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Will Covid-19 kill off traditional shops?

Will Covid-19 kill off traditional shops?

What happens after movement control orders, social distancing, shelter in place, circuit breaking, etc.? Do we return to normal? And what will that new normal look like? Will people stop buying stuff from traditional shops? Will all transactions be henceforth online?   Since I run a traditional bookshop, that’s really scary. The best parts of being a bookseller, are the book-buyers and readers one meets, and the resulting conversations that take place. At Silverfish, we’re constantly meeting amazing customers and having amazing conversations. How boring to buy all your books online and never discuss your discoveries with fellow lovers.  ...

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Western Civilisation: is this the end?

Western Civilisation: is this the end?

  This is from the NewScientist, 2018 : https://www.newscientist.com/article/mg23731610-300-end-of-days-is-western-civilisation-on-the-brink-of-collapse/ To many, the term “Western civilisation” itself is an oxymoron; decadent, debauch, hedonist, selfish, greedy, and predatory to the point of eating their own babies.  Add to that: political strife, crippling inequality and climate change. (BTW, some scientist believe that the US is already 20 years into a mega-drought enhanced by climate change.)   Will the US and European civilisation come to an end? That will be a worst-case scenario. I will go for decline and decay over a few centuries, much like the Roman Empire. Will the US implode? Good...

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Are polymaths born or made?

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Are polymaths born or made?

( Photo credit from left to right: Pete Souza, gatesnotes.com, Wikipedia Commons) "Polymaths have existed forever — indeed they are often the ones who’ve advanced Western civilization more than any others —" says author, Michael Simmons, link below. (Not just Western but all world civilisations.)   Polymaths have often been used synonymously with "geniuses", sort of meaning that they're born, not made. Funny that, considering how almost every child I've ever met is a genius, a polymath; so unbelievably curious, so voracious for knowledge. (Parents, not so much.)   (I think, all geniuses are polymaths, and not all polymaths are...

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Back from La La Land

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Back from La La Land

Back from La La Land

Travelling to the US has always been nerve-wracking for me (unless it’s done illegally, I’m told). Are they going to profile me for the way I look, for my colour, for my passport; will I be detained for hours for interrogation; will I miss my connection; will I be strip searched, should I wear my good underwear, will they make me take it off ... But this time, with a new administration in place, my fears hit fever pitch. Will they let me board the plane; will they cancel my visa mid-flight, does my name sound suspicious, will they rampas my laptop, will they turn me back, will I get picked-on in the streets ...

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Fascism in sci-fi

Facism foreigners immigration sci-fi

Fascism in sci-fi

I read two interesting article in wired.com recently (it is a magazine for nerds, so if you don't know about it, that’s fine); one titled The Man Who's Trying to Kill Dark Matterand the other calledHere's What Sci-Fi Can Teach Us About Fascism. The first is a story about a Dutch theoretical physicist, Erik Verlinde, arguing that dark matter does not exist. (Actually, he posted a 51-page paper about it online.)

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