We grow up hearing nursery rhymes and fairy tales that deal with good and evil. All of us fondly remember the cartoons of our youth and the stories we grew up with. We talk to Soman Chainani about authoring a new entry into the catalogue of mythology and his attempt to course-correct the lessons more modern stories have been teaching our children.
Bats: Their Value and Their Endangerment
Bats are often thought of as scary or dangerous. But two experts tell us… thery’re actually very helpful! They eat the insects we so deperately try to rid our yards amd neighborhoods of. We explore the benefits of bats, and why their numbers are decreasing in alarming numbers.
Social media has become a source of constant comparison between ourselves and our peers, which can lead to us feeling like we’re not doing as well or enjoying life as much as others. It often seems that everyone on social media is happier and more fulfilled than you.
Neil Pasricha, author of Two Minute Mornings: A Journey to Win Your Day Every Day, says people want to be happy, more than anything. We also know what to do to become happy, because the research has been done. The biggest roadblock to our happiness is anxiety, we live in a high-pressure world, which seems to zap the happiness from us. Sharon Weil, author of ChangeAbility: How Artists, Activists, and Awakeners Navigate Change, says that we are always changing. While writing her book she found that timing is everything. When change is too slow, too fast, or comes out of nowhere, it can be upsetting, causing shock and grief, which leave little room for joy.
It’s important to take time for yourself during changes, according to Weil. This is because we experience fear during a change, which causes our body go into anxiety mode. If we stop and take time to just even focus on our breathing we can reverse the fear and prevent an anxiety attack. The fear is what actually takes the happiness from us, and if we can learn how to reverse it, then the happier we can be.
Fears can also keep us from making changes that will make us happier. A lot of people fail at resolutions and goals because the motivation is not big enough to overcome their fear of change. Most successful changes happen when we are motivated by someone or something we love. Fear holds us back, but love seems to send us forward towards a happier life.
Neil Pasricha, author of Two Minute Mornings: A Journey to Win Your Day Every Day
Sharon Weil, author of ChangeAbility: How Artists, Activists, and Awakeners Navigate Change
While women make up more than half of the workforce, they only account for twenty-six percent of the tech industry. Reshma Saujani, the founder of Girls Who Code, says this is because of what our culture teaches us. She uses the example of a common image for a computer scientist: a man in a basement who probably hasn’t showered. Unsurprisingly, when asked, girls say they don’t want to be him, or even be friends with him.
According to Saujani, there are around 500,000 open jobs in the computer and tech industry. In the United States last year we graduated 40,000 people qualified for these jobs. She says that economically everyone can benefit from being in the tech industry, but without women helping to solve the problems, you lose half of the population’s ideas. All the studies indicate that a more diverse team works better.
Hiring women also can help tech companies. Eighty percent of the shopping is done by women, so women on the team can give great marketing and sales insights. Studies show that a more diverse team makes more money.
Girls Who Code was started as a way to empower girls to learn about computer science. They have taught over 40,000 girls to code in under five years. All the programs are free, removing barriers that girls might have. They have summer programs, school programs, and clubs that meet in libraries all around the country. Saujani’s book tells the story of computer coding through five young girls from all different walks of lives.
Reshman Saujani, founder of Girls Who Code and author of Girls Who Code: Learn to Code and Change the World
In the modern era of social media, demanding jobs, and anxiety, it may seem nearly impossible to find the joy you dream of. We talk to two experts about how to overcome our fears, withstand constant change, and feel more happiness in our everyday lives.
Teaching Girls to Code: The mission to close the gender gap in tech
Technological advancements are happening every day. But statistics show the tech field is dominated by men. Reshma Saujani decided to do something about that and began an organization dedicated to teaching girls to code, and hopes to empower a new future of innovation.
Dr. Charles Fernhough author of The Voices Within: The History and Science of How We Talk to Ourselves says that hearing voices is part of the human experience, and needs to be understood better. One thing Dr. Fernhough is trying to do is educate the public about the difference between thoughts and talking to yourself. There is also no real right way to talk to yourself, and some people do it more often than others. Dr. Ethan Kross, a professor of Psychology at the University of Michigan, is studying how people talk themselves through problems, which he calls self-talk.
A study showed that people who use their name while talking themselves through a problem have a higher rate of success. Although third person self-talk is proven to be more effective, you might get some strange looks if you talk out loud in the third person.
Dr. Charles Fernyhough, author of The Voices Within: The History and Science of How We Talk to Ourselves
Dr. Ethan Kross, Professor of Psychology at the University of Michigan
Photography used to be handled by professionals, and only for special occasions. Edwin Land, the creator of the Polaroid camera, helped turn photography into a daily activity for everyone. Ron Fierstein profiles Land in A Triumph of Genius: Edwin Land, Polaroid, and the Kodak Patent War.
Edwin Land, the creator of the Polaroid camera, had made millions off a thin sheet that removed the glare from headlights and needed a new problem to solve. This led to the Polaroid camera in the 1940’s and the SX70 in the 70’s. In the 1940’s Kodak formed a partnership with Polaroid to develop the film from their cameras, and both sides made a lot of money from the deal. Kodak then allowed Land to use their labs when he was working on the SX70. When the SX70 was done Kodak, wanted to sell the film as a Kodak film, while Land had decided to sell it himself. This was the start to many more problems with the two companies. A short time after this, Kodak came out with a new instant camera. Land sued for patent infringement, claiming that Kodak had used some of his technology. This led to one of the largest patent settlements in America, and forced Kodak out of the instant camera business.
Ron Fierstein, author of the book, A Triumph of Genius: Edwin Land, Polaroid, and the Kodak Patent War