Someone with half your IQ is making 10x as you because they aren’t smart enough to doubt themselves

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Maybe the easiest lucrative job in finance is:

Take a job at a hedge fund.
Get handed an employment agreement on the first day that says “you agree not to disclose any of our secrets unless required by law.”
Sign.
Take the agreement home with you.
Circle that sentence in red marker, write “$$$$$!!!!!” next to it and send it to the SEC.
The SEC extracts a $10 million fine.
They give you $3 million.
You can keep your job! Why not; it’s illegal to retaliate against whistleblowers.
Or, you know, get a new one and do it again.

[…]

The theory here is that the US Securities and Exchange Commission has a whistleblower protection rule that says that “no person may take any action to impede an individual from communicating directly with the Commission staff about a possible securities law violation, including enforcing, or threatening to enforce, a confidentiality agreement.”

[…]

Anyway:

OpenAI whistleblowers have filed a complaint with the Securities and Exchange Commission alleging the artificial intelligence company illegally prohibited its employees from warning regulators about the grave risks its technology may pose to humanity, calling for an investigation.

[…]

OpenAI made staff sign employee agreements that required them to waive their federal rights to whistleblower compensation, the letter said. These agreements also required OpenAI staff to get prior consent from the company if they wished to disclose information to federal authorities. OpenAI did not create exemptions in its employee nondisparagement clauses for disclosing securities violations to the SEC.

{ Matt Levine | Bloomberg | Continue reading }

his sperm

Elon Musk is offering to donate his sperm to help colonize Mars […] he recently told employees he anticipates one million people living on Mars within two decades, affirming his personal commitment by stating his intention to die there.

By 2022, 2.78% of 18- to 24-year-old adults self-identified as transgender, up from 0.59% in 2014.

Lesbian women reported the highest orgasm frequency, followed by bisexual women, with heterosexual women having the lowest orgasm frequency. Lesbian women also outperformed heterosexual women on sexual duration, while heterosexual women outperformed lesbian and bisexual women on sexual frequency.

This paper shows that shootings are predictable enough to be preventable. Using arrest and victimization records for almost 644,000 people from the Chicago Police Department, we train a machine learning model to predict the risk of being shot in the next 18 months. Out-of-sample accuracy is strikingly high: of the 500 people with the highest predicted risk, almost 13 percent are shot within 18 months

AT&T says hackers stole 2022 call and text data from ‘nearly all’ cell customers update: AT&T Paid a Hacker $370,000 to Delete Stolen Phone Records

Goldman Sachs: AI Is Overhyped, Wildly Expensive, and Unreliable

A fleet of drones patrolling New York City’s beaches for signs of sharks and struggling swimmers is drawing backlash from an aggressive group of birds

Miss AI

Why don’t we know how antidepressants work yet?

the man who used dreams and premonitions to predict the future — In 1966, a British psychiatrist had an idea: to change the course of history by asking the public to share their eerie intuitions

The reality is that the ability to read the brain and influence activity is already here. It’s no longer only in the realm of science fiction. Now, the question is, what exactly can we access and manipulate in the brain?

Taking principles from fractal geometry and the strategic game of chess, physicists have created what they say is the most fiendishly difficult maze ever devised. In a Knight’s tour, the chess piece (which jumps two squares forwards and one to the right) visits every square of the chessboard just once before returning to its starting square. This is an example of a ‘Hamiltonian cycle’ – a loop through a map visiting all stopping points only once.

Artists say all colors are a mixture of red, yellow, and blue. But physics and TV screens and printers disagree. How does color really work?

The inaugural Miss AI contest opened in spring, drawing entries from some 1,500 AI programmers around the world. […] After judges of the world’s first AI beauty pageant unveiled 10 finalists last month, the inaugural Miss AI has now been crowned.

O.J. Gude, The Man Who Invented Times Square

Häxan

Creator Startups Have Already Raised as Much Money This Year as in All of 2023

majority of websites and mobile apps use dark patterns in the marketing of subscription services — Dark patterns are defined as practices commonly found in online user interfaces and that steer, deceive, coerce, or manipulate consumers into making choices that often are not in their best interests.

If you live in Phoenix or Houston and your air conditioner fails, staying in your house may be impossible and you may need to evacuate. Air-conditioning now plays a central role in protecting public health in homes, workplaces, and public spaces. […] Given the enormous importance of air conditioning, I thought it would be useful to put together a few posts about it. This is part one: some background on the physics of air conditioning.

A mother said her 8-year-old daughter was losing her hearing and fluids were leaking from her ears. Several women said they experienced fainting spells, including while driving on the highway. Others said they were wracked by debilitating vertigo and nausea, waking up in the middle of the night mid-vomit. None of them knew what, exactly, was causing these symptoms. But they all shared a singular grievance: a dull aural hum had crept into their lives, which growled or roared depending on the time of day, rattling their windows and rendering them unable to sleep. The hum, local law enforcement had learned, was emanating from a Bitcoin mining facility that had recently moved into the area

Drug Trends […] Ketamine is approaching world domination […] According to wastewater analysis, the popularity of the drug rose in 12 of 15 cities in Eastern and Western Europe from 2022 to 2023 […] global seizures of ketamine hit a record high in East and South-East Asia where they saw an increase of 70 percent in just one year.

According to data from the Hubble and James Webb Space Telescopes, the origins of the free-flying photons in the early cosmic dawn were small dwarf galaxies that flared to life, clearing the fog of murky hydrogen that filled intergalactic space.

Do we have the right to believe whatever we want to believe? This supposed right is often claimed as the last resort of the wilfully ignorant, the person who is cornered by evidence and mounting opinion: ‘I believe climate change is a hoax whatever anyone else says, and I have a right to believe it!’ But is there such a right? […] belief is not knowledge.

Häxan is a Swedish-Danish film, a curious and groundbreaking mix of documentary and silent horror cinema, written and directed by Benjamin Christensen. Whereas most films of the period were literary adaptations, Christensen’s take was unique, basing his film upon non-fiction works. […] Reportedly the most expensive film of the Swedish silent film era, Häxan was actually banned in the United States, and heavily censored in other countries. In 1968, an abbreviated version of the film was released. Titled Witchcraft Through the Ages, it featured an eclectic jazz score by Daniel Humair and dramatic narration by the wonderfully gravel-toned William S. Burroughs. [video]

English lewd vocabulary for romance and erotica writers

individual prices

Whataburger app becomes power outage map after Houston hurricane […] Whataburger is a San Antonio-based fast-food chain with 127 stores in the Houston area. On the Whataburger app, users can see a map of Whataburger locations, with an orange logo indicating a store is open, and a grey logo meaning it’s closed.

Eighteen hundred feet of rail expands by more than an inch for every 10 degrees Fahrenheit of temperature increase. So rails used to be laid down in sections — each between 30 and 60 feet long — with small gaps. Still, in a severe heat wave, the rail can swell until the underlying ties can no longer contain it. Then the rail gets visibly wavy, morphing into what’s known as a sun kink.

Heat waves reduce the number of motile sperm (the only ones capable of fertilizing an egg) by up to 10%

A basic four-stop elevator costs about $158,000 in New York City, compared with about $36,000 in Switzerland. [NY Times]

Airbnb’s hidden camera problem […] The Airbnb employee revealed that when a guest complains of a hidden camera, the company doesn’t – as a matter of practice – notify law enforcement, not even when a child is involved. […] Hidden cameras placed in bedrooms and bathrooms show guests during their most private moments – changing clothes, being with their children, even having sex […] while hotels can be held legally responsible for guests harmed on their property, Airbnb frequently is not. […] Madden initially denied ownership of the camera, which was concealed in a clock radio and pointed at his guests’ bed. Then, he said he put it there for security reasons. Ultimately, Madden admitted he’d been recording guests engaged in sexual activity. “I’m an artist,” he said. “I look at everything, I study everything.” Madden served 14 days behind bars.

how online shopping, persistent data collection, and machine-learning algorithms could combine to generate the stuff of economists’ dreams: individual prices for each customer.

the 19-year-old getting paid to rate Instagram profiles

Positive feedback is often given in an attempt to boost people’s performance. In many cases, however, positive feedback undermines performance […] when positive feedback was delivered before participants started preparing for their next task, it impaired subsequent performance.

The Barnum effect is a common psychological phenomenon whereby individuals give high accuracy ratings to descriptions of their personality that supposedly are tailored specifically to them, yet which are in fact vague and general enough to apply to a wide range of people. […] general characterizations attributed to an individual are perceived to be true for them, even though the statements are such generalizations that they could apply to almost anyone. Such techniques are used by fortune tellers, astrologers, and other practitioners to convince customers that they, the practitioners, are in fact endowed with a paranormal gift.

Jersey Devil

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Butterflies can cross the Atlantic in as few as five to eight days.

10 billion passwords leaked in the largest compilation of all time

the decision to be unfaithful is primarily driven by individual tendencies, with minimal influence from the partner. The study found that a strong commitment to one’s partner is linked to a lower likelihood of infidelity, whereas shared passion and intimacy do not serve as effective deterrents.

Destiny beliefs describe the belief that a relationship is meant to be while growth beliefs describe the tendency that relationships can be cultivated and maintained through effort. […] those with higher growth beliefs experienced a slower decline in relationship satisfaction over time.

The big problem for materialists is what contemporary philosopher David Chalmers dubbed the “hard problem” of consciousness. In a nutshell, the problem is this: You’re conscious. But if you’re just made of non-conscious matter, why and how exactly could consciousness arise from that? […] Panpsychism lets you bypass the hard problem of consciousness altogether. That’s because the panpsychist starts out with the right ingredients. If you believe that consciousness resides, however minimally, in matter’s tiniest building blocks — atoms, electrons, quarks — then it’s much easier to explain how sophisticated forms of consciousness can eventually arise in, say, humans. This fits very well with the theory of evolution, which says that creatures gradually became more complex as they evolved. […] In a landmark 2006 paper, Strawson took this idea and ran with it, making a radical argument: Materialism, he said, actually entails panpsychism. Consciousness is real. (We know that from our own experience.) Everything is physical. (There’s no evidence that immaterial stuff exists.) Therefore, consciousness is physical. There’s no “radical emergence” in nature. (We don’t get something from nothing.) Consciousness emerging from totally non-conscious stuff would be radical emergence. Therefore, all stuff must have some consciousness baked into it.

the biology of fatigue

Treating several individuals suffering from post-COVID-19 syndrome with a nicotine patch application, we witnessed improvements ranging from immediate and substantial to complete remission in a matter of days.

In the 13th century, a boie was a servant, but already in that time the provenance of the word was obscure. A century later, the term started being used to indicate a male child. […] Since the 14th century, gyrle was a word used to indicate a child, with no gender distinction. Despite the apparent simplicity of the term, so far nobody has been able to reconstruct its origins.

Sometimes the Jersey Devil features a dog’s head and pig’s feet; sometimes he’s an eighth child instead of a thirteenth. The story’s emotional crux, however, is consistent: an unwanted pregnancy, a mother’s anger, a curse. It reads as what folklore scholars Joan Radner and Susan Lanser might call a “coded” tale—a story that invites multiple, even contradictory, interpretations to “protect the creator from the dangerous consequences of directly stating particular messages.” A hallmark of feminist folklore, coding allows a tale-teller to convey ideas that are controversial or forbidden by camouflaging morals in ambiguity, ensuring the story reads differently to different audiences. […] it’s easy to see the Jersey Devil as a critique of callous mothering […] Though gynaehorror often represents female reproductivity negatively, it can function as a “way of exposing misogyny.”

Looking up flights on multiple browser tabs can be cumbersome, but Google’s Gemini has a solution. The model integrates with Google Flights and Google Hotels, pulling in real-time information from Google’s partner companies in a way that makes it easy to compare times and, crucially, prices. How to use AI to plan your next vacation

Russian Space Chiefs Finally Admit US Landed on Moon

Shark Fishing in Miami with the South Beach Shark Club + Rene De Dios and the South Beach Shark Club [video]

How many times do you have to riffle a deck of cards before it is completely shuffled? It’s a tricky question, but math has us covered: hyou need seven riffles.

High-speed hippos

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Thai teacher banned from school after she livestreamed under her skirt while teaching

High-speed hippos can get airborne, says new study

Explanations of consciousness abound and the radical diversity of theories is telling. My purpose here must be humble: collect and categorize, not assess and adjudicate. Seek insights, not answers. Unrealistically, I’d like to get them all, at least all contemporary theories that are sufficiently distinct […] It’s the classic “mind-body problem:” How do the felt experiences in our minds relate to the neural processes in our brains?

Watching a movie, sisters’ brain activity is more similar than that of friends

how brain activity triggers these severest of headaches — migraines — has long puzzled scientists. A study in mice suggests that a brief brain ‘blackout’ — when neuronal activity shuts down — temporarily changes the content of the cerebrospinal fluid, the clear liquid that surrounds the brain and spinal cord. This altered fluid, researchers suggest, travels through a previously unknown gap in anatomy to nerves in the skull where it activates pain and inflammatory receptors, causing headaches.

In 19th century New York City, Theodore Gaillard Thomas enjoyed an unusual level of fame for a gynecologist. The reason, oddly enough, was milk. Between 1873 and 1880, the daring idea of transfusing milk into the body as a substitute for blood was being tested across the United States. […] In 1875, he injected 175 milliliters of cow’s milk into a woman suffering from severe uterine bleeding after an operation to remove her cancerous ovaries. At first, he wrote, the patient “complained that her head felt like bursting.” She soon developed a high fever and an abnormally high heart rate, but recovered a week later. […] Saline solutions, still used today, were introduced the next decade as a much less dangerous, if imperfect, stopgap measure for emergency bleeding. […] ErythroMer is made from “recycled” human hemoglobin—the protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body—wrapped in a membrane to mimic a tiny cell. In the rabbit, the transfusion appeared to be working.

Not only had Microsoft hired most of Inflection’s employees — it also licensed the startup’s technology […] Amazon hired “close to” to 66 percent of Adept’s employees […] Amazon will also be licensing Adept’s technology […] The problem for Big Tech is that they are no longer allowed to buy companies like they once did. The current antitrust enforcement regime would most certainly try to block an Amazon acquisition of Adept […] Even still, capitalism finds a way. What Microsoft did to Inflection, and what Amazon just did to Adept, is the new Big Tech playbook for swallowing the AI industry and getting away with it.

Over the past two decades, Chinese leaders have built a high-tech surveillance system of seemingly extraordinary sophistication. […] Although the protesters were careful to conceal their faces with masks and hats, the police used mobile-phone location data to track them down. […] Over the past eight decades, the Chinese Communist Party has constructed a vast network of millions of informers and spies whose often unpaid work has been critical to the regime’s survival. It is these men and women, more than cameras or artificial intelligence, that have allowed Beijing to suppress dissent. […] Generations of Chinese leaders have struck a delicate balance between making the secret police powerful enough to do its job, but not so powerful that it threatens the regime itself.

The r/SecurityClearance subreddit […] where government workers and public servants share their secrets before they share them with the U.S. government.

“It seems like every block in New York now has a tailored-for-millennial-women piercer, both in terms of VC-backed brands like Studs and boutique-y local spots”

Revenge saving has become a trend on Chinese social media websites, with Chinese youth setting extreme monthly savings targets

In Australia, strangulation has been explicitly criminalized in all states and territories. However, it continues to be a “normalized” sexual practice despite its potentially fatal consequences and associated short and long-term sequelae. […] Confidential, cross-sectional online surveys were conducted with 4702 Australians aged 18–35 years […] 57% reported ever being sexually strangled and 51% reported ever strangling a partner.

The dangers of sneezing—from ejected bowels to torn windpipes

Despite the great amount of time spent on ships and ferries, swimming was a rare skill among men. Among women, it was unheard of—­even suspect. Benjamin Franklin, however, was in his element.

Why Music Is Getting Worse

The Mauritanian iron ore train spans up to 3km (1.8 miles) in length, travels on a single track of 704 kilometres (437 miles), with 200 – 300 freight carriages, weighing up to a total of 84 tons and making it the longest and heaviest train in the world. […] This train has no ticket, no conductor, no dining cart, or any sort of announcements.

bribery

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The US supreme court just basically legalized bribery

The article is specifically focused on the risk of LLMs causing an extreme catastrophe in which they do something akin to taking over the world and killing everyone.

IBM, which has a $20 billion consulting business, ran into some of those issues on its work with McDonald’s. The companies developed an A.I.- powered voice system to take drive-through orders. But after customers reported that the system made mistakes, like adding nine iced teas to an order instead of the one Diet Coke requested, McDonald’s ended the project. […] McKinsey’s A.I. group, QuantumBlack, built a customer service chatbot for ING Bank […] The chatbot now handles 200 of 5,000 customer inquiries daily. ING has people review every conversation to make sure that the system doesn’t use discriminatory or harmful language or hallucinate. […] Over a four-month period this year, Reckitt worked with Boston Consulting Group to develop an A.I. platform that could create local advertisements in different languages and formats. With the push of a button, the system can turn a commercial about Finish dishwashing detergent from English into Spanish. Reckitt’s A.I. marketing system, which is being tested, can make developing local ads 30 percent faster. [NY Times]

The Joy of Reading Books You Don’t Entirely Understand

The triplets (whose abilities at walking, cycling, and donkey riding are identical) always leave home together at the last possible minute and arrive at school together on the last stroke of the bell.

a photo by Stephen Shore titled “Kingston, New York, November 8, 2020, 41°56.9443167N, 74°1.7406167W.” The image is from Shore’s fabulous new show of photographs shot from drones, at 303 gallery in New York.

birds

S. Korea administrative robot defunct after apparent suicide, found unresponsive after having apparently fallen down a two-meter (six-and-a-half foot) staircase

The authors of the study reasoned that if black-and-white stripes ward off flies for zebras, they should also do the same for people painted with zebra stripes.

What makes a good tree? We used AI to ask birds

What drives mosquitoes’ bloodlust? Their hormones. One hormone seems to boosts the insects’ thirst for a blood meal, while another shuts it off.

Study suggests connection between anxiety and Parkinson’s disease Researchers compared a group of 109,435 people 50 and older who were diagnosed with a first episode of anxiety between 2008 and 2018 with a control group of 987,691 people without anxiety.

Teenagers with lower levels of mental ability may be three times more likely to experience a stroke before the age of 50, research suggests

Goldman signals end of an era in private equity […] No longer can you “be the highest bidder, buy the company, sit there, wait for multiple expansion and sell again”[…] investors shouldn’t expect the type of buyout returns that until 2022 were often buoyed by market exuberance, climbing valuations and financial engineering.

One study says a third of American workers have signed one; another puts the number at more than half. NDAs are being given out to roommates, to parents, to boyfriends and ex-girlfriends, and to bachelor-party attendees and wedding guests.

Lawsuit Claims Microsoft Tracked Sex Toy Shoppers With ‘Recording in Real Time’ Software

Scholars have known about the hidden Cupid since 1979 when x-rays and other tests first indicated a painting-within-a-painting underneath the blank background wall. At the time, it seemed that Vermeer had simply decided against including this element and painted it out. […] The museum ran additional tests, which provided significant clues such as dirt between the Cupid and the paint covering it. Further conservation revealed craquelure (cracks that form on paintings’ surfaces) on the Cupid itself. Both discoveries suggested that the Cupid had been exposed for a significant period of time. In other words, the overpaint must be by a later artist, not Vermeer. More: The Mysterious Cupid in Johannes Vermeer’s Paintings

L.A. Influencer

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The brain makes a lot of waste. Now scientists think they know where it goes

new technology using engineered living skin tissue and human-like ligaments gives robots a more natural smile

researchers develop visual tracking technology to detect drink drivers

Analysis of 400,000 healthy adults finds no health benefits from taking daily multivitamins […] Rather than living longer, people who consumed daily multivitamins were marginally more likely than non-users to die in the study period

Swallowable tiny robot with thrusters performs endoscopy at home Using a smartphone app, the distant doctor controls the robot within the patient’s stomach. PillBot shuts down and exits the body naturally within six to twenty-four hours. In addition, the team is working on using AI to make the preliminary diagnosis, after which a physician will create a course of therapy. [..] The team envisions expanding the technology to examine the bowels, vascular system, heart, liver, brain, and other parts of the body. […] With clinical trials underway, the company aims to secure FDA approval and launch commercially in the US by early 2026. [more]

Is Delaying Menopause the Key to Longevity? The ovaries, in particular, appear to be connected to virtually every aspect of a woman’s health. They also abruptly stop performing their primary role in midlife. Once that happens, a woman enters menopause, which accelerates her aging and the decline of other organ systems, like the heart and the brain. While women, on average, live longer than men, they spend more time living with diseases or disabilities. [NY Times]

Tumor-seeking radiopharmaceuticals promise targeted treatments with fewer side effects

Isoniazid can be detected in finger sweat for 1–6 h following controlled administration of the drug. This technique is adaptable for other drugs

Acetaminophen, also known as paracetamol and sold widely under the brand names Tylenol and Panadol, may also increase risk-taking

cravings for drugs in addiction are supposed to be impossible to resist […] this image of craving is fundamentally flawed. My aim is to develop a more nuanced understanding of craving and rectify the damage done by this false image.

A military lab found distinctive damage from repeated blast exposure in every brain it tested, but Navy SEAL leaders were kept in the dark about the pattern. The vast majority of blast exposure for Navy SEALs comes from firing their own weapons, not from enemy action. The damage pattern suggested that years of training intended to make SEALs exceptional was leaving some barely able to function. [NY Times]

study demonstrates how our initial impressions can have a lasting impact on our decisions, often leading us to persistently choose inferior options even when better ones are available.

Youtube has recently offered lump sums of cash to the major labels — Sony, Warner, and Universal — to try to convince more artists to allow their music to be used in training AI software

Man makes money buying his own pizza on DoorDash app — A pizza for which he charged $24 (£20) was being advertised for $16 on DoorDash - and when he secretly ordered it himself, the app paid his restaurant the full $24 while charging him $16.

Pooping on the Moon The Apollo crews left a total of 96 bags of waste, including urine and feces, across their six landing sites […] Human feces is packed with microbial life […] Learning how long those microbes survived in the extraterrestrial excrement would reveal tantalizing insights into the mystery of life’s origins on Earth and its potential existence elsewhere. […] “Basically, in space a human no longer has gravity to assist pulling the feces away from the anus. It becomes really a sticky liquid problem of surface tension. As it is organically active, extreme care has to be taken to make sure one cleans up.”

Microbial dark matter comprises the vast majority of microbial organisms (usually bacteria and archaea) that microbiologists are unable to culture in the laboratory

the L.A. Influencer Who Is Trying to Get Famous By Never Tipping at Restaurants and Bars

The New Eagle Creek Saloon (2019 — ongoing) is an installation, and a vibe, that reimagines my father’s bar—the first black-owned gay bar in San Francisco.

Shop Imp Kerr: Vive la France!

dentist’s chair

2 years of mild caloric restriction significantly reduces biological age

5 things you’re doing that can land you in a dentist’s chair: eating popcorn, chewing on ice, energy drinks, sodas, coffee, vaping, using fluoride-free toothpaste. Also: using your teeth to open packages, tear off tags, or even bite their nails, teeth grinding (bruxism), brushing too hard

The U.S. Postal Service has shared information from thousands of Americans’ letters and packages with law enforcement every year for the past decade, conveying the names, addresses and other details from the outside of boxes and envelopes without requiring a court order. […] more than 60,000 requests from federal agents and police officers since 2015 […] more than 312,000 letters and packages between 2015 and 2023

Almost half of U.S. teachers and K-12 students say they are using ChatGPT weekly.

Researchers describe how to tell if ChatGPT is confabulating

I am using AI to automatically drop hats outside my window onto New Yorkers

Calculator words

venom

This month, Walmart became the latest retailer to announce it’s replacing the price stickers in its aisles with electronic shelf labels. The new labels allow employees to change prices as often as every ten seconds. “If it’s hot outside, we can raise the price of water and ice cream.”

Sensory secrets of penis and clitoris unlocked after more than 150 years Krause corpuscles — nerve endings in tightly wrapped balls located just under the skin — were first discovered in human genitals more than 150 years ago. The structures are similar to touch-activated corpuscles found on people’s fingers and hands, which respond to vibrations as the skin moves across a textured surface. […] Ginty and his collaborators activated the Krause corpuscles in both male and female mice using various mechanical and electrical stimuli. The neurons fired in response to low-frequency vibrations in the range of 40–80 hertz. Ginty notes that these frequencies are generally used in many sex toys; humans, it seems, realized that this was the best way to stimulate Krause corpuscles before any official experiments were published.

I started by dating somebody on an ENM app who was in a different polycule who was connected to someone in this polycule. And then I started dating someone else in this polycule. He’s married, and his wife and I are metamours, which is simply a word for my partner’s partner. — Lessons From a 20-Person Polycule

Here we bring recent evidence from neuroscience and allied disciplines to argue that in modern humans, language is a tool for communication, contrary to a prominent view that we use language for thinking. [PDF]

the group has collected venom from more than 500 species, building an unrivalled collection of animal toxins. Studying the molecules that make up venom, scientists have been able to develop compounds that can relieve chronic pain, treat diabetes and create eco-friendly insecticides.

“blue carbon” refers to the carbon dioxide sequestered and stored by coastal habitats such as mangroves and seagrass beds. These highly efficient ecosystems occupy just 0.5% of the seafloor but contribute over 50% of oceans’ carbon burial, sequestering even more carbon by area than rainforests.

This is the first animal ever found that doesn’t need oxygen to survive […] a jellyfish-like parasite that doesn’t have a mitochondrial genome […] it could also have implications for the search for extraterrestrial life

One of Vico’s chief claims is that, though civilizations rise and fall, the periods of decline do not return them to their original state. Some foundation remains from which rebuilding can commence. A central challenge for a science of politics, then, is to reduce the severity of the inevitable downturns, shorten the reign of “barbarism,” and through these means, hope for gradual improvement.

In California, the “Daughter from California” is known as the “Daughter from New York”

I jumped from a plane – and my parachute failed

mathematicians

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Monitoring marine litter from space is now a reality

A lack of sleep can make it extraordinarily difficult to retain information. Two new studies uncover why this is and what is happening inside the brain during sleep and sleep deprivation to help or harm the formation of memories.

The con artists take on false online identities and spend months financially grooming their victims to get them to invest on fraudulent cryptocurrency websites. It’s theft at a scale so large that investigators are now calling it a mass transfer of wealth from middle-class Americans to criminal gangs. Last year, the FBI estimates, pig butchering scams stole nearly $4 billion from tens of thousands of American victims, a 53% increase from the year before.

Social-Media Influencers Aren’t Getting Rich—They’re Barely Getting By — Platforms are paying less for popular posts, brands are pickier about partnerships and a possible TikTok ban looms

‘mathematicians can’t agree on the definition of what makes two things equal

Nietzschean Language Models and Philosophical Chatbots: Outline of a Critique of AI

Chinese scientists and engineers are applying ChatGPT-like technology to sex robots, aiming to create interactive, artificial intelligence (AI)-powered companions

Shelly’s Leg (1973-1977) was Seattle’s first disco, an unapologetically gay establishment that welcomed revelers of every sexuality

Flashback: humansnotinvited.com

Bum Bum Cream

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American Airlines passenger gagged and bound with duct tape to her seat after being accused of attempting to open an aircraft door mid-flight […] after drinking a neat Jack Daniels

One of the most coveted beauty products among teenagers is a creamy, fragrant lotion that comes in a tangerine-colored plastic tub. Called Brazilian Bum Bum Cream, it is sold for $48 by the beauty brand Sol de Janeiro. According to Sol de Janeiro, a jar of Brazilian Bum Bum Cream is sold every six seconds.

Stock-obsessed Gen Z are using astrology and tarot to invest

Researchers turn wool and hair offcuts into graphite for lithium batteries […] About 70 per cent of the world’s graphite, a key component in lithium batteries, comes from China.

U.S. government Sues Adobe and Executives for Hiding Fees, Preventing Consumers from Easily Cancelling Software Subscriptions

The Excel World Championship

How I Made Trading Cards with E- Ink Displays

The first rule of avoiding scam calls is to never answer unknown numbers, and even some known ones.

Through a combination of behavioural and neuroimaging methods, experiments have identified sensory, perceptual, emotional and cognitive processes that make important contributions to our psychological experiences of art, in particular the emergence of aesthetic preferences. Here we conduct a selective review of this literature that will provide readers without a background in the neurosciences a first introduction into what we have learned so far

Which of these shapes is bouba and which is kiki?

Pelvic floor muscle training, more

female composers

Wells Fargo Fires Over a Dozen for ‘Simulation of Keyboard Activity’

One of the bigger discussions happening right now on the internet is whether a “Remote Amazon Tribe” has become “addicted to porn” as a result of getting SpaceX’s Starlink internet. […] The Marubo people have been using the internet long before Starlink came to their village

Subvocalization: Why Do We Have A Voice In Our Heads When We Read?

How Data-Fueled Neurotargeting Could Kill Democracy the technique, which weaponizes emotional data for political gain, could erode the foundations of a fair and informed society

Where are the Female Composers? Evidence on the Extent and Causes of Gender Inequality in Music History

A new study finds that people today who eat and exercise the same amount as people 20 years ago are still fatter. First, people are exposed to more chemicals that might be weight-gain inducing. Pesticides, flame retardants, and the substances in food packaging might all be altering our hormonal processes and tweaking the way our bodies put on and maintain weight. Second, the use of prescription drugs has risen dramatically since the 1970s and ’80s. Prozac, the first blockbuster SSRI, came out in 1988. Antidepressants are now one of the most commonly prescribed drugs in the U.S., and many of them have been linked to weight gain. Finally, Kuk and the other study authors think that the microbiomes of Americans might have somehow changed between the 1980s and now. It’s well known that some types of gut bacteria make a person more prone to weight gain and obesity. Americans are eating more meat than they were a few decades ago, and many animal products are treated with hormones and antibiotics in order to promote growth. All that meat might be changing gut bacteria in ways that are subtle, at first, but add up over time. Kuk believes that the proliferation of artificial sweeteners could also be playing a role.

On average, for every 555 million molecules of water, one is split into a negatively charged OH⁻ and a positively charged H⁺. And this actually matters a lot, in chemistry. It’s the reason we say water has pH 7.

The Missing Post Office is an artwork by Japanese artist Saya Kubota. It is a “post office” where undeliverable letters are collected The Missing Post Office receives mail from all over the world. Addressees include deceased individuals, future descendants, first loves to whom the writers were never able to express their feelings, themselves, and long-time favorite items.

Level Devil

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Missouri Restaurant bans women under 30, men under 35, wants a ‘grown and sexy’ vibe

Entertainment Media as a Source of Relationship Misinformation We discuss two ways that relationship misinformation can appear in entertainment media – in the form of blatant claims and subtle content – and we provide an example of each from reality television.

study uncovers brain differences in sexual desire disorders in men and women […] HSDD (hypoactive sexual desire disorder), characterized by a persistent lack of sexual interest causing significant distress, affects about 10% of women and 8% of men. […] Women with HSDD exhibited greater activation in limbic regions such as the amygdala, striatum, and thalamus, which are associated with emotional processing and sexual motivation. In contrast, men showed greater activation in the visual cortex, indicating a heightened sensitivity to visual sexual cues.

In the morning, you report that you barely slept at all. Yet according to the test—polysomnography, the gold standard for sleep measurement—you slept all night. […] these people showed pockets of arousal in the form of fast brain waves during rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. REM is the stage in normal sleep when your brain should completely disconnect from the systems that keep you aware and vigilant People with subjective insomnia with this interrupted REM do not experience their sleep as restful. When wakened, they reported having had thoughts similar to those when awake […] They were less likely to have immersive dreams […] interrupted REM is strongly linked to disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and anxiety.

No evidence sperm counts are dropping, researchers find

Depression and memory decline are intimately linked […] those with higher depressive symptoms were more likely to experience faster memory decline, while those who started off with a poorer memory were more likely to develop depressive symptoms during the study period.

Southeast Asian countries such as Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines ingest the most microplastics among 109 countries, according to a study by Cornell University researchers. Indonesians, the top consumers of microplastics, were found to ingest about 15g of microplastics per month – equivalent to three credit cards – with the majority of plastic particles coming from aquatic sources such as fish and seafood. Indonesians’ daily consumption of microplastics increased by 59 times from 1990 to 2018.

More than a century ago, flamingos disappeared from Florida, when hunters nearly drove them to extinction in the quest for their fashionable — and highly profitable — plumage. Now they’re back, likely transported by Hurricane Idalia last August.

dolphins and parrots address conspecifics by imitating the calls of the addressee […] African elephants address one another with individually specific name-like calls Audio: >Wild elephants may have names that other elephants use to call them

The US dollar continues to cede ground to nontraditional currencies in global foreign exchange reserves, but it remains the preeminent reserve currency. Recent data from the IMF […] point to an ongoing gradual decline in the dollar’s share of allocated foreign reserves of central banks and governments. Strikingly, the reduced role of the US dollar over the last two decades has not been matched by increases in the shares of the other “big four” currencies—the euro, yen, and pound. Rather, it has been accompanied by a rise in the share of what we have called non-traditional reserve currencies, including the Australian dollar, Canadian dollar, Chinese renminbi, South Korean won, Singaporean dollar, and the Nordic currencies. […] One non-traditional reserve currency gaining market share is the Chinese renminbi, whose gains match a quarter of the decline in the dollar’s share.

Ask most venture-backed founders why they get 10x more equity than employee #1, 100x more equity than employee #5, and 1000x more equity than employee #15, and you’ll get the same answer: “I’M TAKING SO MUCH RISK, IT’S SO HARD TO START A COMPANY, I MADE A BIG MOVE!!!” And then you’ll ask, “but why are you yelling?” […] Founder liquidity refers to the practice where founders sell a portion of their shares during a new funding round. This allows them to “take chips off the table,” securing personal financial stability while continuing to build the company with a fresh influx of venture capital. Why is it a secret that founders get liquidity in many venture rounds? Because it undermines the narrative of the founder who is “all-in.”

Waistlines are expanding in most countries, except for a skinny list of nations bucking the trend. How is France dodging the global obesity trend?

how we produce fresh water and how we dispose of wastewater at the South Pole

George Spelvin, Georgette Spelvin, and Georgina Spelvin are traditional stagename used to hide a performer’s identity. “Georgina Spelvin” has fallen out of general use since it was adopted as a screen name by pornographic actress Shelley Graham, who was credited by that name in The Devil in Miss Jones (1973) and her subsequent films.

Level Devil

Smoking Devil in Stereohell

Detachable Penis

United Airlines starts serving passengers personalized ads on seat-back screens

Google’s and Microsoft’s AI Chatbots Refuse to Say Who Won the 2020 US Election

First, we show that older people tend to underestimate their cognitive decline. We then show that those experiencing a severe decline but unaware of it are more likely to suffer wealth losses.

Sexuality plays a significant role in most romantic relationships and is a factor that differentiates romantic relationships from other types of close relationships. Research shows that different aspects of sexuality, such as sexual desire and satisfaction, have been consistently linked with relationship satisfaction, quality, and stability. Moreover, sexually active couples report higher individual and relational well-being. […] However, several factors may hinder couples from engaging in sexual activity, including stress.

Free Will Beliefs are Positively Associated With Health Behavior

Deciding Who Is Worthy of Help: Effect of the Probability of Reciprocity on Individuals’ Willingness to Help Others

Living in the afterlife: clues from direct experiencers Although most of the information obtained by our different sources converge on the general description of the afterlife, and how life proceeds in these realms, they cannot be considered definite proof of the afterlife and its characteristics.

Gene therapy restores hearing to children with inherited deafness

artificial intelligence system that can identify people who are likely to suffer heart attacks up to 10 years in the future, could soon be in operation across Britain

excessive vigorous exercise could muffle your immune system

Dreaming Under Anesthesia

How Do We Know When to Pee?

Winston Churchill Received the First Ever Letter Containing “O.M.G.”

According to an editor at a venerable publishing imprint, debut novelists need three key publicity achievements to “break out”: one, a major book club; two, a boost from Barnes & Noble, Amazon, Indie Next, and/or Book of the Month; and three, a major profile. Why Are Debut Novels Failing to Launch?

Advance market commitments allow us to buy products that don’t yet exist, giving innovators an incentive to invent and scale new products. This is a practical guide on how to start an AMC.

In 1910, Mare Samuella Cromer, a rural schoolteacher in South Carolina, organized a girl’s tomato club so females aged 9 to 20 could “not learn simply how to grow better and more perfect tomatoes, but how to grow better and more perfect women.

The Secret History of Holywell Street, Home to Victorian London’s Dirty Book Trade

The music of “Detachable Penis” consists largely of a distorted electric guitar riff fed through a noise gate and a delay, backed by organ and drum grooves with brief lead guitar improvisation.

ASCII Silhouettify is an app that converts images into ASCII silhouettes

wooden satellite

One of the best known non-bank banks is Starbucks – “a bank dressed up as a coffee shop”. […] “McDonald’s is a real estate company dressed up as a hamburger chain” and “Harvard is a hedge fund dressed up as an institution of higher learning”. […] The company had offered a gift card since 2001 but Schultz [Starbuck’s CEO] revitalized it, pairing it with a new loyalty program […] In 2010, Schultz put the card on an app […] more than 60% of the company’s peak morning business in the US comes from Starbucks Rewards members who overwhelmingly order via the app. The program has 33 million users, equivalent to around one in ten American adults. these users load or reload around $10 billion of value onto their cards each year […] not all of it gets spent at once. As at the end of March, $1.9 billion of stored card value sat on the company’s balance sheet waiting to be spent – kind of like customer deposits. To give that some context, 85% of US banks have less than $1 billion in assets. Unmasking the Banks Inside Starbucks, Carnival, Naked Wines, Delta, Travel + Leisure

US has the highest rate of maternal deaths among high-income nations. Norway has zero

Costco is building out an ad network built on its trove of loyalty membership data, using its 74.5 million household members’ shopping habits and past purchases

In the last few months, Meta started to sneakily train its generative AI tool on Instagram posts. Now, some artists are jumping ship to a lesser-known portfolio app, Cara, to protect their work from AI data scrapers.

If you are a professional, if you are under NDA with your clients, if you are a creative, a lawyer, a doctor or anyone who works with proprietary files - it is time to cancel Adobe

Microsoft is about to launch a new AI-powered Recall feature that screenshots everything you do on your PC. Recall doesn’t perform content moderation, so it won’t hide information like passwords or financial account numbers in its screenshots.

Due to national security concerns, the U.S. government prohibits Nvidia from selling AI chips like the A100 and H100 directly to Chinese companies. The restrictions don’t prevent Chinese firms from renting chips for use within the U.S. — ByteDance is allegedly leasing servers with chips from Oracle. ByteDance reportedly had access to over 1,500 H100 chips and several thousand A100s last month through the Oracle deal. China Telecom, a large state-owned wireless carrier, has sought a similar deal with other cloud providers. How ByteDance Got the Best AI Chips Despite U.S. Restrictions

Known as “Roaring Kitty” on YouTube and “DeepF***ingValue” on Reddit’s popular WallStreetBets, Gill was a key figure in the so-called “Reddit rally” in which shares of GameStop surged 1600% at one point in Jan. 2021, crushing hedge funds that had bet against the videogame retailer. But after drawing congressional and regulatory scrutiny for his role in the extraordinary saga, Gill quickly disappeared, albeit much richer thanks to his GameStop investment which at one point reached $48 million in value. […] Then out of the blue Gill appeared in recent weeks to resurface online, sending GameStop’s shares soaring once again. On Monday, they rose 21% after Gill’s Reddit account posted a screenshot showing a $116 million bet on the stock. On Thursday, they surged almost 50% after Gill’s YouTube account scheduled a livestream for 12 p.m. ET (1600 GMT) on Friday.

World’s first wooden satellite wooden Moon shelters are also planned

chocolate manufacturers combine a paste made from cacao seeds with sugar. Lots and lots of sugar […] the few health benefits provided by the chocolate bean are swamped by ingredients that increase the risk of diabetes and cardiovascular disease. […] To address this stark imbalance, a team of researchers reinvented the chocolate recipe from the ground up

During the Renaissance period, hands were as important a focus of attention as the face was, because they were the only other visible area of the body. […] Given its high visibility, hand gestures in portraits and paintings have been one of the most effective ways of conveying secrets, codes and messages. […] There is a peculiar hand gesture that is widely used by painters of several nationalities belonging to the Renaissance, Mannerism, Baroque and later artistic movements: It is an unnatural position of one or both hands in which the third and fourth digits are held tight together, as if almost fused, resembling syndactyly, and the second and fifth fingers are separated from the central ones. This paper will examine the eventual hidden meanings behind this peculiar hand gesture.

The Talk: Bernie Sanders & Slavoj Žižek and The Talk: Kanye West & Elon Musk

dementia

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Remote Amazon tribe gained access to the Internet via Starlink last September — only to wind up hooked on porn, social media

About half of adults would prefer electric shocks over spending fifteen minutes alone with their thoughts. They’re the ones who want to hang out with you during a plague. They didn’t just consent to electric shocks. They did it to themselves. They were given a little button to push. […] Nearly 70 percent of the men preferred the shocks, compared to 25 percent of the women.

Women make fewer mistakes and have better mental agility while on their period despite feeling worse than at any other time during their menstrual cycle, research suggests.

brain scan could detect dementia several years before people develop noticeable symptoms, with an estimated 80% accuracy

when using cashless methods of payment, individuals tend to spend more when purchasing […] the effect was not observed when donating or tipping.

A group backed by more than two dozen investors—including Citadel Securities and BlackRock—is planning to start its own stock exchange in Texas

Stromatolites are the earliest geological record of life on Earth. These curious biotic structures are made of algae carpets growing toward the light and precipitating carbonates. After their first appearance 3.48 billion years ago, stromatolites dominated the planet as the sole living carbonate factory for almost three billion years.

Diamond industry ‘in trouble’ as lab-grown gemstones tank prices further

Online shop selling used tampons to strangers. “It is a lucrative business”

bunya nut miso caramel

Italian village with 46 residents has 30 local election candidates

The FDA is poised to approve the notorious party drug as a therapy. Here’s what it means, and where similar drugs stand in the US.

Who Took the Cocaine Out of Coca-Cola?

Giving the drug before surgery instead of chemotherapy led to a huge increase in patients being declared cancer-free […] Drug that ‘melts away’ tumours hailed as ‘gamechanger’ for some bowel cancer patients

“I’ve made bunya nut ice cream, a bunya nut miso caramel, and a dish that we made from grated down bunya nuts.” Indigenous chef Jack Brown, trained in traditional French cuisine, is on a mission to change Australian cuisine

If English was written like Chinese

Catastrophic weather events influence the movement of wild animals. In particular, airborne animals such as birds and insects are expected to occasionally face challenging flights because of unfavorable atmospheric currents such as hurricanes, cyclones, and typhoons. […] Here, I report on a rare case of […] a GPS-equipped streaked shearwater (Calonectris leucomelas) was apparently caught in a huge typhoon, showing swirling flight high over the mainland of Japan.

James Joyce would pick drunken fights, then duck behind his burly friend Ernest Hemingway and say, “Deal with him, Hemingway. Deal with him.”