|Current: Red Rectangles 2012, Ink, Lexan, Steel Pins|
|Detail- Side View|
|Current: Red Rectangles 2012, Ink, Lexan, Steel Pins|
|Detail- Side View|
I used to put "The Drift" on at dinner parties, just to see the moment where the conversation stops and everyone collectively asks, "what the hell is this?"
On the fundamental question--evolution or creation?--Americans are on the fence. According to one survey, while 61% of Americans believe we have evolved over time, 22% believe this evolution was guided by a higher power, with another 31% on the side of creationism. For some, modern science debunks many of religion's core beliefs, but for others, questions like "Why are we here?" and "How did it all come about?" can only be answered through a belief in the existence of God. Can science and religion co-exist?
About the book:
In How to Create a Mind, The Secret of Human Thought Revealed, the bold futurist and author of The New York Times bestseller The Singularity Is Near explores the limitless potential of reverse engineering the human brain. Ray Kurzweil is arguably today's most influential—and often controversial—futurist. In How to Create a Mind, Kurzweil presents a provocative exploration of the most important project in human-machine civilization—reverse engineering the brain to understand precisely how it works and using that knowledge to create even more intelligent machines. Kurzweil discusses how the brain functions, how the mind emerges from the brain, and the implications of vastly increasing the powers of our intelligence in addressing the world's problems. He thoughtfully examines emotional and moral intelligence and the origins of consciousness and envisions the radical possibilities of our merging with the intelligent technology we are creating. Certain to be one of the most widely discussed and debated science books of the year, How to Create a Mind is sure to take its place alongside Kurzweil's previous classics.
Intelligence Squared U.S. Presents "Legalize Drugs" with Paul Butler and Nick Gillespie for the motion, Asa Hutchinson and Theodore Dalrymple against the motion. Moderated by John Donvan. It was 1971 when President Richard Nixon declared a "war on drugs." $2.5 trillion dollars later, drug use is half of what it was 30 years ago, and thousands of offenders are successfully diverted to treatment instead of jail. And yet, 22 million Americans-9% of the population-still uses illegal drugs, and with the highest incarceration rate in the world, we continue to fill our prisons with drug offenders. Decimated families and communities are left in the wake. Is it time to legalize drugs or is this a war that we're winning?
There are now more than one billion people using Facebook every month, and there’s no doubt that a huge number of them are sharing photos. To help illustrate what that means, the company teamed up with design studio Stamen to create animated visualizations of three different pictures going viral. The results are totally mesmerizing. In the short videos, the photos spread in branches, each one starting from a different person. As the pictures are shared by more people, new branches sprout off from the previous ones, with each color representing a different gender and the colors fading to white as time passes. The forms look wonderfully organic, like groups of tiny organisms moving under a microscope. There are periodic, pulsing bursts of activity that remind me of fireworks, and meanwhile, the tendrils of the photo maps spread out as if they were time-lapse videos of plants growing.
Vince Hannemann, A.K.A. the Junk King, has spent much of his life constructing the Cathedral of Junk in Austin, TX.In 2010, the city of Austin requested a building permit and Vince was forced to tear down nearly half of his creation.
Despite this traumatic event and with the help of many supporters, Vince was still able to keep the Cathedral alive and continue its legacy.
The BBC's Radiophonic Workshop was set up in 1958, born out of a desire to create 'new kinds of sounds'. Alchemists of Sound looks at this creative group from its inception, through its golden age when it was supplying music and effects for cult classics like Doctor Who, Blake's Seven and Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy, and charts its fading away in 1995 when, due to budget cuts, it was no longer able to survive.
There are interviews with composers from the Workshop, as well as musicians and writers who have been inspired by the output. Great archive footage of the Workshop and its machinery is accompanied by excerpts of the, now cult, TV programmes that featured these sounds.
Team members at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory share the challenges of the Curiosity Mars rover's final minutes to landing on the surface of Mars.
Located around Tulsa, Oklahoma are five different bouldering areas. This video showcases some of the more classic lines in these areas. With problems ranging from V1-V13, you're sure to find one the gets you psyched.
There is No Authority But Yourself is a Dutch film directed by Alexander Oey documenting the history of anarchist punk band Crass. The film features archive footage of the band and interviews with former members Steve Ignorant, Penny Rimbaud and Gee Vaucher. As well as reflecting on the band's past, the film focuses on their current activities, and includes footage of Rimbaud performing with Last Amendment at the Vortex jazz club in Hackney, a compost toilet building workshop and a permaculture course held at Dial House in the spring of 2006.
The title of the film is derived from the final lines of the Crass album Yes Sir, I Will; "You must learn to live with your own conscience, your own morality, your own decision, your own self. You alone can do it. There is no authority but yourself."
http://www.ted.com Artist Aaron Koblin takes vast amounts of data -- and at times vast numbers of people -- and weaves them into stunning visualizations. From elegant lines tracing airline flights to landscapes of cell phone data, from a Johnny Cash video assembled from crowd-sourced drawings to the "Wilderness Downtown" video that customizes for the user, his works brilliantly explore how modern technology can make us more human.
During an appearance on Real Time with Bill Maher on March 2, 2012, Dr. Tyson explains the stages that deniers of scientific fact must go through.
Started out as just a collection of snaps as I stripped down an engine bought off ebay. (To replace my old engine, which had suffered catastrophic failure). The snaps were so that I remembered how everything went, so I could put it back together again.
Then I realised it'd be quite cool to make it an animation. found some suitable music, rekindled my ancient knowledge of Premiere, storyboarded it, shot it as I worked on the engine (my poor DSLR got covered in engine oil), this was the result.
|Tape Fall, Reel-to-Reel, Ladder, Magnetic Tape, 1989|
|Moebius Loop, Cassette Tapes, Zip Ties, 1994|
|Virtuoso, Altered Accordion, 2000|
http://www.ted.com Comic author Rob Reid unveils Copyright Math (TM), a remarkable new field of study based on actual numbers from entertainment industry lawyers and lobbyists.
Part 1 (39:25): The segment begins with Cage and Feldman discussing the various ways people perceive intrusion in their lives. The composers then spend some time on the occupation of the artist as "being deep in thought," and what the goals or purposes of "being deep in thought" might be.
Part 2 (49:41): Cage and Feldman look at how everyday tasks such as correpsondence are affected by the artist's desire to not disappoint the public once the public has recognized the artist. Cage and Feldman engage in a fairly philosophical discussion regarding the telephone, and recount some anecdotes about using the phone book.
Part 3 (43:48): Cage seems fascinated by the idea that the large and small scale is becoming ever more prominent in society, while the importance of the mid-scale is dwindling. Some serious debate ensues when Cage expresses the opinion that we already have quality in the world, and what we are truly seeking is quantity. The two also touch on the role of artists in reaction to the Vietnam War, and how musicians seem frequently absent from the political dialogue. The conversation ends with Cage hypothesizing that the printing press changed the course of life activity toward material
Using wikis and digital fabrication tools, TED Fellow Marcin Jakubowski is open-sourcing the blueprints for 50 farm machines, allowing anyone to build their own tractor or harvester from scratch. And that's only the first step in a project to write an instruction set for an entire self-sustaining village (starting cost: $10,000).
Marcin Jakubowski is open-sourcing a set of blueprints for 50 farming tools that can be built cheaply from scratch. Call it a "civilization starter kit."
Join critically-acclaimed author and evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins and world-renowned theoretical physicist and author Lawrence Krauss as they discuss biology, cosmology, religion, and a host of other topics.
Male bowerbirds use their intelligence to impress the females, constructing elaborate structures called bowers to attract mates. They are not only master builders, but also accomplished artists. Males of some species decorate their bowers lavishly with flower petals and sparkly manmade objects. The Satin bowerbird even paints the walls of his bower with charcoal or chewed up berries. Male Great bowerbirds are even more remarkable. Their bowers, which are among the most complex of all, are true marvels of avian architecture. But as well as being builders and artists, males of this species are also magicians – the bowers they build are like a house of illusions, with built-in visual tricks that manipulate females' perceptions and increase their likelihood of choosing the builder as their mate. Bowerbirds are a family of twenty species that are native to Australia and New Guinea that are renowned for their unusually complex mating behaviour. The Great bowerbird of northern Australia is the largest species in the family. Males sport brownish-grey plumage build bowers, and spend many months building their bowers. The bowers consist of a thatched twig tunnel forming an avenue of approximately half a metre in length, opening out onto a court whose floor is covered with bones, shells and stones. When a potential mate steps into the avenue, the male stands in the court just by the avenue's exit, displaying to her the colourful objects he has collected, one after the other. Two years ago, John Endler of Deakin University and his colleagues reported that the males use visual illusions when constructing their bowers. They do so by arranging the objects covering the floor of the court in a particular way, so that they increase in size as the distance from the bower increases. This positive size-distance gradient creates a forced perspective which results in false perceptions of the geometry of the bower, which is visible only to the female when she is standing in the avenue. From her point of view, all of the objects in the court appear to be the same size. Consequently, she may perceive the court as being smaller than it actually is, and the male to be bigger.
Conlon Nancarrow (October 27, 1912 – August 10, 1997) was a United States-born composer who lived and worked in Mexico for most of his life. Nancarrow is best remembered for the pieces he wrote for the player piano. He was one of the first composers to use musical instruments as mechanical machines, making them play far beyond human performance ability. He lived most of his life in relative isolation, not becoming widely known until the 1980s.
A short doc about a kinetic sculpture that took four years to build. We had the honor of spending three days in Chris Burden's studio filming this sculpture before it was moved to the Los Angeles Country Museum of Art (LACMA) where it is being reinstalled.
The body of the tower was made by a new technique called “ferrofluid sculpture” that enables artists to create dynamic sculptures with fluid materials. This technique uses one electromagnet, and its iron core is extended and sculpted. The ferrofluid covers the sculpted surface of a three-dimensional iron shape that was made on an electronic NC lathe. The movement of the spikes in the fluid is controlled dynamically on the surface by adjusting the power of the electromagnet. The shape of the iron body is designed as helical so that the fluid can move to the top of the helical tower when the magnetic field is strong enough.
Over 3500 individual infrared images from the GOES East weather satellite, collected between October 28,2011 to January 1, 2012 and made into a movie.
How could weird thoughts and behaviors enhance a person’s ability to think creatively? My research suggests that these manifestations of schizotypal personality in and of themselves do not promote creativity; certain cognitive mechanisms that may underlie eccentricity could also promote creative thinking, however. In my “shared vulnerability” model of how creativity and eccentricity are related, I theorize that one of these underlying mechanisms is a propensity for cognitive disinhibition.
Too Much Information
Cognitive disinhibition is the failure to ignore information that is irrelevant to current goals or to survival. We are all equipped with mental filters that hide most of the processing that goes on in our brains behind the scenes. So many signals come in through our sensory organs, for example, that if we paid attention to all of them we would be overwhelmed. Furthermore, our brains are constantly accessing imagery and memories stored in our mental files to process and decode incoming information. Thanks to cognitive filters, most of this input never reaches conscious awareness.
There are individual differences in how much information we block out, however; both schizotypal and schizophrenic individuals have been shown to have reduced functioning of one of these cognitive filters, called latent inhibition (LI). Reduced LI appears to increase the amount of unfiltered stimuli reaching our conscious awareness and is associated with offbeat thoughts and hallucinations. It is easy to see that allowing unfiltered information into consciousness could lead to strange perceptual experiences, such as hearing voices or seeing imaginary people.
Cognitive disinhibition is also likely at the heart of what we think of as the aha! experience. During moments of insight, cognitive filters relax momentarily and allow ideas that are on the brain’s back burners to leap forward into conscious awareness, in the same manner that bizarre thoughts surface in the mind of the psychotic individual. Consider this example from Sylvia Nasar’s 1998 book A Beautiful Mind, about Nobel Prize winner (and diagnosed with schizophrenia) John Forbes Nash. When asked why he believed that aliens from outer space were contacting him, he responded: “Because the ideas I had about supernatural beings came to me the same way that my mathematical ideas did. So I took them seriously.” (Nash’s case illustrates how the cognitive mechanism of the eureka moment is similar to the delusional experience called thought insertion, in which individuals suffering from psychosis believe that outside forces have placed thoughts in their brains. Most people suffering from psychosis or schizophrenia do not produce ideas that are considered creative, however. The ability to use cognitive disinhibition in a creative way depends on the presence of additional cognitive abilities associated with a high level of functioning.)