Paul Bloom, psychologist and Yale professor, argues that empathy is a bad thing—that it makes the world worse. While we’ve been taught that putting yourself in another’s shoes cultivates compassion, it actually blinds you to the long-term consequences of your actions.
Way up north on the Norwegian Longyearbyen on Svalbard is the northernmost settlement on earth with over 1000 residents. It is only 1300 kilometers south of the North Pole.
Opened by the Norwegian Government in February 2008, this town host the world’s largest secure seed storage. From all across the globe, crates of seeds are sent here for safe and secure long-term storage in cold and dry rock vaults.
A Lot Of Cool Things
Some are really scary, others are cute.
2016 World Press Freedom Index, released yesterday by Reporters Without Borders’
Really embarrassing! Or are we?
Here is the “Arab League” ranks (best to worst):
Country/Rank (out of 180)
1. Mauritania – 48
2. Comores – 50
3. Tunisia – 96
4. Lebanon – 98
5. Kuwait – 103
6. Qatar – 117
7. UAE – 119
8. Oman – 125
9. Algeria – 129
10. Morocco – 131
11. Palestine -132
12. Jordan – 135
13. Iraq -158
14. Egypt – 159
15. Bahrain – 162
16. Libya – 164
17. Saudi Arabia – 165
18. Somalia – 167
19. Yemen – 170
20. Djibouti – 172
21. Sudan – 174
22. Syria – 177
Really Good Job Mauritania and Comores!
Who is worse? Well, at the bottom of the list we have Uzbekistan – 166, Equatorial Guinea – 168, Iran – 169, Laos – 173, Vietnam – 175, China – 176, Turkmenistan – 178, North Korea – 179 and the “winner” is Eritrea – 180.
But more interestingly is who scored better than the Arab League? While most of the countries are from Europe, and putting Mauritania and Comores aside (being among top 50), your jaw will drop when you come to know that Namibia, Uruguay, Surinam, Ghana, Samoa, Burkina Faso, Botswana, Niger, Haïti, Madagascar and Guyana are among the top 60.
The U.S. is ranked at 41. In fact, Uruguay, Namibia, Samoa, Ghana, and South Africa all offer a greater “level of freedom of information” than the United States (and the so called “Only Democracy in the Middle East”, THE Occupation State of Israel – ranked 101).
What is Zero? Getting Something from Nothing
Is zero really a number? How did it come about? Hannah Fry tells the story of how zero went from nothing to something. Even though we can’t divide by it, zero is probably the single most important number in the history of math.
Has all this mass surveillance made us safer?
New video from Kurzgesagt assisting the potential effect of surveillance measures.
Not the sound, but, rather more importantly, the smell.
Learn more about your car engine from this graphic animation. Car engines are astoundingly awesome mechanical wonders. It’s time you learned more about the magic under the hood!
It’s absolutely incredible to watch
SpaceX has finally landed its Falcon 9 rocket on a drone ship at sea:
(I recommend that you watch the whole video of this mission) SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket launched a cargo spacecraft to the International Space Station, but most important part is the fact that after several failed attempts, SpaceX successfully landed the first stage of the rocket on an ocean barge. All previous SpaceX’s attempts to land the rocket on a floating drone ship crashed.
[Few days ago, Blue Origin successfully launched and landed their rocket. Watch it here]
Fly high above Lake Iliamna, Alaska, following the crew of the Alaska Salmon Program as they conduct sockeye salmon surveys during one of the largest migrations in recent history.
DNA data storage could help us file away the vast amounts of information we continue to generate
To do it, researchers from the University of Washington first have to convert ones and zeroes that make up a digital file using the four basic building blocks of DNA— adenine, guanine, cytosine and thymine. Once the team’s determined how to represent a file, they then synthesize artificial DNA based on their calculations.
Reading the data is made easier by distinctive markers that the team place within the strands of DNA. The team can sequences the sample, then use these markers to finds the starting point of a file. Then they simply read back the combination of adenine, guanine, cytosine and thymine, use the Huffman coding to convert it back into digital data and—voila!—the files is restored.
Could It Be The Future Of Biotechnology?
Biomimicry, soft electronics and smart control mechanisms help these robots get a better grip on a complex world.
So. Space elevators. Are they are thing that we should talk about?