Satire fresh out of Saudi Arabia, people! (thanks AM!)
In case you don’t understand the ovary reference in the song, a religious leader in Saudi Arabia is saying that if women are allowed to drive it will harm their reproductive system by “push[ing] the pelvis upwards.” After hearing this, some men started to worry about their reproductive health. So the cleric had to clarify that part of the mystery of being a woman is that driving harms only them.
Women there started driving on October 26 of this year to protest the law. Many men are supporting them (hence, the video).
The name of the project is Shadow, and the inventor is thirty-one-year-old Hunter Lee Soik. The free app is an alarm clock that wakes you gradually, then starts recording when you shut it off.
He tells The New Yorker: “Modern alarm clocks destroy dreams, because they rip you through your hypnopompic sleep state, the state between sleeping and waking. The idea is to come out slowly—we gradually increase the vibration and the volume. When you shut off the alarm, the app records. You can speak or text a dream. If you speak, it will transcribe the audio, then we’ll run an algorithm through the dream and pull out all the keywords. ‘Horses,’ airplanes,’ ‘red cars,’ ‘running,’ ‘jumping.’ Then we’ll push the whole dream through a big data cloud, so that we can anonymously organize the global data.”
Soik hopes the app will create global patterns of dreams, and somehow glean meaning from them. “Can you quantify the dreams of successful people, and can you teach that? Could we run an algorithm against the news and find people who predict events in their dreams? They say that Einstein came up with the theory of relativity in a dream. What if you could go back and find that dream?”
When I was a child, I had a recurring dream that I was running from a giant wave of vomit… TMI?
You’ve been newsed! Cool big screens, and giant iPads, give Fox News the veneer of actual fact-checking credibility. Says Stephen Colbert: “It’s like they’re playing ‘Wii Tragedy.'” This 8 minute take-down employs kittens and robots for your viewing enjoyment.
Perhaps that headline is wishful thinking, but, the Wall Street Journal published two stories on Saturday (2!) about what Henry David Thoreau would do about all the tech distractions of today, and how it makes good sense to follow his lead (from 1845 no less).
Believe me, I see the irony in writing a blog post, that I will cross post on facebook, about the need to unplug. Here goes!
Called “Simplify Your Tech Life, Thoreau-Style,” Michael Hsu helps you power down in six easy steps. It’s worth the longer read for the detailed instructions and advice, but here they are in brief:
- Manage Your Facebook Friendships
- Stay Just Out of Touch (especially when the work day is through)
- Read Something Longer Than 140 Characters
- Ditch Your Smartphone While Driving [duh]
- Proactively Prevent Procrastination [for example, there are apps that will kick you off-line at the times you set like, say, bedtime]
- Take a Walk for the Heck of It [my favorite, along with #2]
Then, cleverly, Gary Sernovitz writes “We Are The Nine Percent,” which is the segment of the population that doesn’t own a cell phone (21 million adult Americans). For the online version, the article headline was changed to “Confessions of a Cellphone Holdout” A sample:
“For the last two decades, I have spent 83% of my waking hours enjoying the freedom of not owning a cellphone, 5% feeling smug about it, 2% in situations in which a phone would have been awfully convenient and 10% fielding incredulous questions.”
Quoting Thoreau, Sernovitz says “Our inventions ‘are but improved means to an unimproved end which it was already but too easy to arrive at;…’”
Want to find out for yourself, What Would Thoreau Do? Yes, there’s a digital collection from the Walden Library. So, download, but then get off-line to read it.