E E Cummings:”I feel that too many people judge books by their covers”

Q: “Why did you mention that you love humanity? Every time you mentioned your love for humanity, you seemed to contradict that statement by following it with something very dreary, why is that?”

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EC: “I feel that too many people judge books by their covers. They do not want to find out the true meaning of what they just read simply because people are shallow and they would rather take the easy route. This can ultimately be related to our overly simplistic society. I for one, do not love humanity, I feel that humanity itself is cruel and unjust. There is no in-between class, only the less-fortunate and the over-fortunate and this creates an unfair gap, and I stress this point in the first stanza. I felt that if I were to trick and exploit my audience by using satire and sarcasm, into thinking that they were going to read a happy poem, my message would have been better understood. In the title, I created a euphoric setting to encompass the reader’s attention before even reading the text. I wanted to make people feel good about themselves and humanity before unveiling the different shades of truth.”

Source : https://thefullviewblog.wordpress.com/2014/04/23/humanity-i-love-you-my-interview-with-e-e-cummings/

Maria Popova :”If we are so busy being successful that we don’t have time to be happy, then we need to seriously reconsider our definition of success”

Q: The “Information Age” seems to have ushered in this hectic, new pace of working that’s driving us all a bit crazy. And it feels unsustainable. How do you think we ended up here?

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Maria Popova : I think that word “should” in our internal narratives is very toxic—this notion of, “what should I be doing?” and it’s always pegged to some sort of expectation, whether it’s self-imposed or external or a combination of the two. It’s hard to balance those expectations of what you should be doing with what you want to be doing. I feel very fortunate in that to a large extent what I do is exactly what I want to be doing for myself, and I still write for an audience of one. I read things that stimulate me and inspire me and help me figure out how to live and then I write about them. The fact that there are other people who enjoy it is nice, but it’s just a byproduct.

I think there is a high correlation between “type A” personalities and people that “do their own thing.” But we typically do that thing within a structure that’s borrowed from the world of working for the man—the only difference is you’re the man now. When you’re your own boss, the demands you place on yourself are probably higher and more intense than any demands anyone else would place on you if you were an employee.

If we are so busy being successful that we don’t have time to be happy, then we need to seriously reconsider our definition of success.

Source : http://99u.com/articles/29651/maria-popova-staying-present-and-grounded-in-the-age-of-information-overload

Brian Lara :”People are always looking for role models”

Q: How does it feel to be a role model, and how do you take on that responsibility?

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BL: It’s very important. As a sportsman you realise very quickly how short your career is and there’s so much life beyond that. We’re just 1.3 million people. People are always looking for role models, they’re always looking for someone to follow and it’s not like America where around every corner there is a superstar. Trinidad and Tobago is very small so we are straight into the minds of the youngsters in the country and therefore we have a responsibility, like it or not, to give back and reach out to them. I feel honoured to be a role model and I do know my responsibilities and sharing it with others is a good feeling.

Source : http://www.the-report.com/reports/trinidad-tobago/a-caribbean-leader/interview-with-brian-lara-sports-ambassador/

Cormac McCarthy:”My perfect day is sitting in a room with some blank paper. That’s heaven”

Q: How does the notion of aging and death affect the work you do? Has it become more urgent?

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CM: Your future gets shorter and you recognize that. In recent years, I have had no desire to do anything but work and be with [son] John. I hear people talking about going on a vacation or something and I think, what is that about? I have no desire to go on a trip. My perfect day is sitting in a room with some blank paper. That’s heaven. That’s gold and anything else is just a waste of time.

Source : https://www.wsj.com/articles/SB10001424052748704576204574529703577274572

Elon Musk:”Stuff doesn’t need to change the world just to be good”

Q: So, we want to spend the time today talking about your view of the future and what people should work on. To start off, could you tell us, you famously said, when you were younger, there were five problems that you thought were most important for you to work on. If you were 22 today, what would the five problems that you would think about working on be?

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Elon: Well, first of all, I think if somebody is doing something that is useful to the rest of society, I think that’s a good thing. Like, it doesn’t have to change the world. If you make something that has high value to people… And frankly, even if it’s something, if it’s like just a little game or some improvement in photo sharing or something, if it has a small amount of good for a large number of people, I think that’s fine. Stuff doesn’t need to change the world just to be good. But in terms of things that I think are most like to affect the future of humanity, I think AI is probably the single biggest item in the near-term that’s likely to affect humanity.So, it’s very important that we have the advent of AI in a good way. It’s something that, if you could look into the crystal ball and to the future, you would like that outcome because it is something that could go wrong, as we’ve talked about many times. And so, we really need to make sure it goes right. So that’s AI, working on AI and making sure it’s great future. That’s the most important thing, I think, right now, the most pressing item. Then, I would say anything to do with genetics. If you can actually solve genetic diseases, if you can prevent dementia or Alzheimer’s or something like that with genetic reprograming, that would be wonderful. So I think genetics might be the sort of second most important item. And then, I think, having a high-bandwidth interface to the brain. We’re currently bandwidth-limited. We have a digital tertiary self in the form of out email capabilities, our computers, phones, applications. We’re practically superhuman. But we’re extremely bandwidth-constrained in that interface between the cortex and that tertiary digital form of yourself. And helping solve that bandwidth constraint would be, I think, very important in the future as well. Yeah

Source: https://www.ycombinator.com/future/elon/

 

 

 

Lin Dan:”I don’t choose a commercial only based on money issues”

Badzine: How do you choose the commercials you go for?

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Lin Dan: First, I don’t choose a commercial only based on money issues.  I must consider whether the product is suitable for me.  Second, I don’t readily agree to do commercials for food or pharmaceuticals since people regard me as their hero and idol, and I must be responsible for them.  That’s also the reason why I am so cautious in choosing products I endorse

Source :http://www.badzine.net/2013/08/superstar-lin-dan-talks-to-badzine/

Orhan Pamuk:”I think that fiction teaches us something essential about life”

Interviewer  : A year ago, a very famous Dutch art critic came into my house and saw all my books and said, “What a waste of time to read all those novels.” For him literature is something that is really dead.

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Orhan Pamuk: I would say that his kind of understanding of reading literature, which implies that one could have done something more useful with one’s time, is very utilitarian. I think it is very premodern to look at books as objects that will educate you, or benefit you, or to consider reading as an intellectual investment you could somehow rely on in the future. With his statement, this art critic implies that, unfortunately, reading literature is a wrong investment. Right?

Interviewer: Yes.

Orhan Pamuk: Well, I think that fiction teaches us something essential about life. I have learned a lot about life from fiction — from Dostoyevsky, from Tolstoy. My understanding of major categories of life comes from fiction rather than the laws of psychology. But I will tell you something. For me, the urge to write and read fiction is not utilitarian. Instead it is like playing with toys. When I was a kid, I just wanted to play with my brother, or with this toy or that toy, without knowing why. The instinct to write fiction has that aspect, and the instinct to read fiction has that aspect.

Source : http://bidoun.org/articles/orhan-pamuk