The Metaverse Is Coming, and the World Is Not Ready for It

from NYTs The metaverse is coming. It was once a science-fiction fantasy, most notably in Neal Stephenson’s novel “Snow Crash,” of an all-encompassing virtual universe that would exist alongside the physical one. But technological advances have brought this transformation of human society close enough to reality to demand that we consider its consequences. In the metaverse, a user might curate a digital avatar, like a character in a video game. Through the eyes of their avatar, they would experience a digital reality as active and engaging as the physical one. Some futurists believe that soon we might attend doctor’s appointments […]

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Do You Feel Rich?

from Seth’s Blog It’s not the same as being rich. Rich is always relative. Compared to your great-grandparents, we’re impossibly, supernaturally rich. We have access to information and technology that was unimagined a century ago. At the same time, compared to someone ten miles away or ten years in the future, we’re way behind. Two people with precisely the same resources and options might answer the question of ‘rich’ completely differently. Because money is a story. More here.

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Educating in the Metaverse

from SERENDIPTHY35 There is not much mention of education in all the discussions this year about the metaverse, but it is thought that it will better allow students to have a cyber-physical learning experience. The virtual world will merge with the real one more and more seamlessly. For the past 20 months, there has been a global educational experiment in online learning. But don’t think that what has happened in education because of the COVID-19 pandemic is an accurate account or prediction of what teaching and learning are at their best, or what they will become in a metaverse. The […]

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Gettysburg Address

Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth, on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should […]

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With China, a ‘Cold War’ Analogy Is Lazy and Dangerous

from NYTs A new idea is gaining currency among some politicians and policymakers in Washington: The United States is in a cold war with China. It’s a bad idea — bad on history, bad on politics, bad for our future. The Biden administration has wisely pushed back on the framing. But the president’s actions suggest that his strategy for dealing with China may indeed suffer from Cold War thinking, which locks our minds into the traditional two-dimensional chess model. Competition with China, though, is a three-dimensional game. And if we continue to play two-dimensional chess, we will lose. While neither […]

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‘The Great Resignation’ Misses the Point

from Wired IN EARLY MAY, Anthony Klotz, an associate professor of management at Texas A&M University, did an interview with Bloomberg about a possible spike in job turnover. “The Great Resignation is coming,” he warned. A few weeks later, the Bureau of Labor Statistics confirmed a record 4 million Americans had left their jobs in April. Suddenly, people were reaching for ways to refer to the phenomenon unfolding before them—to brand it, to make sense of it. Klotz’s catchy off-the-cuff terminology, now printed on Bloomberg’s pages, seemed to fit the bill. And just like that, a name was born. We […]

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A Brief History of Online Influence Operations

from Lawfare The Wall Street Journal’s Facebook Files series resumed last week, revealing that the platform took action against an online campaign to set up a new right-wing “Patriot Party” after the Jan. 6 insurrection. Earlier this month news outlets reported that a number of former employees excoriated the company’s content moderation practices in their departure emails. And on Oct. 25, a dozen news outlets released new stories based on yet more leaked Facebook documents. In congressional hearings on the initial Facebook leak, Sen. Richard Blumenthal succinctly captured the tone of the public sentiment, saying that “Facebook and Big Tech […]

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The Qualities Of An Indispensable Leader

from Forbes What is the secret sauce that makes some leaders stand out from the rest? These are the leaders who rise through the ranks, great at managing their teams while also keeping the company’s vision in mind, the type of people identified for advancement into senior leadership. According to Janet Altman, Marketing Principal at Kaufman Rossin and indispensable leader herself, the number one factor she looks for in promising leaders is their ability to handle a strategic scope. “The most important thing for me, when I think of my go-to people, is the ability to look at the big […]

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What Is Critical Race Theory? Start Here

from Wired WHEN MY FATHER called recently and asked me to explain critical race theory (CRT) to him, I initially balked. He voted for Donald Trump in both 2016 and 2020, a choice that caused a rift between us. I’ve since tried hard to reconcile Dad’s politics with what I know of him as a person. He is a loving man and always supported my intellectual pursuits. He also knew that I’d studied race and racism in graduate school and that the issues were foundational to my dissertation and teaching at the college level. Finally, he knows that I make […]

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Afraid of Afraid

from Seth’s Blog We’d probably be better off if we could simply say, “I’m afraid.” Our culture has persistently reminded us that the only thing to fear is fear itself, that confessing fear is a failure and that it’s better to lie than to appear un-brave. And so we pretend to be experts in public health and epidemiology instead of simply saying, “I’m afraid.” We fight possible change from the start instead of examining it on the merits. And we make uninformed assertions about the causes and implications of global phenomena instead of acknowledging that change is scary. Fear of […]

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Date of Viking Visit to North America Pinpointed to 1021 AD

from Kottke Using samples of chopped-down wood left behind by Viking explorers at their settlement in Newfoundland and known chemical markers of powerful solar storms in 993 AD, a group of scientists has determined the exact timing of the first-known visit of Europeans to North America: 1021 AD. If you’re keeping score at home, that’s 471 years before Columbus. A team of scientists looked at wood found at the L’Anse aux Meadows Viking site. In three cases the trees had been physically cut down, and moreover, they were clearly cut with metal tools — Vikings had metal implements at the […]

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The Case for File Cabinets

from NYTs Remember filing cabinets? Those lumbering, clattering towers of drawers stuffed full of Pendaflex folders? They were once vital to every workplace, as much a part of the landscape as desks and chairs. There was always a warren of them in a back room somewhere, and no matter what your eventual profession, if you ever served time as an intern, an executive assistant, a clerk or a catalog manager, you filed. You filed and filed until your thumbs wore down. You’d painstakingly recenter those metal rods, always prone to slipping free; you’d occasionally handwrite a label onto the perforated […]

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Shift Your Tech Time Horizon

from Seth’s Blog Ten years ago, if you were as good at using networks and software as you are today, most of your peers would have considered you some sort of wizard. The question isn’t whether or not each of us is going to get better at using our tools, the only issue is: how soon? We can choose to live behind the curve or ahead of it. It turns out that there are significant rewards for pushing through discomfort and getting (much) better at all the resources that are suddenly freely available in data acquisition, learning technologies, financial tech, […]

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Tools For Modern Citizens

from Seth’s Blog It has taken us by surprise, but in our current situation, when everyone has more of a voice and more impact on the public than ever before, it suddenly matters. You wouldn’t take your car to a mechanic who didn’t know how to fix a car, and citizens, each of us, should be held to at least as high a standard of knowledge. Everyone around us needs to know about: More here.

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Flipped Learning: What Is It, And When Is It Effective?

from Brookings Instructors are constantly on the lookout for more effective and innovative ways to teach. Over the last 18 months, this quest has become even more salient, as COVID-19 has shaken up the academic landscape and pushed teachers to experiment with new strategies for engaging their students. One innovative teaching method that may be particularly amenable to teaching during the pandemic is flipped learning. But does it work? In this post, we discuss our new reportsummarizing the lessons from over 300 published studies on flipped learning. The findings suggest that, for many of us who work with students, flipped […]

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The Final Demographic

from Docs Searls Weblog I worked in retailing, wholesaling, journalism and radio when I was 18-24. I co-founded an advertising agency when I was 25-34. Among the things I studied while working in that age bracket were Nielsen and Arbitron ratings for radio and TV. Everything those companies had to say was fractioned into age brackets. The radio station I did most of that work for was WQDR in Raleigh, one of the world’s first album rock stations. Its target demographic was 18-34. It’s a country station now, aimed at 25-54. Other “desirable” demographics for commercial media are 18-49 and […]

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How Ai Translation Could Unseat English As The Lingua Franca Of The Business World

from Fast Company Anyone who has traveled to a country where the language spoken is not their native one knows that not conversing fluently (or at all) can turn even a VIP into a second-class citizen. Einstein himself would have struggled to express his intelligence in, say, Farsi. In one of my favorite episodes of Modern Family, Sofia Vergara’s character Gloria says in frustration, “You don’t know how smart I am in Spanish!” Even fluent speakers can face bias if they have an accent because of certain underlying perceptions that your language skills are correlated with your intelligence. No one […]

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The Focus On The Last Thing

from Seth’s Blog The play before time ran out. The last speech of the campaign. The typo on your resume or the spot on your tie. The final decision before the company declared bankruptcy. We focus on the thing that happened just before the end. And that’s almost always an unimportant moment. Things went wrong (or things went right) because of a long series of decisions and implementations. A misguided strategy, a bad hire, a brilliant insight about network effects–these are the acts with leverage, not the obvious thing that all the pundits would like to talk about. When you […]

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How To Mitigate The Harmful Effects Of Zoom Burnout

from Forbes During the pandemic, the amount of screen time for many people working and learning from home as well as binge-watching TV has sharply increased. And prolonged screen time is leaving a series of maladies in its wake. Researchers at Arizona State University published a study showing that heavy screen users—defined as those who use screens an average of 17.5 hours per day—reported the least healthful dietary patterns and the poorest health-related characteristics compared with moderate and light users, who averaged roughly 11.3 and 7 hours of screen use per day, respectively. More here.

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