Can humans travel through wormholes in space?

Two new studies examine ways we could engineer human wormhole travel.

Imagine if we could cut paths through the vastness of space to make a network of tunnels linking distant stars somewhat like subway stations here on Earth? The tunnels are what physicists call wormholes, strange funnel-like folds in the very fabric of spacetime that would be—if they exist—major shortcuts for interstellar travel. You can visualize it in two dimensions like this: Take a piece of paper and bend it in the middle so that it makes a U shape. If an imaginary flat little bug wants to go from one side to the other, it needs to slide along the paper. Or, if there were a bridge between the two sides of the paper the bug could go straight between them, a much shorter path. Since we live in three dimensions, the entrances to the wormholes would be more like spheres than holes, connected by a four-dimensional “tube.” It’s much easier to write the equations than to visualize this! Amazingly, because the theory of general relativity links space and time into a four-dimensional spacetime, wormholes could, in principle, connect distant points in space, or in time, or both.

The idea of wormholes is not new. Its origins reach back to 1935 (and even earlier), when Albert Einstein and Nathan Rosen published a paper constructing what became known as an Einstein-Rosen bridge. (The name ‘wormhole’ came up later, in a 1957 paper by Charles Misner and John Wheeler, Wheeler also being the one who coined the term ‘black hole.’) Basically, an Einstein-Rosen bridge is a connection between two distant points of the universe or possibly even different universes through a tunnel that goes into a black hole. Exciting as the possibility is, the throats of such bridges are notoriously unstable and any object with mass that ventures through it would cause it to collapse upon itself almost immediately, closing the connection. To force the wormholes to stay open, one would need to add a kind of exotic matter that has both negative energy density and pressure—not something that is known in the universe. (Interestingly, negative pressure is not as crazy as it seems; dark energy, the fuel that is currently accelerating the cosmic expansion, does it exactly because it has negative pressure. But negative energy density is a whole other story.)

If wormholes exist, if they have wide mouths, and if they can be kept open (three big but not impossible ifs) then it’s conceivable that we could travel through them to faraway spots in the universe. Arthur C. Clarke used them in “2001: A Space Odyssey”, where the alien intelligences had constructed a network of intersecting tunnels they used as we use the subway. Carl Sagan used them in “Contact” so that humans could confirm the existence of intelligent ETs. “Interstellar” uses them so that we can try to find another home for our species.

If wormholes exist, if they have wide mouths, and if they can be kept open (three big but not impossible ifs) then it’s conceivable that we could travel through them to faraway spots in the universe.

Two recent papers try to get around some of these issues. Jose Luis Blázquez-Salcedo, Christian Knoll, and Eugen Radu use normal matter with electric charge to stabilize the wormhole, but the resulting throat is still of submicroscopic width, so not useful for human travel. It is also hard to justify net electric charges in black hole solutions as they tend to get neutralized by surrounding matter, similar to how we get shocked with static electricity in dry weather. Juan Maldacena and Alexey Milekhin’s paper is titled ‘Humanly Traversable Wormholes’, thus raising the stakes right off the bat. However, they are open to admitting that “in this paper, we revisit the question [of humanly traversable wormholes] and we engage in some ‘science fiction.’” The first ingredient is the existence of some kind of matter (the “dark sector”) that only interacts with normal matter (stars, us, frogs) through gravity. Another point is that to support the passage of human-size travelers, the model needs to exist in five dimensions, thus one extra space dimension. When all is set up, the wormhole connects two black holes with a magnetic field running through it. And the whole thing needs to spin to keep it stable, and completely isolated from particles that may fall into it compromising its design. Oh yes, and extremely low temperature as well, even better at absolute zero, an unattainable limit in practice.

Maldacena and Milekhins’ paper is an amazing tour through the power of speculative theoretical physics. They are the first to admit that the object they construct is very implausible and have no idea how it could be formed in nature. In their defense, pushing the limits (or beyond the limits) of understanding is what we need to expand the frontiers of knowledge. For those who dream of humanly traversable wormholes, let’s hope that more realistic solutions would become viable in the future, even if not the near future. Or maybe aliens that have built them will tell us how.

Link Original: https://bigthink.com/13-8/are-wormholes-real/?utm_term=Autofeed&utm_medium=Social&utm_source=Facebook#Echobox=1638739644


Have Imposter Syndrome At Work? Try This Viral Hack.

No, you’re not a fraud. You’re perfectly capable and qualified. Do this, and you’ll be reminded of that whenever you need a little confidence boost.

Have imposter syndrome or a tendency to downplay your talents at work? It’s time for you to make a brag folder on your desktop.

The idea went viral last month when the popular Instagram account @shityoushouldcareabout shared a tweet from actress and singer Jenneviere Villegas explaining what exactly a brag folder is.

“Do yourself a favor,” Villegas told her followers. “Start a folder on your desktop — mine is called ‘you’re doing a great job’ ― and when you get positive feedback, a compliment, etc., screenshot it and put it in there. When you need a confidence boost, or to combat imposter syndrome, open it up and read them.”

Others chimed in that they kept brag folders with all their work wins, too, either on their desktops or on their phones.

Ian Helms, an associate director of content marketing at Wpromote, has a brag folder, though in his case, it’s an email folder labeled “Yay!” (He tries to flag at least three to five emails each month.) Anytime he’s feeling a little uncertain about how he’s doing at work, he returns to the folder. 

“Sometimes the emails I flag are nice notes of gratitude from clients or teammates,” he told HuffPost. “Other times, it’s messages marking milestones for projects I’m involved in. We also receive a weekly video from our CEO that includes shoutouts from coworkers, so whenever I get a shoutout I keep track of those video messages, too.”

Now that Helms is in a higher position at work, he’s expanded his “yay!” folder to keep track of the impact he’s made on the junior teammates he mentors and to catalog their wins. 

“Keeping track of those moments gives me something to refer back to the next time they might be feeling down about something they did or didn’t do to remind them how great and worthy they are, too!” he said. 

The term “imposter syndrome” was coined by psychologists Pauline R. Clance and Suzanne A. Imes in 1978 to describe an “internal experience of intellectual phoniness in people who believe that they are not intelligent, capable or creative despite evidence of high achievement.” To put it simply, imposter syndrome is the tiny voice in your head that hounds you with negative self-talk, constantly reminding you that you’re not good enough and don’t deserve to be in the position or field you’re in.

Creating a brag folder like Helms or Villegas have done won’t cure you of your imposter syndrome for good, obviously, but it could help combat it, said Angela Karachristos, a career coach for women in leadership. 

“When dealing with imposter syndrome, the ‘imposter’ likes to remind us why we aren’t capable, qualified or fit for the task at hand,” she told HuffPost. “Referring to a brag folder can snap you out of that false, negative self-talk and bring you back to the truth: That you’re not only capable, you excel at what you do. ”

Melody Wilding, an executive coach and author of “Trust Yourself: Stop Overthinking and Channel Your Emotions for Success at Work,” is also a big proponent of the brag file.

“If you have imposter syndrome, a brag file like this is a simple way to rewire your brain to focus on your talents, strengths and all the value you have to offer,” she said.

Try to use the folder to give yourself internal validation, too, she said. 

“For example, capture moments of strength ― times when you had a difficult conversation, overcame resistance or acted with courage at work, even if you didn’t get the outcome you hoped for,” she explained.

Vivian Kaye, a public speaker and the founder of KinkyCurlyYaki, a hair extension brand for Black women, swears her brag folder.

“I’ve had major imposter syndrome,” she told HuffPost. “I’m a Black woman, immigrant, a college dropout and a single mom who bootstrapped an e-commerce business to millions of dollars in sales. When you look up success, you wouldn’t find a photo of someone with my unconventional background.”

When her imposter syndrome starts to creep in, Kaye taps on the “praise folder” she keeps on her iPhone.

“I think as women, we need to pat ourselves on the back more often than we do,” she said. “We deserve the accolades. We need to stop humbling ourselves and remind the world who we are.”

You can also use the emails and other feedback in your folder to make the case for promotions, write your year-end reviews, or to think about what you’ll bring up in any interviews for new jobs.

In other words, try to leverage your personal wins folder for your career growth, said Nadia De Ala, the founder of Real You Leadership, a group coaching program for women of color in technology.

“It’s valid data that can help you relax if you’re nervous about ‘bragging’ about how awesome and badass you are,” she said. “It makes advocating for yourself feel less difficult and less personal.”

The One Downside Of The ‘Brag File’

There’s one caveat with the brag folder, according to Valerie Young, an imposter syndrome expert and the author of “The Secret Thoughts of Successful Women”: You don’t want to become too dependent on positive feedback and compliments.

“For instance, a young woman told me after sending an email she waits to receive some kind of praise or reinforcement that she’d doing a good job,” Young recalled. “I was pretty blunt in telling her that’s a problem because people are busy and they don’t always have time to praise your every move.”

Look at the folder like a visual equivalent of a pep talk, Young said. But to really move the impostor syndrome needle in any lasting way, you may want to create a separate folder for constructive criticism ― one that houses feedback that helped you see your blind spots and refine your skill set.

“Rather than just focus on the things you’ve done well, also include things you’d do differently next time and improvements,” she said. “Gather constructive criticism that you’re grateful for because it made you better.”

This whole process ― creating a brag file and perhaps also creating a constructive criticism file ― takes effort, but ultimately, isn’t it worth it for the confidence boost?

Link Original: https://www.huffpost.com/entry/have-imposter-syndrome-at-work-try-this-viral-hack_l_61a95569e4b025be1af57384?d_id=2915855&ncid_tag=fcbklnkushpmg00000032&utm_medium=Social&utm_source=Facebook&utm_campaign=us_life&fbclid=IwAR1uCTGsB8Hx3-SHAbSmi_Q5utP6h1Tbrx71qcAOa2Zv8cIoB-hD2fPHVrY


A engenhosa solução dos antigos persas para ‘capturar o vento’ e se refrescar no calor escaldante

Do Antigo Egito ao Império Persa, um método engenhoso de capturar e dirigir o vento refrescou as pessoas por milênios. Na busca por refrigeração livre de emissões, o «captador de vento» pode vir nos ajudar novamente.

A cidade de Yazd, no deserto do centro do Irã, é, há muito tempo, um centro de criatividade. Yazd é o berço de uma das maravilhas da engenharia antiga — um sistema que inclui uma estrutura de refrigeração subterrânea chamada yakhchal, um sistema de irrigação subterrâneo chamado qanats e até uma rede de mensageiros chamada pirradazis, criado mais de 2.000 anos antes do serviço postal americano. 

Dentre as tecnologias antigas de Yazd, encontra-se o captador de vento, ou bâdgir, em persa. 

Essas estruturas notáveis são comumente encontradas elevando-se sobre os telhados de Yazd. Muitas vezes, são torres retangulares, mas elas também existem em formato circular, quadrado, octogonal e em outros formatos ornamentados.

Afirma-se que Yazd é a cidade com mais captadores de vento do mundo. Eles podem ter se originado no Antigo Egito, mas, em Yazd, o captador de vento logo se mostrou indispensável, possibilitando a vida naquela parte quente e árida do planalto iraniano.

Embora muitos dos captadores de vento da cidade do deserto tenham caído em desuso, suas estruturas estão agora chamando a atenção de acadêmicos, arquitetos e engenheiros, a fim de estudar o papel que eles poderiam desempenhar para nos manter refrigerados em um mundo em rápido aquecimento.

Como os captadores de vento não precisam de eletricidade para funcionar, eles são uma forma de resfriamento verde e barata. Com o ar condicionado mecânico convencional já representando um quinto do consumo total de eletricidade do mundo, alternativas antigas como o captador de vento estão se tornando uma opção cada vez mais atraente.

Existem duas forças principais que dirigem o ar através das estruturas: a entrada do vento e a mudança da impulsão do ar dependendo da temperatura — o ar quente tende a subir sobre o ar frio, que é mais denso.

Primeiramente, quando o ar é captado pela abertura de um captador de vento, ele é canalizado para baixo até a construção, depositando eventuais fragmentos ou areia no pé da torre. O ar então flui ao longo de toda a parte interna da construção, às vezes sobre piscinas subterrâneas com água para melhor resfriamento. Por fim, o ar aquecido se elevará e deixará a construção através de outra torre ou abertura, com o auxílio da pressão no interior da construção.

A forma da torre e outros fatores — como o projeto da casa, a direção para onde a torre está voltada, a quantidade de aberturas, sua configuração de pás internas fixas, canais e altura — são todas adequadamente definidas para aumentar a capacidade da torre de canalizar vento para baixo, até o interior da construção.

A história do uso do vento para resfriar construções começou quase ao mesmo tempo em que as pessoas começaram a viver no ambiente quente dos desertos.

Uma das primeiras tecnologias de captura do vento data de 3.300 anos atrás, no Egito, segundo os pesquisadores Chris Soelberg e Julie Rich, da Universidade Estadual Weber em Utah, nos Estados Unidos. Nesse sistema, as construções tinham paredes espessas, poucas janelas voltadas para o sol, aberturas para entrada de ar na principal direção dos ventos e uma ventilação de saída do outro lado — conhecida em árabe como arquitetura malqaf.

Mas há quem defenda que o captador de vento foi inventado no próprio Irã.

De qualquer forma, os captadores de vento se espalharam pelo Oriente Médio e pelo norte da África. Variações dos captadores de vento iranianos podem ser encontradas com nomes locais, como os barjeels do Catar e do Bahrein, os malqaf do Egito, os mungh do Paquistão e muitos outros, segundo Fatemeh Jomehzadeh, da Universidade de Tecnologia da Malásia, e seus colegas.

Acredita-se que a civilização persa tenha adicionado variações estruturais para permitir melhor resfriamento, como a sua combinação com os sistemas de irrigação existentes para ajudar a resfriar o ar antes da sua liberação por toda a casa.

No clima quente e seco de Yazd, essas estruturas se tornaram cada vez mais populares, até que a cidade se tornou um oásis de altas torres ornamentadas em busca do vento do deserto. Yazd é uma cidade histórica que foi reconhecida como Patrimônio Mundial da Unesco em 2017 — em parte, pela sua grande quantidade de captadores de vento.

Além de desempenhar o propósito funcional de resfriar as casas, as torres também tinham forte importância cultural. Os captadores de vento fazem parte da paisagem de Yazd, da mesma forma que o Templo do Fogo de Zoroastro e a Torre do Silêncio.

E há também o captador de vento do Jardim de Dowlat Abad, que se acredita ser o mais alto do mundo (com 33 metros de altura) e um dos poucos ainda em funcionamento. Abrigado em uma construção octogonal, ele fica de frente para uma fonte e um lago que se estende ao longo de fileiras de pinheiros.

Possível renascimento?

Com a eficácia do resfriamento fornecido por esses captadores de vento livres da emissão de gases, alguns pesquisadores argumentam que eles merecem ressurgir. 

O pesquisador Parkham Kheirkhah Sangdeh estudou minuciosamente a aplicação científica e a cultura local dos captadores de vento na arquitetura contemporânea na Universidade de Ilam, no Irã. Ele afirma que inconvenientes como insetos que ingressam nas calhas e o acúmulo de poeira e fragmentos do deserto fizeram com que muitas pessoas abandonassem os captadores de vento tradicionais. 

No seu lugar, são utilizados sistemas de resfriamento mecânicos, como unidades convencionais de ar condicionado. Muitas vezes, esses sistemas alternativos são alimentados por combustíveis fósseis e usam refrigerantes que agem como poderosos gases do efeito estufa quando liberados para a atmosfera.

Há muito tempo, o advento das modernas tecnologias de resfriamento é culpada pela deterioração dos métodos tradicionais no Irã, segundo a historiadora da arquitetura iraniana Elizabeth Beazley escreveu em 1977.

Sem manutenção constante, o clima hostil do planalto iraniano desgastou muitas estruturas, desde captadores de vento até casas de armazenamento de gelo. Kheirkhah Sangdeh também observa que o abandono dos captadores de vento se deveu, em parte, à tendência do público de adotar tecnologias vindas do Ocidente. 

«É preciso que haja mudanças de perspectiva cultural para usar essas tecnologias. As pessoas precisam observar o passado e entender por que a conservação de energia é tão importante», afirma o pesquisador, «a começar pelo reconhecimento da história cultural e da importância da conservação de energia».

Kheirkhah Sangdeh espera que os captadores de vento do Irã sejam reformados para oferecer resfriamento com uso eficiente de energia às construções existentes. Mas ele encontra muitas barreiras para esse trabalho, como as tensões internacionais existentes, a pandemia de covid-19 e a atual falta de água. «A situação está tão ruim no Irã que [as pessoas] levam um dia de cada vez», afirma ele.

Métodos e sistemas de resfriamento que não utilizam combustíveis fósseis, como os captadores de vento, poderão muito bem merecer seu ressurgimento, mas, para surpresa de muitos, eles já estão presentes — embora não sejam tão grandiosos como os iranianos — em muitos países ocidentais.

No Reino Unido, cerca de 7.000 variações de captadores de vento já foram instaladas em edifícios públicos entre 1979 e 1994. Eles podem ser vistos em construções como o Hospital Real de Chelsea, em Londres, e em supermercados de Manchester. 

Esses captadores de vento modernos lembram pouco as estruturas iranianas em forma de torre. Em um edifício de três andares em uma rua movimentada no norte de Londres, pequenas torres de ventilação pintadas de rosa-choque oferecem ventilação passiva. No alto de um shopping center em Dartford, também no Reino Unido, torres de ventilação cônicas giram para capturar a brisa com o auxílio de uma asa traseira que mantém a torre voltada para a direção do vento. 

Os Estados Unidos também adotaram projetos inspirados nos captadores de vento com entusiasmo. Um desses exemplos é o centro de visitantes do Parque Nacional de Zion, no sul de Utah. 

O parque fica em um alto planalto desértico, com clima e topografia comparáveis com a região de Yazd, e o uso de tecnologias de resfriamento passivo como o captador de vento eliminou quase por completo a necessidade de ar condicionado mecânico. Os cientistas registraram diferença de temperatura de 16°C entre o lado externo e o interior do centro de visitantes, apesar das muitas pessoas que passam regularmente pelo local. 

À medida que se aprofunda a busca de soluções sustentáveis para o aquecimento global, surgem mais oportunidades que favorecem a construção de captadores de vento. Em Palermo, na Itália, pesquisadores descobriram que o clima e as condições de vento existentes fazem da cidade um local propício para uma versão do captador de vento iraniano. 

Em outubro, o captador de vento foi exposto com destaque na feira Expo Dubai, nos Emirados Árabes Unidos, como parte de uma rede de construções cônicas no pavilhão da Áustria. Para sua idealização, a empresa de arquitetura austríaca Querkraft inspirou-se no barjeel — a versão árabe do captador de vento. 

Enquanto pesquisadores como Kheirkhah Sangdeh argumentam que o captador de vento tem muito mais a oferecer para o resfriamento de casas sem o uso de combustíveis fósseis, essa engenhosa tecnologia já migrou para outras partes do mundo — mais do que se pode imaginar. Na próxima vez que você encontrar uma torre de ventilação alta no topo de um supermercado, edifício ou escola, examine com cuidado. Você pode estar olhando para o legado dos magníficos captadores de vento do Irã.

Link Original: https://www.bbc.com/portuguese/internacional-59431860?at_medium=custom7&at_custom3=BBC+Brasil&at_custom1=%5Bpost+type%5D&at_custom4=1B7B499C-55C7-11EC-B231-62780EDC252D&at_custom2=facebook_page&at_campaign=64&fbclid=IwAR0kuYZC280HPPD686Dk5HGIkZjPuOcg_WDFaedmwwt9xJF9LHFTVR67BGU


’Zuckerbergism’: Why the young founder myth is a trap for entrepreneurs

A recent study challenges the conventional thinking that says only young people can dream up successful new businesses.

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There’s no shortage of stories about young, hyper-successful entrepreneurs. From the Forbes’ 30 Under 30 lists to films like “The Social Network”, these stories offer an alluring blueprint for early success: dream huge, work hard, and soon enough you too can get filthy, tech-titan rich.

You’re less likely to hear the more common story: a young entrepreneur starts a new business, accrues debt, runs out of luck, gets demoralized and then, reluctantly, takes on a regular job. What explains the frequency of these crash-and-burn stories? It seems the problem doesn’t lie in the pursuit of entrepreneurism, but rather in the age at which entrepreneurs start launching businesses.

MOST SUCCESSFUL FOUNDERS AREN’T EXACTLY YOUNG

That’s the takeaway of a recent study that found the mean age for the 1-in-1,000 fastest growing new ventures to be 45 years. This finding held true across “high-technology sectors, entrepreneurial hubs, and successful firm exits.” So, although conventional thinking tends to paint the young generation as uniquely creative innovators and (sorry in advance) Big Thinkers, it seems that older generations are more likely to possess traits that facilitate entrepreneurial success.

“We find that age indeed predicts success, and sharply, but in the opposite way that many propose,” the researchers wrote. “The highest success rates in entrepreneurship come from founders in middle age and beyond.”

The basic idea behind this age-success relationship is that people tend to accumulate skills, resources and experience with age. However, the findings did reveal some caveats:

“Overall, we see that younger founders appear strongly disadvantaged in their tendency to produce the highest-growth companies. That said, there is a hint of some interesting age thresholds and plateaus in the data. Below age 25, founders appear to do badly (or rather, do well extremely rarely), but there is a sharp increase in performance at age 25. Between ages 25 and 35, performance seems fairly flat. However, starting after age 35 we see increased success probabilities, now outpacing the 25-year-olds. Another large surge in performance comes at age 46 and is sustained toward age 60.”

TO DREAM OR NOT TO DREAM?

So, what’s the lesson for young, prospective entrepreneurs? It’s not to stop dreaming big. But maybe it’s wise to start dreaming more strategically — to broaden the definition of entrepreneurism to include more low-cost, low-risk paths, like carving out entrepreneurial opportunities within your current job. That way, you can accumulate more of the experience and skills that’ll help to fortify your entrepreneurial pursuit when the time comes.

The findings on age and success also imply that young entrepreneurs shouldn’t fall into the trap of comparing themselves to the outlier young-success stories — the Zuckerbergs, Musks and Gates’ of the world.

“We should stop lying to young people about commerce and tell the truth that business is hard,” Jeffrey A. Tucker wrote in an article for the American Institute for Economic Research.“Work is hard. Saving money is hard. Serving customers is hard. For some people, just showing up is hard. These are all learned skills. The fun comes once you master them.”

Link Original: https://bigthink.com/the-present/young-entrepreneurs/#Echobox=1638508300