Book by Neil Shubin (2008)
“The Minds of Men” is a 3+ year investigation into the experimentation, art, and practice of social engineering and mind control during the Cold War – a mind-bending journey into the past that gives startling insight into the world we are living in today.
Richard Fortey investigates why islands are laboratories of evolution. Examining some of the crucial influences on natural selection that are normally overlooked – like geology, geography, isolation and time – the series reveals that there is much more to evolution than ‘survival of the fittest’.
Professor Richard Fortey journeys high in the Rocky Mountains to explore a 520-million-year-old fossilised seabed containing bizarre and experimental lifeforms that have revolutionised our understanding about the beginnings of complex life. Among the amazing finds he uncovers are marine creatures with five eyes and a proboscis; filter-feeders shaped like tulips; worm-like scavengers covered in spikes but with no identifiable head or anus; and a metre-long predator resembling a giant shrimp.
Professor Richard Fortey travels to northeastern China to see a fossil site known as the ‘Dinosaur Pompeii’ – a place that has yielded spectacular remains of feathered dinosaurs and rewritten the story of the origins of birds. Among the amazing finds he investigates are the feathered cousin of T-rex, a feathered dinosaur with strong parallels to living pandas and some of the most remarkable flying animals that have ever lived.
Professor Richard Fortey investigates the remains of ancient volcanic lake in Germany (Messel pit) where stunningly well-preserved fossils of early mammals, giant insects and even perhaps our oldest known ancestor have been found. Among the amazing finds are bats as advanced and sophisticated as anything living today, more than 50-million-years-later; dog-sized ‘Dawn’ horses, the ancestor of the modern horse; and giant ants as large as a hummingbird.
As the world around us increases in technological complexity, our understanding of it diminishes. Underlying this trend is a single idea: the belief that our existence is understandable through computation, and more data is enough to help us build a better world.
In reality, we are lost in a sea of information, increasingly divided by fundamentalism, simplistic narratives, conspiracy theories, and post-factual politics. Meanwhile, those in power use our lack of understanding to further their own interests. Despite the apparent accessibility of information, we’re living in a new Dark Age.
From rogue financial systems to shopping algorithms, from artificial intelligence to state secrecy, we no longer understand how our world is governed or presented to us. The media is filled with unverifiable speculation, much of it generated by anonymous software, while companies dominate their employees through surveillance and the threat of automation.
In his brilliant new work, leading artist and writer James Bridle surveys the history of art, technology, and information systems, and reveals the dark clouds that gather over our dreams of the digital sublime. (VERSO)
timespace coordinates: 2014 Taipei, Taiwan / Paris
Lucy is a 2014 English-language French Science-fantasy / Biopunk / Postcyberpunk action-thriller film written and directed by Luc Besson and produced by his wife Virginie Besson-Silla for his company EuropaCorp. The film was shot in Taipei, Paris, and New York City. It stars Scarlett Johansson, Morgan Freeman, Choi Min-sik, and Amr Waked. Johansson portrays the title character, a woman who gains psychokinetic abilities when a nootropic drug is absorbed into her bloodstream.Luc Besson once called this film as “one part Léon (1994), one part Inception (2010) and one part 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)”. Many shots in the film were mirrored after these three films.
The 10 percent of the brain myth is a widely perpetuated urban legend that most or all humans only use 10 percent (or some other small percentage) of their brains. It has been misattributed to many people, including Albert Einstein. By extrapolation, it is suggested that a person may harness this unused potential and increase intelligence. (read more)