J. W. Davis

My rambling perspective

Anonymous asked: Why do we need to clean our teeth from an evolutionary point of view? Surely our teeth haven't always been falling out as early primates

edwardspoonhands:

scishow:

Well, a few things to consider. First, these days we eat a lot more foods with nutrients that bacteria REALLY LOVE, particularly simple sugars. So there is some truth to that whole “candy rots your teeth” thing. But the bigger answer is that animals get terrible tooth decay (including primates) and keepers regularly brush the teeth of animals in zoos to prevent these problems. Finally, the average human these days lives a lot longer than we’re designed to. The life expectancy of our nearest relative, the chimpanzee, is just 40 years in the wild. In captivity, that number goes up to around 60. We just live longer than we’re supposed to…so we have to keep our parts working for longer than they’re designed to work…which means brushing your teeth a couple times a day.

- Hank

I’m answering sciencey questions on the SciShow Tumblr these days…

You are personally responsible for becoming more ethical than the society you grew up in.

Eliezer Yudkowsky 

Being a “product of their times” is no excuse. Never let someone off the hook for bigotry. 

(via toostoked)

(Source: abundance-mine, via disimba)

Anonymous asked: Yo, Max. What games are you most anticipated for?

maxscoville:

Sucks it got delayed till 2016, though.

explore-blog:

Ann Friedman's Disapproval Matrix for handling criticism is a thing of genius, not to mention essential internet-age literacy. She explains:

Critics: These are smart people who know something about your field. They are taking a hard look at your work and are not loving it. You’ll probably want to listen to what they have to say, and make some adjustments to your work based on their thoughtful comments.
Lovers: These people are invested in you and are also giving you negative but rational feedback because they want you to improve. Listen to them, too.
Frenemies: Ooooh, this quadrant is tricky. These people really know how to hurt you, because they know you personally or know your work pretty well. But at the end of the day, their criticism is not actually about your work—it’s about you personally. And they aren’t actually interested in a productive conversation that will result in you becoming better at what you do. They just wanna undermine you. Dishonorable mention goes to The Hater Within, aka the irrational voice inside you that says you suck, which usually falls into this quadrant. Tell all of these fools to sit down and shut up.
Haters: This is your garden-variety, often anonymous troll who wants to tear down everything about you for no rational reason. Folks in this quadrant are easy to write off because they’re counterproductive and you don’t even know them. Ignore! Engaging won’t make you any better at what you do. And then rest easy, because having haters is proof your work is finding a wide audience and is sparking conversation. Own it.
The general rule of thumb? When you receive negative feedback that falls into one of the top two quadrants—from experts or people who care about you who are engaging with and rationally critiquing your work—you should probably take their comments to heart. When you receive negative feedback that falls into the bottom two quadrants, you should just let it roll off your back and just keep doin’ you.

Complement with Benjamin Franklin’s trick for neutralizing critics, Daniel Dennett on how to criticize with kindness, and Anne Lamott’s definitive manifesto for handling haters.

explore-blog:

Ann Friedman's Disapproval Matrix for handling criticism is a thing of genius, not to mention essential internet-age literacy. She explains:

Critics: These are smart people who know something about your field. They are taking a hard look at your work and are not loving it. You’ll probably want to listen to what they have to say, and make some adjustments to your work based on their thoughtful comments.

Lovers: These people are invested in you and are also giving you negative but rational feedback because they want you to improve. Listen to them, too.

Frenemies: Ooooh, this quadrant is tricky. These people really know how to hurt you, because they know you personally or know your work pretty well. But at the end of the day, their criticism is not actually about your work—it’s about you personally. And they aren’t actually interested in a productive conversation that will result in you becoming better at what you do. They just wanna undermine you. Dishonorable mention goes to The Hater Within, aka the irrational voice inside you that says you suck, which usually falls into this quadrant. Tell all of these fools to sit down and shut up.

Haters: This is your garden-variety, often anonymous troll who wants to tear down everything about you for no rational reason. Folks in this quadrant are easy to write off because they’re counterproductive and you don’t even know them. Ignore! Engaging won’t make you any better at what you do. And then rest easy, because having haters is proof your work is finding a wide audience and is sparking conversation. Own it.

The general rule of thumb? When you receive negative feedback that falls into one of the top two quadrants—from experts or people who care about you who are engaging with and rationally critiquing your work—you should probably take their comments to heart. When you receive negative feedback that falls into the bottom two quadrants, you should just let it roll off your back and just keep doin’ you.

Complement with Benjamin Franklin’s trick for neutralizing critics, Daniel Dennett on how to criticize with kindness, and Anne Lamott’s definitive manifesto for handling haters.

You’re probably not getting enough sleep, but you might not be as far off the mark as you think. Most sleep experts would offer that aiming for between seven to nine hours of snooze time a night is optimal for feeling refreshed and productive the next day. In a new report, however … researchers are closing in on what may just be that magic nightly number—and it’s not nine hours, or even eight as once believed… it’s seven hours of sleep.

The usual caveats apply, and these findings should be taken with a grain of salt. But the results are interesting—especially if you’re the kind of person who struggles with sluggishness throughout the day.

"The lowest mortality and morbidity is with seven hours," [says] Shawn Youngstedt, a professor in the College of Nursing and Health Innovation at Arizona State University Phoenix… "Eight hours or more has consistently been shown to be hazardous."

Intriguing new study on the optimal amount of sleep. But that grain of salt can’t be overstated given the wide variation of “chronotypes” and internal time.

Also see the science of what actually happens while you sleep and how it affects your every waking moment.

(via explore-blog)

Every barometer by which female worth is measured—from the superficial to the life-altering, the appreciative to the punitive—has long been calibrated to “dude,” whether or not those measurements are actually being taken by dudes.

Intelligent op-ed by The New Republic's Rebecca Traister on why women are tired of being judged by the Esquire metric.

To illustrate the point, step into the cultural time machine and fly back to Esquire’s appallingly sexist 1949 attractiveness questionnaire, a caricature of the more subtle ways in which we still evaluate women today.

(via explore-blog)