Sundry: Losing weight playing chess (!), AC technology, addiction, building pyramids, monsters


Paul Romer, Nobel laureate in economics, goes to Burning Man. There, he claims, might be the solution to urban planning — + learn everything about the NYC street grid

The history, economics, and environmental impact of air conditioning technology —

Chess players can burn 6,000 calories a day during a competition. They have the same blood pressures as professional athletes. And can lose up to 1 kilo per day. Why is that? Stress and anxiety. So yes, you can shed weight by sitting idly for hours. A fascinating read —

The science of addiction, by Judith Grisel, a previously-addicted scientist. A chilling finding: “primates given ecstasy twice a day for four days (eight total doses) show reduction in the number of serotonergic neurons seven years later.“ —

How to trade FOMO (the fear of missing out) to JOMO (the joy of missing out) —

Why are we so afraid of monsters? Their distinctly unnatural shapes and figures are surprising, which makes them hard to ignore. In turn, the ideas and symbols they represent become very spreadable —

A new study claims that people are talking faster in less-efficient languages, such as Japanese or Basque —

How the Egyptians built the pyramids of Giza, or a tutorial in how to build pyramids, if it strikes your fancy —

Curated technology links

For the news/media industry, the Spotify business model is not appropriate. Perhaps technology for personnalisation is better —

In 2015, conversational ecommerce was hailed as the future of online shopping. It did not turned out that way. Massive, topical group chats can act as a useful, crowdsourced concierge service. Very interesting —

How the iOS App Store search algorithms favoured Apple’s own apps, with impressive and useful data graphics —

Face recognition and the ethics of AI —

How is a video game programmed? —