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The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet

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‘In his sci-fi trilogy The Three Body Problem, author Liu Cixin presents the dark forest theory of the universe.

When we look out into space, the theory goes, we’re struck by its silence. It seems like we’re the only ones here. After all, if other forms of life existed, wouldn’t they show themselves? Since they haven’t, we assume there’s no one else out there.

Liu invites us to think about this a different way.

Imagine a dark forest at night. It’s deathly quiet. Nothing moves. Nothing stirs. This could lead one to assume that the forest is devoid of life. But of course, it’s not. The dark forest is full of life. It’s quiet because night is when the predators come out. To survive, the animals stay silent.

Is our universe an empty forest or a dark one? If it’s a dark forest, then only Earth is foolish enough to ping the heavens and announce its presence. The rest of the universe already knows the real reason why the forest stays dark. It’s only a matter of time before the Earth learns as well.

This is also what the internet is becoming: a dark forest.

In response to the ads, the tracking, the trolling, the hype, and other predatory behaviors, we’re retreating to our dark forests of the internet, and away from the mainstream….’

Yancey Strickler | OneZero



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digdoug
13 minutes ago
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Louisville, KY
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Four Borzoi Dogs Adorably Peek Their Big Noses Out of Curtained Window One at a Time

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Four Dog Noses Peek From Behind Curtain to Outside

Four absolutely adorable Borzois, a breed known for their very long noses, adorably peeked their big snouts through a curtained window at one time in order to find out what was going on outside. Each dog eventually revealed their entire face but found that the window could not accommodate more than three of them at one time.

This event happens rather often and can often include their golden retriever sibling.

via Infinite Objects

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The post Four Borzoi Dogs Adorably Peek Their Big Noses Out of Curtained Window One at a Time first appeared on Laughing Squid.

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digdoug
5 days ago
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Borzoi's are closely related to Greyhounds.. but fuzzier. thumbsup.
Louisville, KY
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Even If You Can’t Travel to Iceland, Your Screams of Frustration Can

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It might sound silly, but the tourism board's latest stunt is based on actual psychology, known as primal therapy. Screaming out frustrations or anxiety can offer a sense of relief and release when the yelling stops.

"[We use] primal scream therapy when we don't necessarily have the words to express our frustrations and things a bit more visceral," says Zoë Aston, a London-based psychotherapist who consulted on Iceland's endeavor. "That's exactly what's going on for people right now, because we aren't equipped to deal with the feelings that we are having and, because we aren't moving as much, there's a physical build up of emotion, which can produce blockages and things like depression and anxiety." For many, screaming with abandon can help unlock those emotions and work through them, and ultimately let them go, says Aston. "The venting allows that emotional blockage to shift, so that the part of the mind that has been in survival mode for the last several months is then freed up to make really good decisions about what happens moving forward," she says.

To get the most out of your scream, Aston says to mentally step back, way back, to when you were an infant—you'll want to embrace that level of wailing and scream from your diaphragm, from your gut, rather than from your throat, she says. "It really comes from your soul, from the place where most of our feelings sit," she says. Then, before you let out a proper scream, you'll want to think about why you're doing it. Yes, you may be angry and frustrated—it's hard not to be under today's circumstances—but your scream needs to come from a more intentional place. "This is going to help you let go," Aston says. "It's going to help you move on and move out of lockdown in a healthy way, so you don't need to go into it aggressively like we usually think of with screaming."

Obviously, this isn't the only way to find relief from the intense stress of this time—Aston suggests checking in with yourself and your emotions daily (hopefully unblocked by a good, long scream), and making space for mindfulness in your routine. But hopefully, seeing your voice echoing around the iconic Skógarfoss waterfall will also help you envision post-pandemic travel to Iceland, which is certainly something to feel good about.

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digdoug
7 days ago
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way ahead of you, Iceland.
Louisville, KY
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Things Covid-19 Has Proven Are True

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I found this on one of the files on my jump drive. I don’t think these really need any more elucidation, because they should be self-evident, so I’m just going to put them out there. This list will probably expand over time.

The stock market is not the economy.

Health care should not be tied to employment.

Taxes do not fund government spending.

There is no shortage of money.

Globalized, just-in-time supply chains are fragile.

A lot of the work we do is pointless and nonessential. Or, put another way, jobs are more about earning the money to live rather than doing socially useful work.

The most important workers in society are often the least paid.

American politicians are corrupt and incompetent.

The notion of the “service economy” is bogus, and always has been.

“Small government” is not an inherent virtue.

A functional social safety net is actually good for business.

Feel free to add on to the list.

BONUS: This is a good perspective from a commenter on Naked Capitialism:

“I’ve been referring to Coronavirus for a while as the world’s most effective stress test of institutions, maybe the biggest such experiment in history. It has unerringly found the weak link in every country and society its hit – whether that weak link being weak institutions, stupid politicians, sclerotic bureaucracies, religious nutcases, institutional groupthink, authoritarian tendencies or whatever. In the US its found not just one, but a whole series of weak links it can exploit. The results are not pretty.”

BTW: I’m still not happy with the blog layout. Does anyone have any suggestions?

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jepler
7 days ago
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> A functional social safety net is actually good for business.
and all the rest
Earth, Sol system, Western spiral arm
HarlandCorbin
7 days ago
"The stock market is not the economy." This. I have been saying this for years. And, that, stocks are not money. You can have $1,000,000 "worth" of stocks, but unless you can get someone to buy them from you, you have $0.
DuskStar
5 days ago
I've yet to see how this is true during the pandemic. Consumer spending is good for business, and a social safety net is good for people, but I've heard a lot of businesses are having trouble restarting because people are earning more on unemployment than at their jobs.
HarlandCorbin
5 days ago
Huh... businesses aren't able to underpay people and get them to come back when they have an option. Maybe those businesses need to use their free-market tools and pay more to entice workers.
dukeofwulf
5 days ago
@DuskStar I've heard that too, but it seems super sketchy to me. If someone is offered their job back and refuses, they can lose the unemployment too, and then they're really stuck. I'd think wielding that threat should counteract the perverse incentive... unless the unemployment offices are still too backlogged to take the reports, and the recipients are aware of it.
DuskStar
5 days ago
If someone offered me 200k/yr to stay home without working, I'd take it. That doesn't mean that I'm underpaid currently @HarlandCorbin.
DuskStar
5 days ago
@dukeofwulf12 isn't that only the case for offering the same job at the same location, etc? You're not required to accept *every* job offer or lose unemployment.
HarlandCorbin
4 days ago
@DuskStar - no, but if $600/wk *is* enough to be a disincentive to going back to work, what is the job paying? $600/wk, 40 hrs/wk comes out to $15 an hour. Employers should, in a free market, offer enough to entice workers. What is the cost of going to work, even at $15/hr, if you have to protect yourself from the plague? If you have to deal with entitled idiots who refuse to protect themselves and others?
DuskStar
4 days ago
$15/hr PLUS whatever you normally would have gotten via unemployment. (generally somewhere between $150 and $400/wk) And yes, in someplace like Michigan where the minimum wage is below $10/hr, $20/hr is more than a hell of a lot of people normally make. (The median income in Michigan is ~30k/yr, or ~$15/hr if that's full time)
dukeofwulf
4 days ago
@DuskStar I'd interpreted your "at their jobs" to mean you were referring to offers of same job at same location. However, you're only somewhat right. You can refuse a job offer if it's "unsuitable," the rules of which can vary per state. Some resources: https://www.cnbc.com/2020/06/23/can-i-get-unemployment-after-quitting-or-refusing-my-job-heres-what-to-know.html https://employment.findlaw.com/losing-a-job/refuse-job-offer-collect-unemployment-insurance-ui-benefits.html
popular
6 days ago
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digdoug
7 days ago
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Louisville, KY
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1 public comment
CallMeWilliam
6 days ago
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Republicans hold the economy hostage, saying "You can have enough money to live, but only if we maintain the social hierarchy."

APOD: 2020 July 27 – Comet and Lightning Beyond Bighorn Mountains

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APOD: 2020 July 27 – Comet and Lightning Beyond Bighorn Mountains Normally, Steamboat Point looks cool -- but not this cool. Every day, the iconic peak of the Bighorn Mountains is an interesting sight, in particular from US Highway 14 in Wyoming. On some rare days, the rocky vertical ridges look even more incredible when seen in front of a distant lightning storm. Earlier this month, though, something even more unusual happened -- the naked-eye Comet NEOWISE rose above it in the middle of the night. Just as a distant lightning storm was occurring in the background. Recognizing a rare opportunity, a determined astrophotographer spent a sleepless night capturing over 1400 images of this unusual triple conjunction. The featured image is among the best of them, with the foreground lit by the Moon off to the right. Comet C/2020 F3 (NEOWISE) is now headed back to the outer Solar System, destined to return only in about 6700 years.
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digdoug
7 days ago
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Louisville, KY
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The Ramones Perform ‘Rock ‘N’ Roll High School’ Live on a 1979 Episode of the ‘Sha Na Na’ Variety Show

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The Ramones performed their now-iconic hit “Rock ‘n Roll’ High School” live on a rather silly 1979 episode of Sha Na Na. Before the performance, host Bowser introduced band as a “great singing family” to which Joey plainly responded, “we’re not even related to each other.”

via Boing Boing

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The post The Ramones Perform ‘Rock ‘N’ Roll High School’ Live on a 1979 Episode of the ‘Sha Na Na’ Variety Show first appeared on Laughing Squid.

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digdoug
11 days ago
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I watched this when it aired. For some reason Sha Na Na was very big with me at 7
Louisville, KY
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