Additional knowledge and information
Saturday, 31 August 2013 (Global)
Abraham Maslow and the pyramid that beguiled business
The psychologist Abraham Maslow's theory of human motivation is 70 years old but continues to have a strong influence on the world of business. What is it, and is it right?
There is a commonly reproduced symbol which many believe holds the secret to personal fulfilment and business success. It usually takes the form of a triangle, but variants in the shape of 3D pyramids and staircases are not uncommon. It regularly appears in university psychology modules, and may pop up in other degree courses too. On management training courses it's as inevitable as biscuits and role-playing.
In 1943, the US psychologist Abraham Maslow published a paper called A Theory of Human Motivation, in which he said that people had five sets of needs, which come in a particular order. As each level of needs is satisfied, the desire to fulfil ..→
Friday, 28 January 2011 (Global)
How Meditation May Change the Brain
Over the December holidays, my husband went on a 10-day silent meditation retreat. Not my idea of fun, but he came back rejuvenated and energetic. He said the experience was so transformational that he has committed to meditating for two hours a day, once in the morning and once in the evening, until the end of March. He’s running an experiment to determine whether and how meditation actually improves the quality of his life.
I’ll admit I’m a skeptic.
But now, scientists say that meditators like my husband may be benefiting from changes in their brains. The researchers report that those who meditated for about 30 minutes a day for eight weeks had measurable changes in gray-matter density in parts of the brain associated with memory, sense of self, empathy and stress. The findings will appear in the Jan. 30 issue of Psychiatry ..→
How wikipedia turned into a leading source for daily news
For centuries, an encyclopedia was synonymous with a fixed, archival idea about the retrievability of information from the past. But Wikipedia’s notion of the past has enlarged to include things that haven’t even stopped happening yet. Increasingly, it has become a go-to source not just for reference material but for real-time breaking news — to the point where, following the mass murder at Virginia Tech, one newspaper in Virginia praised Wikipedia as a crucial source of detailed information....
But even when Wikipedia’s function is journalistic, its aim is not; rather than report the news, the goal is to act as a kind of phenomenally fast, bias-free digest of what others have already reported elsewhere. On a big news day, Wikipedia functions like a massive, cooperative blog — except that where most blogs’ function is to sieve news accounts through ..→
Monday, 20 December 2010
How English evolved into a global language
As the British Library charts the evolution of English in a new major exhibition, author Michael Rosen gives a brief history of a language that has grown to world domination with phrases such as "cool" and "go to it".
The need for an international language has always existed. In the past it was about religion and intellectual debate. With the technologies of today, it's about communicating with others anywhere in the world in a matter of moments.
Two events, separated by nearly 400 years, show how this need has always been present. Firstly, sitting in front of me I have a copy of the celebrated book Utopia, by Sir Thomas More. This particular edition is published in 1629 in Amsterdam, not in English, not in Dutch, but in Latin. The second event was a talk I recently had with a German scientist. He said that he knew of scientific conferences ..→