Summary of “Isaac Asimov: Becoming Educated”

You may learn critical knowledge and key reasoning skills from books filled with facts, but this knowledge and reasoning will be limited in their scope without a broad imagination.
It’s often said that the best way to learn or to be educated is to teach, and there is a truth to that because teaching forces you to dig down to a core understanding that many neglect.
The best of the best only have one job: to evoke a sense of curiosity in you and to teach you to enjoy learning for its own sake.
“You valued learning and you taught me to value it. Once I learned to value it, the rest came without trouble.”
Very few people can recall the details of what they learned in school, but everybody can tell you their favorite part of a gripping story or the first time they picked up a great non-fiction.
Every experience we have and every lesson we learn is another information point that leads to a form of education.
Isaac Asimov lived a life that placed a high value on learning, and in the process, he showed us what it means to become educated and the steps worth taking to get there.
We associate knowledge with non-fiction, but great fiction is perhaps an even greater container of wisdom.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Slime Molds Remember”

Research into the behavior of protozoa such as the slime mold Physarum polycephalum suggests that these seemingly simple organisms are capable of complex decision-making and problem-solving within their environments.
Nakagaki and his colleagues have shown, for example, that slime molds are capable of solving maze problems and laying out distribution networks as efficient as ones designed by humans.
Chris Reid and his colleague Simon Garnier, who heads the Swarm Lab at the New Jersey Institute of Technology, are working on the mechanism behind how a slime mold transfers information between all of its parts to act as a kind of collective that mimics the capabilities of a brain full of neurons.
Each tiny part of the slime mold contracts and expands over the course of about one minute, but the contraction rate is linked to the quality of the local environment.
Using computer vision techniques and experiments that might be likened to a slime mold version of an MRI brain scan, the researchers are examining how the slime mold uses this mechanism to transfer information around its giant unicellular body and make complex decisions between conflicting stimuli.
He is not persuaded that Dussutour’s experiment with slime molds staying habituated to salt after extended dormancy shows much.
To Fred Kaijzer, a cognitive scientist at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands, the question of whether these interesting behaviors show that slime molds can learn is similar to the debate over whether Pluto is a planet: The answer depends as much on how the concept of learning is cast as on the empirical evidence.
“Slime mold researchers insist that functionally equivalent behavior observed in the slime mold should use the same descriptive terms as for brained animals, while classical neuroscientists insist that the very definition of learning and intelligence requires a neuron-based architecture,” he said.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The AI revolution has spawned a new chips arms race”

Google has a special AI chip for neural networks call the Tensor Processing Unit, or TPU, which is available for AI apps on the Google Cloud Platform.
IBM is developing specific AI processor, and the company also licensed NVLink from Nvidia for high-speed data throughput specific to AI and ML. Even non-traditional tech companies like Tesla want in on this area, with CEO Elon Musk acknowledging last year that former AMD and Apple chip engineer Jim Keller would be building hardware for the car company.
Why do we need more chips now, and so many different ones at that?
While x86 currently remains a dominant chip architecture for computing, it’s too general purpose for a highly specialized task like AI, says Addison Snell, CEO of Intersect360 Research, which covers HPC and AI issues.
The actual task of processing AI is a very different process from standard computing or GPU processing, hence the perceived need for specialized chips.
“Chips on the edge won’t compete with chips for the data center,” he says.
“Data center chips like Xeon have to have high performance capabilities for that kind of AI, which is different for AI in smartphones. There you have to get down below one watt. So the question is, ‘Where is not good enough so you need an accessory chip?'”.
A desire for more specialization and increased energy efficiency isn’t the whole reason these newer AI chips exist, of course.

The orginal article.

Summary of “10 important life lessons we are often taught too late”

Throughout our lives we keep rising and falling, picking up important lessons along the way.
There are many life lessons that we simply cannot learn until we face certain situations in our life.
Most people would say that there are some lessons that come too late, catching us off-guard and unprepared.
The following list unveils some of the most important lessons in life that people learn the hard way.
As EduGeeksClub’s career expert, Julia Smith once wrote: “Young people often face difficulties when it comes to putting what they have learned into practice; therefore all this knowledge becomes useless when it should be the fuel that propels their careers”.
If you want to have a good life with a successful career, emotional satisfaction, and trustworthy friends you have to work hard.
Live your life to its full extent because life is short and we never know what tomorrow brings.
Your life is your own and you know what’s best for you.

The orginal article.

Summary of “This is how the robot uprising finally begins”

The robot arm is performing a peculiar kind of Sisyphean task.
Anyone worried about a robot uprising need only step inside a modern factory to see how far away that is.
An ordinary robot arm lacks the sense needed to pick up an object if it is moved an inch.
The AI software that controls Osaro’s robot lets it identify the objects in front of it, study how they behave when poked, pushed, and grasped, and then decide how to handle them.
So with every grasp and placement, the software behind these robots will become more and more adept at making sense of the world and how it works.
The man behind Osaro’s smarter robot Osaro’s CEO, Derik Pridmore, studied physics and computer science at MIT before joining a West Coast VC firm called Founders Fund.
He founded Osaro and quickly zeroed in on robot picking as the ideal application.
For the past few years, Amazon has been running a “Robot picking” challenge in which researchers compete to have a robot pick up a wide array of products as quickly as possible.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Double Loop Learning: Download New Skills and Information into Your Brain”

Double loop learning is the quickest and most efficient way to learn anything that you want to “Stick.”
We can think of double loop learning as learning based on Bayesian updating – the modification of goals, rules, or ideas in response to new evidence and experience.
Double loop learning is part of action science – the study of how we act in difficult situations.
If we are accustomed only to success, double loop learning can ignite defensive behavior.
For double loop learning to happen, the managers would have to let go a little.
37Signals is one company using double loop learning to restructure their work week.
Double loop learning turned his failing noodle bar into an award-winning empire.
Double loop learning is the key to turning experience into improvements, information into action, and conversations into progress.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How many words do you need to speak a language?”

Learning a new language can be tricky, but how many words do you need to know before you can actually get by in a foreign tongue?
To work out how many words you need to know to be able to speak a second language we decided to look into how many words we know in our first language, in our case English.
We considered dusting off the dictionary and going from A1 to Zyzzyva there are an estimated 171,146 words currently in use in the English language, according to the Oxford English Dictionary, not to mention 47,156 obsolete words.
Their theory is that if you count up how many of the 50 words you understand and multiply the total by 500 you are able to estimate your total English vocabulary.
Words start off simply enough; dog, editor, immense but they quickly become more obscure, for example would you know how to use “Oleaginous” or “Cowsucker” in a sentence?
A study in Taiwan showed that after nine years of learning a foreign language half of the students failed to learn the most frequently-used 1,000 words.
You don’t need to know all of the words in a language: for example it seems unlikely that anyone reading this has suffered from not knowing that “Zyzzyva” is a kind of tropical weevil and not a Spice Girls lyric.
So which words should we learn? Prof Webb says the most effective way to be able to speak a language quickly is to pick the 800 to 1,000 lemmas which appear most frequently in a language, and learn those.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Keeping Evolution in Mind: The Future of Evolutionary Social Science”

Evolution has shaped the human body, but it also shaped the human brain, so evolutionary principles are indispensable for understanding our psychology.
Teachers, and even social scientists struggle to see how our evolutionary history significantly shapes our cognition and behavior today.
The lack of willingness to view human cognition and behavior as within the purview of evolutionary processes has prevented evolution from being fully integrated into the social science curriculum.
Psychological adaptations for social learning, such as conformity bias, develop in complex and diverse cultural ecologies that work in tandem to shape the human mind and generate cultural variation.
Truly satisfying explanations of human behavior requires identifying the components of human cognition that evolution designed to be sensitive to social or ecological conditions and information.
Applying evolutionary theory to social science has the potential to transform education and, through it, society.
Evolutionary perspectives can help social scientists understand, and eventually address, common social problems.
The researchers recommend that the esteem bullies seek “Should be borne in mind when engineering interventions” designed to either decrease a bully’s social status or channel the bully’s social motivations to better ends.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Parents’ Screen Time Is Hurting Kids”

These findings attracted a decent bit of media attention to the physical dangers posed by distracted parenting, but we have been slower to reckon with its impact on children’s cognitive development.
In the early 2010s, researchers in Boston surreptitiously observed 55 caregivers eating with one or more children in fast-food restaurants.
Forty of the adults were absorbed with their phones to varying degrees, some almost entirely ignoring the children.
Unsurprisingly, many of the children began to make bids for attention, which were frequently ignored.
A follow-up study brought 225 mothers and their approximately 6-year-old children into a familiar setting and videotaped their interactions as each parent and child were given foods to try.
The mothers were then told that they would need to teach their children two new words and were given a phone so that investigators could contact them from another room.
To balance adults’ and children’s needs, much less their desires, and it’s naive to imagine that children could ever be the unwavering center of parental attention.
In some respects, 21st-century children’s screen time is not very different from the mother’s helpers every generation of adults has relied on to keep children occupied.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Pain Plus Reflection Equals Progress”

Rather than run from pain, we need to identify it, accept it, and learn how to use it to better ourselves.
Our images of learning are filled with positive thoughts about how we learn from others.
Ray Dalio, the longtime leader of Bridgewater, the largest hedge fund in the world, argues that pain “Is a signal that you need to find solutions so you can progress.” Only by exploring it and reflecting on it can we start to learn and evolve.
We’ve known about this problem for a long time: We’ve watched others make mistakes and fail to learn from them.
They run from the pain that could be the source of learning.
For us to adapt, we need to learn from the uncomfortable moments.
It’s easy and comfortable to convince yourself that the world should work differently than it does, that you have nothing to learn from the pain.
If we don’t learn to embrace being uncomfortable, we will need to learn how to embrace irrelevance, and that will be much harder.

The orginal article.