Don't Stay in School

The track “Don’t Stay in School” by Boyinaband went viral about 3 weeks ago.

Its worth a listen – even if you don’t like hip hop or androgynous looking men with long hair. He has nailed my feelings on this subject, It is now one of my favourite tunes.

After the deluge of interest in the the track the artist has said in a later video that he has big plans to continue taking this issue foreword. On the video below he is explaining how one school is making changes after the song being viewed by most of the students and staff.

Good work Boyinaband!

 

 

Research Rockets

I am pretty excited about a new start-up I am involved with called Research Rockets.

It helps people to conduct their own online research by providing a method to separate fact from fiction and display their research graphically in a way that is simple and shareable. It’s like a cross between an info graphic and a mind map and it will be embeddable in blog posts and web pages.

The application is in development and is scheduled to be released in limited Beta in April. More details can be found below

Using the trivium to make better decisions

Research Rockets was born out of a conversation I had last year where I attempted to help some of my family members who had some medical problems. I was talking to my brother, I suggested he might benefit from exploring other treatments. He was nervous about this and suggested that

As we are not experts researching ourselves could be more harmful than helpful.

I didn’t agree with that statement but instead of arguing I decided to take a different tack. I conducted my own research on the subject and then when complete I provided my brother with a map of the information and then talked to him about the method and approach I used to focus on the most relevant and exclude the misleading.  It worked fantastically well and brought us together with a shared way of talking about the subject. That approach was the precursor to what is now called Research Rockets.

Two months later at christmas I found myself in a situation where my employer had mandated two weeks of forced leave but my wife was only able to take three days off. So for one of the two weeks I took myself on a road trip (approx 3000km) in six days , starting boxing day.

My Trip

  • Melbourne
  • Sydney
  • Canberra
  • Jindabyne
  • Albury
  • Melbourne

It was on that trip where I worked out the product , the pitch, the business model and the marketing plan for what is now called Research Rockets (and in the process gave my self tennis elbow -which I still have now).

Once I got back I pitched the idea to Kriang (an excellent developer and designer who I met at a startup weekend event in October 2015 ). He agreed to join me in this venture. We are now in the the process of building out the limited alpha version of the software (planned release end of March). Whilst Kriang is working on this I have set up a club to help people with individual research. We hope that by helping people out with their own research we can get some valuable feedback for the business. If you live in Melbourne and are interested in getting to grips with the method before the software goes live then please sign up to the mailing list on the site.

To see more of my articles about managing information, intellectual self defense, and how we can use information to bring more independence into our lives click here

 

Taking back control of your mind – The importance of grammar

The first step to taking back control is understanding

Everyday we are bombarded with incoherent, illogical and misleading information. We are swimming in more information than ever before but the paradox is, most people are drowning. 

The Trivium is a systematic method of critical thinking for deriving certainty from any information coming into the mind via the five senses. In medieval universities, the trivium comprised the three subjects that were taught first, specifically in this order: grammar, logic and rhetoric. If the three steps are arranged any other way, the Trivium will not work as a method for deriving certainty. The word is a Latin term meaning “the three ways” or “the three roads” which lead to Truth. This forms the foundation of a medieval liberal arts education.

reference wikipedia

Trivium

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Mathamagicland

Mickey mouse used to be Smart

The film Mathamagicland from 1959 stars Mickey mouse and is very insightful about the relationship, context and history of mathematics, explaining how maths has been used to identify patterns for  beauty , music and life through history. It is worth a view if you have not seen it before.


As I venture into the world of older cinema I find a trend proven by many examples where the media in the past containing a higher level of intelligence than today. I have written about how the media along with schooling are being used to dumb generations around the world. This can be found on the now defunct website called usethetrivium.com (a previous project of mine). Below is one of the many promotional videos that explains what that project was about.

Mind Control

mind_control

We are all under mind control

The only thing that varies from person to person is how much control we are under. The confused overwhelmed state of most people indicates that there is more mind control happening than we realize. As a result  many poor decisions are made that are not in our own best interests. We are bombarded daily with a birage of mind control techniques which makes it difficult to be immune to their effect.

There are practical steps however you can take to defend yourself from mind control and I will cover this in more depth in a future post. In the mean time a good first step would be to download and read the mental antivirus PDF which is a brief overview of common methods used to deceive. Then turn on the TV and see how many fallacies you can identify.  If your feeling keen then try the mental antivirus on your own views on a particular issue and see if you can identify fallacies in your own thinking (I think you’ll be surprised).

Mind control techniques have been around since the birth of language. Language is at the center of mind control which is why many great thinkers also study linguistics and and the history and derivation of language. It was after the first world war, however, that mind control as it is today was really perfected. Edward Bernays is looked as as being the father of PR (modern mind control) and responsible for many of the more sophisticated methods of mind control in use today.

The Stanley Parable
is genius. It is a game but not really, more like an artwork adventure through mind control. I have never experienced anything like it. I was sick recently and played the game inspired me to write this post. Enjoy the trailer – I recommend the game it is very,very clever ………and so is mind control

Codecademy

codecademy free tuition

codecademy free tuition

Today I just finished “web Fundamentals”. Which is a suite of free online training  turtorials on a great training site called codecademy. It covered HTML 5 , CSS and a bit of java. I am really impressed with the site and the way the lessons are structured. I also like the way it gives you medals for performance – I have found it to be very motivating.

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Energy Efficient light globes are harmful

I have long suspected that the claims made for energy efficient light globes is nonsense so armed with google I did a bit of research

The claim for energy efficient globes (Compact fluorescent lamp)

  • More environmentally Friendly

  • Use less electricity

  • As good as existing light globes
  • Last Longer

Let me take these items one at a time

More environmentally Friendly
These bulbs are much more energy and resource intensive to manufacture and they also contain mercury making them difficult to dispose of properly.
Use less electricity
They do use less electricity however they are basically using the same technology as old fashioned fluorescent strip lights and they share the efficiency profile of these. If you turn these lights and never turn them off they use about a quarter of the energy of a conventional bulb. However if you turn your lights on and off frequently (like we do) then the efficiency goes right down because these bulbs (just like fluorescent strip lights are a lot less efficient when being turned on and off).

As good as existing light globes
I hate the light from these (the wave spectra is different). They also take a while to get to full brightness. They have also been shown to cause epilepsy and they can buzz. The EPA take the safety and disposal of these pretty seriously if you break one you need to evacuate the room for 15 minutes and dispose of the bulb in a glass jar
Last Longer
I suspect if you have a modern house with electrics then they would last longer but I frequently have these (expensive) babies blow on me. Also as they get older they get less bright. The life is also dramatically shortened by turning them on and off.
 
SOURCES – WIKIPEADIA
 
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