Saturday, August 18, 2018

Stuff I learned this week.

I always love to learn new things. My first fun fact is about the mudskipper, a fish that lives much of its life above water. That makes it sound like it's technically an amphibian, but it has gills and can only breathe through them. How does it breathe without being submerged? It fills up its cheeks with water and the gills get oxygen from there.

I didn't know that last part until this week.

Michael Godwin, the lawyer best known for his formulation of the Internet rule called Godwin's Law, gave a link on Twitter (sniff.) to a short introduction to the philosopher Jacques Derrida. I knew a little about his work, but this taught me more. I was completely unaware of Derrida's background as an Algerian Jew, an outcast both in Algeria and later in Paris. This informs his philosophy, which always looks to understand why some things are valued over others, like high culture over pop culture or reason over passion. His ideas are always questioning the choices we make, but he clearly chooses kindness or cruelty.

Personally, I would usually rather read an article than watch a video, unless the video is really short and/or has adorable animals in it. This is almost ten minutes, but I came out of it much better informed. Your mileage may vary.


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