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When asked about our leisure time activities, more than half the population will answer something in the context of the entertainment world. However, compared to our forebears, what might their sources of pastime be? This question triggers an idea of whether the emergence of the entertainment world also followed a particular lineage.An Overview
Why do humans participate in an array of things that do not appear to have anything to do with surviving and procreating? Why do people spend many hours, weeks, seasons, and even decades producing and enjoying music, books, visual arts, and athletic events? These ostensibly “frivolous endeavours dominate some people’s complete life.” These trends necessitate a rationalization. To solve these conundrums, evolutionary psychologists have used two main strategies.Display Hypothesis
The display assumption could be used to describe the first strategy. This theory holds that culture is “an endogenous entity originating from sexual rivalry amongst enormous quantities of people pursuing diverse breeding tactics in various mating venues.” To disseminate courtship demonstrations to a range of women, men notably often produce and exhibit musical and artistic works: “As every adolescent recognizes and most academics abandon, cultural presentations by males promote sexual availability.”
The display theory can also explain how old different cultural displays are. Young adulthood is the phase when men are incredibly passionately immersed in intrasexual partner rivalry, and men produce many critical artistic pieces and songs during this time. In summary, the display theory explains the dispersion of ages and sexes in culture creation.
However, the display hypothesis cannot account for other literature, music, and art aspects. This cultural product’s essence cannot be explained to start. Why do some songs move people while others fail to do so? Why do some people find Shakespeare’s plays to be enthralling while finding many other playwrights’ works to be tedious?
Why do some films garner millions of viewers while others become forgotten? The substance of cultural objects, not only their age, must be explained by a coherent theory of culture. Secondly, the display thesis cannot explain why some people spend excessive time alone appreciating musical and literary artwork in settings where no exhibit is visible.Evolution of the Mind
Pinker offers a broad, if dubious, solution to these conundrums in a second attempt at clarifying culture. He contends that the solution is found in the mind’s developed processes for various purposes rather than distinct modifications for artistry, music, and literature that “enable individuals to delight in shapes, colours, melodies, humour, tales, and mythologies.”
For example, paintings that mirror these patterns can pleasingly trigger a colour vision system created for detecting ripe fruits. Artwork, portraits, videos, and websites can use psychological inclinations for indications to pregnant females to enjoyably recreate the rhythms the processes were initially designed to respond to and sought for.
Art, entertainment, and language can be constructed to “juice” several evolved psychological systems, much as stimulants can be made to “juice” our dopamine receptors. Humans have mastered activating already-existing mechanisms artificially by creating cultural artefacts that imitate the stimulus whereby the circuits were initially conceived. In other words, these cultural practices are nonadaptive consequences rather than adjustments. Pinker presents an identical case for music, speculating that it is audible tiramisu, an exquisite treat made to tease at minimum six of our senses.
These cognitive capacities encompass linguistics (such as music lyrics), aural scene assessment (where we must distinguish between sounds that originate from different places, as a bird cries in a loud environment), affective cries (such as whimpering, wailing, moaning, clamouring, and applause are metaphorically used to define melodic passages), habitat choice (such sounds as lightening, moving water, snarls, and more can indicate secure or dangerous surroundings).
Furher, motor coordination (such sounds as the groove, a ubiquitous element of tunes, imitate the motor function required for a wide range of activities, such as running and slicing, and signal characteristics like immediacy, sluggishness, and assertiveness). This hypothesis states that the musical patterns we enjoy are the ones that artificially imitate the organic stimulation our developed brains are wired to process.
One may have a comparable case for novels and films. Comedy and tragedy-themed language, plots, and stories can elicit pleasure feelings by engaging a variety of evolved circuits. It is likely no surprise that the most popular books and films, like Avatar, About Time, and Titanic, feature themes of intrasexual struggle, mate selection, romance, and potentially destructive antagonistic natural forces.
Over the past decade, the evolutionary psychology examination of the media, including movie and literary works, has exploded to the point where complete publications are now dedicated to these subjects. Analyses that go deep imply that evolutionary psychology can influence creative activities as various as the intricacies of cinema to the lyricism and politics of British literature.
Although it does not provide a conclusive statement on these cultural embodiments, using an evolutionary prism has revealed novel insights into areas previously believed to lack the principles of evolution that elucidate human nature.Conclusion
As with everything else, the entertainment sector changes over time. The preferences and standards of the populace at any given moment significantly impact what is created and popularized. The current state of technology is another factor. These changes have an impact on film, television, and music. Even though they might seem inconsequential at the time, examining generations of entertainment uncovers essential developments.
Naturally, particular objects have endured the test of time, but their uses have changed. Entertainment has become much more frenzied, moving from having various songs to appeasing crowds everywhere. Our entertainment evolves alongside our preferences and will continue in the hereafter to reflect whatever the shared values at the moment.
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The Art of Happiness – Chasing Superiority
The second impediment to being happy is to chase superiority. It is in human nature to get attracted to other people’s status and develop adoration for what others have. Humans have a tendency to follow their dreams, and many a times; these dreams are made of what they see of others.
If your friend has a bungalow and you don’t, there are chances that you will try to get a bungalow by some means – be it by earning money through part-time job, or by switching your organization or may be even by some crooked means. This is so inherent in human nature that most of the times, we don’t even realize that we are committing this mistake. Knowingly or unknowingly, each human tries to outperform his superiors and in this process, turns out to be unhappier every day.Common Traits that Lead to Unhappiness
The following are the common traits in the superiors that make the inferiors feel unhappy −
Wanting to be better than everyone else is the root cause of unhappiness. To understand this impediment, let us consider an example.Peer Pressure
Our human culture is such that if one achieves something, the entire world comes around to pat on his/her back. Appreciations, laurels and applauses are showered on the person, making him feel good but also making him realize that one will be admired only after doing something superior. This instills a thought in everyone’s mind since childhood that in order to be admired, one has to reach to a level of someone superior.Hubristic Pride and Expertise
The reason why humans seek superiority is that they feel happy when they win or achieve something by defeating others. The happiness that one feels by getting ahead of others makes one seek superiority. The third reason why we pursue superiority is the desire for mastering skills. When someone finds another person superior to oneself, the person is compelled to realize that he/she is not perfect at that thing. And that is the reason why humans follow superiority.Autonomy
Moreover, we also feel a lot of autonomy and freedom when we find ourselves superior to others. That is the reason why managers feel that they have more freedom than their subordinates and this is also the reason, why subordinates try to get promoted to the post of manager.Impact of Pursuing Superiority on Happiness
In the previous section, we have understood how pursuit of superiority is prevalent in human culture. In this section, we will understand how this habit impacts our happiness levels.Social Comparisons Materialism Self-centered Approach Control the Need for Superiority
Superiority is not a necessary factor for being happy. The need of superiority is not a necessity to motivate oneself. Sometimes, it may develop a killer instinct and may even spur us to take risks. But in the longer term, the desire of superiority impacts us negatively.
Daniel H. Pink and his colleagues from Duke University found through their study in Massachusetts Institute of Technology that in mechanical work, students performed better when bigger reward was given for better work. However, for the tasks that required cognitive skills, the performance of the students lowered for the tasks that had higher reward. The pressure to ace at the more difficult tasks to gain more money made their performance decline in quality. The results were similar in an experiment conducted in India too. Higher incentives led to worse performance in both the studies.
The result of decrease in productivity, growth in loneliness and the habit of social comparison is killing happiness levels. Although we may feel more motivated to work, but it may actually worsen our performance regardless of our motivation levels.
Google maps is synonymous with directions: it is difficult to recall a time before we’d Google Maps available at our hands and needed to find our solution for ourselves or even utilize an old-school newspaper map.
However if we think of Google Maps — the navigation, the trapped services — it’s quite often an older variant of this program that springs into mind. Google Maps has evolved, and with it are a plethora of new features that lots of users have neglected to research.The original Google Maps
Google Maps was released in 2005, and in the intervening years has been the standard for digital mapping solutions. A year after, the technology giant came with Street View, which has been among the products most famous characteristics, and definitely it’s most contentious. Among the largest influences it had for Google was that the business no longer needed to rely on third parties because of its own information, and that is if Google Maps actually grew into something larger than was envisaged.Apple vs. Google
The coming of Google Maps on Apple’s first iPhone in 2007 was yet another significant turning point, and also the times when Google and Apple publicly transitioned appear long past. These times they’re bona fide competitions, along with the growth of Apple Maps in 2012 was a substantial stage in electronic mapping background, also saw the close of the cooperation between both tech behemoths.
The ancient Apple Maps was successful, and the ancient version was user-unfriendly concerning bugs which present Apple CEO Tim Cook has been forced to make a public apology. These bugs were soon smoothed out, however, and now it’s very much a real rival for the distance provided that monopolized by Google Maps, and naturally is the norm all Apple products, which immediately spilled Google Maps upon the evolution of Apple Maps.
Apple Maps isn’t the only equal, as other workable third party offerings like Citymapper — that really uses the mapping information as manufactured by Google — compete to its electronic map viewers, which can be high on everybody using a smartphone. That’s a massive number of possible users, and also the basic reason why there are several different programmers battling for recognition in this lucrative area.
Microsoft got in on the action with Bing Maps, which really raised the bar in regards to these features because the now-famous upper aerial shot, enabling structures to be looked at from a 45-degree angle, for instance. Nokia is just another supplier who proceeds to build top quality maps, also sells into a range of prominent organizations, such as Garmin, whose goods are used in the sports industry, carmakers like BMW, as well as Amazon. They’re a few profitable contracts.
Also read: No Plan? Sitting Ideal…No Problem! 50+ Cool Websites To VisitGoogle Maps today
As the world evolves afterward, so does the world of digital mapping, and thus does Google Maps. Among the latest improvements to this service has become the capability to guide message the companies that attribute on Google Maps, provided that they use Google’s ‘My Company’ function. The ability to talk directly with companies via instant messaging may interest many — to get a beginning it provides the chance of requiring information that’s not on the company’s site or that folks aren’t ready to phone for hold off.
The Evolution of the War on Terrorism Former CIA counterterrorism head says United States must reach out to friends — and enemies
Former CIA head of counterterrorism Cofer Black speaks to law students. Photo by Kalman Zabarsky
J. Cofer Black is a lot of things, depending on who’s doing the describing: a legendary CIA agent who helped bag notorious terrorist Carlos the Jackal; an architect of the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan, in 2001, and the overthrow of the Taliban; a key player in the U.S. rendition and secret prison programs; an executive at an American security outfit accused of running roughshod in Iraq.
On Monday, Black was at the School of Law, talking to students at a luncheon hosted by the University’s National Security Law Society, a law student group.
In a packed room, he gave a rundown of his three-decade career with the CIA and the U.S. Department of State and talked about the evolution of the government’s attitude — legal and otherwise — toward terrorism since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.
Black, who has a master’s degree in international relations from the University of Southern California, joined the CIA in 1974. He is credited with collecting the intelligence that led to the 1994 capture of notorious Venezuelan terrorist Ilich Ramírez Sánchez, also known as Carlos the Jackal.
In 1993, Black was assigned as CIA station chief in Khartoum, Sudan, where relations with the United States were strained over the African country’s sponsorship of terrorism. At the time, al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden had found a safe harbor there and had even targeted Black for assassination because of his pursuit of information on terror cells.
After the end of the Cold War, the U.S. military became focused on state sponsors of terrorism, such as Libya and Iran, and regarded the actions of loosely affiliated and nongovernment-backed groups a law enforcement issue. Al-Qaeda was not a top priority, Black said, as evidenced by the meager funding, resources, and personnel allotted to it.
In 1999, CIA Director George Tenet appointed Black director of the agency’s Counterterrorist Center. Black said the millennium plot to bomb Los Angeles International Airport in December 1999 marked a turning point in the official attitude toward terrorism. He and his team had warned that there was an 80 percent chance that the United States would be attacked, and to “its significant credit,” he said, the Clinton administration took action. A Canadian border stop of one of the plotters netted a trunkful of explosives. But then Clinton exited the political stage. “As they were walking out the door,” Black said, “they got it, big time. It took them eight years to get it.” The new Bush administration, while more focused on terrorism, was not fast enough, he said.
“In my view, we have not emphasized enough our contacts and relationships with our friends, and to some extent our enemies, overseas,” Black said. “This has to be a cornerstone of how we do our business. We need to be perceived as the kind of people that we are, not as how we are presented in the media. I’ve been very pleased to see how our new administration has been received overseas. We’ll have to follow this up with constructive actions. We all support Obama, and there are challenges out there besides financial. There continue to be terrorists.”
After speaking, Black took questions from the audience. Michael Sloan (LAW’10) asked, “In your opinion, should CIA interrogations be limited to the methods within the Army Field Manual?”
Black responded by asking audience members how many waterboarding interrogations they believed the CIA had conducted: “300? 3,000? 30,000? And remember, the criteria is people who have killed Americans, who say they’re going to kill Americans, or have knowledge of plans to kill Americans.”
Black’s answer: “There were three.”
For security agencies, he said, “there should be some ambiguity. Ambiguity can be helpful,” to avoid giving terrorists an interrogation playbook. He pointed out that 61 of the released Guantanamo detainees have resurfaced as terrorists and have killed at least four U.S. soldiers. “I would really never want to be in the position to see these soldiers’ mothers,” he said.
“I do believe our counterterrorism techniques have become increasingly more effective,” Black said. “I think we’re in much better shape now than certainly we were during the 9/11 period. It’s taken a lot of time, a lot of people, the expensive creation of new agencies. But I think we’re on the right track.”
Black ended by urging students to start their careers in the field of service, to do “something that is primarily for somebody else and doesn’t involve how much money you can make. In the end, it’s not how much your car costs, but what you walk away with.”
The National Security Law Society at BU’s School of Law seeks to promote democracy and the rule of law, as well as nonpartisan discourse on U.S. national security policy and foreign affairs. Among the society’s areas of interest: the separation of constitutional powers between the president, Congress, and the courts in the national security field; international and domestic legal constraints on the use of force in international relations; legal issues raised by the global war on terror, including the use of civil litigation; and the promotion of democracy and the rule of law.
Caleb Daniloff can be reached at [email protected].
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The Art of the Game of War
There’s a sequence in the game “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2” that you don’t have to play if you don’t want to. I haven’t finished the entire game yet. My Xbox broke while I was working through it, and I haven’t had time to get it repaired. But I did get to this sequence, or level, and I was anticipating it. The game doesn’t offer a specific warning about its content, but you do get a warning before you start playing the game from the beginning that something is coming you might want to skip, especially if you’re a sensitive viewer.[Image credit: mandiberg]
In the first person shooter sequence, your character is an intelligence agent who has infiltrated a terrorist group. In the scene in question, you take part in a terrorist attack. You and a bunch of characters controlled by the computer enter an airport in Russia and start shooting. For the first few minutes, there is no resistance. You are shooting unarmed civilians. People scream and run away. People run up the escalator the wrong way. People fall and die. There’s a lot of blood.
It is, without a doubt, the most disturbing moment I’ve ever encountered in a video game. What’s most interesting, though, is that the scene is completely integral to the plot. If your character didn’t participate in this mission, the events that occur next would never happen.
How do you play such a level? What’s the moral imperative in video games? In some ways, there is none. These aren’t real people, obviously. It’s all just computer generated imagery on a screen. I could kill a million people in a video game. Would it be mass murder? Genocide? No, because nothing really happened.
Would I feel like I’m committing murder? That’s another question, and that depends on the game itself.
The first time I played through the CoD: MW2 level, I tried to avoid killing anyone. It’s possible for the first half of the level, but eventually security arrives, and in order to progress, you have to defeat the armed guards. It felt treasonous, almost, because I knew that my character is an undercover agent, and so the guards are really on my side. But you can’t continue the game without killing the opposition, and so that’s what I did.
The second time I played through the level, I killed everyone I could. I shot women in the head. I walked up to people lying on the floor, begging for mercy, and I shot them in the chest until they stopped moving. I used guns, grenades and knives. I tried to kill more people than the computer-controlled characters next to me.
I tried to enjoy the killing, but I couldn’t. It was very disturbing. I tried to embrace it, but the quality of the graphics, the voice acting and even the story itself all created a world that was just real enough to give me pause. I felt bad about killing innocent civilians in an airport terror attack, even though there was no killing, no civilians and no airport. It was all on screen, and it was all in my head.
That’s art. That is exactly what art is supposed to do. I started thinking about this when Ars Technica’s gaming writer, Ben Kuchera, tweeted that Call of Duty is as much art as Ico, a somewhat more abstract and fantastic video game title. Video games are often disparaged in the art world. Roger Ebert famously landed in hot water recently by penning a story claiming that video games can never be art. He has since made a qualified retraction of his original statement, but nonetheless, it seems that video games still get beaten down and taken to task in a way that traditional, more widely accepted artwork does not.
First, let me define my terms. I believe “art” is any creation that exists purely (or primarily) to elicit an emotional response. Any creation; any emotional response. This is a broad definition (if you didn’t realize, ), and this leaves the category wide open so that a wide range of things can be considered “art.” That’s fine with me. I would much rather argue about whether something is good art, or, even better, whether it’s successful art, than argue about whether it is art at all.
I have no interest in arguing about whether or not video games are, in fact, pieces of art. Some of them are, some are not. I think that the game itself has to elicit a human emotion for the game to be considered art. I don’t mean the act of winning the game, I mean the game itself. So, in my view, Tetris is not a work of art. It’s a fantastic game, one of the best ever created and a personal favorite (I am a Tetris demigod), but the happiness I get from Tetris, or any emotional response, comes from my own skill and success in playing the game. A game like “Call of Duty,” or “Bioshock,” or even “Guitar Hero” elicits a deeper emotional response that comes from being able to relate to the game. If the first two are more obvious, I would say “Guitar Hero” elevates itself to the level of art first because you are literally playing music, and music has always been considered art, but second because the game tries to help us imagine ourselves as skilled, successful musicians. Load up any Guitar Hero video on YouTube and tell me the kid playing complicated, 5-star riffs doesn’t envision himself a skilled musician. I’m not saying he’s right, I’m just saying that’s art.
While I was thinking about this article, a new controversy came up. Electronics Arts will release a new “Medal of Honor” title, another war-based first person shooter, set in today’s conflict zones. Though the story mode will have the player acting as an allied forces soldier, someone on our side, in other words, there is also a multiplayer mode. As Ars Technica quotes EA Games reps as saying: “if someone’s the cop, someone’s gotta be the robber.” To that end, half the players in a multiplayer round will be trying to kill the guys on ‘our side.’ Those opponents could play as “Taliban” soldiers. This has parents groups up in arms in the UK.
Why is it that parents groups always seem to come down on the side of censorship? Why do so-called parents groups try to get the government to mandate what my children can watch, so that my own entertainment has to be reduced to the level of what’s acceptable for my child?
In any case, there are two major flaws to this argument. First, nobody is actually becoming the Taliban. Just because you pick up a joystick and look through the virtual eyes of a Taliban fighter, that doesn’t mean you have anything in common with our enemies in Afghanistan. In a way, these parents groups are not only proving my original thesis that video games are in fact artwork, they are in fact showing just how successful the artwork has become. If the representation wasn’t so powerful, and if the games did not produce a real emotional response, would parents care? Would parents care if their children played games where they could act like a family of small frogs trying to cross a busy highway and getting killed by passing trucks? Of course not, because that was not a successful piece of artwork. But the more powerful representation elicits a more powerful emotional response. Art doesn’t make everyone happy; it isn’t supposed to.
Second, this unfortunately shows video games’ place at the bottom of artistic hierarchy. At the Academy Awards this year, the Best Supporting Actor award went to an actor who played an especially vicious and frightening Nazi. Did any parent group step up and say that Christoph Waltz should not have been allowed to portray a Nazi? Should we blacklist any actor who appears as a Taliban fighter in a movie? Or a soldier in the Burmese army? A serial killer? Not only are these actors not condemned, but the more they frighten us, the more they draw forth a real response from their audience and turn their audience into ersatz victims of their crimes, the more we appreciate their performance.
You can’t have it both ways. You cannot claim that video games do not deserve the same protection and respect as other forms of art, then claim that the emotional response they trigger in their audience is too powerful and needs to be banned. You can’t celebrate an actor’s performance as a murderer or an enemy combatant, then turn around and denigrate the same types of characters in video games.
If you don’t like a video game, or a movie or an exhibit of oil paintings strewn with elephant dung, don’t go to see them. If you’ve played the game, argue about its successes and failures, how it made you feel and how you reacted to that feeling. We’re far past the point where there’s a question about whether video games are a form of art.
Before DeFi, no one would think that we can have a financial network together, without the help of credible organizations. A network where everyone has equal opportunities and access to resources. Where everyone can play a significant role and provide or use pair-to-pair services, gain profit, or pay for other services.
With the emergence of applications such as Compound, Maker, or Uniswap, the revolution entered a new phase. However, because of the rapid growth of users and demands, and the lack of scalability of Ethereum, the usage fee of these applications quickly skyrocketed. The fees are so high that as of April 20th, 2023, the fee of one transaction on the Ethereum network is about 32$.
This increase in fees stripped away the industry from its core essence, which was being accessible for everyone. A lot of users are not capable of paying a 120$ fee for a simple transaction. This led the scene to become more and more accessible and open for other less welcomed individuals such as crypto whales.
After some time, this issue got resolved thanks to the Binance Smart Chain which increased the liquidity rates of some dapps such as Pancakeswap and Venus.
But soon, a new issue decided to show itself: Lack of distribution and decentralization. Not just anyone can become a validator on the Binance Smart Chain network. Only 21 people can validate the transactions. Needless to say, this is completely against the essence of DeFi.
Right now, you might say that Mr. CZ, the manager of this network, is a trustworthy person but as I mentioned at the beginning of this article, we are experiencing a revolution right now. A revolution where we want not to be dependent on one single individual or organization.
So, two main issues are slowing down this revolution: 1. Scalability 2. Distribution
Is there a scalable, open-source, distributed, and decentralized network with low fees that we can use? Yes. The Stellar network.
By benefitting from the quorum slices model, Stellar can handle thousands of transactions per second. This means a suitable platform for performing financial operations and transactions.
But what’s Lumenswap’s role in all of this?
Lumenswap is the decentralized exchange and an open-source client for the Stellar network that allows you to swap and trade assets on the network using a friendly, minimal interface.
Lumenswap seeks to bring the DeFi industry into the Stellar space in order to familiarize users with inherent features of the Stellar network, such as high speed and low fees.
These features allow us to perform financial related operations of the application (such as distributing rewards, providing liquidity rates, etc) with ease and have a stable DeFi-based application.
Lumenswap has come up with two reward plans in order to help to build a dynamic ecosystem and a financial network where everyone can contribute and play a role in its development. If you look at the tokenomics of Lumenswap, you can see that they have allocated about 40% of their own assets (which make up a large portion of our total supplies) for rewarding our contributors and community.
So they need a scalable and low-fee network to distribute these rewards, they might need to distribute them between thousands of addresses. Thankfully, the cost of completing about 100k transactions on the Stellar network is only about $100.$$100,000*0.001=100$$
You cannot give small rewards to your community on the Ethereum network. For example, to distribute only 25$ between 100k people, you’ll need at least $50k. And if you try to complete the transactions through smart contracts, the fee would become more expensive than the reward which would not make sense.
All of these rewards have one single goal: Instead of just crypto whales, They like to allow everyone to be part of the economic cycle of the application.
The Lumenswap team released the Tokenomics and roadmap of LSP asset (Lumenswap native asset) a few days ago and, according to the article, they will hold an auction on their platform in the next few weeks. If you are interested in participating in it, follow them:
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