Six Links Worthy of Your Attention #670

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Is there one link, story, picture or thought that you saw online this week that you think somebody you know must see?

My friends: Alistair Croll (Solve for Interesting, Tilt the Windmill, Interesting Bits, HBS, chair of Strata, Startupfest, FWD50, and Scaletechconf; author of Lean Analytics and some other books), Hugh McGuire (Rebus Foundation, PressBooks, LibriVox) and I decided that every week the three of us are going to share one link for one another (for a total of six links) that each individual feels the other person “must see.”

Check out these six links that we’re recommending to one another: 

  • A Chemical Hunger – Part I: Mysteries – Slime Mold Time Mold. Veering away from artificial life, I’m sharing two things on humans this week. First up: Obesity is an epidemic. 100 years ago, 1% of the US population was obese, and it ate ‘more bread and almost four times more butter than we do today’ as well as ‘more cream, milk, and lard.’ Today, about 36% of the population is obese. The question is: Why? Most of what you think about the causes of obesity are wrong. This series of posts debunks many of the usual talking point, and offers some surprising ones: Did you know obesity goes down as altitude increases? Or that something suddenly happened in the 1980s to make levels climb? Or that obesity has increased as carb consumption has declined? The best current theory is that an environmental trigger — such as antibiotics, drugs, fast food, or additives like phthalates — found in our food or groundwater is causing our bodies to mis-regulate fat levels. They (spoiler alert) suggest a few things, including antibiotics, food marketing, PFAs (teflon, etc.), and lithium. I learned a lot from this series of posts; it leaves me thinking we’ll discover some trigger in the coming decades that’s similar to discoveries about leaded gasoline or smoking.” (Alistair for Hugh).
  • Science, cessation, and human hibernation – Dr. Ruben Laukkonen“Next up: It’s a surprisingly little-known fact that our senses submit information to our brain out of step — you see someone touch your arm before you feel it, because information travels faster as photons than across electrons. It’s your brain’s job to tell a convincing ‘story’ that makes this disparate input into a consistent, albeit illusory, reality for you. Whenever I think about this, I’m amazed we don’t talk about it more. Here’s a somewhat related look at what happens in the brains of people who can meditate well enough to basically shut themselves down, apparently for days on end. One of the things we don’t talk about enough is a side effect of humans all being online: Even very rare occurrences can be ‘run up the flagpole’ of social media, searched for, and studied. In this case, at least two research groups are analyzing brainwaves of ‘deep’ meditators, and, well, there’s something there. Is this a vestigial form of hibernation? How will what we learn about resetting your brain help therapy? Does this have implications for artificial neurological networks? It’s only scratching the surface, but the implications are huge.” (Alistair for Mitch).
  • This Is What World Leaders Would Look Like As Wes Anderson Characters – Newsweek. “AI assisted art showing world leaders as they would look if they were in a Wes Anderson film.” (Hugh for Alistair).
  • What I Think Is Going On 1) with China-US Relations, 2) with Their Relations with Other Countries, and 3) in China – Ray Dalio – LinkedIn. “More Ray Dalio on US-China relations and the brink.” (Hugh for Mitch).
  • Evolution of Human Civilization and Superintelligent AI – Manolis Kellis – Lex Fridman Podcast. “I do not believe that we will look back and think that all of this worry, concern and excitement over AI was just media hype and hyperbole. I don’t. I think we will look back on these, precise, moments as, ‘what did society do?’ It might be good. It might be bad. Either way, it will be ‘different’. The conversations that Lex Fridman is having on his podcast are very (very, very) important. Here’s another big brain with fascinating thoughts, experiences and perspectives as our world develops something truly smarter than all of us. Follow this conversation… and dig in deep on the brain of Manolis Kellis. This conversation will bend your mind (and everything else).” (Mitch for Alistair and video below).
  • Inside the wild, drug-fueled world of Big Talk – Insider. “I always find it hard to explain to people what I do for a living. ThinkersOne is the easy part (I’m an entrepreneur with a new startup helping to make bite-sized and personalized thought leadership more accessible to any organization). But, I’ve also been a professional speaker for close to twenty years, and the economics of that business are quite different from any other type of work (including consulting and teaching). Here’s a little romp behind the scenes that even include people like Don Epstein (from Greater Talent Network – now United Talent Agency)  who signed and represented me in the US (and beyond) for close to seven years, before I moved over to Leading Authorities. Enjoy the ride…” (Mitch for Hugh).

Feel free to share these links and add your picks on TwitterFacebook, in the comments below or wherever you play.