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Annemieke Cloosterman
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Long but interesting post.

"Meaning is non-physical connection, something that exists in networks of symbols and contexts. Because it is not purely physical, it can leap across great distances to connect through space and time." 

"Meaning is more stable than emotion, and so living things use meaning as part of their never-ending quest to achieve stability."

"People ask what is the meaning of life, as if there is a single answer. There is no one answer: there are thousands of different ones. A life will be meaningful if it finds responses to the four questions of purpose, value, efficacy, and self-worth. It is these questions, not the answers, that endure and unify."
 
The meanings of life - Parents often say: ‘I just want my children to be happy.’ It is unusual to hear: ‘I just want my children’s lives to be meaningful,’ yet that’s what most of us seem to want for ourselves. We fear meaninglessness. We fret about the ‘nihilism’ of this or that aspect of our culture. When we lose [...]The post The meanings of life appeared first on Aeon Magazine. http://ow.ly/2zVMCP
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There is a unique purpose for each one of us.  However, the simple meaning of life for me is to enjoy the life's journey – take care, be good, and be free! ✿
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Introduction to Philosophy is a great free online course. This week is about Minds, Brains and Computers. 
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Indeed a very interesting post about music and language.   

"From a developmental perspective, we argue that music comes first and language arises from music."

"As adults, people focus primarily on the meaning of speech. But babies begin by hearing language as 'an intentional and often repetitive vocal performance', they listen to it not only for its emotional content but also for its rhythmic and phonemic patterns and consistencies. The meaning of words comes later."
 
This is really interesting and I think very intuitively plausible idea, though I've never considered it before. (I also find it encouraging as a sort-of-musician who's learning a new language. +Emma Eeyore Åström I think you may be especially interested in this; it dovetails completely into one of our discussions from yesterday.)

Obviously the sophistication of spoken language is probably the single most defining human characteristic. Music is also similarly unique to human beings, but unlike language, the importance or utility of music has never been really clear. Why exactly is it so universal and so emotionally potent? I think this may well be one of the most satisfying and likely answers we will ever get: we love music in part because it utilizes the same abilities we need to process such complex auditory information as in spoken language.

One of the most amazing things about the human mind is how it rewards itself for becoming more adept at information processing. Humor, for example, has a lot to do with the mind rewarding itself for solving small puzzles. Similarly, I think some of the satisfaction for listening to really great music has to do with being able to make sense of it – to "reverse engineer" it on the fly, so to speak. This happens both on the level of understanding musical patterns themselves, and also on the level of signal processing: When you hear, say, a vocal sample that has been run through an effects rack that makes it sound really lush and awesome, in part what is happening is your brain deriving satisfaction from being able to recognize roughly how that sound is related to an original signal. Of course there are also many other layers to the satisfaction and I dont want to oversimplify, but I definitely think that this is a major component. At the very least I certainly think it applies to my musical brain.
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Yes, absolutely! Not sure about 2nd language learners (not that many people learn Dutch as their 2nd language :) but it is very confusing if the rhythm is not congruent with the meaning. Maybe learning another language is indeed very much about mimicking others in the beginning, much like children do. I know I am very much compelled to do so :)
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How to Face the Digital Future Without Fear

Interesting video about how we have to plan for a future that we can not imagen. That we do not have to learn facts anymore but pathways. That our smartphones have become a slightly slower version of our memory. And that we entrusted our future to people who are confused by the present.
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Interesting post on an interesting new platform.

Loved this: 'An idea is something that floats freely; all it needs is an address to be pointed to in a space.'
 
I just wrote a post on Ev's new Medium about replacing copyright with creditright. I'd like people to discuss it, so I'm linking them here. Read there. Talk here. Pass around. Please. 
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Annemieke Cloosterman

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Aesthetics and the Philosophy of Art

Looks very interesting. Especially the second part about understanding works of art. 

This part examines the interpretation of literature, the expression of emotion in music, and the definition of art.
 
Aesthetics & the Philosophy of Art from Oxford University: http://goo.gl/iQhLc  Added to our list of 700 Free Online Courses:  http://is.gd/eKuaOA
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Best new global city for startups is Eindhoven.

The Intelligent Community Forum, a nonprofit think tank, ranked Eindhoven's tech neighborhood (dubbed Brainport) the world's smartest region in 2011. The one-square-kilometer area is home to more than 100 companies and institutes and some 8,000 researchers, developers, and entrepreneurs who churn out nearly 50% of all Dutch patent applications.

Good for

•Green/sustainable
•Software
•Online participation 
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Great post! Found via +Gideon Rosenblatt 

"You can’t fix a broken culture once it’s been set on its way. You can’t take the power of privilege away from those who are gifted with it as a network is born. All you can do is try to distribute that power as broadly as possible early on, while your network is still forming, in order to allow for the serendipity and inclusiveness that will let a piece of technology reach its highest potential."
 
You Can’t Start the Revolution from the Country Club via +Anil Dash 
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Interesting quotes on Brain Pickings about the role of art in society.

Loved this one: 

"The great artist is not the one who unites mankind on a basis of feeling but the one who by transcending personal feelings discovers symbols for the universal archetypes of the psyche." 
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Great list, the 20 most-watched TED Talks. I have seen several of them, but there are also many on the list that I did not see yet.
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