To do

Two things I found that I hope will inspire students as we move into longer research projects in many classes. You can be more than you think you can; you can do more than you think you can. Be curious.

From Open Culture: Leonardo da Vinci’s “To Do” list is amazing. At first it might make you feel lazy, even if you’re as busy as I think you all are. But I hope it also inspires. His intellectual curiosity is boundless. And he knows what he knows and what he doesn’t know, and he’s not afraid to ask experts. I want you to do the same.

From Mental Floss: 8 musicians who are brilliant in other fields, too. Talk about “renaissance men”! (I do wish they’d highlight some women in this list, too. Maybe that can be a research project idea for someone? Find some female musicians or athletes and also scientists, for example).

Anyway, these men continue to write and play music, while at the same time studying other things.

This is Brian May, the guitarist from Queen. 10 years ago he got his PhD, and he’s since written two books about space and helped NASA when they sent a probe to Pluto.

This is the lead singer/songwriter of The Offspring (remember them? Saw them in concert in Tokyo ages ago). He just got a PhD in molecular biology and he’s doing research into HIV and AIDS.

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Never say never

How could someone who can’t see kayak? With a lot of motivation and ingenuity, and a litle help from technology.

Read more about this native of Turkey, who lost his sight when he was a child:

“The Water Belongs to Everyone, and This Blind Kayaker Will Prove It” (from KQED)

Here’s the app he uses: Be My Eyes. If you’re feeling philanthropic, maybe you can lend your eyes to someone who needs them.

“The saddest saddo sailing on the sea of sadness”

There are tons of articles and videos and books that tell us how we can be happier, and regular lists of the “happiest countries in the world”. But as I heard someone say the other day, it’s often easier to avoid things that make us unhappy than it is to pursue things that supposedly make us happy.

So here’s a video from CGP Gray about how you can be miserable. How many can you avoid?

Funny:

  • “Be the equivalent of a human pile of laundry.”

A good acronym / mnemonic device:

  • VAPID goals vs. SMART goals