Curating Content To Support Learning About Humanity's Transition

Posts tagged with:  long-now

By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 14 Feb 18

Mann titled his talk “The Edge of the Petri Dish.” He explained, “If you drop a couple protozoa in a Petri dish filled with nutrient goo, they will multiply until they run out of resources or drown in their own wastes.” Humans in the world Petri dish appear to be similarly doomed, judging by our exponential increases in population, energy use, water use, income, and greenhouse gases.How to save humanity? Opposing grand approaches emerged from two remarkable scientists in the mid-20th century who fought each other their entire lives. Their solutions were so persuasive that their impassioned argument continues 70 …

Two ways to save humanity Read More »

Mann titled his talk “The Edge of the Petri Dish.” He explained, “If you drop a couple protozoa in a Petri dish filled with nutrient goo, they will multiply until they run out of resources or drown in their own wastes.” Humans in the world Petri dish appear to be similarly doomed, judging by our exponential increases in population, energy …

Two ways to save humanity Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 5 Nov 17

photo by Evan SpilerThanks to the growing human domination of natural systems on Earth, people say we are entering an Anthropocene Epoch, Grinspoon began, but what if the term “epoch” understates the consequence of what is going on? (The Holocene Epoch is only 11,700 years old.) Astrobiologists recently learned that planet formation is the norm in the universe, and now they’re trying to find out if life formation is also the norm. They won’t look for signs of mere geological epochs on other planets; they’re looking for eon-scale transitions like the three that Earth has gone through in its 4.8 billion …

Cognitive Planet Read More »

photo by Evan SpilerThanks to the growing human domination of natural systems on Earth, people say we are entering an Anthropocene Epoch, Grinspoon began, but what if the term “epoch” understates the consequence of what is going on? (The Holocene Epoch is only 11,700 years old.) Astrobiologists recently learned that planet formation is the norm in the universe, and now they’re …

Cognitive Planet Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 7 Sep 17

photo by Evan SpilerIF WE FIND, anywhere in the universe, one more instance of life besides what evolved on Earth, then we are bound to conclude that life is common throughout the vastness of this galaxy and the 200 billion other galaxies. The discovery would change how we think about everything.Most of the search for life beyond Earth, Porco explained, is the search for habitats. They don’t have to look comfy, since we know that our own extremophile organisms can survive temperatures up to 250°F, total desiccation, and fiercely high radiation, high pressure, high acidity, high alkalinity, and high salinity.In our …

Life nearby Read More »

photo by Evan SpilerIF WE FIND, anywhere in the universe, one more instance of life besides what evolved on Earth, then we are bound to conclude that life is common throughout the vastness of this galaxy and the 200 billion other galaxies. The discovery would change how we think about everything.Most of the search for life beyond Earth, Porco explained, is …

Life nearby Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 22 Aug 17

photo by Evan SpilerHE BEGAN, “Hi, I’m Nicky Case, and I explain complex systems in a visual, tangible, and playful way.” He did exactly that with 207 brilliant slides and clear terminology. What system engineers call “negative feedback,” for example, Case calls “balancing loops.” They maintain a value. Likewise “positive feedback” he calls “reinforcing loops.” They increase a value.Using examples and stories such as the viciousness of the board game Monopoly and the miracle of self-organizing starlings, Case laid out visually the basics of finessing complex systems. A reinforcing loop is like a ball on the top of a hill, ready to …

How to finesse complexity Read More »

photo by Evan SpilerHE BEGAN, “Hi, I’m Nicky Case, and I explain complex systems in a visual, tangible, and playful way.” He did exactly that with 207 brilliant slides and clear terminology. What system engineers call “negative feedback,” for example, Case calls “balancing loops.” They maintain a value. Likewise “positive feedback” he calls “reinforcing loops.” They increase a value.Using examples and stories …

How to finesse complexity Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 22 Jun 17

photo by Gary WilsonWEST FOCUSSED ON CITIES in his discussion of the newly discovered exponential scaling laws that govern everything alive. “We live,” he said, “in an exponentially expanding socio-economic universe.” Global urbanization has reached the point that there are a million new people arriving in cities every week, and that rate is expected to continue to midcentury. What is the attraction?One reason for constant urban growth is that the bigger the city, the more efficient it is, because of economies of scale. With each doubling of a city’s size, the numbers of gas stations and power lines and water lines, …

Why cities live forever Read More »

photo by Gary WilsonWEST FOCUSSED ON CITIES in his discussion of the newly discovered exponential scaling laws that govern everything alive. “We live,” he said, “in an exponentially expanding socio-economic universe.” Global urbanization has reached the point that there are a million new people arriving in cities every week, and that rate is expected to continue to midcentury. What is the …

Why cities live forever Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 27 Mar 17

photo by Gary WilsonLOMBORG OPENED WITH A PHOTO FROM HAITI, showing a young girl dressed for school wading through the muck and garbage of a slum, with pigs in the muck right behind her. Lomborg was just back from working with the government of Haiti and the Canadian Development Agency to prioritize aid projects there. He sympathized that when people see that photo they instantly want to donate to urban sanitation in Haiti, but that is not the most effective good that can be done for the girl.There is a limited amount of aid money that can be spent in Haiti, and …

Doing Good Better Read More »

photo by Gary WilsonLOMBORG OPENED WITH A PHOTO FROM HAITI, showing a young girl dressed for school wading through the muck and garbage of a slum, with pigs in the muck right behind her. Lomborg was just back from working with the government of Haiti and the Canadian Development Agency to prioritize aid projects there. He sympathized that when people see …

Doing Good Better Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 13 Feb 17

photo by Gary WilsonPAHLKA QUOTED: “EFFICIENCY IN GOVERNMENT IS A MATTER OF SOCIAL JUSTICE.” (Mayor John Norquist) It is at the often maddening interface with government that the inefficiency and injustice play out. Two examples (both now fixed)… At the Veterans Affairs website, you needed to fill out the application for health benefits, but the file wouldn’t even open unless you had the unlikely combination of a particular version of Internet Explorer and a particular version of Adobe Reader. Nothing else worked. In California, the online application for food stamps was 50 screens long and took 50 minutes to complete.How did …

Toward agile government Read More »

photo by Gary WilsonPAHLKA QUOTED: “EFFICIENCY IN GOVERNMENT IS A MATTER OF SOCIAL JUSTICE.” (Mayor John Norquist) It is at the often maddening interface with government that the inefficiency and injustice play out. Two examples (both now fixed)… At the Veterans Affairs website, you needed to fill out the application for health benefits, but the file wouldn’t even open unless you …

Toward agile government Read More »


Scroll to Top