The bitcoin and cryptocurrency community has been set alight by news payments giant PayPal PYPL+0.6% will allow its 346 million users buy and spend bitcoin and a handful of other major cryptocurrencies.
What do a human rights negotiation in Afghanistan, a crisis negotiation in Calgary, and a business dispute between a Brazilian and a Frenchman have in common? At first blush, nothing. However, when we dig deeper into these high-stakes negotiations, there is a common thread that connects them all. The concept of face.
David Lyford-Smith is an expert at solving spreadsheet mysteries. Once, in a previous job, he was sent a payroll form to look over for a new starter. It had the number 40,335 in a random box, and payroll wasn’t clear why it was there. “So they assumed it was a joining bonus for the employee and drew up a draft pay slip with a £40,335 bonus,” he says. But, when it comes to spreadsheets, assumptions can be costly.
In 1930, John Maynard Keynes predicted we’d be having 15-hour workweeks by the end of the century. But by the time it was 2013, it was clear the great economist had gotten something wrong.
It is not often that a comedian gives an astrophysicist goose bumps when discussing the laws of physics. But comic Chuck Nice managed to do just that in a recent episode of the podcast StarTalk.The show’s host Neil deGrasse Tyson had just explained the simulation argument—the idea that we could be virtual beings living in a computer simulation. If so, the simulation would most likely create perceptions of reality on demand rather than simulate all of reality all the time—much like a video game optimized to render only the parts of a scene visible to a player. “Maybe that’s why we can’t travel faster than the speed of light, because if we could, we’d be able to get to another galaxy,” said Nice, the show’s co-host, prompting Tyson to gleefully interrupt. “Before they can program it,” the astrophysicist said,delighting at the thought. “So the programmer put in that limit.”
Sanitizer may zap germs, but it doesn’t leave your hands dirt- and grime-free. These can make it hard for sanitizer to do its job. Try to scrub up with suds after things like gardening, playing outdoors, fishing, or camping.
A story that’s well-known among architects and urban designers is the tale of how people stopped complaining about waiting for elevators in the skyscrapers of New York City. The story’s origins are in the post-Second World War building boom, with its massive increase of skyscrapers. One building’s manager brought in mechanical engineers and elevator companies to help him solve a daily problem: people were waiting too long for the elevators, and they were getting angry about it. After looking at the issue, the engineers and company representatives came back and said that this problem was unsolvable. But a psychologist who worked in the building came up with his own solution. According to one version of the story, the psychologist didn’t focus on elevator performance but on the fact that people felt frustrated with what was a relatively short wait. He concluded that the frustration was likely born out of boredom. With the approval of the building’s manager, he put up mirrors around the elevator waiting area so that people could look at themselves and others waiting. Thus, waiting became interesting. The complaints not only ceased immediately and completely, but some previous complainers actually applauded the building staff for improving the speed of the elevator service.
By raising questions and taking on a more active role in decision making, patients can do their part to avoid needless medications, tests, treatments or procedures, says neurosurgeon Christer Mjåset.
The pandemic has boosted interest in vending machine ownership. But just how lucrative is the business? We spoke to 20+ operators to find out.