this circle so I know you have done the three steps above!#circleshare #circlesharing #circleoftheday #wanttobecircled #addmetoyourcircles #public #publiccircle #sharedcircles #Britain #sharedcircle #morefollowers #sharingcircles #sharedpubliccircles #sharedpublicircles #sharedcircle #photography #uk  #nottingham #Holland #Netherlands #Duch2014-07-16 10:40:014918812
Lose Those Poundz1,283Health and Weight loss Circle V 1.0This is a super circle and in it I have put together a group of really interesting and active friends on Google Plus to add in your circles.I'm talking about the *top Google+ users who share and reshare unique and original contents regarding weight loss and healthy eating.Follow this advice and grow your G+ community with like minded people who share marvelous content:Boost your visibility on Google+ - Share the circle!If you want to be circled and added  to the next circle, do these simple steps:1 - Add this circle2 - Share the circle (Publicly) 3 - Plus 1 the post 4 - CommentIf you already have me in circle and want to be included in the next circle to be shared, don't be sad, just  leave a comment. Saying you wish to be included. More you share, more you get sharedHave fun! #circles     #circleshare     #circlesharing     #sharedpubliccircles     #addpeople     #addcircle       #weightloss   #healthyeating  2014-07-11 04:13:23483206
Becky Collins12,812Small Business Circle:Circle of very #social #engagerspeople and companiesTo be included in my shares (#sharedcircle), be so kind to:1 - Do +1 t the post2 - Comment the post and specify your "category" (job or interest) Ex: Fashion, SEO, Companies, Social Media Marketing, Sailing, Photography, Bloggers/Writers, Web graphics and design, Italy, Artists, Sport, Finance/Economy ...3 - include the circle among your circles4 - share the circle (include yourself)Improve your popularity, be social be cool !Keep yourself updated, enjoy the Shared Circles Hellenic Alliance, you can share your shared circles inside the upcoming Community:https://plus.google.com/communities/112552559573595396104  #socialmedia  #media  #circles   #circleshare   #circlesharing  #circlecircle   #beckyscircle   #sharedcircles   #sharedpubliccircles  #sharedcircleoftheday  +Becky Collins ?2014-07-08 05:12:1542311513
Doug Hyatt3,412(DH4)  HERE IS THE LATEST CIRCLE - 6/30/2014CIRCLE SHARING IS THE FASTEST WAY TO GROW YOUR FOLLOWING ON GOOGLE+  SIMPLY ADD THE CIRCLE, THEN ADD YOURSELF, THEN RE-SHARE USING THE HASHTAGS PROVIDED HERE.  WATCH HOW FAST YOU GROW! ENJOY  #DOUGHYATTCIRCLESHARING #CircleSharing #Circle #CircleOfTheDay #Share #SharedPublicCircles #SharedCircles #Google+ #GooglePlusTips #Google #ShareCircle #SocialMedia #AddCircle #ADD #Marketing #Engagers #SocialMediaMarketing #EliteInnerCircle #Friends #PublicCircle #buy_GooglePlus_followers2014-06-30 16:34:05401014
Doug Hyatt3,234Part 4  MANY NEW PEOPLE WHO WILL PLUS 1 and RESHARESimply ADD yourself to this circle, copy the #HASHTAGS, and REPOST#circles   #circlemania   #circletoday   #circleplus   #circleshare   #circlesharing   #CircleSharing   #sharecircle   #sharecirclethis   #worldsharecircle   #pleasecircleaddme   #circleoftheday   #newgenerationcircle  #monstercircle   #usacircle   #bestofthecircle   #shareofthecircle   #pleasecircle   #newbestcircl  add circle add circle * best share circle * share please pleaseplease add circle * best share circle * share please please#add #circle   #addcircle   #pleasecircle   #bestcircle   #mostcircle  #bestsharecircle   #newcircle   #top100circle   #best500circle   #top500circle   #circleoftheday   #circledaily   #nicecircle   #photography   2014-06-29 13:03:00400104
John Nuntiatio38,202#circles #sharedcircles #circlesharing #circle #bestcircle #news #bestofcircles #bestcircleshare #share #tech #business #sport #small #smallcircle #photography #health2014-06-15 06:01:32319368
Robert Connor8,877public circle share1. Add me to your circles, if you haven't done so already2. +1 this circle3. Publicly share this circle to public, your circles and extended circles.4. Leave a comment on this circle so I know you have done the three steps above #circle #circles #public #publiccircle #circleshare #circlesharing #sharedcircles  #sharedcircle  #morefollowers  #sharingcircles #circleshare #sharedpubliccircles #sharedpublicircles #sharedcircle   #photography #photographer #bestphotographer #topphotographer2014-05-28 11:24:43490171335
Harry Day305Google Friends! - You're in this Circle - Share the circle·         +1 this circle·         Share this circle·         Add this circle to your circles·         Comment on this post#SpecialNew #circles #sharedcircles #addcircle #veryimpcircle #circle #circleshare #circlesharing #circles #fashoncircle #fashion #model #pinterest #women #sharedcircles #share2014-05-16 11:29:50433337
Анна Красота0very cool circle!#круги   #обмен  #кругляши #круглим   #круги #Google+   #SharedCircles   #circles   #circleshare   #sharedcircle   #circlesharing   #followers   #social  2014-05-14 16:49:29401107
rudi firmansyah442please add me my profile in your circle,Reshare if you like! Please plus to tell me you have seen it! *There is no need to thank me, this is me thanking you! *1. Plus The Post2. Comment3. Add People To Circles4. share the circle (include yourself)#circlesharing #circleshare #circles #circle #googleplustips #googleplus #indonesia #artists #artist #artistphotographeramateurorprofessional2014-05-12 18:26:34501001
fendy syahputra409please add me my profile in your circle,Reshare if you like! Please plus to tell me you have seen it! *There is no need to thank me, this is me thanking you! *1. Plus The Post2. Comment3. Add People To Circles4. share the circle (include yourself)#circlesharing #circleshare #circles #circle #googleplustips #googleplus #indonesia #artists #artist #artistphotographeramateurorprofessional2014-05-12 05:34:44501114
John Nuntiatio36,016#circles #sharedcircles #circlesharing #circle #bestcircle #news   #bestofcircles #bestcircleshare #share #tech #business #sport #small   #smallcircle 2014-05-09 20:16:39311233
John Nuntiatio29,767#circles #sharedcircles #circlesharing #circle #circleoftheday #bestofcircles #bestcircleshare #share #tech #business #sport2014-03-14 06:27:36393014
John Nuntiatio29,767#circles #sharedcircles #circlesharing #circle #circleoftheday #bestofcircles #bestcircleshare #share #tech #business #sport2014-03-14 06:26:50393033
John Nuntiatio29,767#circles #sharedcircles #circlesharing #circle #circleoftheday #bestofcircles #bestcircleshare #share #tech #business #sport2014-03-14 06:26:17393011
John Nuntiatio (TodayNews)29,767#circles #sharedcircles #circlesharing #circle #circleoftheday #bestofcircles #bestcircleshare #share #tech #business #sport2014-03-14 06:25:52393011
John Nuntiatio29,767#circles #sharedcircles #circlesharing #circle #circleoftheday #bestofcircles #bestcircleshare #share #tech #business #sport2014-03-14 06:25:16393203
John Nuntiatio28,623#circles #sharedcircles #circlesharing #circle #circleoftheday #newcircle #bestofcircles #bestcircleshare #share #tech #business #sport #health   #entertainment  #news  2014-03-01 15:15:34459261728
Scott Lewis119,839*The Amazing Women Circle*So as today's Hangout from +STEM Women on G+ w/ +Jonathan Eisen started, I decided to go back through my "Amazing Women's Circle" and feature the fantastic people that enrich my life, particularly in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. These brilliant women contribute regularly here on +Google+ and are a shining example of how it doesn't matter what sex or gender you are, everyone can do remarkable things.Please feel free to share this about and let me know in the comments if there are more Amazing Women I should add to this group! #STEMWomen   #GenderEquality   #Equality   #ScienceEveryday   #ScienceSunday  2014-02-16 21:06:57103251529
Mike Elgan3,022,401Drafting +Renata Sherwin into the League!Click "Add people" below to circle my League of Extraordinary Circle Friends!" (And please SHARE with all your circles!)My Google+ charm offensive continues with the addition of one +Renata Sherwin into the League. Renata was an early Google+ superstar, then mysteriously vanished for awhile. Now she's back, bigger than life, and sharing her world and discoveries. Welcome to the League, Renata!!2014-01-26 18:46:493220625
John Nuntiatio19,970#sharedcircles #circlesharing #circle #circleoftheday #bestofcircles #bestcircleshare #share 2013-11-26 17:06:3046713517
Lo Sauer2,493This is a great circle combined of active engagers, creative folks and  some of the best and brightest people on google+. A thank you in this circle-inclusion-shoutout to: +Peter Terren +Michael Műller +Carlos Esteban +Justin Chung +Malthus John +Marta Rauch +Rajini Rao +Katherine Vucicevic +Jonathan Eisen +Mike Allton +Scott Buehler +Mario Falcetti +Zvonimir Fras +Krithika Rangarajan +sridhar krishnan +Joanna Ortynska +Seamus Smyth +Chuck Croll +Michael Schobel +2013-11-19 18:19:4843218317
John Nuntiatio19,329#sharedcircles #circlesharing #circle #circleoftheday #bestofcircles #bestcircleshare #share 2013-11-17 16:29:574667310
Francesco Zambelli527#circlesharing   #circleshare   #topengagers   #sharedpubliccircles   #sharedcircles   #sharedcircle   a very good circle is being built... to be included you have to1) share this circle2) +1 to this post3) comment it.2013-11-07 19:36:45198117
Johnny Huntington0#webdesign #sharedcircles #webdevelopment  Here is a great shared circle of Professional Web Designers.2013-11-04 13:45:45501003
Rank Kemeng0This is a group of individuals that has personally shared four of my best circle sharing circles in the last month (or so).  They also include a mix of new circle sharers and some that are just trying to learn it for the first time. :) :) :0)They are individuals, to a large degree, that are very interested in not just circle sharing (which is great), but also engaging with you in a meaningful way (which is awesome)!!!Guidelines for Core Multipliers- Share the circle to stay in the circle- Have some fun!- If you are new and want in the circle, share the circle.This is a great group.  Enjoy this circle and have an awesome Thursday!*if you were somehow missed/ not included in the circle, please let me know and it will be corrected on the next share. My apologies ahead of time! :)**For those coming from multiplying circle, we are not inviting new folks here, you can privately message them or ping them when you share the circle on your public feed. Thanks!#corecircle #multiplyingcircle #coremultipliers #sharedcircles #circleshare #bestsharedcircle   #circleshare   #sharedcircles   #circleoftheday   #CircleQueen   #CircleMaster   #GPlusList   #Circle   #Circleshare   #Circlesharing   #PublicSharedCircles2013-11-01 15:53:38426115
Coyeb Sundel02013-10-24 10:04:35425202
James Steward1,112These are awesome scientist friends who comment my posts#scientistcirle #circle #circleshared #sharedcircle #circleoftheday #followfriday2013-10-10 16:30:23414103
James Steward1,112These are awesome scientist friends who comment my posts#scientistcirle #circle #circleshared #sharedcircle #circleoftheday #followfriday2013-10-10 16:29:39414003
James Steward1,112These are awesome scientist friends who comment my posts#scientistcirle #circle #circleshared #sharedcircle #circleoftheday #followfriday2013-10-10 16:29:27414002
James Steward1,112These are awesome scientist friends who comment my posts#scientistcirle #circle #circleshared #sharedcircle #circleoftheday #followfriday2013-10-10 16:29:04414002
James Steward1,112These are awesome scientist friends who comment my posts#scientistcirle #circle #circleshared #sharedcircle #circleoftheday #followfriday2013-10-10 16:27:59414004
James Steward1,112These are awesome scientist friends who comment my posts#scientistcirle #circle #circleshared #sharedcircle #circleoftheday #followfriday2013-10-10 16:27:16414002

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2014-12-01 08:01:13 (30 comments, 139 reshares, 135 +1s)Open 

The question game!
Teaching kids to ask smart questions

Think about it: A four-year-old asks on average about 400 questions per day, and an adult hardly asks any. Our school system is structured around rewards for regurgitating the right answer, and not asking smart questions - in fact, it discourages asking questions. With the result that as we grow older, we stop asking questions. Yet asking good questions is essential to find and develop solutions, and important skill in innovation, strategy, and leadership. So why do we stop asking questions - and more importantly, why don't we train each other, and our future leaders, to ask the right questions starting from early on?

I've been just reading Die Kunst des klugen Fragens by Warren Berger who suggests that there are three main questions which help in problem solving: why questions, what-happens-if... more »

Most reshares: 139

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2014-12-01 08:01:13 (30 comments, 139 reshares, 135 +1s)Open 

The question game!
Teaching kids to ask smart questions

Think about it: A four-year-old asks on average about 400 questions per day, and an adult hardly asks any. Our school system is structured around rewards for regurgitating the right answer, and not asking smart questions - in fact, it discourages asking questions. With the result that as we grow older, we stop asking questions. Yet asking good questions is essential to find and develop solutions, and important skill in innovation, strategy, and leadership. So why do we stop asking questions - and more importantly, why don't we train each other, and our future leaders, to ask the right questions starting from early on?

I've been just reading Die Kunst des klugen Fragens by Warren Berger who suggests that there are three main questions which help in problem solving: why questions, what-happens-if... more »

Most plusones: 135

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2014-12-01 08:01:13 (30 comments, 139 reshares, 135 +1s)Open 

The question game!
Teaching kids to ask smart questions

Think about it: A four-year-old asks on average about 400 questions per day, and an adult hardly asks any. Our school system is structured around rewards for regurgitating the right answer, and not asking smart questions - in fact, it discourages asking questions. With the result that as we grow older, we stop asking questions. Yet asking good questions is essential to find and develop solutions, and important skill in innovation, strategy, and leadership. So why do we stop asking questions - and more importantly, why don't we train each other, and our future leaders, to ask the right questions starting from early on?

I've been just reading Die Kunst des klugen Fragens by Warren Berger who suggests that there are three main questions which help in problem solving: why questions, what-happens-if... more »

Latest 50 posts

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2015-04-05 05:39:37 (1 comments, 10 reshares, 23 +1s)Open 

Software defined networks are changing the internet backbone

If you don't know what a software-defined network is or how it works, read the linked post. These networks have wide-ranging implications, both positive and negative.

Example: Throttling and bandwidth quotas.
Implementing bandwidth quotas has been, in the past, something costly, inefficient, and a major consumer annoyance. But now, it comes practically out-of-the-box for internet service providers.

Example: Large-scale network setup and administration.
Now for the good part: network administration has never been easier! Forget the Cisco Certifications and other expensive, year-long training - now, even an amateur hobbyist should be able to set up a big-data-scale network cluster without much difficulty.

Now that's a big change in the IT landscape behind the scenes - and one that, in... more »

Software Defined Networking - Everybody needs it. Nobody understands it. We explain it!

Beginning with well known fact, that routers, switches can be configured to work in a fail save mode, being redundant (see BGP - Border Gateway Protocol) and several selected ports can be switched to build their own 'collision domain', called VLAN, there was an urgent need to have VLAN groups depending on protocol basis (e.g. port 80, http) for e.g. load balancing.

Directly after CISCO™, JUNIPER™ did implemented that, customers were asking for firewalling (IP masquerading, NAT), bandwidth control for realtime services, like video streaming (Netflix®), telephony (Skype™), video conferencing, decentralized server clusters. Things became complex, more and more software controlled. Good old ASICS, doing well in routers, switches until now, couldn't solve these complex tasks any longer.

So some CISCO® employees founded JUNIPER®, building up routers, switches with FreeBSD and ASICS as 10/100 GbE network card, gaining significant market share.

Now, something magic happend. Some guys did find out, that memory I/O of a simple INTEL® Core™ i5 is fast enough to care about everything running - Linux!

Have a look at next picture: Jetway NF9G-QM77 plus Jetway ADE4INLANG 4 Port PCI-E daughter board, together available for far under $300. (Available at: http://www.jetway.com.tw/jw/ipcboard_view.asp?productid=996&proname=NF9G-QM77 ). For more ports see cheap $20 TP-LINK 8 port switch (see diagram).

With that hardware you have everything in one: Router, switch, VLANs, redundancy, bandwidth control, firewall.

But not only that. Running isolated in secure LXC/Docker™ containers, you can start e.g. a 'silent, reversed proxy' like Varnish or Squid. Means: All bypassing traffic (http, ftp, video streaming) will be cached in the Linux machine, being internally rerouted (#ip route add...), massively reducing physical traffic going through your network of connected #Linux machines. Akamai® is known to offer such 'caching proxy' services, massively reducing traffic on #Microsoft servers e.g. at "patch day".

Why 6 ports? 6 ports are the minimum and sufficient number of physical ports needed to build up even largest redundant logical networks. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Network_topology

It's important to understand, that physical topology and logical topology, real traffic flow and logical trafic flow as well as real routing/switching and virtual routing/switching now totally have been decoupled. See diagram.

With #SDN, a physical port in california can build a logical, (firewalled) collision domain with some physical ports in europe, with or without proxy cache somewhere in between to reduce traffic. That's, why companies, like Netflix® with their global #FreeBSD server farms and global million customer base can fullfil their business, do exist.

So, in fact, just by connecting some handful of these magic Linux SDN machines you can throw out almost all network hardware, you ever had.

Now you might ask: Who, the hell, is able to administrate such complex SDNs? From my point of view, you have exactly two choices:

Either install #UBUNTU™ #OpenStack™, pay for expensive courses learning to administrate that stuff, or use OpenWRT zero administration machines. Based on B.A.T.M.A.N. protocol, just buy some new hardware, plug in, start #OpenWRT and everything is configured automatically. It's building up a professional, highly redundant grid network - automatically. No special knowledge required.

Buying "ready to use" #CISCO® or #JUNIPER® hardware, IMHO, is no option. U.S. NSA is, in fact, spying everywhere (See E. #Snowden papers), silently copying even your internal companies traffic onto #NSA servers in the U.S.A., (self) authorized by U.S. law (see U.S. 'patriot act'). Alternatively buy open sourced #Huawei Linux machines.

Have fun!

What can not be combined on a single manuscript page, is not been thought through yet ready for decision. (Dwight David Eisenhower) ___Software defined networks are changing the internet backbone

If you don't know what a software-defined network is or how it works, read the linked post. These networks have wide-ranging implications, both positive and negative.

Example: Throttling and bandwidth quotas.
Implementing bandwidth quotas has been, in the past, something costly, inefficient, and a major consumer annoyance. But now, it comes practically out-of-the-box for internet service providers.

Example: Large-scale network setup and administration.
Now for the good part: network administration has never been easier! Forget the Cisco Certifications and other expensive, year-long training - now, even an amateur hobbyist should be able to set up a big-data-scale network cluster without much difficulty.

Now that's a big change in the IT landscape behind the scenes - and one that, in a time where data analysis and volume is of growing importance, is bound to change the competitive field!

/via +Gregory Esau​

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2015-04-02 09:12:47 (5 comments, 4 reshares, 9 +1s)Open 

Call for Funding: Dominia, a Negotiation Boardgame

Some time ago I posted about a board game to help teach negotiation skills. After a bit of testing and fine-tuning, I'm almost ready to bring the game to market. What's missing? Well, funding! So here's your chance to secure your copy from the first production run - and have a shiny, professionally produced copy of is board game in your hands! If the funding campaign succeeds, I'll be able to start the first run in June. Look forward to your support!

What's Dominia?
Players: 2-6 players aged 10 and up.
Languages: Bilingual edition in German and English.
Learning Goals: Principled negotiation. 

Each player starts with a character (and secret goal), a region, and two resources. Players take turns rolling the die and performing the action on the die – allowing them to collectre... more »

Call for Funding: Dominia, a Negotiation Boardgame

Some time ago I posted about a board game to help teach negotiation skills. After a bit of testing and fine-tuning, I'm almost ready to bring the game to market. What's missing? Well, funding! So here's your chance to secure your copy from the first production run - and have a shiny, professionally produced copy of is board game in your hands! If the funding campaign succeeds, I'll be able to start the first run in June. Look forward to your support!

What's Dominia?
Players: 2-6 players aged 10 and up.
Languages: Bilingual edition in German and English.
Learning Goals: Principled negotiation. 

Each player starts with a character (and secret goal), a region, and two resources. Players take turns rolling the die and performing the action on the die – allowing them to collect resources, ask questions, form alliances, steal resources, and ultimately attain their goals before anyone else does in order to win the game.

Links
Read more about how Dominia teaches negotiation, and the principles behind the game, at: http://igg.me/at/dominia

Or view the original post - and the first iteration of the game - here:
https://plus.google.com/+SophieWrobel/posts/Lw7wTTbJdEn

#Geist   #learning   #negotiation   #games   #funding  ___

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2015-03-25 08:59:11 (15 comments, 9 reshares, 37 +1s)Open 

More efficient than an oxygen tank

These new cobalt-based oxygen binding crystals look very promising - at the fraction of the size and weight of an oxygen tank, they can bind more oxygen than an oxygen tank and release it as required. And not just once, but repeatedly. This is excellent news for many applications - I can imagine applications not just for diving and submarines but also in space exploration, firefighting, respiritory ailments, and flight safety.

/via +Darin R. McClure​

More efficient than an oxygen tank

These new cobalt-based oxygen binding crystals look very promising - at the fraction of the size and weight of an oxygen tank, they can bind more oxygen than an oxygen tank and release it as required. And not just once, but repeatedly. This is excellent news for many applications - I can imagine applications not just for diving and submarines but also in space exploration, firefighting, respiritory ailments, and flight safety.

/via +Darin R. McClure​___

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2015-03-23 06:32:08 (6 comments, 4 reshares, 16 +1s)Open 

Computer, tell me what I dreamt last night

Would you really want to know what thoughts linger in your mind? When you lie in delerium? When you are in a 'vegitative state'?

Technology like this mind-reader - when it reaches maturity - could have many important applications in allowing traumatized, paraplegics, and other disabled groups to express their needs and provide insight into their experiences and required therapy.

Yet it also raises ethical questions: to what extent should brain-reading be allowed? As a preventative measure to identify behaviour anomalies in children early on? As a wearable device to 'relive your dreams'? Who stores the data, and how would it be evaluated? What is the risk and consequences of false positive results in an increasingly digitalized analytics environment?

... just a few thoughts to start the day!... more »

Computer, tell me what I dreamt last night

Would you really want to know what thoughts linger in your mind? When you lie in delerium? When you are in a 'vegitative state'?

Technology like this mind-reader - when it reaches maturity - could have many important applications in allowing traumatized, paraplegics, and other disabled groups to express their needs and provide insight into their experiences and required therapy.

Yet it also raises ethical questions: to what extent should brain-reading be allowed? As a preventative measure to identify behaviour anomalies in children early on? As a wearable device to 'relive your dreams'? Who stores the data, and how would it be evaluated? What is the risk and consequences of false positive results in an increasingly digitalized analytics environment?

... just a few thoughts to start the day! Enjoy!

/via +Hans Youngmann​___

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2015-03-22 06:34:17 (8 comments, 5 reshares, 15 +1s)Open 

A tribute to the most influential man in shaping Singapore's success

For those who don't know the story of Singapore, I strongly suggest you go and read up about it on Wikipedia. Lee Kuan Yew is one of the heros of the nation's short history. After being expelled from Malaysia 50 years ago as a worthless Island with no resources, this man has more or less singlehandedly transformed the nation into the booming trade capital it is known as today. Certainly, he was not perfect, but he does merit the recognition that others before him have had in their similarly rigid but effective regimes in their respective lands - Margaret Thatcher comes to mind, for instance.

Now in bad health, Lee Kuan Yew's days are numbered... but his legacy will surely continue on the island nation of Singapore.

/via +Robert Chew​

A tribute to the most influential man in shaping Singapore's success

For those who don't know the story of Singapore, I strongly suggest you go and read up about it on Wikipedia. Lee Kuan Yew is one of the heros of the nation's short history. After being expelled from Malaysia 50 years ago as a worthless Island with no resources, this man has more or less singlehandedly transformed the nation into the booming trade capital it is known as today. Certainly, he was not perfect, but he does merit the recognition that others before him have had in their similarly rigid but effective regimes in their respective lands - Margaret Thatcher comes to mind, for instance.

Now in bad health, Lee Kuan Yew's days are numbered... but his legacy will surely continue on the island nation of Singapore.

/via +Robert Chew​___

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2015-03-20 07:43:55 (12 comments, 10 reshares, 40 +1s)Open 

Holistic personal development

One of the things that I've been struggling with in helping my children mature is the gap between what schools teach, the skills that the workplace requires, and ultimately what satisfaction in life itself demands. If you set out searching for happiness, you soon discover that happiness isn't based on the consumerism paradigm that most of us, myself included, grew up with. Rather, happiness comes from a balanced, holistic approach to life - one that takes more than just mere logic and intelligence in consideration.

A particularly interesting division is the following chart, which is organized according to eastern perspectives of how an individual matures. This particular chart is based on http://edforlife.org/ - but there are other sources that follow the same basic outline as well.

The first four building blocks - from birth to... more »

Holistic personal development

One of the things that I've been struggling with in helping my children mature is the gap between what schools teach, the skills that the workplace requires, and ultimately what satisfaction in life itself demands. If you set out searching for happiness, you soon discover that happiness isn't based on the consumerism paradigm that most of us, myself included, grew up with. Rather, happiness comes from a balanced, holistic approach to life - one that takes more than just mere logic and intelligence in consideration.

A particularly interesting division is the following chart, which is organized according to eastern perspectives of how an individual matures. This particular chart is based on http://edforlife.org/ - but there are other sources that follow the same basic outline as well.

The first four building blocks - from birth to around 24 years of age - are, in general, the stages of life in which an individual is shaped, and through that, acquires maturity. This is supported through the educational system, and through parental support outside of the educational system. The latter years - from 24 to 72 years of age - are then the years in which selflessness ripens and comes to fruition.

This maturity, however, assumes that there is a solid foundation of intellect, willpower, emotional and physical maturity: something that, in western society, is sometimes absent amidst the focus on logic, goal-setting and consumerism, and the loss of a sense of awesomeness and appreciation for the "soft skills" and "soft communications" in life. The resulting imbalance leads to numerous other societal problems: depression, mid-life-crisis, etc. And this imbalance also points towards the cure: strengthening the foundation stones that aren't yet in balance, bringing the individual back to the stage of maturity in which they naturally belong.

#Geist   #Learning  ___

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2015-02-12 08:06:00 (5 comments, 6 reshares, 21 +1s)Open 

Looks like the definition of "smart" has changed!

The definition of "smart" seems to have changed since I was a kid. No longer does "smart" mean "having an IQ over xxx". Rather, smart now seems to mean "having the ability to learn." And that, it seems, is based on your attitude towards life.

In a nutshell, there are two main groups of learners:
1) Those who believe intrinsically that each person is born with a certain amount of intelligence, and nothing can change that.
2) Those who believe that hard work and dedication can change outcomes.

Surprise, surprise, no matter what IQ you have, children in the second group are those who seemingly outperform the others. In short: what kids need to be "smart" these days is a dedicated attitude.

#Geist   #Learning

/via +George... more »

Looks like the definition of "smart" has changed!

The definition of "smart" seems to have changed since I was a kid. No longer does "smart" mean "having an IQ over xxx". Rather, smart now seems to mean "having the ability to learn." And that, it seems, is based on your attitude towards life.

In a nutshell, there are two main groups of learners:
1) Those who believe intrinsically that each person is born with a certain amount of intelligence, and nothing can change that.
2) Those who believe that hard work and dedication can change outcomes.

Surprise, surprise, no matter what IQ you have, children in the second group are those who seemingly outperform the others. In short: what kids need to be "smart" these days is a dedicated attitude.

#Geist   #Learning

/via +George Station ___

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2015-02-11 07:38:11 (3 comments, 2 reshares, 8 +1s)Open 

Proposed Australian data retention bill actually gets scrutinized

These days, it seems that legislation makes it through to become law quite often without due scrutiny - resulting in problematic definitions and implementations that work against the interests of citizens. Thankfully, this proposed bill did receive it's share of due scrutiny that all draft bills deserve.

What the draft forgot to provide
The questions raised indicate that this draft bill did not do a good job on the following points:
 - The evidence for data retention?
 - Social media, webmail and data retention
 - The costs of data retention?
 - Not defining 'data' in data retention laws
 - Data retention and the drive toward encrypted technology
 - Circumventing data retention

The consequences of such a loose definition? It could havepoten... more »

Proposed Australian data retention bill actually gets scrutinized

These days, it seems that legislation makes it through to become law quite often without due scrutiny - resulting in problematic definitions and implementations that work against the interests of citizens. Thankfully, this proposed bill did receive it's share of due scrutiny that all draft bills deserve.

What the draft forgot to provide
The questions raised indicate that this draft bill did not do a good job on the following points:
 - The evidence for data retention?
 - Social media, webmail and data retention
 - The costs of data retention?
 - Not defining 'data' in data retention laws
 - Data retention and the drive toward encrypted technology
 - Circumventing data retention

The consequences of such a loose definition? It could have potentially opened up the door for companies - in particular more recent, social companies - to store unrestricted amounts of information, without much limitation on what kinds of information, on potentially unencrypted technology. Just one step away from dangling your credit card details publicly on the web. And not just that, but also expensive - a price tag that will have to be picked up by consumers. While storing data itself is not so bad, misusing data is a very large ethical issue, in particular when the data use ends up to be something that the affected person did not expect or willingly agree to, and the value generated from data retention seems to be inadequately justified, at least given the present stand of things.

#Privacy   #Policy  

/via +Sue Travers ___

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2015-02-09 07:47:44 (7 comments, 20 reshares, 21 +1s)Open 

Low-cost drip irrigation and fertilization

Drip irrigation typically conjures up expensive thoughts: long pipes, water infrastructure, and not the prettiest sight in your garden. This innovative technique brings the benefits of drip irrigation, and with compost inside, also instant fertilization, of the surrounding plants - resulting in a low-cost, low-maintenance organic farming system that almost any household with a bit of garden can implement. The original system is built for tomatoes (which apparently need a cage?) but I'd assume this works with any plant that needs regular dung and water just as well.

The nutshell version (details in the original article):
1) Drill holes into a garbage can
2) Put some compost into the garbage can
3) Plant food around the garbage can
4) Fill the garbage can with water once a week.

Now, I wonder if... more »

Low-cost drip irrigation and fertilization

Drip irrigation typically conjures up expensive thoughts: long pipes, water infrastructure, and not the prettiest sight in your garden. This innovative technique brings the benefits of drip irrigation, and with compost inside, also instant fertilization, of the surrounding plants - resulting in a low-cost, low-maintenance organic farming system that almost any household with a bit of garden can implement. The original system is built for tomatoes (which apparently need a cage?) but I'd assume this works with any plant that needs regular dung and water just as well.

The nutshell version (details in the original article):
1) Drill holes into a garbage can
2) Put some compost into the garbage can
3) Plant food around the garbage can
4) Fill the garbage can with water once a week.

Now, I wonder if this method will still work with my infamous brown thumb...

#Geist  #Health #Agriculture

/via +David Kokua ___

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2015-02-04 04:58:55 (20 comments, 2 reshares, 10 +1s)Open 

A beautiful take on religion

“We see the stories as poetic metaphors and a manifestation of the forces of nature and human psychology."

That's according to a growing group of modern icelandic followers of Norse paganism, who are now erecting a temple in worship of the ancient Norse Gods. And come to think of it, shouldn't the same hold true for all religions - an appreciation for good literature, the forces of nature, and human psychology?

#Geist #Religion #Philosophy #Life

/via +Sarah Rios​

A beautiful take on religion

“We see the stories as poetic metaphors and a manifestation of the forces of nature and human psychology."

That's according to a growing group of modern icelandic followers of Norse paganism, who are now erecting a temple in worship of the ancient Norse Gods. And come to think of it, shouldn't the same hold true for all religions - an appreciation for good literature, the forces of nature, and human psychology?

#Geist #Religion #Philosophy #Life

/via +Sarah Rios​___

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2015-02-02 11:00:58 (4 comments, 5 reshares, 12 +1s)Open 

iQser: taking information management to the next level

Late last year, I joined iQser - a relatively young company, but with a brilliant technological basis, of which information retrieval is just one particular application. I expect we'll see them post several more applications in the near future.

iQser focuses on semantic middleware. It extracts meaning out of information and connects relevant bits of information. In my eyes, what makes it unique is rather how it approaches information connectivity: 

Context is the primary factor behind data relationships. You've heard this many times, I'm sure, and I'm also sure that you will not dispute the importance of context in understanding data. But unlike many technical definitions where context involves physical location, device, friends, time, or other such factors to determine a user's context - meaning... more »

Search reloaded: a faster and better redesign of the search process
A new approach to information with higher productivity and higher quality

Let's face it: search, despite being a valuable tool in finding information, is actually a rather ineffective way of consolidating information. Consider the amount of mental power required to conduct a search as part of a research effort: you need to think about what you want to find, enter that phrase in a search engine, sift through results, and then hope that your search phrase was structured appropriately to hit all of the relevant information that you need. That's a lot of thinking on the way. And, since technology has come a long way since the first search engine - and can even distill and write news articles that can't be differentiated from human-written articles, shouldn't there be something better than search for the rest of us?

The answer is yes: there is. It's called context-sensitive information retrieval, or "context search". Context search isn't a true search, because you don't have to know what you want. You just need to know that you want more information. Then, it's up to the underlying technology to interpret your current working context, distill available information sources to match your that context, and deliver you with an overview of all relevant and important information for you to process - even essential information that you might not have thought of in a typical keyword search.

The result is a simplified process for doing knowledge work: fewer process steps, and higher quality results. This translates into increased productivity, higher quality, more transparency, and direct cost savings.

You'll be surprised by the simplicity, ingenuity, and effectiveness of this methodology. But enough teasing. Here you have it: the detailed explanation behind it all:
https://iqser.com/fileadmin/user_upload/PDFs/EN/iQser-WorkplaceOfTheFuture-ContextSensitiveInformationRetrieval.pdf

Does this sound like something that could take some pain out of your life? If so, we'd love to work with you!___iQser: taking information management to the next level

Late last year, I joined iQser - a relatively young company, but with a brilliant technological basis, of which information retrieval is just one particular application. I expect we'll see them post several more applications in the near future.

iQser focuses on semantic middleware. It extracts meaning out of information and connects relevant bits of information. In my eyes, what makes it unique is rather how it approaches information connectivity: 

Context is the primary factor behind data relationships. You've heard this many times, I'm sure, and I'm also sure that you will not dispute the importance of context in understanding data. But unlike many technical definitions where context involves physical location, device, friends, time, or other such factors to determine a user's context - meaning that the true working context is just a best guess based on these categorized criteria. iQser's approach focuses primarily on the information you're currently working with to determine your context. Instead, if you have a word document open, then that document constitutes your context: it defines the topic, the depth, the scope, the language, and a whole lot of other linguistic and content-related factors related to the context that you'd intuitively expect to define your context.

Dynamic adaption is built into the core of the technology. Language changes over time, and most static systems can't keep up with new memes, terms, and concepts evolving in a living community. So, iQser adopts a dynamic, bottom-up approach to connecting data as opposed to a static, top down approach - allowing it to pick up on and reflect these changes on-the-fly, learning from every interaction and collaboration producing data of any sort.

Speed, performance, and big data. I'll be frank here: most semantic technologies break down after a certain data set size. Indexing Wikipedia is a favorite among researchers, but Wikipedia is a small dataset in comparison to what most large enterprises generate on a daily basis. You'll find that in the fine print of almost every semantic technology on the market today. But a semantic technology that is actually built for and optimized for big, real-time data processing in a production enterprise setting? That's rare. I invite you to have to look into the system architecture and test the technology yourself - after all, it is a daring claim, and the best proof is one that you see yourself. As the ancient wisdom goes, seeing is believing!

And that's what I find very exciting - the potential in this technology as an information bus, linking enterprise information, systems, processes, workflows, and policies, building a backbone to an information ecosystem driving analytics, intelligence, applications, as well as all of the daily operations taking place today. A solution that is simple, fast and easy to roll out, and that can serve business needs not just in 2015, but also for the foreseeable digital future.

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2015-02-01 19:26:12 (11 comments, 15 reshares, 14 +1s)Open 

Superconductivity at room temperature: ready for the next generation of computing infrastructure?

This is a fascinating discovery: a ceramic substance that superconducts at room temperature. That has a lot of potential applications - for example, it may be possible to build a quantum computer without a supercooled room, or to transmit electricity with no energy loss on the way.

/via +Laston Kirkland​ 

Superconductivity at room temperature: ready for the next generation of computing infrastructure?

This is a fascinating discovery: a ceramic substance that superconducts at room temperature. That has a lot of potential applications - for example, it may be possible to build a quantum computer without a supercooled room, or to transmit electricity with no energy loss on the way.

/via +Laston Kirkland​ ___

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2015-01-31 01:47:02 (8 comments, 1 reshares, 14 +1s)Open 

Lifestyle, not genetics, determines how likely you are to get sick

Some people seem to get sick all the time, and others seem to never get sick. In particular families - bugs go round the household in endless circles, or the family seems to never be sick. But contrary to popular belief, genetics has very little to do with most people's immune reaction.

Rather, how well each individual person's immune system responds depends on their lifestyle choices. In a simplified nutshell: Our white blood cells (the 'germ-killer' cells) are produced to target specific germs, and are produced in finite quantities. So if we expose ourselves to a wide variety of germs starting early on, our body remembers these germs and produces that particular mix of white blood cells. If we expose ourselves to a limited variety of germs, or expose ourselves to a lot of a particular germ, the... more »

Lifestyle, not genetics, determines how likely you are to get sick

Some people seem to get sick all the time, and others seem to never get sick. In particular families - bugs go round the household in endless circles, or the family seems to never be sick. But contrary to popular belief, genetics has very little to do with most people's immune reaction.

Rather, how well each individual person's immune system responds depends on their lifestyle choices. In a simplified nutshell: Our white blood cells (the 'germ-killer' cells) are produced to target specific germs, and are produced in finite quantities. So if we expose ourselves to a wide variety of germs starting early on, our body remembers these germs and produces that particular mix of white blood cells. If we expose ourselves to a limited variety of germs, or expose ourselves to a lot of a particular germ, the proportion becomes skewed - and when unknown or less 'common' germs invade, our body lacks the natural immune response, and has difficulty fighting it because our immune memory is already 'blocked off' by the old bias. (Okay, it is a bit more complex than that, but you can read the article to find out how the immune system works.)

At the end of the day, life is an intricate balancing act, and the immune system is no exception. Balance means not just your diet, but also your exposure to germs, your physical activity, and every other aspect of health - and at the end, you'll see a better, healthier, and less prone person in your future path!

#Geist #Health

/via +Tiago Silveira​___

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2015-01-30 05:22:14 (0 comments, 7 reshares, 11 +1s)Open 

The human battery: Powering wearable electronics

Do you recall those kinetic watches that used to exist some time ago - the kind that charge when you shake them? No? Well, generating power for wearable electronics that does not need a battery has been a long-standing dream. And the latest attempt looks very promising.

This thin, flexible material has a bunch of tiny 'hairs' that harvest static electricity from the skin - sort of like how rubbing a balloon on your skin also generates electricity. The current prototype generates 90V at the touch of a finger. Not sure about the produced current, but that cetainly may be enough for some sort of movement-activated alert device, and perhaps a more energy-efficient smart device, watch, communicator, or glasses with HUD in the future.

/via +Panah Rad​​

The human battery: Powering wearable electronics

Do you recall those kinetic watches that used to exist some time ago - the kind that charge when you shake them? No? Well, generating power for wearable electronics that does not need a battery has been a long-standing dream. And the latest attempt looks very promising.

This thin, flexible material has a bunch of tiny 'hairs' that harvest static electricity from the skin - sort of like how rubbing a balloon on your skin also generates electricity. The current prototype generates 90V at the touch of a finger. Not sure about the produced current, but that cetainly may be enough for some sort of movement-activated alert device, and perhaps a more energy-efficient smart device, watch, communicator, or glasses with HUD in the future.

/via +Panah Rad​​___

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2015-01-27 08:29:51 (21 comments, 2 reshares, 14 +1s)Open 

Narrative, Game Design, and Social Media

I was looking at the image on this page and thinking: this reflects a lot of what is going on in the Conversation Community. We have an interesting mix of various narratives, technology, mechanics (determined by the host platform Google+). Building on top of that, we have a set of dynamics created as we interact with the each other and the narrative through the platform, and on top of that the 'take-away' which each individual member of this community receives.

Sure, the analogy doesn't hold for all games, and hanging out here may not necessarily be a game... but it certainly is rewarding, motivating and quite entertaining. At the end of the day: All the world's a stage, and life is just a game!

Narrative, Game Design, and Social Media

I was looking at the image on this page and thinking: this reflects a lot of what is going on in the Conversation Community. We have an interesting mix of various narratives, technology, mechanics (determined by the host platform Google+). Building on top of that, we have a set of dynamics created as we interact with the each other and the narrative through the platform, and on top of that the 'take-away' which each individual member of this community receives.

Sure, the analogy doesn't hold for all games, and hanging out here may not necessarily be a game... but it certainly is rewarding, motivating and quite entertaining. At the end of the day: All the world's a stage, and life is just a game!___

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2015-01-27 07:17:08 (0 comments, 0 reshares, 9 +1s)Open 

3D Printing: The next big thing in medicine

3D printing works by modeling, and then printing, objects out of thin cross-sectional layers of materials. These cross-sections are the same sort of cross sections that most medical devices deliver. That means that putting medical scans together results in a beautiful 3D model of the patient - and should they be suffering from a tumor or some physical disorder, it also means being able to model the shape of that tumor or physical deficiency.

The result: this 3D layering technique is being pioneered to solve a multitude of health problems that were previously diagnosed with a low cure rate, or in some cases a low survival rate. It also helps to clearly demonstrate whether a diagnosis - like massive growth of a tumor - is accurate or inaccurate. And best of all, you can do a lot of it yourself with your health records and a bit of... more »

3D Printing: The next big thing in medicine

3D printing works by modeling, and then printing, objects out of thin cross-sectional layers of materials. These cross-sections are the same sort of cross sections that most medical devices deliver. That means that putting medical scans together results in a beautiful 3D model of the patient - and should they be suffering from a tumor or some physical disorder, it also means being able to model the shape of that tumor or physical deficiency.

The result: this 3D layering technique is being pioneered to solve a multitude of health problems that were previously diagnosed with a low cure rate, or in some cases a low survival rate. It also helps to clearly demonstrate whether a diagnosis - like massive growth of a tumor - is accurate or inaccurate. And best of all, you can do a lot of it yourself with your health records and a bit of technical savvy.

In the last years, there have been a multitude of cases cropping up where 3D modeling, and 3D printing, have made life-changing differences in people's lives:
- Eyesight: http://makezine.com/magazine/hands-on-health-care/
- Heart: http://www.cnet.com/news/doctors-3d-print-a-model-heart-to-help-save-a-little-girls-life/
- Trachea (Windpipe): http://www.uofmhealth.org/news/archive/201305/baby’s-life-saved-groundbreaking-3d-printed-device
- Gastric cancer: http://www.cnet.com/news/3d-printing-helps-surgeons-save-5-year-olds-life/

It will be exciting to watch this technology take off, reduce health costs, and increase health quality, in the next few years.___

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2015-01-25 22:36:50 (0 comments, 2 reshares, 6 +1s)Open 

Could GMOs be an effective in-vitro treatment?

This is fascinating: scientists have modified bacterial strain to be needing a synthetic amino acid for metabolism. This means that without the amino acid, the bacteria dies.

Conventionally GMOs are used in agriculture - and doubtlessly there are applications, and open questions, posed by potential applications and research directions in that field. But what about medicine?

There's long been a history of injecting modified organisms into the human body in order to achieve certain effects - for example, live vaccines like measles vaccines involve taking weakened measles and injecting them into a patient to allow them to build an immune response without getting the real, full-blown measles. Here, ethics have clearly given the go.

Perhaps this may be an easier path to clear from an ethics perspective and a safer delivery... more »

Microbes given a new lease on shelf life

http://www.nature.com/news/gm-microbes-created-that-can-t-escape-the-lab-1.16758

Critics of genetic engineering have long worried about the risk of modified organisms escaping into the environment. A biological-containment strategy described this week in Nature has the potential to put some of those fears to rest and to pave the way for greater use of engineered organisms in areas such as agriculture, medicine and environmental clean-up.

The new approach gives GMOs an Achilles heel. The researchers who have produced the organism have built in vital dependency on an artificial nutrient. If the nutrient is withdrawn, or the organism spreads to where it is no longer available, then the organism cannot survive.

The research marks an elegant step forward for the growing field of synthetic biology. In the first paper, Farren Isaacs and his colleagues at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, describe how they have produced various GMOs whose growth is restricted by the expression of multiple essential genes that depend on synthetic amino acids (A. J. Rovner et al. Nature http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nature14095; 2015). In the second, separate study, George Church at Harvard Medical School in Boston, Massachusetts, and his colleagues redesigned essential enzymes in a GMO to make it metabolically dependent on synthetic amino acids (D. J. Mandell et al. Nature http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nature14121; 2015). The modifications are made throughout the genome to make it harder for the altered sequences to be ejected.

The new technique originated in the laboratory of George Church. Two years ago, Church and his team (which included Isaacs) reported the synthesis of a strain of Escherichia coli that had a reprogrammed genetic code3. Instead of recognizing a particular DNA triplet known as the amber stop codon as an order to terminate protein synthesis, the recoded bacterium read the same instruction as a directive to incorporate a new kind of amino acid into its proteins.

Church and Isaacs have independently made this engineered microbe reliant on unnatural amino acids. The Isaacs team used genomic sequencing to identify sites in essential bacterial proteins where the microbes could incorporate synthetic amino acids without affecting overall function, whereas Church’s group started with the protein structures and added elements to help integrate and accommodate the artificial amino acids. “This is really the culmination of a decade of work,” says Church.

These organisms are also more resistant to viruses than their natural counter­parts because of the mismatch between the genetic code of the virus and that of its host3. Looking ahead, Church and his team are working to co-opt seven different codons, instead of just one. 

The research in both papers is with bacteria, but there seems no reason why the techniques they describe could not be used to engineer more-complex, multicellular organisms — including crops — in the same way.

So what is the downside? Much of the controversy over genetic modification relates to early, clumsy, attempts by big business to commercialize crops, and to gain control over where, when and how they were grown to maximize profit. A crop that needs constant nourishment with a bespoke foodstuff — unavailable elsewhere and with manufacture protected under probable patents — could be presented as a way of tying vulnerable farmers still closer to largely unloved seed companies.

http://www.nature.com/news/gm-microbes-created-that-can-t-escape-the-lab-1.16758

#ScienceSunday  | +ScienceSunday ___Could GMOs be an effective in-vitro treatment?

This is fascinating: scientists have modified bacterial strain to be needing a synthetic amino acid for metabolism. This means that without the amino acid, the bacteria dies.

Conventionally GMOs are used in agriculture - and doubtlessly there are applications, and open questions, posed by potential applications and research directions in that field. But what about medicine?

There's long been a history of injecting modified organisms into the human body in order to achieve certain effects - for example, live vaccines like measles vaccines involve taking weakened measles and injecting them into a patient to allow them to build an immune response without getting the real, full-blown measles. Here, ethics have clearly given the go.

Perhaps this may be an easier path to clear from an ethics perspective and a safer delivery technique for in-vitro targeted viral treatments: virus or bacteria is sent with an 'invasive' snippet to transfer to targeted host cells (say cancer cells), and should complications arise, the treatment can be quickly terminated when the patient stops consuming the synthetic amino acid supplements. Sure, it's just daydreaming and science-fiction at this point, but given precedence and philosophical / ethical acceptance of this sort of technology in the two areas, perhaps it is a useful idea to transfer to a different application line.

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2015-01-25 16:42:25 (0 comments, 9 reshares, 7 +1s)Open 

Game: Raven's Fruits
Dealing with negative emotions

So, my little kindergarten kids don't always know how to behave. Like every little kid, they have their times when they mess up each other's toys on purpose because they don't get their way, sulk and don't want to come to dinner, etc. So how should they deal with negative emotions?

Make logic take over before emotions take over
The amygdala is one of the emotional centers of your brain. When you are upset, it triggers you to react before you think – resulting in tamper tantrums, highs and lows, and getting upset. Mark Goulston proposes a ten-step process to recognizing this pattern and reacting to it before the negative emotions take over:
1. Trigger awareness – Pause immediately when something upsets you.
2. Physical awareness – Think of where and how intensely you arefeeli... more »

Game: Raven's Fruits
Dealing with negative emotions

So, my little kindergarten kids don't always know how to behave. Like every little kid, they have their times when they mess up each other's toys on purpose because they don't get their way, sulk and don't want to come to dinner, etc. So how should they deal with negative emotions?

Make logic take over before emotions take over
The amygdala is one of the emotional centers of your brain. When you are upset, it triggers you to react before you think – resulting in tamper tantrums, highs and lows, and getting upset. Mark Goulston proposes a ten-step process to recognizing this pattern and reacting to it before the negative emotions take over:
1. Trigger awareness – Pause immediately when something upsets you.
2. Physical awareness – Think of where and how intensely you are feeling it.
3. Emotional awareness – Think of an emotion word that applies to what you are feeling.
4. Impulse awareness – Think of what it makes you want to do.
5. Consequence awareness – Think of what will happen if you do that.
6. Taking it too personal awareness – Think of whether you may be taking things too personally.
7. Reality check awareness – Think of whether there may be an alternate explanation for what happened.
8. Solution awareness – Think of a different solution than your impulse.
9. Benefit awareness – Think of the benefits of following the alternate solution.
10. Special person awareness – If you can’t talk yourself out of reacting, imagine someone who deeply cares about you and what they would say if you did that.

Materials
Preparation: You will need a game board, some game markers (rabbit, dog, bear, and porcupine), a die, a pile of fruit cards (apples, oranges, cherries pears), and a spinner.

The game takes you through steps 1-4.

The spinner simplifies steps 5-10  into three sections:
Consequence: What will happen if you do that?
Solution: Is there a better alternative reaction? What makes that reaction better?
Reality check: Could there be another reason for what happened? Are you taking it too personally?

How it works
Setup: Each player gets 10 fruits and picks one game marker. The game markers are placed on GO. The youngest player goes first.

Gameplay: In each turn:
 - the player rolls the die and moves that number of spaces forwards. Read the situation and perform the requested action. If you land on a green square, your turn is over. If you land on a red square, then continue in these instructions until the turn is over.
 - How do you feel as a result of that action? Pick the emotion face that corresponds most closely. If you feel very strongly, then put three fruits on that face. If you feel moderately strongly affected by the situation, then put two fruits on that face. If you feel only lightly affected by the situation, then put one fruit on the face.
 - State how you would react to the situation.
 - The player spins the spinner. Read the question - anyone can answer.
 - If the answer leads to a "better" solution, then the player keeps all of the fruits on the face and takes the same number of fruit from the raven. If the answer leads to a "worse" or the same solution, then the raven gets all the fruits on the face.
 - The turn is over and the next player rolls.

The game ends when the raven has all the fruit, or the raven has no fruit. If the raven has all the fruit, then the raven wins. If the raven has no fruit, then the players win.

Does it work?
Well, good question. :) I don't know yet! I'm waiting for my two little ones to come home and test it out... and will see whether their reactions end up milder over time. I'll update the post when they're there!

Update: the kids reactions seems to be a bit mixed. My son figured out fairly quickly that he needs to improve his rection (lets see if he applies that the next time he fights with his sister!) in order to get ahead, but my daughter was often happy when most people would be upset by the situation - which is consistent with her behaviour, but didn't always help in discussing her reaction.

#Geist   #Learning   #Emotions   #Game  ___

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2015-01-24 18:16:50 (6 comments, 15 reshares, 19 +1s)Open 

Game: Dragons and Disasters
Guiding young children to learn effectively

Recommended age: 3 years and up
Primary learning goal: Adapting to change

Background
Alvin Toffler once stated, “The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.”

The world around us constantly changes, and the ability to continually learn, unlearn, and relearn defines our ability to adapt to continuous change. Without the ability to adapt, we become trapped in a static world of the past – leaving us unable to effectively deal with changes needed to stay up-to-date. The key to successfully dealing with change, then, lies in effective learning.

Effective learning is about training the mind to recognize recurring patterns and put them into appropriate contexts to create a biggerpictu... more »

Game: Dragons and Disasters
Guiding young children to learn effectively

Recommended age: 3 years and up
Primary learning goal: Adapting to change

Background
Alvin Toffler once stated, “The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.”

The world around us constantly changes, and the ability to continually learn, unlearn, and relearn defines our ability to adapt to continuous change. Without the ability to adapt, we become trapped in a static world of the past – leaving us unable to effectively deal with changes needed to stay up-to-date. The key to successfully dealing with change, then, lies in effective learning.

Effective learning is about training the mind to recognize recurring patterns and put them into appropriate contexts to create a bigger picture, as well as to store these patterns in long-term memory as opposed to short-term memory.

This game modifies several techniques that are proven to improve learning effectiveness to provide a learning framework for young learners, who, once the novelty effect wears off, lack the motivation to learn ‚boring’ materials:
• Chunking: During the game preparation, learning texts and exercises are broken down into small chunks that the young learner can handle.
• Pomodoro method: For adults, this involves a 25-minute focused concentration period is followed by a brief, 3-minute reward. Small children can’t focus for 25 minutes, nor do they understand the concept of one minute, so this game breaks down concentration and reward periods into something that they can grasp and that approximates their concentration span with an interspersed reward (game ‚round’). 
• Deliberate practice: In order to get more  cards to win the game, the players need to complete their practice exercise sets. When played in reading-comprehension mode, the material is recalled and applied through the „question die“ to support effective learning reinforcement and applying the material to a defined context.

How it works
Preparation: 
Cut out the cards. You will need a set of practice exercises or a text for reading comprehension. Break up this set into sections, if this is not already the case. Shuffle the cards and place them face down in a stack.

Variation #1 – Basic Game
After answering one question (or reading one block of text), the player takes one card from the top of the stack. Once the player has finished a page of exercises (or reading one chapter),  the player begins to play as follows:
• The player places one card of choice in the middle and turns over the next card in the pile.
• The player rolls the game die.
• If the player’s card has more points for the category that he rolled than than the card from the pile, the player wins the round.
• If the player’s card has less points for the category that he rolled than the card from the pile, the player loses the round.
• If both cards have the same number of points for that category, the player rolls again until there is a clear winner.
• When the all cards have been used, the player wins if he has won more rounds than he lost.

Variation #2 – Review Game
Every time the player loses a round, he must:
• Practice exercises: Answer one question from the final section.
• Reading comprehension: Roll the question die and answer the question on the die.
If this is answered correctly, he wins the round.  If he must ‘cheat’ by looking back, he loses the round.

Download link:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B52D6ns6sCFvWExfSnYtckJXaU0/view?usp=sharing

Personal Experience
The basic version of this game works well to get young children (e.g. 2- and 3- year olds) to focus on tasks like working through reading letters, writing, or math exercises. I was personally surprised with how long my two-year-old daughter was able to focus using this game (7 writing exercise sheets!) before she needed a play break. And, since she’s not yet able to add yet, she also was forced to practice adding points together in context of winning the game instead of doing math – reinforcing the concept of addition by transferring it to the game context instead of just math exercises. My five-year-old son was also able to focus considerably longer on tasks that he didn’t enjoy (e.g. writing). That said, I'd be curious on how other small kids react, and whether your experiences are similar!

#Geist   #Learning   #Game  ___

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2015-01-15 10:42:42 (13 comments, 24 reshares, 21 +1s)Open 

Game: World Domination
Teaching kids principled negotiation

Let's face it: at some point in life, everyone needs to negotiate. But not all of us negotiate effectively - repeating yourself even louder until you get something is, for example, not a very helpful strategy. Most children grasp onto this and change their strategy from crying to talking when they want something, for example. But some people don't seem to grasp that being too pushy isn't always good - even in adulthood. Perhaps you've had to work together with an uncooperative know-it-all who was in charge of a project you're on? Well, then you know what I'm talking about. Those are people who still haven't learned how to negotiate. But, perhaps negotiation is something that we can learn - and also teach kids to do before they hit the job market? Let's give it a try...

What is... more »

Game: World Domination
Teaching kids principled negotiation

Let's face it: at some point in life, everyone needs to negotiate. But not all of us negotiate effectively - repeating yourself even louder until you get something is, for example, not a very helpful strategy. Most children grasp onto this and change their strategy from crying to talking when they want something, for example. But some people don't seem to grasp that being too pushy isn't always good - even in adulthood. Perhaps you've had to work together with an uncooperative know-it-all who was in charge of a project you're on? Well, then you know what I'm talking about. Those are people who still haven't learned how to negotiate. But, perhaps negotiation is something that we can learn - and also teach kids to do before they hit the job market? Let's give it a try...

What is principled negotiation?
In Getting to Yes, Fisher and Ury describe the art of principled negotiation, a negotiation tactic centered around four considerations:

1) People: Separate people from the problem
2) Interests: Focus on soliciting and speaking to interests, not positions
3) Options: Generate a variety of possibilities before deciding what to do next
4) Criteria: Base the result on objective standards. Produce a wise agreement, if an agreement is possible, in an efficient manner that improves or maintains the existing relationship.

In general, there are two main approaches to negotiation: 

1) Competitive negotiation typically employs positional bargaining to create confrontational, unfriendly constellations and results in a win-lose situation. It is characterized by communication patterns with higher opening demands than the targeted goal, forceful speaking, manipulative intentions and distorted information.

2) Collaborative negotiation typically employs interest-based solution building to build friendly, supportive constellations and creates a win-win  situation. Characterizing communication patterns include disclosure statements, supportive remarks, accepting responsibility, identifying top priorities, non-specific compensation, and inventing new options to meet the other side’s needs.

Each negotiation strategy has its benefits and disadvantages – and there are times in the game during which one strategy works better than the other. 

Introducing World Domination

Recommended ages: Grade 4 and upwards.
Players: 3 to 5 players. Two players can play, but that doesn't work as well, because there's no incentive to try collaborative negotiation.

Gameplay
Each player starts with a character, a region, and two resources. Players take turns rolling the die and performing the action on the die - allowing them to collect resources, ask questions, form alliances, steal resources, and ultimately attain their goals before anyone else does in order to win the game.

Download Links
You can download the game here:
English Version: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B52D6ns6sCFvbnlNeDlyeFdNMW8/view?usp=sharing
German Version: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B52D6ns6sCFvdHVfbWdxOVViUWs/view?usp=sharing

How it teaches principled negotiation
This game provides players with people in the form of characters, interests in the form of hidden goals, a number of options listed on the die and in the chance cards, and objective criteria for winning. The game actions guide the player through the steps of principled negotiation. Players are thus forced to use these considerations in collaborative as well as competitive negotiation throughout the game, have the opportunity to explore how different negotiation tactics invoke different responses, and are forced to develop their own negotiation style within the framework of principled negotiation.

Disclaimers and other notes
- Character names are completely random - no relation to actual people is intended.
- Business names include altered versions of actual company names; I hope (but haven't checked) that they are not actual registered company names.
- Australia and Africa aren't represented. I know! It sucks! I did try hard to find some economic statistics and major company revenues, but their economies are currently too small when put next to the 'big players' driving industry in the other regions of the world.
- I've added the age recommendation because some parents may not want to expose younger children to the existence of certain criminal activities before then. I've been asked if it is possible to change the names of the criminals to more child-friendly things, such as bubble gum thief... but I decided not to, because the represented criminal activities and businesses actually are based on real-life dimensions (but scaled to make the game more playable).
- Reality check aside, anyone who can read and add should be able to play - my 5-year-old son has grasped the game quite well. :)

This post is part of a series of games I'm designing intended to teach children soft skills that schools seem to neglect, and that I believe are essential for every person's success.

#Geist #Learning #Negotiation #Game___

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2015-01-12 09:18:56 (3 comments, 4 reshares, 8 +1s)Open 

3D-printing turns your smartphone into an optometry set

Print out a clip-on device and stick it onto your smartphone camera: that's all you need in order to take high-quality pictures of someone's retina and get a health professional to diagnose what's wrong with your eyesight.

This is the type of innovation that we need more of - the type of inovation that puts expensive medicine in the hands of lay people. Maybe one day telemedicine will offer a low-cost, viable business alternative to traditional health care for most common problems? I could imagine something like this: if you dont have an optician nearby, online glasses discounter advertises, send in your retinal image and we'll make cheap prescription glasses for you!

/via +André Fachat 

3D-printing turns your smartphone into an optometry set

Print out a clip-on device and stick it onto your smartphone camera: that's all you need in order to take high-quality pictures of someone's retina and get a health professional to diagnose what's wrong with your eyesight.

This is the type of innovation that we need more of - the type of inovation that puts expensive medicine in the hands of lay people. Maybe one day telemedicine will offer a low-cost, viable business alternative to traditional health care for most common problems? I could imagine something like this: if you dont have an optician nearby, online glasses discounter advertises, send in your retinal image and we'll make cheap prescription glasses for you!

/via +André Fachat ___

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2015-01-12 00:16:55 (4 comments, 7 reshares, 31 +1s)Open 

Learning to learn

Many people seem to have an illusion that the world they live in should be static and plannable in order to be perfect - yet we live in a dynamic, changing world. And change is critical to perfection: it allows us to evolve, rethink, and improve life.

Simultaneously, learning how to adapt - how to relearn, how to think, and how to appreciate change - seems to be something that our education system fails to emphasize early on, despite being instrumental in obtaining happiness and growing in the emerging digital community we see blossoming today.

Perhaps this learning to adapt, and appreciate change, is one of the cornerstones of educational reform that is badly needed today?

#Geist #Learning #Literacies

/via +Walter Reade​​, who left a link to this in another thread discussion.

Learning to learn

Many people seem to have an illusion that the world they live in should be static and plannable in order to be perfect - yet we live in a dynamic, changing world. And change is critical to perfection: it allows us to evolve, rethink, and improve life.

Simultaneously, learning how to adapt - how to relearn, how to think, and how to appreciate change - seems to be something that our education system fails to emphasize early on, despite being instrumental in obtaining happiness and growing in the emerging digital community we see blossoming today.

Perhaps this learning to adapt, and appreciate change, is one of the cornerstones of educational reform that is badly needed today?

#Geist #Learning #Literacies

/via +Walter Reade​​, who left a link to this in another thread discussion.___

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2015-01-09 07:57:42 (7 comments, 4 reshares, 13 +1s)Open 

Thorcon: Safe nuclear power?

Think for a moment: where do you see small-scale nuclear power sources with a strong risk-benefit argument in favor of nuclear technology? Naval vessels. Medical technology - including implants. Space exploration vehicles.

Of these technologies, naval vessels are particularly interesting: they are designed to undergo regular inspection and part replacement, and are designed to house people - next to their nuclear power source - for lengthy periods of time, as they traverse the seas. So why can't we apply that same concept of designing nuclear technology that can be regularly inspected and maintained to nuclear power generators?

That's what Thorcon Power has done: applied ship-building practices to nuclear power generator design. Now, I'd say that there isn't such a thing as a fail-safe system: the universal law of idiocracy... more »

Thorcon: Safe nuclear power?

Think for a moment: where do you see small-scale nuclear power sources with a strong risk-benefit argument in favor of nuclear technology? Naval vessels. Medical technology - including implants. Space exploration vehicles.

Of these technologies, naval vessels are particularly interesting: they are designed to undergo regular inspection and part replacement, and are designed to house people - next to their nuclear power source - for lengthy periods of time, as they traverse the seas. So why can't we apply that same concept of designing nuclear technology that can be regularly inspected and maintained to nuclear power generators?

That's what Thorcon Power has done: applied ship-building practices to nuclear power generator design. Now, I'd say that there isn't such a thing as a fail-safe system: the universal law of idiocracy says that if you build a good system, then nature will build an even bigger idiot. For example, a major earthquake and tidal wave could damage the building structure and drain tanks and simultaneously trigger reactor overheating, resulting in potential radioactive leakage through the damaged structures. But, the system certainly appears safer than the conventional nuclear reactors we see today - if we're going to have nuclear power, then let's at least make it as safe, as modular, and as maintainable as possible.

/via +Jack Stanley ___

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2015-01-09 07:36:38 (5 comments, 5 reshares, 9 +1s)Open 

Gender identity, and transsexuality: when does it start?

Every person is born with a physical gender identity (usually determined by the presence of a penis or a vagina), and at some point in life they develop an emotional gender identity (that's why we have transsexuals, homosexuals, and so on.) But when does this emotional gender identity actually begin?

According to this research, it looks like our brains are wired up to reflect that emotional gender identity - it isn't just something that we 'learn' from the environment we are raised in. Rather, there are significant differences in how male, female, and transsexual brains are wired up internally, and that these differences are caused by hormonal development.

All in all, they suggest that it is quite possible that a person's emotional gender identity may be wired into their brains as early as... more »

Gender identity, and transsexuality: when does it start?

Every person is born with a physical gender identity (usually determined by the presence of a penis or a vagina), and at some point in life they develop an emotional gender identity (that's why we have transsexuals, homosexuals, and so on.) But when does this emotional gender identity actually begin?

According to this research, it looks like our brains are wired up to reflect that emotional gender identity - it isn't just something that we 'learn' from the environment we are raised in. Rather, there are significant differences in how male, female, and transsexual brains are wired up internally, and that these differences are caused by hormonal development.

All in all, they suggest that it is quite possible that a person's emotional gender identity may be wired into their brains as early as within the womb.

/via +Hans Youngmann ___

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2014-12-26 05:49:34 (5 comments, 6 reshares, 57 +1s)Open 

Glitter + Computational graphics = Cheap, light telescope

Ingenious construction plans for future telescopes - once they solve the glitter positioning, maintanence, and repair issues, that is. But for amateurs here on Earth, having an open source implementation of that graphics stitching program could lead to a blossom in amateur astronomy.

/via +Sarah Rios​

Glitter + Computational graphics = Cheap, light telescope

Ingenious construction plans for future telescopes - once they solve the glitter positioning, maintanence, and repair issues, that is. But for amateurs here on Earth, having an open source implementation of that graphics stitching program could lead to a blossom in amateur astronomy.

/via +Sarah Rios​___

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2014-12-24 04:25:57 (19 comments, 0 reshares, 15 +1s)Open 

Merry Christmas!

Or technically, Christmas Eve, but because Christmas tradition starts today, I'll define it as Christmas. And Christmas comes complete with the Christmas story. Only, with a twist: in our home, asking questions during storytime is encouraged, as is questioning everything and every command. My kindergarden-aged son's questions this year are, in my opinion, worth sharing - here's a selection:

1. If God is in heaven and Angels are made of light then who gave Mary a sperm?

2. What does holy mean?

3. Why do we give each other presents? If it's Jesus' birthday then doesn't everyone have to give him presents instead?

4. Why are we celebrating Jesus' birthday if he's not coming (to the party)?

5. Why are we still celebrating his birthday if people killed him a long time ago for telling a lie?... more »

Merry Christmas!

Or technically, Christmas Eve, but because Christmas tradition starts today, I'll define it as Christmas. And Christmas comes complete with the Christmas story. Only, with a twist: in our home, asking questions during storytime is encouraged, as is questioning everything and every command. My kindergarden-aged son's questions this year are, in my opinion, worth sharing - here's a selection:

1. If God is in heaven and Angels are made of light then who gave Mary a sperm?

2. What does holy mean?

3. Why do we give each other presents? If it's Jesus' birthday then doesn't everyone have to give him presents instead?

4. Why are we celebrating Jesus' birthday if he's not coming (to the party)?

5. Why are we still celebrating his birthday if people killed him a long time ago for telling a lie?

... I gave him a bunch of 'opinions', but no answers, and told him to be careful about who he asks such questions to. I explained to him the brutality through which Christianity spread and how that's why we still celebrate Christmas as tradition today, how pagan traditions like the Christmas tree mixed into the tradition, and how despite all of the past, there still are both good and bad Christians - just like every religion has good and bad followers. He's at a phase where he's learning to differentiate between fact and fiction (he asks the same sort of questions about illogical statements in books where animals talk, for example). It'll probably be some time before he finally sorts things out.

Whatever you believe, wish you a thoughtful and reflective start to the season!

___

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2014-12-23 05:13:47 (0 comments, 1 reshares, 9 +1s)Open 

The star's life cycle

My daughter cant stop singing twinkle twinkle now... +Max Huijgen​'s fault!

Seriously, very nice little video. ;)

#Learning #geist

I'm SUPER EXCITED to announce my new video and first Children's Book, Astronomically Correct Twinkle Twinkle, a collaboration with +Zach Weiner of SMBC Comics and illustrator +Chris Jones .

Please watch and share with all science-minded parents you know!___The star's life cycle

My daughter cant stop singing twinkle twinkle now... +Max Huijgen​'s fault!

Seriously, very nice little video. ;)

#Learning #geist

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2014-12-22 09:00:34 (18 comments, 1 reshares, 17 +1s)Open 

Digital relationships: A long-needed breaking down of capitalist consequences

A few days ago, +Guy Kawasaki made an insightful post highlighting how being selfish brings more status, job promotions, and 'good' things in some countries - namely the more capitalistic ones. At the same time, it highlights how other countries - namely the more socialist ones - tend to link kindness with those same 'good' rewards of status, job promotions, etc. And this systematic reward scheme creates a system that we live in, which over time has been pushed to extremes - and as a result, many have come to passionately love or hate it. Link to Guy's post: https://plus.google.com/112374836634096795698/posts/XbqrRnJp6PF

But something interesting is happening in the digital world of interaction, where these international barriers no longer exist, and where people are free to make... more »

Digital relationships: A long-needed breaking down of capitalist consequences

A few days ago, +Guy Kawasaki made an insightful post highlighting how being selfish brings more status, job promotions, and 'good' things in some countries - namely the more capitalistic ones. At the same time, it highlights how other countries - namely the more socialist ones - tend to link kindness with those same 'good' rewards of status, job promotions, etc. And this systematic reward scheme creates a system that we live in, which over time has been pushed to extremes - and as a result, many have come to passionately love or hate it. Link to Guy's post: https://plus.google.com/112374836634096795698/posts/XbqrRnJp6PF

But something interesting is happening in the digital world of interaction, where these international barriers no longer exist, and where people are free to make behavioral choices that determine their digital reputation status independent of whether or not it helps them get on with their career: even in 'selfish' countries, people begin to break away from the selfish stereotype and base decisions on kindness instead.

Here's one recent perfect example of this in practice: +Carrie Canup, who lives in what is rated as an extremely selfish country but happens to also be one of those 'kind souls' whose kindness touches people worldwide through her presence on Google+, makes a post requesting for financial help - and is overwhelmed by how her request has funded her medical needs for next year within the first 24 hours. I doubt she'd have gotten the same response if she wasn't the 'kind soul' that she is: kindness pays off and leads to reciprocacy in status, just as it does in the 'kind' countries in Guy's article. Link to Carrie's post: https://plus.google.com/u/0/114849831678812551299/posts/2pKVZMacpbA

The result, which we see repeated over and over again across social media: successful digital relationships are not triggered by capitalist, economic incentives. They are instead triggered by meaningful, reciprocal relationships.

So what are the incentives that make create status, and thus success, online? Nothing that we don't intuitively already know: being kind, being sympathetic, having a human personality, having strengths and weaknesses without hiding them, being a positive motivator, and... oh, I'll bet there are people in some of those 'kind' countries who have put effort into figuring out how to climb the ladder of career success, who may be much better positioned than anyone in the 'selfish' world to teach the art of positive influence!

And what's more: I'd expect that this shift to a world, or at least a media channel, where social aptitude and kindness are crucial in reputation building, should bring a lot more happiness into the 'selfish' world as people, and businesses, are forced to become more aware of what humanity actually means instead of cocooning away in ramping up economic success.

As we mix the two opposing directions of kindness and selfishness, I'd hope to see a new flourish of businesses that are, also, kind - not just the few token examples that you read about now and then, but every single corporation, from small to large, resulting in a more sustainable socioeconomic system, more friendly and more human relationships, and ultimately a happier world population.___

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2014-12-21 16:26:09 (5 comments, 1 reshares, 15 +1s)Open 

Escher revisited

Not all of Escher's illusions are impossible from a topological standpoint... so we took one of his famous pictures and turned it into a greeting card, which of course also folds flat for envelope storage. Though I must admit that my artistic assistants have a few more years to go before their people reach Escher quality!

#illusion #popup

Escher revisited

Not all of Escher's illusions are impossible from a topological standpoint... so we took one of his famous pictures and turned it into a greeting card, which of course also folds flat for envelope storage. Though I must admit that my artistic assistants have a few more years to go before their people reach Escher quality!

#illusion #popup___

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2014-12-20 20:00:03 (4 comments, 0 reshares, 18 +1s)Open 

My daughter surprises me again...

I find that children's art is sometimes quite amazing - I gave her four small buckets of paint (primary colors and green), and this was the result. Actually, a row of three paintings, before she got bored and went off to play lego instead. Color and composition seem to be a second nature, even if the picture is otherwise not what he said it was. (Her narration while painting was something like this: here is a bear, now i made the bear dissappear, now a line, another line, and dots).

She's two-and-a-half - the age where paintings are still more abstract accidents than intentional forms, though she does manage simple forms (her name, potato-head-people, etc).

Note: The background is actually white, but photography under electric lighting didn't go too well.

#Geist

My daughter surprises me again...

I find that children's art is sometimes quite amazing - I gave her four small buckets of paint (primary colors and green), and this was the result. Actually, a row of three paintings, before she got bored and went off to play lego instead. Color and composition seem to be a second nature, even if the picture is otherwise not what he said it was. (Her narration while painting was something like this: here is a bear, now i made the bear dissappear, now a line, another line, and dots).

She's two-and-a-half - the age where paintings are still more abstract accidents than intentional forms, though she does manage simple forms (her name, potato-head-people, etc).

Note: The background is actually white, but photography under electric lighting didn't go too well.

#Geist___

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2014-12-18 08:06:44 (0 comments, 1 reshares, 4 +1s)Open 

Know your audience: an unwritten, but necessary, online literacy

This is an interesting perspective on Gamergate: perhaps all the anger isn't about some gamers being digital idiots. Perhaps it is just about subcultures clashing and not understanding each other's rules and ettiquette, resulting in some rather nasty results. 

While I would argue that Gamergate has crossed the lines in several respects, I do think that this perspective does have some validity: the digital world has brought together a mix of cultures, regions, languages, and opened up the door for misunderstanding to a larger extent than many of us are acquainted with. And this is something that we need to constantly keep in the back of our minds in every digital conversation.

This was an interesting essay on Gamergate as a clash of cultural discussion norms:

> The Man In Black points out that there is a certain sociology going on [in Chan culture]. Anonymity leads to rude, mob behaviour. But much of this is good-natured ribbing: since participants do not have stable personas nobody ever loses (unlike in fora where you have at least a pseudonymous identity whose reputation you might wish to protect). That is not to say there is no real sexism or malice there, just that it is mixed up with far more uses of its terminology where the actual meaning is different.

> There is also an identification with the mob and its chaotic, dynamic nature – consider the delight Anonymous took in being an inchoate, implacable enemy of whoever aroused its ire (“Because none of us are as cruel as all of us”). As the MIB says, “Chan culture considers personal reputation meaningless but collective identity sacrosanct”. Deliberately trying to stand out is in the eyes of this subculture and in the rules of its discourse uncouth. To claim that the consensus is wrong and that one’s personal experiences can refute a point breaks the rules of discourse. To have a mass of people respond with rude invective to any statement (including statements they actually agree with) is how you have an argument: if you do not want a wave of hostility, why did you invite it by making a claim?

> These rules of discourse are of course radically different from in other subcultures. And this nicely explains part of the gamergate explosion: when the Chan culture touches other cultures of discourse there will be fundamental misunderstandings about the very nature of what a discourse is supposed to be.

[...]

> ...the Internet means that every culture of discourse can potentially encounter every other. Normally this does not happen since people network with people like themselves, and instead the properties of Internet communities lead to rapid evolution of local cultures of discourse. Sometimes they are borrowed: this blog, for example, tends to stick close to academic philosophical discourse styles much of the time (for example, people often responding with objections even though they are meant in a friendly way – the ideal is honest truth-seeking rather than status gams). However, occasionally a post here touches on a topic of interest to other communities and we get an infusion of commenters from elsewhere. Often this leads to a bit of friction since people don’t follow the assumed and unspoken rules. How can they know that when a philosopher suggests that mulching children could be good he does not actually promote baby-mulching, but trying to make a fine point about some metaethical issue? Normally when somebody says somethingb they mean it.

> Blowups seem to happen more and more often thanks to the nonlocal nature of the Internet. I write something that makes sense as bioethics, and find myself vilified (and subject to satirical poetry) by people who didn’t get the context. Somebody makes a joke that is innocuous in their home culture but vile blasphemy elsewhere. There is also a network effect: since messages are transmitted not from central hubs but as branching trees between participants, there is both potential for accumulating bias and misunderstanding, but also that comments on comments become relevant – and they also have blowup potential. As a blowup gets larger more people become involved, each with a certain probability of adding a secondary detonation through some comment or action (I bet that the eventual size distribution of such reactions has a power-law probability distribution). Conversely, when something causes interest thousands or million eyes can focus on a single individual, sometimes with disastrous consequences.___Know your audience: an unwritten, but necessary, online literacy

This is an interesting perspective on Gamergate: perhaps all the anger isn't about some gamers being digital idiots. Perhaps it is just about subcultures clashing and not understanding each other's rules and ettiquette, resulting in some rather nasty results. 

While I would argue that Gamergate has crossed the lines in several respects, I do think that this perspective does have some validity: the digital world has brought together a mix of cultures, regions, languages, and opened up the door for misunderstanding to a larger extent than many of us are acquainted with. And this is something that we need to constantly keep in the back of our minds in every digital conversation.

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2014-12-11 18:44:05 (0 comments, 2 reshares, 7 +1s)Open 

Fasting: Getting your body to clean itself up from within

IF is intermittent fasting. The above says that IF improves cognitive function, reduces resting heart rate, reduces blood pressure, reduces inflammation, increases muscle efficiency and increases stress resistance.

Well, what exactly does fasting do? There's a bunch of links in the article, but in a nutshell, fasting about self-cleaning. Not just spiritual self-cleaning (which is, in my opinion, overemphasized in the article), but more importantly also physical and biological self-cleaning.

A period of fasting is a period in which the body doesn't get all the nutrients it needs. That forces it to reduce vital functions to a bare minimum, and eliminate non-vital functions. With perhaps surprising results: it makes you healthier than before!

Example: Fasting combined with a particular... more »

Fasting: Getting your body to clean itself up from within

IF is intermittent fasting. The above says that IF improves cognitive function, reduces resting heart rate, reduces blood pressure, reduces inflammation, increases muscle efficiency and increases stress resistance.

Well, what exactly does fasting do? There's a bunch of links in the article, but in a nutshell, fasting about self-cleaning. Not just spiritual self-cleaning (which is, in my opinion, overemphasized in the article), but more importantly also physical and biological self-cleaning.

A period of fasting is a period in which the body doesn't get all the nutrients it needs. That forces it to reduce vital functions to a bare minimum, and eliminate non-vital functions. With perhaps surprising results: it makes you healthier than before!

Example: Fasting combined with a particular diet (hard-bread-evenings-only-for-a-week) will kill off all unnecessary intestinal flora, allowing you to regenerate the 'good' intestinal bacterial flora and kill all the 'bad' bacteria. That results in more efficient nutrient uptake and leaves you energized, even if you eat less.

Example: "When you starve, the system tries to save energy, and one of the things it can do to save energy is to recycle a lot of the immune cells that are not needed, especially those that may be damaged," Dr Longo says. Prolonged fasting reduced the enzyme PKA, which is linked to aging and a hormone which increases cancer risk and tumor growth. It promotes stem cell-based regeneration.

Example: "What we started noticing in both our human work and animal work is that the white blood cell count goes down with prolonged fasting. Then when you re-feed, the blood cells come back. So we started thinking, well, where does it come from?" So, fasting causes an immune system boost, and the red blood cells needed to transport blood return after you are done fasting, to restore oxygen transport to your previous levels.

/via +Irreverent Monk ___

2014-12-06 13:37:07 (4 comments, 6 reshares, 12 +1s)Open 

The Debate Game
Teaching children how to argue constructively

One of my favorite games as I was a teenager was the spontaneous debate. And in retrospect, it is one of the most valuable games that I've played - because it taught me several skills that have proven to be invaluable over the course of my career so far. In particular, because it taught me - at that point a timid introvert - how to deal with public speaking successfully. Other skills that the game develop include: self-confidence, spontaneity, humor, presentation style, rhetoric, and logical argumentation - skills that are valuable because they make working with other people, and influencing teams, easier... and in general humor and spontaneous, positive reactions help to make you a more likable person.

True, this game sounds challenging when you read it - and the first time you try it out, it is challenging.... more »

The Debate Game
Teaching children how to argue constructively

One of my favorite games as I was a teenager was the spontaneous debate. And in retrospect, it is one of the most valuable games that I've played - because it taught me several skills that have proven to be invaluable over the course of my career so far. In particular, because it taught me - at that point a timid introvert - how to deal with public speaking successfully. Other skills that the game develop include: self-confidence, spontaneity, humor, presentation style, rhetoric, and logical argumentation - skills that are valuable because they make working with other people, and influencing teams, easier... and in general humor and spontaneous, positive reactions help to make you a more likable person.

True, this game sounds challenging when you read it - and the first time you try it out, it is challenging. But give it a few rounds, and you will begin to love it because of all the craziness that results. OK, maybe not you, but if you have children who are at that age where defiance is a magical attraction, then they will love it!

This post is dedicated to +Frank Nestel, who I promised in my last parenting post to share a learning game directed more towards teenagers.

How it works

Materials: pen and paper, a stopwatch, a coin, a die, and two to five people. 

1. Divide yourselves into two teams of two. If you are an odd number of people, one person sits to the side as the jury.

2. Flip the coin to determine which team forms the House and which the Opposition. 

3. Make two lists of six items: a list of subjects (try to get a good mix and not a homogenous list), and a list of controversial issues (current issues are better, but older topics work too). For example:

(1) Subjects:
 - Superman
 - Mickey Mouse
 - Nemo
 - black people
 - janitors
 - super-rich

(2) Controversial issues:
 - slavery
 - genetic modified foods
 - digital privacy
 - Catalonia declaring independence
 - abortion
 - climate change tax

4. Next, the house begins the debate by delivering the resolution: "Be it resolved that __(a)__ __(b)__ __(c)____."
(a) To fill in the first blank, roll the die and announce the corresponding subject from (1).
(b) The second blank is a coin flip: Heads for supports, Tails for rejects.
(c) The third blank is another die roll, and gives the corresponding subject form (2).

Following the example above: If I rolled 1, Heads, and 4 then I would have, "Be it resolved that Superman supports Catalonia declaring independence."

5. No time to prepare, sorry! No matter how outrageous the statement may sound, you, the house, have just delivered your opening statement and have the next three minutes to deliver your opening arguments. Good luck.

6. This is followed by a three-minute defense from the opposition. No pauses.

7. Next, the house delivers a three-minute counterargument.

8. Next, the opposition delivers a five-minute conclusion.

9. Finally, the house delivers a two-minute conclusion.

Usually, the teams work such that each member delivers one speech, and alternates between the members. If you have an additional person sitting around, that person can be the jury and judge the debate based on style, argument, and content.

Have fun!

#Geist #Learning #Education #SoftSkills #Parenting___

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2014-12-04 21:04:40 (8 comments, 3 reshares, 15 +1s)Open 

How different are online and offline relationships?

It's not too often that someone whom I know only virtually passes away, and leaves enough of an impact to make it actually worth dedicating a post to it. And here is one such person: +Dieter Mueller, known for his provocative obsession with genitalia, cynicism, and irony. But what makes his death unique is not just a personal virtual connection: it is notable that a community of virtual acquaintances - and a damn intelligent one at that - respond precisely as one might respond to an actual, in-person relationship, only on a digital medium.

If you take a look at the attached post and the comment discussion contained within, you'll see elements of relationship and reaction that are, perhaps, unusual for an online environment:
 - personal concern, to the point of checking in with the police as to what's going on
 -g... more »

Yes, it is possible to have genuine online friends, we miss you Dieter
Two years ago, +Dieter Mueller  played an experiment where he deleted his G+ account in order to show the superficial nature of online friendships and what he called the ‘big data cow’. His experiment failed miserably when scores and scores of people contacted him to know was he okay and to come back and join us again. 
Sadly, Dieter has departed for good this time. In true Dieter style, and in his own words he has stage managed his own death. I’ve no doubt he is above there now looking down at us all and smiling, but I’m sad we didn’t get a chance to say goodbye. I hope Dieter has finally found the rest he desired. ___How different are online and offline relationships?

It's not too often that someone whom I know only virtually passes away, and leaves enough of an impact to make it actually worth dedicating a post to it. And here is one such person: +Dieter Mueller, known for his provocative obsession with genitalia, cynicism, and irony. But what makes his death unique is not just a personal virtual connection: it is notable that a community of virtual acquaintances - and a damn intelligent one at that - respond precisely as one might respond to an actual, in-person relationship, only on a digital medium.

If you take a look at the attached post and the comment discussion contained within, you'll see elements of relationship and reaction that are, perhaps, unusual for an online environment:
 - personal concern, to the point of checking in with the police as to what's going on
 - group collaboration to figure out what happened
 - reflection on that person's life and of each other's experiences and encounters with the deceased 
 - people who have not heard from each other for some time congregate together again - as an old saying goes, there are three events when people gather: birth, marriage, and death.

... really, except for the distances and media, there are quite a few elements that make online relationships just as intense as offline ones.

Yet at the same time, there are immense differences: without the in-person touch, tone, gesture, and expression experiences, limited communication heightens the potential for misunderstandings and misinterpretations. The digital environment makes communication even more ambiguous than ever before. But is ambiguity really a difference? We have enough ambiguity in daily language, and misunderstand each other often enough even before the additional challenges of the digital medium.

Surely, there are differences. And surely, many people take online and offline relationships differently. Yet, as the linked post demonstrates, true relationships still remain the same at their essence - regardless of whether they are online, offline, or both.

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2014-12-03 09:27:22 (27 comments, 30 reshares, 102 +1s)Open 

NSA Whistleblower wins Swedish Human Rights Award

Whistleblower Edward Snowden received several standing ovations in the Swedish parliament after being given the Right Livelihood award for his revelations of the scale of state surveillance.

Snowden, who is in exile in Russia, addressed the parliament by video from Moscow. In a symbolic gesture, his family and supporters said no one picked up the award on his behalf in the hope that one day he might be free to travel to Sweden to receive it in person.

If anything, this highlights the true significance of data privacy invasion and the gradual shift towards a society where total digital surveillance is becoming a rapid reality.

And while digital data integration and homogenization does bring superior advantages and conveniences with it, the potential for data abuse grows too. Finding a balance, and providing... more »

NSA Whistleblower wins Swedish Human Rights Award

Whistleblower Edward Snowden received several standing ovations in the Swedish parliament after being given the Right Livelihood award for his revelations of the scale of state surveillance.

Snowden, who is in exile in Russia, addressed the parliament by video from Moscow. In a symbolic gesture, his family and supporters said no one picked up the award on his behalf in the hope that one day he might be free to travel to Sweden to receive it in person.

If anything, this highlights the true significance of data privacy invasion and the gradual shift towards a society where total digital surveillance is becoming a rapid reality.

And while digital data integration and homogenization does bring superior advantages and conveniences with it, the potential for data abuse grows too. Finding a balance, and providing the technical and legal basis to protect liberty, morality, and ethics while continuing to enable technological integration and advancement - for example by constructing and upholding a data use permission system. But this is so contrary to the goals of total surveillance... and, as the award recognizes, the problems associated with total surveillance are quite massive indeed, that standing up to protect our right to privacy is an act of heroism and a necessary step in ensuring the protection of basic human rights, more fundamental and crucial to prevent large-scale corruption and abuse than you might want to believe.

I recommend that you watch his acceptance speech - and hope, that the speech delivery via Google Hangouts does not give away sufficient information for US foreign agents to dispose of Snowden during his exile. After all, total digital surveillance leaves very little space to hide.

#Privacy   #Policy   #HumanRights  ___

2014-12-01 09:06:53 (1 comments, 0 reshares, 12 +1s)Open 

Giving is about enablement

+Visnja Zeljeznjak makes a very strong point in her post (linked): true presents aren't things - not even things that someone could use, or food that someone not-so-well-off could consume. It's about enablement. It's about using your creative prowess to enable someone else to succeed - reflected strongly in her gift examples:

 - A moment of togetherness.
 - A bundle of knowledge.
 - A kind conversation.
 - A product that solves human problems.
 - A service that makes people smile and thrive.

And as I sit there, thinking about what to give to a dear friend of mine who barely scrapes by on social assistance, I think of how she reacts to presents as well: a reaction that very closely illustrates what Visnja is saying. My friend is quite put off by gifts of money, food, etc. But give her a home-made, educational toy for herkids (... more »

Imagine a world based on giving, rather than on taking. Scarcity is a product manufactured by man's decision to base his civilization on taking rather than on giving. (source: mind-sets.com)

Scarcity is manufactured. Scarcity is artificial. Can you believe this?

Nature is abundant. Human-made creations are scarce. It is a choice we made, and continue to make every day.

And can you believe that the only, only way to reverse that reality is to stop being part of it, to ignore it, and live in your own reality distortion field, where giving is the default?

It all starts with one single human. Enter my reality distortion field.

What would your world of giving look like? What would be different?

Maybe you would look to give first and take second.
Maybe you would be grateful for the abundance you already have.
Maybe you would smile at people more.
Maybe you would not look at other people as your competitors.
Maybe you would donate more to the needy, without expecting rewards.
Maybe you would be less cynical for just one day.
Maybe you would start noticing the abundance of beauty in this world.

Today is December the 1st 2014. It's a month where we're accustomed to giving to others. How about for a change, we give more of everything to those who really need it?

Your mom probably does not need another Christmas present. She doesn't need stuff. Think about what she needs more.

Your partner does not need you to go to the mall and buy her/him a present. There could be something else he/she needs from you more.

Stuff, stuff, stuff. We don't need more stuff. Why not give the most precious asset a human has: time? Convert that time into energy that is useful to others?

Create something:
A moment of togetherness.
A bundle of knowledge.
A kind conversation.
A product that solves human problems.
A service that makes people smile and thrive.

What does your world of giving look like?___Giving is about enablement

+Visnja Zeljeznjak makes a very strong point in her post (linked): true presents aren't things - not even things that someone could use, or food that someone not-so-well-off could consume. It's about enablement. It's about using your creative prowess to enable someone else to succeed - reflected strongly in her gift examples:

 - A moment of togetherness.
 - A bundle of knowledge.
 - A kind conversation.
 - A product that solves human problems.
 - A service that makes people smile and thrive.

And as I sit there, thinking about what to give to a dear friend of mine who barely scrapes by on social assistance, I think of how she reacts to presents as well: a reaction that very closely illustrates what Visnja is saying. My friend is quite put off by gifts of money, food, etc. But give her a home-made, educational toy for her kids (she is planning to be an educator when her newest child is a bit older), give her information about natural preventative medicine (one of her personal interests), or something else that enables and empowers her and she'll be thrilled beyond imagination - the value of such gifts have a long-lasting impact, not just on her but also on those around her, and can never be depleted but only multiply.

At the risk of coming across as self-promotional, I'll link here two of my contributions this season, if you're looking for something for young children: after seeing how my kindergarten has taught my kids how to stop asking questions and start accepting everything the teacher says as fact, I think it's time to take action and start developing those skills at home instead, as those are skills that the education system diminishes, but are highly valued and required by pretty much every well-paying job today.

- A (completely free) 'Question Game' designed to reinforce creative thinking and problem solving: https://plus.google.com/112842631531364722564/posts/EASGYXrtAyU
- A book with a year's worth of DIY kid's experiments, designed to encourage open exploration and to challenge common assumptions: https://plus.google.com/112842631531364722564/posts/d6bUdwqm6TB

Giving isn't about material wealth transfer. True giving about enablement. Let's enable each other every day!

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2014-12-01 08:42:00 (3 comments, 2 reshares, 1 +1s)Open 

Automated publishing: Let's shake up the public research game

I can't wait for a project like Narrative Science to be combined with a bot that goes around scraping abstracts and research projects, and turning them into pop-sci news on a (not yet existing) automated news outlet. Because that would do something that open journals - and other open research approaches - have failed to do: raising knowledge accessibility by turning complex research into understandable articles.

And if such a portal does become one of the critical criteria in determining how effective publicly funded research is, then perhaps we would also see increased monitoring of these portals to consider comments that average folk like you and me have on all those complex projects and implications - and finally help to bridge the communications gap between the academic world, industry applications,... more »

Automated publishing: Let's shake up the public research game

I can't wait for a project like Narrative Science to be combined with a bot that goes around scraping abstracts and research projects, and turning them into pop-sci news on a (not yet existing) automated news outlet. Because that would do something that open journals - and other open research approaches - have failed to do: raising knowledge accessibility by turning complex research into understandable articles.

And if such a portal does become one of the critical criteria in determining how effective publicly funded research is, then perhaps we would also see increased monitoring of these portals to consider comments that average folk like you and me have on all those complex projects and implications - and finally help to bridge the communications gap between the academic world, industry applications, and the general public.
 
/via +Wayne Radinsky ___

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2014-12-01 08:01:13 (30 comments, 139 reshares, 135 +1s)Open 

The question game!
Teaching kids to ask smart questions

Think about it: A four-year-old asks on average about 400 questions per day, and an adult hardly asks any. Our school system is structured around rewards for regurgitating the right answer, and not asking smart questions - in fact, it discourages asking questions. With the result that as we grow older, we stop asking questions. Yet asking good questions is essential to find and develop solutions, and important skill in innovation, strategy, and leadership. So why do we stop asking questions - and more importantly, why don't we train each other, and our future leaders, to ask the right questions starting from early on?

I've been just reading Die Kunst des klugen Fragens by Warren Berger who suggests that there are three main questions which help in problem solving: why questions, what-happens-if... more »

The question game!
Teaching kids to ask smart questions

Think about it: A four-year-old asks on average about 400 questions per day, and an adult hardly asks any. Our school system is structured around rewards for regurgitating the right answer, and not asking smart questions - in fact, it discourages asking questions. With the result that as we grow older, we stop asking questions. Yet asking good questions is essential to find and develop solutions, and important skill in innovation, strategy, and leadership. So why do we stop asking questions - and more importantly, why don't we train each other, and our future leaders, to ask the right questions starting from early on?

I've been just reading Die Kunst des klugen Fragens by Warren Berger who suggests that there are three main questions which help in problem solving: why questions, what-happens-if questions, and how questions.

Regardless of the question, the question needs to be phrased openly and positively in order to achieve positive results - a closed or negative question only raises bad feelings against each other.
 - Why questions help to find the root of a problem.
 - What-if questions open up the floor for creative solutions.
 - How questions focus on developing practical solutions.
 
So, perhaps, this lesson can be adapted to help trigger young children to start solve problems early too and stop accepting whatever the kindergarten teacher says to be fact? And perhaps, continue to keep up these inquiring and probing abilities later on in life? Well, here goes, let's give it a try...

Introducing the Question Game
Preparation: print out the figure in the illustration, cut it out and glue the tabs together to form a cube.

Pick up your favorite illustrated fairy tale book - the kind of book you'd read a two-year-old for bedtime stories. On each page, roll the cube and answer the question together. I'll bet you'd be surprised by what turns Little Red Riding Hood can take... and more importantly, I'll bet that after a while, you and your child will both start asking these questions more often than not!

#Geist   #Education   #Learning   #Questions   #ProblemSolving  ___

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2014-11-17 19:30:59 (26 comments, 0 reshares, 6 +1s)Open 

Personalized, informed dieting recommendations made simple!

Concerned about your weight? Well, it should be more than just weight. It should be about maintaining a healthy body. And that means putting all of the puzzle pieces together: nutrition, weight, body fat, body muscle mass, bone mass, vitamin and mineral deficiencies...

Most DIY-estimates of these factors are very approximate - you can estimate body fat, body muscle mass, but these measurements are tedious and are often tracked together with weight loss apps as opposed to combined with nutritional recommendations. But from what I hear, it looks like this company has made accurate measurements easy with their multi-frequency bio-electric impedance analysis device - complete with bluetooth integration between their measuring device and your user profile - and that means my dream application might actually become real: I... more »

Personalized, informed dieting recommendations made simple!

Concerned about your weight? Well, it should be more than just weight. It should be about maintaining a healthy body. And that means putting all of the puzzle pieces together: nutrition, weight, body fat, body muscle mass, bone mass, vitamin and mineral deficiencies...

Most DIY-estimates of these factors are very approximate - you can estimate body fat, body muscle mass, but these measurements are tedious and are often tracked together with weight loss apps as opposed to combined with nutritional recommendations. But from what I hear, it looks like this company has made accurate measurements easy with their multi-frequency bio-electric impedance analysis device - complete with bluetooth integration between their measuring device and your user profile - and that means my dream application might actually become real: I want a holistic app that covers nutritional recommendations, monitoring of dietary intakes, weight, body fat, muscle mass, in order to reach my fitness goals, and on top of that is not very cumbersome to use. I'll be looking for some screenshots or integration about this device to see if it does meet up to that expectation - it would certainly be a welcome switch from the three different apps I currently switch between and scratch my head about.

And even better, I'll bet service is going to be excellent - their new community manager is an active and lovely G+ resident,+Laura Manach! Their Google+ Page is soon, I hear.... ;)

Original post with more details on what this little device does: https://plus.google.com/u/0/114096099683887759200/posts/Bcz4RB4nkMT___

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2014-11-17 15:38:37 (4 comments, 19 reshares, 27 +1s)Open 

How to get a child to think critically

This article contains illustrative examples which resonate to my personal educational experience throughout school - I remember how much I would detest all the test questions that I got wrong because I answered 'What word means .....' with a synonym of the vocabulary list word instead of that word itself, or because I had written out a fraction instead whereas the answer key rounded to two decimals, or because my experimental measured lab value was not close enough to the expected experimental value, and so on.

But the bigger and more immediate question remains unanswered by the article, if the current system doesn't teach children how to think critically, how do we teach those children critical thinking? 

For starters, I'd humbly propose a few suggestions:

1) Do misuse everything you can.more »

How to get a child to think critically

This article contains illustrative examples which resonate to my personal educational experience throughout school - I remember how much I would detest all the test questions that I got wrong because I answered 'What word means .....' with a synonym of the vocabulary list word instead of that word itself, or because I had written out a fraction instead whereas the answer key rounded to two decimals, or because my experimental measured lab value was not close enough to the expected experimental value, and so on.

But the bigger and more immediate question remains unanswered by the article, if the current system doesn't teach children how to think critically, how do we teach those children critical thinking? 

For starters, I'd humbly propose a few suggestions:

1) Do misuse everything you can.
Learning goal: Do not take anything for granted.
Why can't a bed be an ironing board? Why can't a cardboard box turn into a toy bridge? Or a diaper be an emergency sunshade? All is well, until the kids reach kindergarten and start getting told off by the teachers on what is and isn't acceptable, and now they tell me what I should be doing and are continually astounded that whatever alternative I'm doing actually works. Yes, Mama is crazy... and not a bit ashamed of it.

2) Do try out stupid things.
Learning goal: Test things out yourself.
Why not eat a lemon together? Go out in the rain without a raincoat? Stick a balloon on a needle? Microwave a CD? Try to fix a broken radio with Google's help instead of taking it to the repair shop? The result is sudden, golden insights bringing very diverse topics together: 'Mama, going out in the rain is just like taking a shower, so I don't have to wash my hair tonight!' (No, Mama did not teach that!)

3) Do make silly excuses.
Learning goal: Create inventive and fluent arguments.
Yes, my son does roll his eyes when I offer completely outrageous reasons. And laughs when I challenge him to test the reasons himself (he knows better than to believe everything I say). But he also started answering commands such as 'Time to go to bed' as tactfully as any politician asked to give a spontaneous statement on a controversial topic.

#Geist   #Learning   #Creativity   #CriticalThinking   #Education  
/via +O'Neil Godfrey ___

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2014-11-17 14:01:38 (2 comments, 1 reshares, 7 +1s)Open 

What do you think about open data as an internet-disarming measure?

How did the cold war end? With a massive arms dismantlement program. Why wouldn't a massive disarming be a solution to end Facebookistan?

By disarming, I do not mean throwing out stacks of artillery. Rather, I mean opening up information: make statistical user data analysis available via an open API, and build tools allowing people to analyze data. And that would empower anyone, anywhere to draw the types of conclusions that currently are only available to marketers with sufficiently deep pockets, giant social media networks, or other cloud giants. People can help one another determine what is evil and what is not.

Is this a realistic dream? I'd hope so. After all, open source didn't just die out, even though it was ridiculed at its birth as well. Sure, opening data does not mean opening up your... more »

'Ask an internet platform spokesperson why his or her firm made nearly any decision, and you’ll hear some variation on “to improve user experience.” But we all know that it’s only a certain kind of user experience that is really valued, and promoted. For Facebook to continue to meet Wall Street’s demands for growth, its user base must grow and/or individual users must become more “productive.” Predictive analytics demands standardization: forecastable estimates of revenue-per-user. The more a person clicks on ads and buys products, the better. Secondarily, the more a person draws other potential ad-clickers in–via clicked-on content, catalyzing discussions, crying for help, whatever–the more valuable they become to the platform. The “model users” gain visibility, subtly instructing by example how to act on the network. They’ll probably never attain the notoriety of a Lei Feng, but the Republic of Facebookistan gladly pays them the currency of attention, as long as the investment pays off for top managers and shareholders.

As more people understand the implications of enjoying Facebook “for free“–i.e., that they are the product of the service–they also see that its real paying customers are advertisers. As N. Katherine Hayles has stated, the critical question here is: “will ubiquitous computing be coopted as a stalking horse for predatory capitalism, or can we seize the opportunity” to deploy more emancipatory uses of it?  I have expressed faith in the latter possibility, but Facebook continually validates Julie Cohen’s critique of a surveillance-innovation complex. The experiment fiasco is just the latest in a long history of ethically troubling decisions at that firm, and several others like it.

Unfortunately, many in Silicon Valley still barely get what the fuss is about. For them, A/B testing is simply a way of life. There are some revealing similarities between casinos and major internet platforms. As Rob Horning observes, Social media platforms are engineered to be sticky . . . Like video slots, which incite extended periods of “time-on-machine” to assure “continuous gaming productivity” (i.e. money extraction from players), social-media sites are designed to maximize time-on-site, to make their users more valuable to advertisers . . . and to ratchet up user productivity in the form of data sharing and processing that social-media sites reserve the rights to.” That’s one reason we get headlines like “Teens Can’t Stop Using Facebook Even Though They Hate It.” There are sociobiological routes to conditioning action. The platforms are constantly shaping us, based on sophisticated psychological profiles.

The characteristics of Facebook’s model (i.e., exemplary) users in many ways reflect the constraints on the model users in the company–i.e., the data scientists who try to build stylized versions of reality (models) based on certain data points and theories. The Facebook emotion experiment is part of a much larger reshaping of social science. To what extent will academics study data driven firms like Facebook, and to what extent will they try to join forces with its own researchers to study others?

Present incentives are clear: collaborate with (rather than develop a critical theory of) big data firms.  As Zeynep Tufekci puts it, “the most valuable datasets have become corporate and proprietary [and] top journals love publishing from them.”  “Big data” has an aura of scientific validity simply because of the velocity, volume, and variety of the phenomena it encompasses. Psychologists certainly must have learned something from looking at over 600,000 accounts’ activity, right?

The problem, though is that the corporate “science” of manipulation is a far cry from academic science’s ethics of openness and reproducibility. That’s already led to some embarrassments in the crossover from corporate to academic modeling (such as Google’s flu trends failures). Researchers within Facebook worried about multiple experiments being performed at once on individual users, which might compromise the results of any one study. Standardized review could have prevented that. But, true to the Silicon Valley ethic of “move fast and break things,” speed was paramount: “There’s no review process. Anyone…could run a test…trying to alter peoples’ behavior,” said one former Facebook data scientist.

Why are journals so interested in this form of research? Why are academics jumping on board? Fortunately, social science has matured to the point that we now have a robust, insightful literature about the nature of social science itself[...] One of Isaac’s major contributions in that piece is to interpret the social science coming out of the academy (and entities like RAND) as acultural practice: “Insofar as theories involve certain forms of practice, they are caught up in worldly, quotidian matters: performances, comportments, training regimes, and so on.” Government leveraged funding to mobilize research to specific ends. To maintain university patronage systems and research centers, leaders had to be on good terms with the grantors. The common goal of strengthening the US economy (and defeating the communist threat) cemented an ideological alliance.

Government still exerts influence in American social and behavioral sciences. But private industry controls critical data sets for the most glamorous, data-driven research. In the Cold War era, “grant getting” may have been the key to economic security, and to securing one’s voice in the university. Today, “exit” options are more important than voice, and what better place to exit to than an internet platform? Thus academic/corporate “flexians” shuttle between the two worlds. Their research cannot be too venal, lest the academy disdain it. But neither can it indulge in, say, critical theory (what would nonprofit social networks look like), just as Cold War social scientists were ill-advised to, say, develop Myrdal’s or Leontief’s theories. There was a lot more money available for the Friedmanite direction economics would, eventually, take.

It is very hard to develop categories and kinds for internet firms, because they are so secretive about most of their operations. (And make no mistake about the current PR kerfuffle for Facebook: it will lead the company to become ever more secretive about its data science, just as Target started camouflaging its pregnancy-related ads and not talking to reporters after people appeared creeped out by the uncanny accuracy of its natal predictions.) But the data collection of the firms is creating whole new kinds of people—for marketers, for the NSA, and for anyone with the money or connections to access the information.'___What do you think about open data as an internet-disarming measure?

How did the cold war end? With a massive arms dismantlement program. Why wouldn't a massive disarming be a solution to end Facebookistan?

By disarming, I do not mean throwing out stacks of artillery. Rather, I mean opening up information: make statistical user data analysis available via an open API, and build tools allowing people to analyze data. And that would empower anyone, anywhere to draw the types of conclusions that currently are only available to marketers with sufficiently deep pockets, giant social media networks, or other cloud giants. People can help one another determine what is evil and what is not.

Is this a realistic dream? I'd hope so. After all, open source didn't just die out, even though it was ridiculed at its birth as well. Sure, opening data does not mean opening up your entire company strategy. Convenience of access, guaranteed availability of data access, and so on are features that corporations will still pay for. But the core business changes slightly, the same way that open source and closed source businesses are slightly different: rather than building a business around selling other people's data, give the data away for free and instead build a business around selling services and access to other people's data.

In this digital age where privacy is commodity where theoretical demands for privacy and practices against privacy do not coincide, and where anonymized statistical analysis are becoming more rampant than ever, is open data really that far away?

/via +Gregory Esau 

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2014-11-10 07:57:44 (2 comments, 0 reshares, 5 +1s)Open 

Want to know how effective those esoteric 'electrosmog protectors' are?

There are a number of esoteric companies offering stickers that they claim can reduce the effect of unwanted electromagnetic fields (so-called electrosmog) on biological organisms in the near proximity of the electronic device (e.g. mobile phone). Backed up with scanty, if any, scientific evidence. And by scientific evidence, I mean a clear hypothesis, tests designed to isolate a single variable, and statistical results as opposed to pretty pictures. Well... here's one company which has published some scientific findings regarding the effectivity of their products - and I commend them for doing so! Ignoring the fact that the leading scientist seems to have no credible research papers published to his name, let's take a look at the results.

Test in 2011: this actually looks like they... more »

Want to know how effective those esoteric 'electrosmog protectors' are?

There are a number of esoteric companies offering stickers that they claim can reduce the effect of unwanted electromagnetic fields (so-called electrosmog) on biological organisms in the near proximity of the electronic device (e.g. mobile phone). Backed up with scanty, if any, scientific evidence. And by scientific evidence, I mean a clear hypothesis, tests designed to isolate a single variable, and statistical results as opposed to pretty pictures. Well... here's one company which has published some scientific findings regarding the effectivity of their products - and I commend them for doing so! Ignoring the fact that the leading scientist seems to have no credible research papers published to his name, let's take a look at the results.

Test in 2011: this actually looks like they might be onto something. Not only a clear description of the test methodology, but also astounding results in section 4.3. To quote the conclusion: "The compensation potential is up to 100% for disruptions of up to 0,4 Microtesla, and beyond that 50%." So there you have it: measured effectiveness of 50% for the claimed capabilities of electromagnetic field restoration.  http://waveex.at/uploads/page_Gutachten_Medinger.pdf

Repeated test in 2014 (no idea if there were any 'research developments' on how to make that sticker 'better' between 2011 and 2014): forget that previous result. This repeated test shows that can nice results can only be achieved by selectively choosing measurement points to create a 'positive' conclusion. (More concretely: the sticker does have a minimal effect, which starts to be effective at a distance of 20 cm from your mobile phone, and not at the typical 1cm distance you'd hold a phone at when you talk on it.)
http://waveex.at/uploads/page_20140130BVMedinger.pdf

Surprise, surprise, it looks like the sticker makes very little difference after all!___

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2014-11-10 05:25:06 (2 comments, 12 reshares, 30 +1s)Open 

Look: an anti-alzheimer and learning enhancer drug in one!

Okay, it's not yet for humans, but this drug does have potential - if scientists can figure out which of the five human variants of their proposed drug have the desired effect on humans, they may have a sci-fi dream drug in their hands.

This drug allows the brain to rapidly grow new neural connections, giving the patient the power to learn quickly, the way children do. Want to learn a new language overnight? Become an engineering genius? This drug may be one key to those dreams. Simultaneously, enabling new connections blocks the onset of alzheimers, which is caused by this same pathway being blocked by a 'no-grow' protein.

Of course, fast learning isn't without its downsides: it means less sability in your thought pathways. The kind of stability that prevents you from forgetting to look for... more »

Look: an anti-alzheimer and learning enhancer drug in one!

Okay, it's not yet for humans, but this drug does have potential - if scientists can figure out which of the five human variants of their proposed drug have the desired effect on humans, they may have a sci-fi dream drug in their hands.

This drug allows the brain to rapidly grow new neural connections, giving the patient the power to learn quickly, the way children do. Want to learn a new language overnight? Become an engineering genius? This drug may be one key to those dreams. Simultaneously, enabling new connections blocks the onset of alzheimers, which is caused by this same pathway being blocked by a 'no-grow' protein.

Of course, fast learning isn't without its downsides: it means less sability in your thought pathways. The kind of stability that prevents you from forgetting to look for cars before crossing the road. Then again, not everything can be perfect!

/via +Wayne Radinsky___

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2014-10-25 10:31:02 (0 comments, 3 reshares, 10 +1s)Open 

Paper-strips for testing infections

This is an amazing invention if it can be commercialized and easier to use: a paper strip that changes color if an igfectious disease is present. The researchers demonstrated that they can use the paper to build in sensitivity for ebola: smear ebola on the paper, and it turns purple within an hour. At 4 cents a strip, these paper tests could make a real difference reducing the need and cost for 24 hour genetic tests.

On the other side, these tests need a minimum amount of lab skills to carry out - you first have to extract the viral dna or rna. That isn't exactly as easy as dipping the stripinto a urine sample. But who knows, maybe this problem can also be eliminated to create cheap, universal genetic tests?

/via +Jack Mason

Paper-strips for testing infections

This is an amazing invention if it can be commercialized and easier to use: a paper strip that changes color if an igfectious disease is present. The researchers demonstrated that they can use the paper to build in sensitivity for ebola: smear ebola on the paper, and it turns purple within an hour. At 4 cents a strip, these paper tests could make a real difference reducing the need and cost for 24 hour genetic tests.

On the other side, these tests need a minimum amount of lab skills to carry out - you first have to extract the viral dna or rna. That isn't exactly as easy as dipping the stripinto a urine sample. But who knows, maybe this problem can also be eliminated to create cheap, universal genetic tests?

/via +Jack Mason___

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2014-10-23 09:28:26 (13 comments, 1 reshares, 13 +1s)Open 

Not fun: My house just short-circuited.

A break from the usual news, with something more personal that hopefully doesn't happen every day: Kabel-BW was supposed to show up and install a cable for a high-speed internet connection on my property. They showed up fairly late towards the evening, installed the cable, and... surprise, no more electricity in the house! The installer called me in and seemed not to understand how a fuse works - he told me that the fuse looked okay, the plastic coating was still hard and there was no switch to flip. He claimed he only bored one hole in the wall, didn't hit any power mains, and that maybe something else was wrong in the house, and then left.

I asked my neighbor (who is an electrician) to have a look. My neighbor came by and tried swapping out the fuse - the old fuse was burnt through, and the new fuse blew right away as well. I... more »

Not fun: My house just short-circuited.

A break from the usual news, with something more personal that hopefully doesn't happen every day: Kabel-BW was supposed to show up and install a cable for a high-speed internet connection on my property. They showed up fairly late towards the evening, installed the cable, and... surprise, no more electricity in the house! The installer called me in and seemed not to understand how a fuse works - he told me that the fuse looked okay, the plastic coating was still hard and there was no switch to flip. He claimed he only bored one hole in the wall, didn't hit any power mains, and that maybe something else was wrong in the house, and then left.

I asked my neighbor (who is an electrician) to have a look. My neighbor came by and tried swapping out the fuse - the old fuse was burnt through, and the new fuse blew right away as well. I interpreted that as somewhere, there was a short circuit.

After talking to customer service, who refused to do anything until an electrician had demonstrated that they were at fault, I commissioned an electrician in to look at the matter. After about an hour, he found the cause: The cable was mounted to the wall with several screws, and in mounting the screws, the installer had drilled through the main power supply for the house and inserted the screws into the power mains, causing a short circuit. The electrician removed the offending screws, and put up preliminary safety measures in place to secure the site and restore power.

So much for high-speed internet installation! But, that raises a few questions:

1) Why does a technical installer who works with cables containing electricity not know what a fuse is? I know that few houses actually have fuses these days (newer houses have circuit breakers, but older houses don't).

2) How can you short out the power main and not realize it? Usually a spark flies, and I'll bet one flew when the first screw hit the power main...

Image source: „Kurzschluss 12V20A“ von MdE (de) - Eigenes Foto. Lizenziert unter Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 über Wikimedia Commons http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Kurzschluss_12V20A.jpg#mediaviewer/File:Kurzschluss_12V20A.jpg

#kabelbw  ___

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2014-10-17 13:53:04 (21 comments, 8 reshares, 18 +1s)Open 

Declining creativity: a worrying educational trend

Let me highlight a worrying quote from the linked article:
"... the creativity scores had also been going up in the same way as their IQ equivalents until the 1990s, upon which these scores have consistently dropped in American children."

What happened in the 1990s, and why has creativity fallen consistently since? What kind of society do we want, and what kind of children do we need to solve the world's problems and build a decent future for themselves? With routine work being increasingly replaced by technology, the future is going to need creative, analytical people who can solve problems. Why has this been neglected, and what do we need to bring this back on the rise?

Is it now the onus of parents to teach children to rediscover how to ask questions? To teach them that it is okay to not conform... more »

Declining creativity: a worrying educational trend

Let me highlight a worrying quote from the linked article:
"... the creativity scores had also been going up in the same way as their IQ equivalents until the 1990s, upon which these scores have consistently dropped in American children."

What happened in the 1990s, and why has creativity fallen consistently since? What kind of society do we want, and what kind of children do we need to solve the world's problems and build a decent future for themselves? With routine work being increasingly replaced by technology, the future is going to need creative, analytical people who can solve problems. Why has this been neglected, and what do we need to bring this back on the rise?

Is it now the onus of parents to teach children to rediscover how to ask questions? To teach them that it is okay to not conform to the masses? To teach them to not be afraid to sow the seeds of discussion, to speak up and question (teacher) authorities, and to teach them to deal with injustice and inequality early on in life?

Destroying a system and rebuilding a new one is never easy. And while I think that there is great value in learning those lessons of diplomacy, tact, inequality, and injustice early on in life, I am not so sure that children are emotionally ready to take on those burdens when the first year of school arrives. Is there a better model around?

#Geist #Learning #Creativity  #Education

/via +O'Neil Godfrey ___

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2014-10-15 06:07:21 (7 comments, 16 reshares, 14 +1s)Open 

Have you updated your browser security settings?

The attached article contains a great explanation on how the latest disclosed attack on SSL v3, POODLE, works. The POODLE attack was discovered by a team of engineers at Google, and abuses the SSL handshake protocol to allow an attacker to decrypt targeted stored cookies, for example your Google authentication cookie, and thus steal your identity. This attack is nowhere near as critical as Heartbleed, but it is a good reminder that you should keep your browsing habits safe!

The short version of the confusion between SSL and TSL
SSL v3 was introduced in 1995 by Netscape. Do you remember Netscape? That was, in terms of internet development, a very long time ago... and internet security has come a long way since. Most modern security handshakes work via TLS, which has been improved several times since its introduction.... more »

Have you updated your browser security settings?

The attached article contains a great explanation on how the latest disclosed attack on SSL v3, POODLE, works. The POODLE attack was discovered by a team of engineers at Google, and abuses the SSL handshake protocol to allow an attacker to decrypt targeted stored cookies, for example your Google authentication cookie, and thus steal your identity. This attack is nowhere near as critical as Heartbleed, but it is a good reminder that you should keep your browsing habits safe!

The short version of the confusion between SSL and TSL
SSL v3 was introduced in 1995 by Netscape. Do you remember Netscape? That was, in terms of internet development, a very long time ago... and internet security has come a long way since. Most modern security handshakes work via TLS, which has been improved several times since its introduction. TLS was, like SSL v3, also first introduced in 1994 / 1995 by Mozilla, but Mozilla has survived and continued to improve it over the years.

To add to the confusion and myth that SSL makes things secure, there are some interesting naming conventions: TLS v1 has also identified itself as SSL v3.1, due to its similarities and large cross-compatibility with SSL v3. Also, many popular TLS implementations contain SSL in their names, notably OpenSSL, LibreSSL or PolarSSL.

So how do I protect myself?
The solution to the problem should be relatively simple: Disable SSLv3. Most servers support TLS. Any server administrator can do this, but not many have been willing to, as certain browsers (in particular Internet Explorer 6, which is also quite old and insecure!) do not support TLS. All other major browsers do support TLS, and even if server administrators don't want to turn off SSL support, you can protect yourself by turning this off in your browser, or by upgrading if you are one of those evil surfers using IE6.

You can test whether you are vulnerable with one of these tests:
 - Test your server: https://ssltest.com
 - Test your browser: https://www.poodletest.com

Some 'quick fix' instructions for selected popular browsers:

Firefox will disable SSL v3 starting from version 34, which should be released on November 25. If you're not an early adopter, you'll have to wait a while before getting the update - or you can do it yourself. Open up Firefox and go to the URL about:config . Then, find the security.tls.version.min Preference and change its value to 1. All done!

For Chrome, you'll need to modify the launcher. In Linux, you'll need to edit the /usr/share/applications/google-chrome.desktop file. Edit all lines starting with Exec= to include --ssl-version-min=tls In Windows, right-click on the shortcut you use to start Chrome and choose Properties. In the exec parameter box, add --ssl-version-min=tls All done!

In Internet Explorer versions higher than 6, choose Settings > Internet Options > Advanced tab > Uncheck the SSLv3 box under Security . All done!

I have not been able to find any solution so far for Safari on OSX.

/via +Kristian Köhntopp and elaborated with information from various other net sources___

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2014-10-15 00:50:54 (11 comments, 0 reshares, 11 +1s)Open 

Coal vs. nuclear showdown: weighing out radioactive impact of coal

Coal power plants produce radioactive ash - which is released into the environment. This ash releases more radioactivity into the surrounding environment than a nuclear power plant - meaning if you live next to a coal plant, you are exposed to more radioactive particles and have likely ingested more radioactivity than if you lived next to a nuclear power plant. The same applies if you live near a landfill that receives coal ash, or get your tap water from the drainage basin which that landfill feeds.

Certainly, this does not cover the 'what if' situation around a nuclear meltdown. But it does raise the question, what is the environmental and human health impact costs of the two technologies? Could a shift to green technology meet our growing energy demands with a guaranteed minimum power consumption... more »

Coal vs. nuclear showdown: weighing out radioactive impact of coal

Coal power plants produce radioactive ash - which is released into the environment. This ash releases more radioactivity into the surrounding environment than a nuclear power plant - meaning if you live next to a coal plant, you are exposed to more radioactive particles and have likely ingested more radioactivity than if you lived next to a nuclear power plant. The same applies if you live near a landfill that receives coal ash, or get your tap water from the drainage basin which that landfill feeds.

Certainly, this does not cover the 'what if' situation around a nuclear meltdown. But it does raise the question, what is the environmental and human health impact costs of the two technologies? Could a shift to green technology meet our growing energy demands with a guaranteed minimum power consumption condition?

/via +Vlad Markov___

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2014-10-14 20:28:24 (24 comments, 6 reshares, 14 +1s)Open 

anonabox: Surfing anonymously just got easier

This is a very interesting kickstarter project - because it solves one of the things that many geeks forget about: making secure and anonymous internet access accessible to your average idiot.

The anonabox is an open-hardware, open-source box that contains, more or less, a pre-configured Tor access point. That means, connect the anonabox between your router and your computer, (or for wireless users, connect to the anonabox wireless network and turn off your router's wireless network) and you be surfing the internet over a secure, encrypted connection being sent over Tor.

Previously, using Tor involved installing and configuring some rather nerdy software, and blindly trusting that you didn't forget some configuration option along the way. For an average internet user, that's a world of difference in usability.... more »

anonabox: Surfing anonymously just got easier

This is a very interesting kickstarter project - because it solves one of the things that many geeks forget about: making secure and anonymous internet access accessible to your average idiot.

The anonabox is an open-hardware, open-source box that contains, more or less, a pre-configured Tor access point. That means, connect the anonabox between your router and your computer, (or for wireless users, connect to the anonabox wireless network and turn off your router's wireless network) and you be surfing the internet over a secure, encrypted connection being sent over Tor.

Previously, using Tor involved installing and configuring some rather nerdy software, and blindly trusting that you didn't forget some configuration option along the way. For an average internet user, that's a world of difference in usability. Kudos to the anonabox team for solving their installation hurdle! Now, let's see how much market entry will cost, and whether this will help to promote smarter, more secure internet usage.

/via +Danial Hallock ___

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2014-10-10 06:01:30 (5 comments, 7 reshares, 21 +1s)Open 

Look! The TTIP is public!

Do you wonder what exactly is going on in the TTIP Agreement, which rumors have taking all sorts of tangents in closed-door discussions? Those days are at an end - the document is now declassified and available for everyone to look at.

The TTIP itself is based on the CETA (Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement), another closed-doors-negotiation document that hasn't made it to public scrutiny in the last five-or-so years in which it has been under negotiation. There have been a lot of rumors concerning how demands in negotiation could affect consumers, including:

 - The right to privacy and the 'liberalization' of European laws
 - Loosening of food labeling restrictions, e.g. regional protection for names on certain foods or labeling requirements for meats containing hormone injections
 - Loosening of production standardre... more »

TTIP document declassified - negotiating mandate for talks on EU-US Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnerships is now public

EU governments have chosen today to make the TTIP negotiating mandate public – something We've been encouraging them to do for a long time.

You can find the document here http://data.consilium.europa.eu/doc/document/ST-11103-2013-DCL-1/en/pdf

More about TTIP http://ec.europa.eu/trade/policy/in-focus/ttip/

#transparency #ttip #classifieds
#trade___Look! The TTIP is public!

Do you wonder what exactly is going on in the TTIP Agreement, which rumors have taking all sorts of tangents in closed-door discussions? Those days are at an end - the document is now declassified and available for everyone to look at.

The TTIP itself is based on the CETA (Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement), another closed-doors-negotiation document that hasn't made it to public scrutiny in the last five-or-so years in which it has been under negotiation. There have been a lot of rumors concerning how demands in negotiation could affect consumers, including:

 - The right to privacy and the 'liberalization' of European laws
 - Loosening of food labeling restrictions, e.g. regional protection for names on certain foods or labeling requirements for meats containing hormone injections
 - Loosening of production standard restrictions and consumer protection standards
 - Impact on worker wages and working conditions

The document is now up for criticism, and I'd expect that some more detailed analysis on major topical blogs, and possibly an increased amount of electronic communications headed towards Brussels, to take place within the next 24 hours.

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