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Tagged with “light” (15)

  1. 138. Steven Pinker (Cognitive Scientist) – The Defeat of Defeatism

    I admit it. I confess. I’ve got a touch of what my guest today calls “progressophobia”. Ever since Charles Dickens got hold of me back in middle school, and William Blake after that, I’ve been a little suspicious of the Great Onward March of science and technology. Gene therapy, healthier crops, safer, more efficient forms of nuclear energy? Very nice, very nice. But what about eugenics, climate change, and Fukushima?  For every problem human ingenuity solves, doesn’t human nature create a new one, on a bigger scale? Dammit, Spock, can your cold, calculating reason fathom the mysteries of the human heart? But you know what? After devouring all 453 pages and 75 graphs of psychologist Steven Pinker’s new book ENLIGHTENMENT NOW, I admit defeat. The defeat of defeatism. This man has done the math. Since the 18th century things have been getting better in pretty much every dimension of human well-being. Health, safety, education, happiness, you name it… And we’ve done it with the most reliable tools we have: reason, science, and Enlightenment humanism.

    —Huffduffed by adactio

  2. Steven Pinker promotes enlightenment values - Big Ideas - ABC Radio National (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

    The idea of progress has animated social reformers since the western enlightenment. With reason, science and individual rights at its core, this philosophy has transformed the western world over the last two hundred years. Harvard Professor Steven Pinker says these ideas are under threat and need to be defended.

    https://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/bigideas/enlightenment-now/9930754

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  3. Steven Pinker: A New Enlightenment - The Long Now

    The Enlightenment worked, says Steven Pinker. By promoting reason, science, humanism, progress, and peace, the programs set in motion by the 18th-Century intellectual movement became so successful we’ve lost track of what that success came from.

    Some even discount the success itself, preferring to ignore or deny how much better off humanity keeps becoming, decade after decade, in terms of health, food, money, safety, education, justice, and opportunity. The temptation is to focus on the daily news, which is often dire, and let it obscure the long term news, which is shockingly good.

    This is the 21st Century, not the 18th, with different problems and different tools. What are Enlightenment values and programs for now?

    http://longnow.org/seminars/02018/mar/13/new-enlightenment/

    —Huffduffed by adactio

  4. Patterns Day: Jina Anne

    Jina Anne speaking at Patterns Day in Brighton on June 30, 2017.

    A one-day event for web designers and developers on design systems, pattern libraries, style guides, and components.

    Patterns Day is brought to you by Clearleft.

    https://patternsday.com/

    —Huffduffed by adactio

  5. Astronomycast 145: Interstellar Travel

    In science fiction it’s easy to hop into your spaceship and blast off for other stars. But the true distances between stars, and the limits of relativity make interstellar travel almost impossible with our current technology. What would it really take to travel from star to star, exploring the galaxy?

    http://www.astronomycast.com/space-flight/ep-145-interstellar-travel/

    —Huffduffed by adactio

  6. Craig Venter: Life at the Speed of Light : NPR

    In his new book Life at the Speed of Light: From the Double Helix to the Dawn of Digital Life, Craig Venter writes of the brave new world synthetic biology may some day deliver: from consumer devices that print out the latest flu vaccine to instruments on Mars landers that analyze Martian DNA and teleport it back to Earth to be studied or recreated.

    http://www.npr.org/2013/10/25/240751591/craig-venter-life-at-the-speed-of-light

    —Huffduffed by adactio

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