01 JAN 2012 by ideonexus

 Sifting Through Photographs of Our Ancestors to See Evolu...

Find a picture of yourself. Now take a picture of your father and place it on top. Then find a picture of his father, your grandfather. Then place on top of that a picture of your grandfather's father, your great-grandfather. You may not have ever met any of your great-grandfathers. I never met any of mine, but I know that one was a country schoolmaster, one a country doctor, one a forester in British India, and one a lawyer, greedy for cream, who died rock-climbing in old age. Still, even if...
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A great thought-experiment that takes us all the way back to when our ancestor was a fish, but shows us that the neighbors of any ancestor looked identical.

02 MAR 2011 by ideonexus

 A Useful Metaphor for Maintaining Momentum

"My boy is having his problems being a serious student," I told Eddie. "Well, your studying is very important," Eddie said, while the boy sat smiling a smile that said: an old person his about to hand out some Wisdom. Could this please be over fast? "You know, a jet plane burns its greatest energy taking off; but once it reaches its cruising altitude, it burs less fuel. Just like studying. If you're constantly taking off and landing, you're going to burn more fuel as opposed to taking off an...
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The metaphor of a plane burning its most fuel when it takes off, and using less to maintain its soaring altitude works for studying, exercise, eating well, and a host of other good behaviors in life.