Our Strength Lies in Our Humanity

Everything is Connected

There are times in our lives when it’s easy to forget how connected everything is. Times when life gets a little too tough and stressful and we end up paying more attention to our own well being in a way that disregards the cost and the consequences to the world out there; the people, the environment and everything else that’s a part of it. We find ourselves being selfish – not because we want to be but because circumstances force us to be.

That’s how the world got into the state that it’s in now. Here’s a neat 20 minute video that explains it all.

On this website I’ll be exploring and adding videos and articles that help to expand and explain the rich and diverse complexity of the world we live in – complex but not complicated.

Latest News

Doctors as border police: what happened to ‘first, do no harm’?

Doctors as border police: what happened to ‘first, do no harm’? Not a doctor's domain. EQRoy/Shutterstock Building trust and acting in the patient’s best interests are guiding principles of medical practice. This is especially true when caring for vulnerable and marginalised people, such as undocumented migrants. They often delay going to the doctor and find…

Betting on speculative geoengineering may risk an escalating ‘climate debt crisis’

Betting on speculative geoengineering may risk an escalating ‘climate debt crisis’ Vladi333 / shutterstock The opening of the Oscar-winning film The Big Short, a comedy-drama on the global financial crisis of 2007-2008, begins with a famous quote: “It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that…

Apollo 11 made us believe we could do anything – the truth is it could hasten our downfall

Apollo 11 made us believe we could do anything – the truth is it could hasten our downfall Earthrise seen from the moon by Apollo 8. NASA The Apollo project gave us the astonishing spectacle of a blue marble rising over the sterile surface of the moon. Of course, the moon was already known to…

Barbudans are resisting ‘disaster capitalism’, two years after Hurricane Irma

Barbudans are resisting ‘disaster capitalism’, two years after Hurricane Irma "The recovery? Look around. It been nearly two years … and I want people to know things are still bad here" – Barbuda resident Fifi. Tamzin Forster, Author provided It’s been nearly two years since Hurricane Irma devastated the tiny Caribbean island of Barbuda. Gusts…

Belly fat: gut bacteria checks could lead to personalised diets

Belly fat: gut bacteria checks could lead to personalised diets In the future, dietary advice will take our gut microbiome into account. SosnaRadosna/Shutterstock Rates of obesity are rising across the globe; a third of the world’s population is now overweight and nearly a fifth is obese. Public health policy has mainly focused on diet to reverse these rising rates, but the impact of these policies has been limited. The latest…

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How the brain prepares for movement and actions

How the brain prepares for movement and actions To perform a sequence of actions, our brains need to prepare and queue them in the correct order. AYAakovlev/Shutterstock Our behaviour is largely tied to how well we control, organise and carry out movements in the correct order. Take writing, for example. If we didn’t make one stroke after another on a page, we would not be able to write a word.…

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Four ways blockchain could make the internet safer, fairer and more creative

Four ways blockchain could make the internet safer, fairer and more creative Yurchanka Siarhei/Shutterstock The internet is unique in that it has no central control, administration or authority. It has given everyone with access to it a platform to express their views and exchange ideas with others instantaneously. But in recent years, internet services such as search engines and social media platforms have increasingly been provided by a small number…

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Exaggerating how much CO2 can be absorbed by tree planting risks deterring crucial climate action

Exaggerating how much CO2 can be absorbed by tree planting risks deterring crucial climate action A long way to go… Amenic181/Shutterstock Planting almost a billion hectares of trees worldwide is the “biggest and cheapest tool” for tackling climate change, according to a new study. The researchers claimed that reforestation could remove 205 gigatonnes of carbon dioxide (CO₂) from the atmosphere – equivalent to about 20 years’ worth of the world’s…

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London to be as hot as Barcelona by 2050? I research urban heat, and I’m sceptical

London to be as hot as Barcelona by 2050? I research urban heat, and I’m sceptical CharlotteRaboff / shutterstock Barcelona just had a week of temperatures above 30℃. It’s a few degrees hotter than the long-term average, but no heatwave. In winter, Spain’s second largest city is typically a mild 15℃ or so. With its climate regulated by warm Mediterranean waters, temperatures rarely drop below freezing. Is this what the…

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Anonymous apps risk fuelling cyberbullying but they also fill a vital role

Anonymous apps risk fuelling cyberbullying but they also fill a vital role Anotnio Guillem/Shutterstock When the anonymous social media app YOLO was launched in May 2019, it topped the iTunes downloads chart after just one week, despite the lack of a major marketing campaign. Designed to be used with social network Snapchat, YOLO lets users invite people to send them anonymous messages. Its viral popularity followed that of other apps,…

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The environmental cost of abandoning your tent at a music festival

The environmental cost of abandoning your tent at a music festival Abandoned tents after a festival: definitely not going to charity. lionheartphotography, CC BY After years of depressing images of huge fields strewn with abandoned tents and rubbish in the aftermath of music festivals, it was heartening to hear Glastonbury Festival organisers claim that 99% of festival-goers’ tents were picked up after the festival. For a festival of 200,000 people…

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Joy Division: 40 years on from ‘Unknown Pleasures’, astronomers have revisited the pulsar from the iconic album cover

Joy Division: 40 years on from ‘Unknown Pleasures’, astronomers have revisited the pulsar from the iconic album cover 'Unknown Pleasures' as you've never seen it before… Freeda/Shutterstock Forty years ago, the English rock band Joy Division released their debut studio album “Unknown Pleasures”. The front cover doesn’t feature any words, only a now iconic black and white data graph showing 80 wiggly lines. To mark the anniversary of the album,…

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Our brain-computer interfacing technology uses music to make people happy

Our brain-computer interfacing technology uses music to make people happy Rohappy/Shutterstock Whether it’s the music that was playing on the radio when you met your partner or the first song your baby daughter smiled to, for many of us, music is a core part of life. And it’s no wonder – there is considerable scientific evidence that foetuses experience sounds while in the womb, meaning music may affect us even before we are born. Music can leave us with a sense of transcendental beauty or make us reach for the ear plugs. In fact, it is almost unparalleled among the arts in its ability to quickly generate an incredibly wide range of powerful emotions. But what happens in our brains and bodies when we emotionally react to music has long…

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BA’s record fine could help make the public take data security more seriously

BA’s record fine could help make the public take data security more seriously Eliyahu Yosef Parypa/Shutterstock British Airways (BA) has received a record fine of £183m after details of around 500,000 of its customers were stolen in a data breach in summer 2018. The fine was possible thanks to new rules introduced last year by the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which gave the British regulator powers to impose much larger penalties on companies that fail to protect their customers’ data. But fines like these don’t just act as a business deterrent because of their financial cost. They are a method of public shaming that we can use as a form of social control to force companies to act more ethically. And research on consumer behaviour has demonstrated that…

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The stark truth about UK government climate action: there is no one in charge

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Oldest human skull outside Africa identified as 210,000 years old

Oldest human skull outside Africa identified as 210,000 years old Nicolas Primola/Shutterstock A 210,000-year-old human skull could provide new evidence that our species left Africa much earlier than previously thought. A new study published in Nature of two fossils found in Greece in the 1970s shows that one of them is the oldest Homo sapiens specimen ever found outside Africa by more than 50,000 years. This exciting discovery adds to a list of recent finds that shows the story of humanity’s spread across the world and interaction with other related species is much more complicated than we once thought. The human skull was one of two cranial fossils found in Apidima Cave, one of a series of cave sites along the southwestern coast of the Peloponnese in Greece. The first,…

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Climate change: having the right combination of tree ‘personalities’ could make forests more resilient

Climate change: having the right combination of tree ‘personalities’ could make forests more resilient Thitima khudkam/Shutterstock Every tree in a forest has a neighbour. In many forest neighbourhoods, the same species are often found living together, especially when the growing conditions are similar. Sometimes these neighbours are close and sometimes far apart, but collectively they form part of a community, with some species naturally being more dominant than others, especially in terms of biomass production. But what happens when the going gets tough? A drought is coming and there’ll be winners and losers. Droughts can be a big challenge for many trees, and one that is only going to get worse as the world shifts to a hotter, drier climate. Different species have different strategies for dealing with this kind…

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