10 Matching Annotations
  1. Oct 2017
    1. The next task for your atten-tion in training is to develop the most important skill mindful digital citi-zens require to make it through life successfully these days: crap detection.

      The ability to "detect crap" is an incredibly useful skill that without it, my life would be much more stressful and confusing. If I can easily detect crap then I can devote my brain power and effort to more important and meaningful tasks. I believe that I am inherently good at crap detection and because of that I've always been able to work more efficiently. I know when something is a waste of time and what's truly important in the grand scheme of things. Crap detection is a useful skill that everyone should work on improving.

    2. When I intentionally aim the beam of my self-awareness on my breath, I strengthen networks of brain cells that eventually begin to function together even when I'm not consciously meditating. Being aware of my own thoughts, I realized, is a skill that can be learned through patient rep-etition.

      Self-awareness is a learned behavior. We can do so much with our brains if we just go through the effort of learning how. Our brains are full of limitless untapped potential and the more in touch one is within themself the better understanding of their brain they have achieved. We are capable of learning infinite skills with infinite uses. The brain is a powerful tool that people should really take more advantage of when they have the opportunity.

    3. Mindfulness in its most general sense is about waking up from a life on automatic, and being sensitive to novelty in our everyday experiences.

      Being mindful is an important quality for one to possess. Being mindful is about turning off the auto-pilot and stopping to smell the roses. Everyday is special and unique in its own way, but if one allows himself or herself to do so one will never notice. All it takes is a little effort, and a conscious flip of a switch to truly wake up and look at each day as a new and unique experience.

    4. Another reading expert, Dehaene, calls this adoption of previously evolved brain mechanisms to serve new tasks "neuronal recycling."

      http://www.unicog.org/publications/DehaeneFyssenChapterPreemption2004b.pdf "the human capacity for cultural learning relies on a process of pre-empting or recycling preexisting brain circuitry. " - the definition of neuronal recycling according to Dehaene's paper

    5. Humans are born biologically equipped to recognize visual patterns, then extract meaning from them, but meshing language, vision, and atten-tion to transmit knowledge was invented

      We as humans are not intended to be able to engage, attention, linguistic, and visual skills all at once but we have trained ourselves to do so. As society evolved and technology grew, so did the capacity of our brains. Although few physical changes have taken place in our brains, we have learned how to achieve so much more with what we have. This is what makes humans so much smarter than other animals. We do not need to wait for evolution for our brains to grow. We are always learning and developing knew skills. Human potential is limitless.

    6. Extremes make for good storytelling, but framing the question of how social media affects individuals

      Social media had a terrible effect on Mr. Costacura when Russia took his pictures to spread propaganda. The effect of social media on us as individuals is much stronger than we realize. When a post is made it is archived for virtually forever. One has no real way of knowing who exactly has seen their pictures and posts on social media, whether it's an old ex or Russian hackers. It is for this reason I always make sure to carefully consider a post before it is made on social media and be absolutely sure that I want to post it.

    7. When external stimuli tempt attention away from the intended focal point, the external stimuli are usually regarded as distractions

      Distractions are a major problem in today's digital society. When one is sitting at their desk in a lecture with their laptop in front of them, the distractions are limitless. One could be distracted by anything from the New York Times to pictures of pigs wearing tutus. Distraction also poses a danger to people in their daily lives. One of the most dangerous things one can do while driving is use their cell phone. The cell phone is a modern distraction that will tempt one's attention from the intended focal point. Distractions are everywhere in our world today, and it is up to us as humans to block it out and keep ourselves focused on what is really important in the world.

    8. When you shift your attention, there is always a short interval during which you must reorient, refocus, and filter out competing information in order to move from one stable theme to another

      Shifting one's attention can lead to a lapse in attention as well as information. This lapse can be a big deal if something critical happens during those few seconds. Much akin to how easily Mr. Costacura's identity was stolen by Russia. In an attentional blink of an eye Mr. Costacura found pictures of himself being used to promote Russian propaganda. One's attention is important when it comes to both real life and the internet. Although Mr. Costacura discovered the use of his profile, if the people at Facebook were paying more attention they should have been able to catch the fake profile. Attention is important in both the physical and digital world, and shifting one's attention in both can lead to undesirable consequences.

    9. Could it be that he was no more or less Attention! 37 attentionally endowed than other students but had learned something that others could learn?

      The thought that the ability to multitask is a learned trait and not innate is an interesting concept in itself. When one asks a friend whether he or she is able to multitask he or she is most likely to say either "yeah I've always been good at it", or "nah I'm not much of a multitasker", or some other variation of those statements. The article poses an interesting concept that multitasking is a learned skill therefore anyone is capable of multitasking if he or she is willing to put in the effort.

    10. I chose the supplemental reading titled Mystery of Russian Fake on Facebook Solved, By a Brazilian. The article followed the story of how Russia created fake profiles on Facebook in order to spread Russian propaganda and denounce Hillary Clinton. A Brazilian salesman noticed that his pictures of him and his daughter were being used for fake American profiles. The profile in question was "Melvin Redick", and he would openly promote the Russian propaganda website DCLeaks.com. The NY Times tried to track down Mr. Redick, but upon further investigation, he did not seem to exist. After the Times reported this to Facebook the profile was soon removed from the website. Reading this article which contained quotes from Mr. Costacurta on how he felt about his pictures being used was eye-opening. The article shows how little the Russians care for the privacy of others as well as how our internet profiles may be a lot less secure than we think. The Russian government stole the pictures of an innocent Brazilian man, in order to influence another country's election. The blatant disregard for morals and Costacura's value as a person are very evident through Russia's actions. They took advantage of how Google blocks image searches of its Brazilian users (a rule that is intended to protect the privacy of users) in order to influence the 2016 election.