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 Philadelphia Inquirer

 

Benefits of having a mental disorder

 

Even though medicine evolves a lot we don’t really have an answer on why human brains go wrong the way they do.

Let me show you how what we call a disorder can be an advantage.

 

Obsessive compulsive disorder

 

Humanity might have been eaten by horror wolves a long time ago if it wasn’t for OCD.

OCD is a psychological immune system.

This disorder carries the stigma of being seen as washing your hands 10 times when you get home or organizing your clothes by color like a neurotic but it has aseptic benefits for humanity.

 

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This people hold cleaning rituals that can be the difference between life and death.

An OCD sufferer acts like he’ll die if he doesn’t get every little thing in his immediate surroundings exactly right and in some cases that is absolutely true.

It is thought that the condition originated as an evolutionary warning system that kept our whole species alive by making certain early humans constantly worried about everyday stuff.

People who have OCD serve as a meaning to get us to stay away from icky things that pose a potential danger in the form of bacteria and parasites.

 

Attention deficit

 

Let’s use the best example: me.

Attention deficit make me write articles, make paintings, read books and learn new languages, just because I easily got bored.

Some people think that attention deficit is a disease but it only is a genetic condition.

A condition that has historically helped humanity.

As specie we need a wide variety of skills to survive.

We had to be a little bit of everything to be successful so is very useful to have a brain that likes to hop from task to task.

Great advancements happened because capable people got bored with the status quo.

We run the world!

 

Dyslexia

 

Dyslexia is one of those disorders that make you wonder just who the hell designed the human brain.

It’s characterized by an inability to read despite normal intelligence.

The brain jumbling up characters like one of those captcha text boxes.

Dyslexia is also a symptom of a brain superpower.

Over 40 percent of successful people describe themselves as dyslexic, from Albert Einstein to Steven Spielberg have struggled with the condition.

People with dyslexia tend to be highly creative, artistic, intelligent and great at solving multidimensional problems.

Things may become tricky when it comes time to write the answer down.

 

 

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New York Post

 

Social media chivalry

Either if you use the social media to promote your business or just to flirt around there are a variety of rules specific to social networking that you have to follow if you want chivalry to prevail.

In this article I present the cardinal guidelines of social networking to avoid being discourteous.

 

Spam

 

There is a certain cadence people expect you to have when you social network and if you exceed it you piss them off.

For example, I haven’t seen anyone go above five tweets per day and be popular.

Remember, is important to be smart and fun but is way more important to be modest.

The first rule then can be set as following: firmly avoid talking about the same thing everyone else is talking.

 

Reply

 

If you talk to someone and that person simply don’t answer back there are two options, is deaf or the most uneducated person you’ve ever met.

When someone sends you a message you’re supposed to write back.

I know it might seem like common sense or even just basic human decency but some individuals doesn’t seems to be grown in a human environment and need to be told about this.

 

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It’s ok being an anti-social monster or a sick maniac depressive that doesn’t want human interaction but try to hide it, act normal so we don’t realize it.

So remember, if one of us, the normal people, talks to you, the weirdo, then you just say something back.

It’s simple. Is not hard, you can do it.

There is of course an exception: Blackberry users.

For the 5 of you out there that join me in the Blackberry use, please don’t feel that pressure since your phone is probably hiding most of the interactions you have.

A couple of weeks ago I found almost 19 Google chat conversations inside my satanic phone.

Conversations filled with questions, demands and increasingly desperate pleas for a response.

Another warning regarding the ‘Always reply’ rule is that it gets a little harder on weekends.

 

Be concise

 

One of the big benefits of social media is the opportunity to be short and simple, so use it.

Be careful, don’t go to the other side and respond to a ten word question with ‘Yes’.

Use common sense, read your message a couple times before sending it and ask yourself how you would interpret this if you were the other person.

 

Punctuation

 

Everybody likes proper punctuation.

Punctuation is not a matter of taste, how you punctuate something can make a big difference in how it’s interpreted.

‘Ok’ feels a lot different from ‘ok!!’

Punctuation is an important part of establishing the mood you’re in when writing.

 

Chat

 

Never, ever, log into a chat, get a request to begin chatting, ignore that request and go offline.

To the person on the other end it can come across as a network error or they can assume that you are a horrible person.

Noblesse oblige I admit to having done this a couple of times, again, in my defense, I have a Blackberry.

And Blackberry main feature is to constantly log you into chat services against your will.

Well guys, I have to go. Nice talking to you!

 

 

 

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The Boston Globe

 

How to be a hacker

 

I’m sure if you are reading this page is because you are smart.

So you are also able to bust into people’s computer, stealing passwords and credit card numbers using nothing more than your brain.

I used to be a hacker myself so let me tell you that everything you’ve see on movies about hacking has utterly failed to communicate just how completely boring it actually is.

 

Hacking is easy

 

The majority of events that you describe as ‘hacks’ are pretty trivial.

Any of us is perfectly capable of cracking passwords or bringing down a website, even you.

Don’t trust me? Google it.

You see? Is just a matter of clicking here and there, some readings, some downloads and you are hacking whatever you want.

It takes very little thought to run someone else’s scripts and hacking tools someone else has made.

Note for the 99% of you who have opened another browser to start hacking things: you can do it but you will get caught so please, for the sake of our overcrowded prisons, stay calm.

 

Social engineering

 

The biggest security hole every piece of software or hardware has to try to deal with can be summed up in the below statement.

Humans are stupid.

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It’s this stupidity that hackers take advantage of for the simplest and most effective hacks of all.

First, there are all the problems we have with our passwords, which are the central element of our security systems.

All of us have terrible easy to guess passwords.

Let’s pretend for a second that you are the exception that proves the rule and your passwords are not dumb.

Well, there’s also another issue: the idiots you’ve given your passwords to for safekeeping.

In other words, the employees of any company that handle emails and passwords.

When you sign up on a social network or a shopping site you don’t conduct an interview with their network security team.

You just access the page and give them your email and your password.

Chances are, those guys don’t even have a clue on how to store your information securely and by simply social engineering you can trick them into giving out anyone’s personal information.

 

Sit and wait

 

When most people think of hacking, they probably picture someone sitting in a dark room frantically typing, every keystroke chipping away at the firewall, just steps ahead of the authorities.

The details may vary but they’ll certainly picture something tense and fast paced, where every second counts.

At no point during this hack do they imagine the hacker wandering off somewhere for several months.

Viruses, Trojan horses, and worms are a group of semi-related programs that, once created, spread around completely on their own, which can take a lot of time, but allows them to damage or compromise a lot of computers.

This is how some of the most impressive hacks of all time have been pulled off.

Like the Trojan horse which blew up a natural gas pipeline in Siberia.

So not only does this type of hacking involve making the virus, with all the tedious weeks of programming, and math that goes into that.

Once that’s done come the months and months of waiting.

It’s about as exciting as planting a tree, except with the fun possibility that the FBI will come kick in your door.

 

 

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GameInformer Magazine

 

Resident Evil movies are better than the games

 

In my humble opinion the Resident Evil movies are the most successful video game movie series ever made.

Some gamers complain about the movies but I love the movies and have powerful reasons.

 

Gamers are not allowed to criticize movies

 

In 1996 Resident Evil games and their fans surrendered any right to criticize any moving image with the worst intro movie ever made.

Back then people were still excited about full motion videos and you’d swear that Resident Evil was trying to warn them that it would never get better.

If you didn’t watch that clip I’m not going to ruin the blissful ignorance you’ve wisely earned.

But let’s just say that people have looked tougher than this grizzled action hero while losing on Cake Wars.

 

The movies have a better plot

 

The first complaint gamers have about the movies is that they don’t follow the plot of the games.

Of course they don’t, the movies aren’t nine hours long and even if they were, eight hours of watching people slowly fetch pointless objects while avoiding shambling bodies isn’t cinema.

The plot of Resident Evil games is dumb.

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In fact the plot of the original games got so stupid that even the games dumped most of it, restarting in Resident Evil 4.

 

Sequel strategy

 

The games had nine different kinds of virus and parasite.

It’s like they got confused about whether people were playing because they liked to shoot zombies or because they were interested in virologist fan fiction.

Since any one of the viruses in the game can apparently do anything, it’s more pointless replication of terrible things than the Kardashian family.

Bizarrely, the movies are better at rebooting between levels than the computer games.

The movies approach sequels like tank combat.

The old one blows up, so you make the new one bigger and even more awesome.

Anything that could have complicated the story is blown up at the start of the next movie.

The movies are incredibly and stupid but they work.

Each Resident Evil movie makes more money than the one before, which is exactly the kind of exponential profit from disasters the Umbrella Corporation would have been going for all this time.

The movies get terrible reviews but are a huge amount of fun.

And I think that we should admit that the games were the exact opposite.

 

Movies don’t waste as much time as games

 

Fans of the game have complained that the movies are lowbrow, and yes, they are clinically incapable of going five minutes without doing something awesomely stupid.

At least they’re doing something.

Games use more padding to keep people stuck than Arkham Asylum, and the contents make less sense.

Most of the games are one part zombies to 20 parts fetch quest.

Resident Evil 2 has you placing a unicorn medal in the police station foyer fountain statue so it can pour you a key.

The quests have less than no explanation and the result is trawling endless narrow corridors full of undead and picking up anything you find because those are the only paths you can follow.

Just like a Pac Man.

 

 

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Chicago Tribune

 

Tips to be happy

You can find millions of articles in on the internet with tips for living a happier life.

They all mention exercise, being thankful, keep a positive attitude and several stupid things that of course I won’t include here.

What I’m giving you are more like the cheat codes to happiness.

 

Think about death

 

We are dead much longer than we are alive so we need to think about dead as something familiar.

People who frequently think and talk about death are more pleasant and less irritable; we are better company for everyone.

If you think about death at least once a day you’ll live with a little more charity and fellowship to everyone around you.

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People with higher awareness of death are more patient and generous with others.

When we remind ourselves of our own mortality we want to be better people and make our short time on this world more fun and positive.

 

Watch sad movies

 

Look at the Best Picture winners from the past 25 years and you’ll notice a trend.

Schindler’s List, Brave heart, The English Patient, Titanic, Million Dollar Baby, The King’s Speech…

These movies were specifically designed to make you weep and won all the possible awards.

Scientists were curious about this so they conducted a study involving a few hundred participants.

Before starting the sad movie, the researchers asked the participants how happy they were with their lives in general.

After the movie was over, the researchers asked the participants to rate their emotions and they found that the participants had become happier because they had subconsciously compared their own with the horrible tragedies onscreen.

Watching others fail on such hopelessly spectacular levels actually makes us feel better about our lives.

 

Stay busy

 

Unless you’re Batman, when you think about being happy, 9 out of 10 it has nothing to do with working.

There’s nothing more relaxing than the thought of being home relaxing and letting time pass slowly by with no obligations.

However keeping your mind busy makes you happier than just lying around and letting your brain take a break.

People who multitask, combining writing, chatting, watching TV and listening to music experience more emotional fulfillment than those who focused on only one activity or nothing at all.

The more tasks you give your brain to accomplish, the more dopamine gets released into your system.

 

 

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Hungarian artist Zsolt Molnár created sixty two unique posters for every episode of Breaking Bad.

Each artwork perfectly reflects the spirit of the episode symbolized.

The young designer was so impressed with the show that he needed to capture the message behind the story in sixty two tangible art pieces.

 

 

 

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Los Angeles Times

 

Zombie fiction doesn’t make any sense

 

I love zombie movies.

However, there are several points about zombie fiction that my mind refuses to acknowledge.

I watch a lot of zombie movies, always with different people, and these same details no one wants to explain to me because ‘it’s just fiction’ they said.

I secretly still want to understand some points.

 

Zombies never ever finish their meal

 

Let’s make an example.

Our movie opens with something pleasant.

Milla Jovovich dressed in mildly inappropriate fashion.

Immediately a zombie runs out of nowhere and ‘bwaaggh blarr gwaaahggg’ try to eat someone’s head.

The biggest problem for a non-zombie is becoming a zombie and zombies are driven only by base hunger.

So if all they want to do is eat you, why are there so many zombies around?

 

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Shouldn’t cities in movies be full of skeletons all over the place and such?

That would make sense for me.

 

Where does the food go?

 

I don’t understand the simple problem of zombie biology.

If they consume flesh, it needs to go somewhere.

World War Z made reference to their stomachs exploding but no one on camera has addressed it.

Why is this question important?

It’s about a fictional world in which the primary danger to the very existence of humans as a species is a thing that uses eating as its chief weapon.

There should be a stunning amount of zombie poop all over the world, shouldn’t?

 

The cure

 

The Walking Dead has brought this up a number of times and it was a big part of the 28 Days Later: can you cure a zombie?

Of course you’d want to get rid of whatever it is that makes you a zombie but after you die, start eating people and been shot a few times, maybe it’s better leave it as it is.

I clearly don’t understand why the zombie apocalypse instills so much new faith in medical science in cures them.

 

Zombies chase the most dangerous food

 

When we are hungry we have lots of choices, so why don’t zombies?

I like the idea of be a zombie in general but of all the things you could mindlessly eat, why choose people?

And if they prefer to eat people, why don’t they eat each other?

How they know who is already a zombie?

I remember that the movie ‘Shaun of the Dead’ they suggested that just acting like a zombie was enough to getting past them.

I like to think that if I were a zombie I’d just spend my existence eating oreo and goldfish.

 

 

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 The New Yorker   

 

 

Office war starters

 

I’m a writer so I don’t need to wake up every morning and drag myself to an office like some of you.

My working days are spent laid on my couch listening to music and writing articles.

But I have lovely memories of my days at an office; I clearly remember all of the little actions that I wouldn’t believe can escalate into almost a war.

 

Coffee

 

Almost every office has a coffee vendor machine and we have two teams; the ones who like their coffee strong and the crowd that prefers a more civilized brew that tastes less robust and doesn’t mimic the effects of methamphetamine in your body and mind.

One thing both groups agree is that the other crowd is completely wrong.

This seems like a trivial matter but keep in mind that caffeine is a drug.

Toying with the influx of caffeine into a person’s bloodstream is inevitably going to end in the closest approximation of a Breaking Bad episode you’ll ever get.

 

Bring and share

When it comes time to celebrate some businesses opt to do so in a way that requires everybody to bring some food to share.

One of the more common solutions is to hold a potluck, where all the weirdos you never even say hello bring a homemade casserole and expect you to eat it.

Office potluck fragment people into three groups: the people who care and bring something, the people who forget they’re supposed to bring something and grab at snack at the store and the people who bring nothing and eat anyway.

Those bastards are away from the game, nobody likes them anyway.

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The real tension rises between the people who bring something without putting thought into it and the people who act as if a potluck is the opportunity to be shown by others as President of cooking nation and put more effort cooking that they do at their job.

 

Air conditioning

The office thermostat might be compared to that comically large red button that sets off a nuclear war in movies.

Take a quick trip to the thermostats in your office and you’ll notice that almost everyone has a yellow post-it or a gigantic note with the delicate message DO NOT TOUCH!!!!!

What I noticed that usually happens is that the room that holds the thermostat features a radically different climate from the rest of the building.

The thermostat might claim that the temperature in the building is 72 degrees but for some reason in that particular room it’s warm as rainforest.

What we do then is leaving that space without anyone’s desk hoping for the best.

Of course that’s never the case and we immediately start using it for meetings so a variety of people are continuously going in and out from that little room.

Those people don’t want to conduct their meetings in the Amazonia so they turn the thermostat a little down.

They then carry on the meeting in a comfortable environment while everyone else enters in the next ice age.

 

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 The Boston Globe  

 

My dog saved my life… and ate my face

Top model Heidi Canis’s life changed last Monday when her dog ate her face while she was unconscious due to a cocaine overdose.

Heidi bears no resentment or bad feeling towards the pet dog which disfigured her face by eating her nose, eyes and mouth.

The top model, now without a face, irrationally regrets that the dog had to be put down after the attack.

While being interviewed by her therapist she says that the dog Benji simply saved her life.

‘I lost my face and I lost my dog but this was the best thing that could have happened’ declared Heidi, an assiduous reader of Osho.

She also admitted to have a drug problem that now is being treated at a rehab facility near her house in Boston.

Her friends and coworkers declared that she was high from the moment she woke up and staid high all day, she would even wake up during the night to have a sniff.

 

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It is unclear exactly what happened on Monday but after going to the bathroom, Heidi tripped on a rip in the stairs as a result of excessive consumption and tumbled down knocking herself out.

She didn’t regain consciousness until several hours later at around 11am and as soon as Wendy awoke, she knew something serious had happened because she was not able to find her face.

She went to a mirror and discovered that Benji had eaten the nose, eyes and mouth while trying to wake her up.

Despite what we are all thinking, Heidi described the moment feelings as ‘relief and happiness’.

She remembers that her first thought was ‘Oh my God, I’m so happy, now I’m no longer a top model so I can stop consuming drugs’.

When officers find her there was blood all over the walls, carpet and couch.

She was able to see out of the holes the dog left on her eyes but only for a couple of minutes so she put on some makeup and a nice dress waiting for the police to come.

The paramedics were completely shocked when they found her and she was completely calm and repeating that ‘Everything happens for a reason’.

 

 

 

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 Sports Illustrated Magazine 

 

Olympic Winter Games

 

At my office we are forced to watch the Winter Olympics.

It’s not that they really force us but more like they coincidentally installed the TVs by the beginning of the Games, tuned on ESPN and nobody changed the channel ever since.

I can’t help but feeling sad thinking that all those withies spend their lives devoted to weird sports just for this one moment at the Olympics.

If the slightest thing goes wrong their whole existence goes straight down the drain.

And even if everything goes right and they win, nobody would actually care either.

 

Luge skeleton

 

I’ve decided to combine the luge and the skeleton into one entry because for me, they’re the same event.

The only real difference is with the skeleton you lay on your stomach and with the luge you lay on your back.

Skeleton is the gay man’s luge and luge is also the gay man’s luge.

The luge it’s just a person sliding around with an ice skate blade attached to their back.

And that’s awesome because all of us can watch it and say ‘Yes, I could be an Olympic athlete too’.

There is literally no talent required other than the willingness to pour yourself into a latex suit and toboggan.

And you know who can do that? Everybody.

 

Figure Skating

 

When I mention figure skating I’m referring to women’s figure skating.

 

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Men’s figure skating is an abomination that should be discarded from the public eye.

But that’s just a matter of time so let’s talk about women’s figure skating.

There is nowhere you can see more people hopes and dreams go down in flames like watching women’s figure skating.

These ladies spend their lives preparing for this one moment, they moved 800 miles away from home to be closer to the best coaches who can train them and then at that very moment, with only a one millisecond miscalculation they fall in the ice and ends with all their parents, friends and fellow citizens expectations.

If we talk about destroying life hopes and dreams, there is no place in Earth that has more of that per capita than a Winter Olympic figure skating event.

 

Biathlon

 

Biathlon is like the Danger Mouse of Olympic events.

This event is about rifles and cross country skiing, together.

I can’t help but imagine if the 1500 meter run during the normal Olympics was interrupted every 50 meters so the runners could break out firearms and start shooting.

 

Curling

 

I wrote this article only to reach this moment.

Has anyone on ever actually watched a curling match on purpose?

Yeah, I don’t think so either.

I had to even check on Wikipedia to understand the rules because as I mentioned earlier at my job we are required to watch the Winter Olympics.

Googling curling worked out fine because according to Wikipedia curling is awesome.

Check it out what it says.

‘A great deal of strategy and teamwork choosing the ideal path and placement of a stone for each situation, the skills of the curlers determine how close to the desired result the stone will achieve.

Curling is like Chess on ice’.

Curling is something (note I wrote something because I refuse to call it sport) that revolved around people screaming while wearing children’s roller shoes and furiously shaking brooms around a rock.

Sorry Wikipedia, this is not Chess on ice.

 

 

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