Sunday, October 14, 2018

Something just like this

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“Something Just Like This”, a song about a relationship that 
doesn’t need to be superhumanly perfect.

"Something Just like This" is a song by American electronic music duo The Chainsmokers and British rock band Coldplay. It was released on 22nd February 2017 as the second single from The Chainsmokers' debut album, Memories...Do Not Open, and as the lead single from Coldplay's thirteenth extended play Kaleidoscope. "Something Just like This" was used as the theme for the 2017 NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament. The song was nominated for the Grammy Award for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance at the 60th Annual Grammy Awards.

The song is written in the key of D Major and has a tempo of 103 beats per minute in common time. It follows a chord progression of G(add9)–Asus–Bm–Asus, and the vocals span two octaves, from G2 to G4.


The Chainsmokers: “Something Just Like This” is about a relationship that doesn’t need to be superhumanly perfect, an ordinary love, a love everyone deserves like the boy on the cover art whose childhood memories are now boxed up. Coldplay is one of our biggest inspirations and this song was an absolute dream come true to make. The song, for the most part, was created during our first meeting with Chris Martin. We found some chords that everyone loved and then Chris plugged a mic into the PA in the studio and freestyled for an hour. This song was the result. We’ve never seen a song written in such a stream of consciousness. It’s hard to maintain your identity when working with such an established artist but we feel this song is great balance between both us and Coldplay.

No copyright infringement intended. For educational, non-commercial purposes only.

The Start of the Rest of Your Lives

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Don't let anyone rush you with their timelines

Alright, everyone looking forward, please.

Good morning, Year Elevens, today’s assembly is about the start of a journey. The start of the rest of your lives. In 2 years’ time all of you will be finishing your A Levels. In 3 years’ time you’ll be studying across the world, studying at the university of your choice. In 5 years’ time you’ll have started your careers. Many of you will be in this room working for the top institutions across the globe. You will then get married, you then may buy a house. In 10 years’ time your life will be set for you. In 15 years you’ll be 30 and from then on your path, your life will be set.

I’m sorry, Mr. Headmaster, let me tell you why that approach may fail you. I know people who graduated at 21 and didn’t get a job until they were 27. I know people who graduated late at 25 and they found work immediately. I know people who never went to university, but found what they love at 18. I know people who found a job straight out of college making decent money, but hate what they do. I know people who took gap years and found their purpose. I know people who were so sure about what they were going to do at 16, they change their mind at 26. I know people who have children but are single, and I know people who are married but had to wait 8 to 10 years to have children. I know people in relationships who love someone else. I know people who love each other but aren’t together... So my point is everything in life happens according to our time, our clock. You may look at some of your friends and think that they’re ahead of you, maybe some of them you feel are behind, but everything happens at their own pace. They have their own time and clock and so do you. Be patient. At age 25, Mark Cuban was a bartender in Dallas. It took till 32 for J.K. Rowling to be published for Harry Potter after being rejected by 12 publishers. Ortega launched Zara when he was 39. Jack Ma started Alibaba when he was 35. Morgan Freeman got his big break at 52. Steve Carell only got his break after 40 years old. Virgin was started by Richard Branson at 34. Getting your degree after 25 is still an achievement. Not being married at 30 but still happy is beautiful. Starting a family after 35 is still possible, and buying a house after 40 is still great. Don’t let anyone rush you with their timelines. Because as Einstein said, “Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that’s counted truly counts.” And this is the most important thing, I want you to be able to create meaningful, purposeful, fulfilling lives for yourselves, and learn how to use that to make an impact and a difference in the lives of others. That, will be true success.


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The Hole in the Road

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So often, we follow the same habits of mind over and over again... But imagine if you started just noticing, being more aware of your surroundings...

It's hard to change something that you can't see. This story demonstrates that awareness is the first step toward positive change, in our minds, and in our lives. It's great motivation for your meditation practice, and the perfect reminder to ... look out for that hole!

Stop and think just for a moment... for you, in your life, what is that hole?


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Friday, October 12, 2018

Ilas Cíes: treasured islands, by Oliver Balch

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(Reproduced from The Guardian)

Illas Cíes are home to one of Spain’s finest beaches, but have no cars, no hotels and visitor numbers are strictly limited

As with all the best adventures, we never actually intended to go to the Islas Cíes. The beaches of northern Galicia were our destination. Well, they were until my wife clicked her weather app and saw blanket rain for a week. Suddenly we weren’t going north after all.

Travelling up from Portugal, we had got as far as the industrial port city of Vigo, which has a sunnier climate than northern Galicia. Without delay, we hit the internet in search of a plan B. One option kept popping up: the Islas Cíes (Illas Cíes in Galician) off the west coast. The images looked amazing: crystalline waters, tree-lined coasts, forest-covered mountains and white beaches.

All the same, I wasn’t convinced. For one, I had never heard of them. Second, was a near-uninhabited archipelago in the Atlantic Ocean really where we wanted to spend our holidays? There were no cars, no nightlife, no hotels and nothing to stop my kids landing up in Newfoundland should they happen to get swept out by the tide.

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Metaphors, mathematics & the imagination, by Roger Antonsen

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Mathematics is about finding patterns, representing patterns, making assumptions, and changing perspectives. In this talk, Roger Antonsen highlights the importance of these aspects of mathematics and builds a bridge from metaphors and mathematics to empathy and the imagination.

Roger Antonsen is a researcher, author, mathematician, logician, and computer scientist. He has a PhD in Computer Science and Mathematics, in the field of mathematical logic and proof theory, and he is the author of the book «Logical Methods: The art of abstract and mathematical thinking» (2014).

Through numerous and creative talks, shows, courses, and projects, he combines science, mathematics, and computer science with entertainment, philosophy, and visualizations. In the last years, he has given hundreds of popular science talks, with titles such as "Logic and Games", "Experimental Mathematics", "Coding, Understanding, and Mathematics", "Playing with the Infinite", "Deterministic Chaos and Cellular Automata", and "30 Mathematical Mysteries in 30 Minutes". Presently, Roger works at the Department of Informatics at the University of Oslo as a researcher, lecturer, and science communicator. His vision is to communicate science differently, to inspire creative thinking, and to remove the common misconceptions about mathematics and computer science.

This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at http://ted.com/tedx



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Monday, October 8, 2018

It's never too late

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Crazy dreams don't have an age limit. Just ask Marjorie, a late bloomer.

Listen to this videoclip and fill in the blanks:

______________ said I was ______________ to run my first __________ at ______, but that's the ____________ thing about _____________ old: I can just _____________ not to hear _____________.

It's only crazy until you do it: just do it.


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Saturday, September 29, 2018

Art, Geometry and Mathematics... by a fish!

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A tiny Japanese pufferfish creates a grand sand sculpture of mathematical perfection on the featureless seabed by using his fins to dig furrows. He uses this to attract the attention of passing females...

... To attract a female fish, the Japanese pufferfish will work 24 hours a day, for an entire week in a row, to create the most stunning sand art. This most incredible video from BBC Earth gives us a glorious look at nature and fish in particular. After watching this video, people will hopefully look differently not only on fish, but on any other animal species and treat them more kindly.

And now, ESO students, enjoy David Attenborough's mesmerising voice and beautiful accent: it is an utter pleasure to learn from each and every of his carefully chosen words.


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Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Oldies Goldies: Supertramp's "The Logical Song"

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"The Logical Song" is a 1979 song performed by the English rock group Supertramp. The song was released as the lead single from their sixth studio album, Breakfast in America (1979), in March 1979 by A&M Records. "The Logical Song" is Supertramp's biggest chart hit in both the United States and their native United Kingdom. "The Logical Song" rose to No. 7 in the UK and No. 6 in the US Billboard chart.

A perfect example of combination of great lyrics, beat, and instrumentation in a 1979 hit that is constantly ranked in the “top 100 best rock songs”. The song, not unlike others in that period, is a scathing criticism of British school and education at the time: the lyrics have been said to be a condemnation of an education system focused on categorical jargon as opposed to knowledge and sensitivity.

"The Logical Song" was written primarily by Roger Hodgson, the lyrics based on his experience of being sent away to boarding school for ten years. It was a very personal song for Hodgson; he had worked on the song during soundchecks, and completed the lyrics and arrangement six months before proposing it to the band for the album. In 1980, Hodgson was honored with the Ivor Novello Award from The British Academy of Composers and Songwriters for "The Logical Song" being named the best song both musically and lyrically. "The Logical Song" also has the distinction of being one of the most quoted lyrics in schools.

Hodgson has said of the song’s meaning: "'The Logical Song' was born from my questions about what really matters in life. Throughout childhood we are taught all these ways to be and yet we are rarely told anything about our true self. We are taught how to function outwardly, but not guided to who we are inwardly. We go from the innocence and wonder of childhood to the confusion of adolescence that often ends in the cynicism and disillusionment of adulthood. In 'The Logical Song,' the burning question that came down to its rawest place was 'please tell me who I am,' and that's basically what the song is about. I think this eternal question continues to hit such a deep chord in people around the world and why it stays so meaningful."


When I was young, it seemed that life was so wonderful
A miracle, oh, it was beautiful, magical
And all the birds in the trees, well, they'd be singing so happily
Oh, joyfully, oh, playfully watching me
But then they sent me away to teach me how to be sensible
Logical, oh, responsible, practical
And then they showed me a world where I could be so dependable
Oh, clinical, oh, intellectual, cynical

There are times when all the world's asleep
The questions run too deep
For such a simple man
Won't you please, please tell me what we've learned?
I know it sounds absurd
But please, tell me who I am

I said, now watch what you say or they'll be calling you a radical
A liberal, oh, fanatical, criminal
Won't you sign up your name, we'd like to feel you're acceptable
Respectable, oh, presentable, a vegetable
Oh, take, take, take it, yeah

But at night, when all the world's asleep
The questions run so deep
For such a simple man
Won't you please, please tell me what we've learned?
I know it sounds absurd
But please, tell me who I am
Who I am
Who I am
Who I am
Who I am

'Cause I was feeling so logical
D-d-d-d-d-d-digital
Yeah, one, two, three, five
Oh, oh, oh, oh
Ooh, it's getting unbelievable
Yeah
B-b-bloody marvelous





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Sunday, September 23, 2018

Silence

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What it takes to climb the world’s first 9c? Let’s find out in Silence, a movie by Bernardo Giménez. It shows what preceded the afternoon of September 3rd 2017 when Adam Ondra, a professional rock climber and currently one of the best climbers in the world, made a little piece of climbing history.

If you work hard, you may fail;
if you don't work, you have already failed.

The harder I work, the luckier I get.

The only secret to success is work, hard, relentless, daily, stubborn work. Nothing comes easily nor effortlessly, nothing comes for free — not even to the best students, the best artists or top-ranked sportspeople. If you want to succeed in whatever endeavour you take up, the only way is through work: there's no shortcut. If you fail, if you fall, you've got to stand up and fight...

... just as Adam Ondra and Chris Sharma, two of the best climbers in the world, show in these videoclips. Of course, Ondra and Sharma have been gifted by nature, no question about that, but their talent would be completely useless without their work ethics, without their persistence and determination... not to mention careful, conscientious, thorough previous planning and organization, leaving as little as possible to chance and improvisation.

Take a look at the very last shot in the first videoclip when the camera is moving away from the cave and notice how small Ondra is, how small and insignificant all of us are when compared to nature... If you want the best in any walk of life (at school, at sport, at arts, friendship or love), first you've got to give the best.


Take a look now at the second videoclip and count how many times each climber fails and falls down. And what happens? They don't give up, they don't quit, they don't surrender... they try again! And again and again and again! That's the only recipe, that's the only prescription, that's the only way.


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