Post Rapture. An interesting TEDTalk on why people believe in strange things
Why do people see the Virgin Mary on cheese sandwiches or hear demonic lyrics in “Stairway to Heaven”? Using video, images and music, professional skeptic Michael Shermer explores these and other phenomena, including UFOs and alien sightings. He offers cognitive context: In the absence of sound science, incomplete information can combine with the power of suggestion (helping us hear those Satanic lyrics in Led Zeppelin).
In fact, he says, humans tend to convince ourselves to believe: We overvalue the “hits” that support our beliefs, and discount the more numerous “misses.”
BRILLIANT. 10 minutes of economics debate throw down in a Rap Video!
According to the National Bureau of Economic Research, the Great Recession ended almost two years ago, in the summer of 2009. But we’re all uneasy. Job growth has been disappointing. The recovery seems fragile. Where should we head from here? Is that question even meaningful? Can governments steer the economy or have past attempts helped create the mess we’re still in?
The biggest takeaway from this infographic? You know how Twitter is always bragging about how big they are and how many users they have?
Turns out that roughly 80% of all Twitter accounts have somewhere between 0 and 9 tweets. In other words, 80% of Twitter’s accounts are abandoned very soon after registration. 80% of people who sign up try it and find it useless.
The total number of users, then, is a red herring — it makes the company and its user base seem bigger and more relevant than they are.