Most unhappy people are unhappy for the exact same reason

Research shows that how you spend your free time matters a great deal.

every activity that didn’t involve a screen was linked to more happiness, and every activity that involved a screen was linked to less happiness. The differences were considerable: Teens who spent more than five hours a day online were twice as likely to be unhappy as those who spent less than an hour a day.

In one experiment, people who were randomly assigned to give up Facebook for a week ended that time happier, less lonely and less depressed than those who continued to use Facebook. In another study, young adults required to give up Facebook for their jobs were happier than those who kept their accounts. In addition, several longitudinal studies show that screen time leads to unhappiness but unhappiness doesn’t lead to more screen time.

Somewhat surprisingly, we found that teens who didn’t use digital media at all were actually a little less happy than those who used digital media a little bit (less than an hour a day). Happiness was then steadily lower with more hours of use. Thus, the happiest teens were those who used digital media, but for a limited amount of time.

You Are Not Late – Kevin Kelly

Written in 2014.

There has never been a better time in the whole history of the world to invent something. There has never been a better time with more opportunities, more openings, lower barriers, higher benefit/risk ratios, better returns, greater upside, than now. Right now, this minute. This is the time that folks in the future will look back at and say, “Oh to have been alive and well back then!”

Does he believe that this is always applicable? Does he believe that there is always ‘no time like the present’, or that we are involved in some sort of eternal progression towards perfection, or is ‘now’ simply a technological moment of opportunity? It’s actually a deeper philosophical question than he addresses.

[Society] The Premium Mediocre Life of Maya Millennial – Venkatesh Rao

August 17, 2017 By Venkatesh Rao, editor-in-chief of Ribbonfarm.

A really perspicacious analysis of the new digital economy, exploring the significance of ‘premium mediocre’ products like smashed avocado on toast, or a premium subscription to Spotify, in the context of millennials growing into the precarious middle class.

Continue reading [Society] The Premium Mediocre Life of Maya Millennial – Venkatesh Rao

[Technology] How technology is designed to bring out the worst in us

"Technology feels disempowering because we haven?t built it around an honest view of human nature," says tech critic Tristan Harris.

People in tech will say, “You told me, when I asked you what you wanted, that you wanted to go to the gym. That’s what you said. But then I handed you a box of doughnuts and you went for the doughnuts, so that must be what you really wanted.” The Facebook folks, that’s literally what they think. We offer people this other stuff, but then they always go for the outrage, or the autoplaying video, and that must be people’s most true preference.

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[Memory] Why We Forget Most of the Books We Read – Julie Beck

In the internet age, recall memory—the ability to spontaneously call information up in your mind—has become less necessary… what’s called recognition memory is more important. “So long as you know where that information is at and how to access it, then you don’t really need to recall it,” [Horvath] says.

Continue reading [Memory] Why We Forget Most of the Books We Read – Julie Beck