EssentialstheDiagonal is a personal blog by Mike Gerra, skeptic, technologist, psychologist, artist, humanist, collector of grand, eclectic ideas.theDiagonal blog connects the dots across multiple disciplines for inquisitive, objective and critical thinkers, exploring the vertices of big science, disruptive innovation, global sustainability, illuminating literature and leftfield art. It is on this diagonal that creativity thrives, big ideas take flight and reason triumphs.
Monthly Archives: April 2011
Tuesday, April 19, 2011
From Scientific American:
The scientific community is increasingly coming to realize how central self-control is to many important life outcomes. We have always known about the impact of socioeconomic status and IQ, but these are factors that are highly resistant to interventions. In contrast, self-control may be something that we can tap into to make sweeping improvements life outcomes.
If you think about the environment we live in, you will notice how it is essentially designed to challenge every grain of our self-control. Businesses have the means and motivation to get us to do things NOW, not later. Krispy Kreme wants us to buy a dozen doughnuts while they are hot; Best Buy wants us to buy a television before we leave the store today; even our physicians want us to hurry up and schedule our annual checkup....read more
Thursday, April 7, 2011
Blaming the American Way of Life for the ills of post-industrial European society is a poor excuse for Europeans’ own partiality to consumer pleasures, writes Petr Fischer. On a positive note, American individualism could teach Europe a thing or two about social solidarity.
“Business–Answer–Solution” reads the advertising banner of the subsidiary of a foreign company in the centre of Prague. At first sight, the banner is not particularly interesting, in this case meaning that it is not particularly surprising. Surprising things are those that capture our attention, that shock us in their particular way. This corporate motto repeats the famous, infinitely repeated mantra of aggressive global capitalism, its focus purely pragmatic: give us a problem and we will come up with a solution that profits both you and us. “Win-win capitalism”, one could say in today’s international newspeak....read more