From the history of how coffee changed the world, early foreign and American coffee-making devices, 1922:
1—English adaptation of French boiler. 2—English coffee biggin. 3—Improved Rumford percolator. 4—Jones’s exterior-tube percolator. 5—Parker’s steam-fountain coffee maker. 6—Platow’s filterer. 7—Brain’s Vacuum, or pneumatic filter. 8—Beart’s percolator. 9—American coffee biggin. 10—cloth-bag drip pot. 11—Vienna coffee pot. 12—Le Brun’s cafetière. 13—Reversible Potsdam cafetière. 14, 15—Gen. Hutchinson’s percolator and urn. 16—Etruscan biggin.
What the Internet is doing to our brains – a charming animation based on Nicholas Carr’s rather reductionist, techno-dystopian book The Shallows. For a more dimensional look at how digital culture is affecting cognition, see this.
Remarkable animated visualization of every meteorite since 861 AD from The Guardian.
Joe Hanson examines the sciences of what it is about music that makes us feel all those feelings. Pair with 7 essential books about music, emotion, and the brain.
Take it from the scientists: Not getting proper sleep is akin to walking around drunk. Learn what actually happens while you sleep and why it matters, the essential science of your internal clock, and how dreams mediate negative emotions.
As a wise woman once wrote, “sleep is the best (and easiest) creative aphrodisiac.”
They estimated fatigue-related productivity losses cost employers $1,967 per employee per year.
One of the first offices in the US to embrace an open napping culture was Yarde Metals. In 1995 company founder, Craig Yarde, noticed that his workers were snoozing at their desks. Rather than penalize them, he stuck a couch in a dark room and let them take 40 winks when they needed to recharge. Since then others have adopted the trend and created napping spaces in their offices. Google has become somewhat of a poster child for office napping after installing futuristic chairs in its offices.
How much nap rooms improve productivity across a company is tricky to measure. Researchers have made the case that the cost to the employer of a 20-minute nap is worth the rejuvenated work that results.
The Stanford researcher Cheri D. Mah found that when she got male basketball players to sleep 10 hours a night, their performances in practice dramatically improved: free-throw and three-point shooting each increased by an average of 9 percent.
Daytime naps have a similar effect on performance. When night shift air traffic controllers were given 40 minutes to nap — and slept an average of 19 minutes — they performed much better on tests that measured vigilance and reaction time.
Longer naps have an even more profound impact than shorter ones. Sara C. Mednick, a sleep researcher at the University of California, Riverside, found that a 60- to 90-minute nap improved memory test results as fully as did eight hours of sleep.
Research confirms that, counterintuitively, relaxing makes you more productive. Of course, Thomas Edison knew that sleep is the key to success.
Artwork by Golden Cosmos
A Boy and His Atom – to explore the limits of filmmaking, IBM scientists create the world’s smallest movie, made by moving actual atoms frame by frame with IBM’s scanning tunneling microscope.
How far we’ve come in the half-century since Disney’s Our Friend the Atom.