At the start of every term, we try to get new students who are working at the DALI Lab onboarded. There's a lot to learn: the DALI Lab project process, design skills, development skills, team skills, and how to collaborate properly using git, slack, etc.
Usually we have a new member orientation which consists of an overview of the lab process and a team building hacktivity (which I'll write about later). However, last term in addition to the orientation we also introduced specific workshops to help with this onboarding.
The goal for this specific workshop was to get both designers and developers up to speed with coding collaboratively. CS classes at Dartmouth by and large don't teach any git flow or much about code version control, so I had to think about how to go through a lot of material quickly, yet enable everyone to feel comfortable with working together on some basic coding.
Do you believe in free will or determinism? Either way, imagine you are creating a life form, and that you want it to have free will. You figure out that you need to design an organ that would be responsible for this. You decide to call it the "free willer".
What would this organ do?
Want to learn about why the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex is the coolest part of the brain? With the onset of modern neuroscience a common question often discussed is: where in the brain are self-regulation, executive control, free will, volition, selection, short-term memory, attention, planning, and overall consciousness located and by what neurological processes do they occur.
My eyes are glued to the screen. They rarely blink. They become irritated but I do not notice. I am in the zone. The force is with me. I feel it flow through me. I am coding. Even though the coding paradigm may not apply to everyone, we all know that feeling of hyper-attention. When an activity is so engrossing that the rest of the world fades away, we are left mano-a-mano, tête-à-tête, our ego and the task battling together for mutual gain.
I watch my cursed boulder tumble down my mountain. I heave a sigh of relief; my aching muscles allowed a brief respite. As I stand on its majestic craggy peak, I survey my mountain beneath me. My boulder is now far out of sight, but I can feel it down below in the darkness waiting for me.
Instead of writing seriously, I wrote an imaginary interview. BTW:Living in a van...
What is the mind when it is happy and when it is unhappy? Most likely the answer is different for each person, but to understand it for myself I first need to discern when it is that I am happy.
Is it possible for humanity to consciously direct our own evolution and if so can we evolve to be better, smarter and faster? Can we evolve ourselves to be able to sustain an utopic society?