for W3c validation
Friday Faves is our weekly blog series highlighting a few select pieces from the REG team’s reading lists. You can catch up on past Friday Faves on the archive.
Why we can’t stop looking at ourselves & talking to our devices
Anne says: We know lockdown has had an impact on our attitudes, practices and ways we perceive our normal daily tasks and our mental health. Researchers are currently trying to understand the issues and their impact – in particular, the longer term effects. While we’ve written about Zoom fatigue previously and mentioned that looking at yourself talking is kind of weird, this article explains further the issue of being unable to look away from your own image. It’s fascinating! We’re constantly drawn back to looking at ourselves – and it’s not just a narcissist thing!
The article reviews the design of video calls, with multiple faces looking at you, listening to each other – but then why does your attention become focused on your own face? The article explains the fascination with ourselves, beyond the question “Do I really look like that?”, to the level of viewing that we’re not typically able to achieve in everyday face-to-face encounters. Rarely will we have a mirror in a meeting room, positioned in such a way that you can watch yourself presenting, listening and reacting. We just can’t take our eyes off ourselves!
The selfie culture has also influenced our desire to put our best “face” forward, again, drawing us to constantly monitor that we’re presenting ourselves the way we’d like to be perceived. And it’s exhausting (as our previous article described). So if you’re finding your own face too distracting, there’s a feature in Zoom that allows you to hide your own face. But seriously, even if you’ve hidden your face from yourself, will you take just a sneak peek every once in a while – just to check??!!
Now – after you’ve stopped looking at yourself on video calls… have you been talking to your home AI voice assistants (Amazon’s Alexa, Apple’s Siri, Google’s assistant)? Apparently, the Washington Post tells us, we’ve become rather annoyed with them! There are some amusing examples that demonstrate the limitations of these devices – but also, what happens as we anthropomorphize devices. Along the lines of the movie, Her, it reveals how we interact and become connected (emotionally and psychologically) with our devices. When the limitations of their capabilities become apparent, our frustrations tend to cover our inner embarrassment that we really expected the device to be our friend, provide us with answers and well, just be a person – sorry, device – we could rely on.
I think it’s time we all stepped outside (if you’re not in quarantine) and take a few deep breaths, away from devices that let you look at yourself for too long. And please, stop getting angry with Siri and Alexa – you never know, they may have learnt a trick or two from Hal and that didn’t end well for the humans!
How to hack your brain to remember almost anything
Nelson Dellis is a four-time USA Memory Champion and Grandmaster of Memory. Some of his feats of recollection include memorising 10,000 digits of pi, the order of more nine shuffled decks of cards and lists of hundreds of names after only hearing them once.
Jakkii says: Did you know there was such a thing as a “Memory Champion” or a “Grandmaster of Memory”?? I certainly didn’t – but I do now! The video (above) and the accompanying article (linked below) look at the ‘memory palace’ method (aka the method of loci) for boosting your memory skills, a technique that’s been around for over 2500 years. There are five key steps outlined:
- Start with strong images
- Put those images in a location
- Pay attention
- Break things up
- Finish up by reviewing
There is, of course, more detail in both the video (8min46sec) and the article that are worth a review. It’s not a new technique and you’ve probably heard of the concepts before even if, like me, you didn’t know there was a name for the overall approach. It’s a funny thing you know, taking memory a bit for granted, at least in the sense of feeling like it’s a static thing and either you’re “good” at it or you’re not. Yet, that really doesn’t seem to be the case – it’s a skill, and like any skill, we can all improve with practice. So, why not take these steps on board and start practising improving your memory? Then maybe we might all stop forgetting the names of the new people we meet.
Around the house
Some of you are back in lockdown, while other places continue reopening. We’re all still spending at least some extra time at home these days though, so we’ll keep bringing you an ‘around the house’ wrap each week for as long as we can find things to put on it – but don’t forget you can always go back to recent Friday Faves posts in the archive to find our old lists as well.
- Try one of these 5 apps for when you need a five-minute break
- Take a look at these highly photogenic insects
- Learn everything you need to know about Modern design
- Find out what one writer learned from visiting the most Instagrammed outdoor places
- Read about the people who imagine disasters
- Check out this booklist recommended by TED speakers
- Get productive with this list of 31 things you can do to make the most of your free time at home
— Emily T 📘📙 (@emily_teffoM) March 29, 2020
— Sara🐝 (@Mistrigf) March 31, 2020
Misinformation Friday Five
- Facebook doesn’t protect users’ civil rights, says audit
- We live in an age of ‘fake news’. But Australian children are not learning enough about media literacy
- Could we fight misinformation with blockchain technology?
- Fake accounts influence what you see on social media
- What is the ‘dangerous misinformation’ that is stopping Melburnians getting tested for COVID-19?
COVID-19 Friday Five
- Facebook and Instagram will remind you to wear a mask atop your feed
- Where the latest COVID-19 models think we’re headed — and why they disagree
- Remote learning meant year 2 student Ayla finally felt like everyone else
- Is the airborne route a major source of coronavirus transmission?
- How coronavirus lockdown inspired the ABC’s first Instagram Live show, Cuppa with Kumi Taguchi
Work Friday Five
- Combating the spread of COVID-19 misinformation at work
- How Twitter is shifting the power balance from companies to their employees
- Remote working is not going away: who wins and loses when workers stay home?
- Changed, changing and will change: adapting to our new and ever-evolving world of work
- The future of work is hybrid: Work from home and the workplace
Tech Friday Five
- TikTok pulls out of Hong Kong as tech companies push back against new security law
- The hidden trackers in your phone, explained
- Microsoft is reimagining virtual collaboration for the future of work and learning
- Workplace from Facebook July updates
- Slack’s new notification schedules give you your weekends back
Social Media Friday Five
- Trump, Twitter, Facebook and the future of online speech
- We’re having the wrong conversation to fix social media
- Google, Facebook, and Twitter halt government data requests after new Hong Kong security law
- Instagram now lets you pin 3 comments on your posts – here’s how
- After India, the US is ‘looking at’ banning TikTok and other Chinese apps; and Australia is concerned, too
Corona Business Insights Podcast
This week: From flooding hashtags to weaponising Disney’s copyright policing: what online activism and protests can learn from K-Pop fans during COVID-19.
As COVID-19 sets out to change the world forever, join Sandra Peter and Kai Riemer as they think about what’s to come in the future of business.