When drivers are attacked, Uber leaves police waiting for help

When Uber driver Brian Blagoue was carjacked at gunpoint in St. Louis, it took three weeks and the murder of another driver for Uber to provide the police with information that led to the arrest of his attackers. This is not an isolated incident, as law enforcement officials in several other cities have reported similar difficulties in obtaining timely information from Uber. Fears are growing that Uber’s privacy could be to the detriment of their drivers Read full article here

Green Light Seems to Relieve Pain, And a New Study in Mice Shows Why

Brace yourselves, folks: there’s a new way to relieve pain that’s “simple, safe, and economical,” and it’s all thanks to the color green. That’s right, according to researchers at Fudan University in Shanghai, the color green can help alleviate pain. In a study on mice, scientists discovered that exposure to low-intensity green light activated certain brain cells and pathways that helped reduce pain. Now, before you go and paint your living room Kelly green, keep in mind that it’s still unclear whether these findings will be replicated in humans. Read full article here

Why is pop culture obsessed with battles between good and evil?

Forget everything you know about good vs. evil in storytelling. According to Aeon, the whole concept of good guys and bad guys is a recent invention. In the past, folktales were just about getting what you want, without any moral framing. Take Sleeping Beauty, for example. Does anyone in that story even care about being good? Even tales that seem to be about good vs evil, like Cinderella, don’t actually hinge on a moral dichotomy. In the oral versions of the story, Cinderella just needs to be beautiful for the story to work. Read full article here

Why we stopped making Einsteins

“[T]utors pop up like mushrooms around historical geniuses.” Many of history’s greatest minds were tutored at a very young age by other genius aristocrats, immersing the young minds in difficult subjects early on, giving them a better understanding and appreciation of science and the humanities. Even Einstein was tutored, with Max Talmud being the key to Einstein’s geometric understanding of space and time. The decline of private tutoring—at least how the aristocracy practised it—coinciding with fewer geniuses makes this a plausible, if a bit distressing, theory. Read full article here


The occasional email full of conversation-worthy content