Weekly Newsletter

October 11, 2015

Mind and Brain

Below is a series of 4 articles that explore Julian Jaynes’ theory of consciousness and its relationship to unusual minds. I found this series incredibly fascinating. It reminds me of Blindsight, a creepy sci-fi novel by Peter Watts that explores the relationship between self-awareness and intelligence. If you’ve ever questioned the nature of consciousness, you’ll enjoy this series. After reading this, I’m committing to reading Julian Jaynes’ Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicaemral Mind.
Article 1: Mr. Jaynes’ Wild Ride
Article 2: Accepting Deviant Mind
Article 3: Hallucinated Gods

Business

We work a 4-day week and just raised $4.75m and Why This Company Thrives on the 5-Hour Workday
Two examples of companies that embrace variations of a compressed work schedule. The first company, Treehouse, has a 4-day work week. The second, a stand-up paddle boarding company, allows its employees to work 5-hour work days. Proponents of compressed work-weeks argue that they require employees to increase their efficiency and focus on the most important tasks. If you’re scoffing at this idea, consider how much time your or your co-workers spend answering emails, sitting in meetings bored, and even checking Facebook and dramatically increases employee quality of life.

Health

Potential Tactics for Defeating Cancer
Dr. Peter Attila, author of the Eating Academy blog and co-founder of the NuSi initiative, discusses research into a potential relationship between Insulin and Cancer. Dr. Attila not only has done the research, but practices what he preaches, having been on a ketogenic diet for years now.

International Development

Is this the most effective development program in history?
Summarizes the incredible results of a Nigerian government program that handed out 60 million dollars to Nigerian entrepreneurs. It’s stories like this that make me think that a Universal Basic Income is potentially a good idea.

Virtual Reality

The Man Who Created Second Life Thinks We Can Make an Earth-Sized Virtual World
Interesting interview with Philip Rosedale, founder of Second Life and now High Fidelity. Rosedale discusses his vision of a future where virtual worlds dominate.

Other Contributions

The Radically Changing Story of the U.S. Airstrike on Afghan Hospital: From Mistake to Justification and CNN and the NYT Are Deliberately Obscuring Who Perpetrated the Afghan Hospital Attack (Will Baird)
Will sent me the below description to go along with this article. I just wanted to add that I consistently find Glenn Greenwald’s (author of this article) perspective on these issues refreshing.

“The Intercept, as usual, gives an unflinching take on the misdeeds of the American military. There are two major take aways from these articles: the government has no desire to tell the truth about its actions, and will take every opportunity to avoid admitting fault; and major news outlets are complicit in these efforts. The bombing of Doctors without Borders seems to show (again) that in battling terrorists, the state has become an agent of terror. I’d like to think we will now tear our gaze away from the abyss, but I don’t have much hope.”

Discussion, links, and tweets

I'm a software developer currently working at UberEats. I keep a low social media presence, but, if you enjoy what I have to say or want to rant at me, you should email me at stephenmalina@gmail.com. If you're interested in what I'm currently programming, check out my Github. I occasionally rant on Twitter as well.