DiscoverZengineering: A Philosophy of Science, Technology, Art & Engineering
Zengineering: A Philosophy of Science, Technology, Art & Engineering
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Zengineering: A Philosophy of Science, Technology, Art & Engineering

Author: Brian and Adam

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Zengineering Podcast is for everyone who loves Science & Technology and also cares deeply about the beauty of Life's Big Questions. We (Adam & Brian) are obsessed with the spot where modern Science, Technology & Engineering meet Philosophy, Art & Spirituality. We have found this to be the place where the most interesting questions are both formulated and discussed. It's the place where mental models are born, and that's what we're really chasing. Are you? Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/zengineering-podcast/support
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Hey there, Zengineers?We hope you're down for a wild ride this week. Our guest is Patrick Mellor: biological scientist, philosopher, geological climatologist (we may have invented this title), researcher, journalist and poet. Needless to say, we had a blast chatting with him.This conversation feels like it lasted for days with all the ground we covered, but we had to cut it down to just the best nuggets. We discuss Earth before life, the wild changes the planet has endured, and how the planet has evolved over time because of life. The impact has been profound, and continues to be today as humanity faces one of its greatest challenges with anthropogenic climate change.Patrick brings a perspective to our study of Earth and its climate that's truly hard to come by. We share a concern for the current situation, but Patrick also shares a perspective of true beauty with us, and one that has stuck with us since the episode. Life on Earth has caused mass extinctions before, but NEVER before has that life been so aware of what is going on and so able to affect positive change. We're in this together, and Patrick's positivity shines through in this episode. We hope you enjoy the conversation as much as we enjoyed having it.Special shout out this week to our longtime listener, Dean for introducing us to Patrick and allowing this episode to come together. Thanks for supporting the show, Dean!Support the show: http://support.zengineeringpodcast.comVisit our website for more episodes: https://zengineeringpodcast.comCheers,Adam & BrianShow NotesPatrick's New Book: https://www.spdbooks.org/Products/9781943209248/alkali-shores.aspxAncient Upheavals Show How To Geoengineer A Stable Climate (by Patrick): https://palladiummag.com/2019/01/28/ancient-upheavals-show-how-to-geoengineer-a-stable-climate/Flood Basalt Eruptions: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flood_basaltPanspermia (a theory of how life spread in the unverse): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PanspermiaThe Younger Dryas: https://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/abrupt-climate-change/The%20Younger%20DryasTesting Iron Fertilization of the Oceans: https://blog.nationalgeographic.org/2012/10/18/iron-fertilization-savior-to-climate-change-or-ocean-dumpingHydroelectric Power on the Mediteranean: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AtlantropaThe deepest part of the Mediterranean Sea: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Calypso_DeepRefilling The Mediterranean Sea: https://mappingignorance.org/2014/02/07/how-the-mediterranean-was-refilled/Yellowstone's Supervolcano: https://www.seeker.com/earth/a-deep-mantle-plume-fuels-the-yellowstone-supervolcanoPermian-Triassic Exstinction Event: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Permian%E2%80%93Triassic_extinction_event--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/zengineering-podcast/support
What's up, Zengineers?We're back in the party pad! Hooray. This week we're getting grungy, or is it crunchy, or maybe grundly? I don't know. Whatever you call it, we're talking about surviving in the great outdoors. You know, AKA, hiking, camping and general adventuring.Adam and Brian are both self proclaimed outdoorsmen, having spent much of their childhood wandering around outside with varying levels of guidance and supervision. They've definitely both pushed the limits ... well, like ... built forts, blown things up, started fires by hand, and gotten badges and stuff ... let's just say they both feel comfy in a tent, and can use a map and compass. That's a good start.This episode is a bit of an exploration of why we adventure, why camping is a thing and not just life, and how adventure can be good for us. We talk about fun things to do outside, fun places we've been recently, and some of the many pitfalls of wandering around in nature when most of your life is spent in the confines of a suburban home where bears are definitely not commonly found.This is a jolly old convo about having fun in nature. It's definitely not a guide on how to survive or how to get started camping or even just hiking. Nope. We're not those kind of story tellers. The general internet is better for that.So, sit back, relax, and put on your Earth day cap while we take you through the green forests of the northeast, the blistering deserts of the southeast, and the delightfully cooling waters that tie life and the entire world together.Support the show: http://support.zengineeringpodcast.comVisit our website for more episodes: https://zengineeringpodcast.comCheers,Adam & Brian--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/zengineering-podcast/support
What's up, Zengineers?Welcome back to the laboratory. This week we're discussing economics with a real live economics professor. Wow! Tim Foad is a good friend, the Chair of the Department of Economics at San Diego State University, and a great guy to shoot the shit with. Tim told us that people aren't always excited to talk to economists. We can't possibly understand why, because we're stoked, and so glad that Tim could join us.This conversation started from a question Brian had about how wealth is created in the world. You know, not just money like Dollars and Yen, but on the books value of goods, commodities, assets ... bigger too ... we're talking GDP and other academic words, phrases, and acronyms that may seem simple, but are all a bit confusing when you starting asking real questions about them.Wealth is a weird concept, but it's an important one when you're going to discuss ... well, just about anything ... but especially how businesses, governments, and technology play into policy around the world. Many of you will recognize that wealth, and the accumulation of it, is not a zero sum game. This is tricky, and confusing, and hard to talk about, but Tim helped make sense of it.We can't promise we stayed on topic the whole time, but Tim helped us place economics into our mental models of the world, and helped us answer some of our puzzling questions. We hope you enjoy the convo.Support the show: http://support.zengineeringpodcast.comVisit our website for more episodes: https://zengineeringpodcast.comCheers,Adam & BrianShow NotesTim's Favorite Economist: https://www.nobelprize.org/prizes/economic-sciences/1992/becker/biographical/Predictably Irrational: https://www.amazon.com/Predictably-Irrational-Revised-Expanded-Decisions/dp/006Diminishing marginal utility of income and wealth: https://www.economicshelp.org/blog/12309/concepts/diminishing-marginal-utility-of-income-and-wealth/Mechanical Turkers may have out-predicted the most popular crime-predicting algorithm: https://www.theverge.com/2018/1/17/16902016/compas-algorithm-sentencing-court-accuracy-problemCorrectional Offender Management Profiling for Alternative Sanctions: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/COMPAS_(software)Development Economics: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Development_economicsNatural Monopoly: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Natural_monopoly--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/zengineering-podcast/support
What's up, Zengineers?Welcome back to the laboratory. It's just us this week (no guests), so we've taken the liberty of chasing a bunch of random topics as a throwback to our early episodes.We started the convo with the intention of sharing a super fun experience we recently shared together in Virtual Reality. We took a tour of the ancient Egyptian tomb of Nefertari as it looked the day she was laid to rest. The tour was guided by a professor of Egyptian Archaeology and was one of the most interesting VR experiences either of us have had to date.The sidetrack topic on this episode turned out to be the privatization of the space industry. The exciting news that SpaceX successfully docked its crew capsule to the international space station for the first time, sets the stage for the first private transportation of US Astronauts in the history of humankind. What an an exciting time.Enjoy the excitement of JFK's announcement of the original Space Race to the Moon: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ouRbkBAOGEwHope you enjoy the convo.Support the show: http://support.zengineeringpodcast.comVisit our website for more episodes: https://zengineeringpodcast.comCheers,Adam & BrianShow NotesVR Cameras on the Space Station: https://www.roadtovr.com/vr-cameras-now-international-space-station-capture-space-walks-missions/Windows running apps natively in VR: https://www.roadtovr.com/windows-mixed-reality-will-soon-run-win32-desktop-apps-vr/Millions attend the same concert in VR: https://www.roadtovr.com/fornite-virtual-concert-potent-glimpse-of-virtual-reality-future/Microsoft HoloLens 2 Release Video: https://www.roadtovr.com/mwc-2019-hololens-2-reveal-demo/The amazing physics of VR: https://www.roadtovr.com/boneworks-reveal-stress-level-zero-physics-based-interactions-embodiment/A new T-Rex experience at the American Museum of Natural History: https://www.roadtovr.com/american-museum-natural-history-brings-visitors-closer-t-rex-new-vr-experience/A hilariously old website sharing JFK's original space race announcement: https://er.jsc.nasa.gov/seh/ricetalk.htmJFK's Moonshot Announcement on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ouRbkBAOGEw--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/zengineering-podcast/support
Howdy, Zengineers!We're back at it trying to help understand Climate Change with our buddies at Nori (https://nori.com/). This week we're joined by CEO, Paul Gambill to hear an update on what's happening at Nori and wheree they are headed.There's a lot of technology driving Nori. Not only are they a software company building on top of a blockchain backbone, but they also have to worry about the organic-to-digital translation of real world measurements of carbon in physical materials like the atmosphere and soil into bits of computer data.In this episode we dive into where Nori is headed from a technological perspective. We discuss how Nori is currently working with farmers to build out economic incentive backed by real data to encourage carbon capture and help make farming generally healthier and more sustainable. It's a lot to digest, but it's all delicious. See what we did there? Hilarious!Hope you enjoy the convo.Support the show: http://support.zengineeringpodcast.comVisit our website for more episodes: https://zengineeringpodcast.comCheers,Adam & BrianShow NotesNori FAQ: https://nori.com/faqNori Carbon Removal Newsroom (new podcast briefs from Nori on climate and carbon capture) https://nori.com/carbon-removal-newsroomAn interview on Nori's Podcast with Astrobiologist David Grinspoon: https://nori.com/podcast/47-astrobiologist-david-grinspoonMore about ol' David! - https://www.psi.edu/about/staffpage/grinspoonEarth In Human Hands (a great read): https://www.amazon.com/Earth-Human-Hands-Shaping-Planets/dp/1455589128BBC's Power of the Planet (geological history and perspective on our planet... kinda like Planet Earth but actually about the planet, and not the living creatures): https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b008fdjy/episodes/guideClimeworks, a leading Carbon Capture Company: https://www.nytimes.com/2019/02/12/magazine/climeworks-business-climate-change.htmlOne of the technological integrations Nori is using to measure and understand climate data: http://cometfarm.nrel.colostate.edu/--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/zengineering-podcast/support
Howdy, Zengineers!This week we're joined by writer and philosopher Jennifer Harris. She's a staple in the San Diego fundraising community, owns and operates JH Collective (http://www.jhcollectiveinc.com - a professional fundraising organization), and used to lead an amazing creative writing group with Brian, years ago.Our conversation is one of falling in and out of love with what you do professionally and who you become throughout the cycles. It's a personal journey trying to understand the psychology of the modern worker and the journey through ever changing careers. In it we attempt to uncover why we connect with the things we choose to do, and how do these connections guide us in developing our self image and our internal monologues. It's a fascinating journey, and we're glad you're here to join us.Hope you enjoy the convo.Support the show: http://support.zengineeringpodcast.comVisit our website for more episodes: https://zengineeringpodcast.comCheers,Adam & BrianShow NotesJennifer Harris Collective: http://www.jhcollectiveinc.com/The Vitruvian Man: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vitruvian_ManSeth Godin: https://www.sethgodin.com/Recode/Decode with Kara Swisher: https://www.recode.net/recode-decode-podcast-kara-swisherOn Being Podcast: https://onbeing.org/series/podcast/2/--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/zengineering-podcast/support
073 - On Working Remotely

073 - On Working Remotely

2019-02-0800:53:40

Howdy, Zengineers!Today we're discussing remote work. Like ... not working at a regular office, and not working in the same room, or even same building as your coworkers. There's a lot of variation here and a lot of conversation around this topic these days, especially in the digital technology sector where both Adam & Brian currently work.Brian started his career at a Fortune 100 company as an engineer working at a manufacturing facility that employed hundreds of people. Adam started a production company and worked in an office with his team on a giant production lot in LA. Both, pretty normal. From there, things got weird.Over the years, our working environments have changed a lot, but one thing's been consistent. Our desks have not been in normal places, and work has often involved a lot of remote contact with coworkers, and definitely lots of working from home. You know, stereotypical tech startup stuff. Houses with friends, lots of video-chatting, and working all hours of the day and night.In this episode, we muse on the benefits and the challenges of working in alternate realities. There's a lot to discuss and it's an important conversation as the nature of so many peoples' work is changing so quickly with the adoption of computer based desk jobs. What does the future hold, and what changes will we see over time? Who knows? This is not your dad's day-job anymore, and things are only getting weirder with time.We hope you enjoy the convo.Support the show: http://support.zengineeringpodcast.comVisit our website for more episodes: https://zengineeringpodcast.comCheers,Adam & Brian--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/zengineering-podcast/support
Howdy, Zengineers!Today we're discussing Universal Basic Income (UBI) in The United States. What is it? How does it work? What's good? What's bad? Who cares and who does it affect? Our guest, Colin Murphy is an old friend and an outspoken supporter of both UBI and political representatives who are forcing this conversation back into the public debate.UBI has been around in many forms for a long time. Some call it socialism. Some say that's absurd. It actually exists in some places around the world already, including the United States. It's a crazy topic that invokes a lot of questions, a lot of debate, and a lot of emotion. A conversation about UBI forces an examination of the entire structure of one's government and underlying economic systems. And, it's a complicated subject that potentially affects wealth, work, and daily life for everyone.UBI is a topic that's particularly popular in some circles these days because of the current global political landscape, a continued growth in wealth gaps around the world, and a global consciousness that simultaneously is becoming more divisive but also more inclusive.It's easy to get overly excited about UBI or to dismiss it as ridiculous. Honestly, both reactions are pretty appropriate, but the conversation may be more relevant today than at any time in history, especially with the ridiculous pace of technological advancement.We hope you enjoy the convo.Support the show: http://support.zengineeringpodcast.comVisit our website for more episodes: https://zengineeringpodcast.comCheers,Adam & BrianShow NotesThe Left Thinks a 'Green New Deal' Could Save Earth and Destroy the GOP (Vice): https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/4397ap/the-left-thinks-a-green-new-deal-could-save-earth-and-destroy-the-gopSend money to the extreme poor: https://www.givedirectly.org/Bullshit Jobs (a book, by David Graeber): https://www.amazon.com/Bullshit-Jobs-Theory-David-Graeber/dp/150114331XBasic Attention Token (monetize your attention): https://basicattentiontoken.org/Brave Browser (a private webroser that integrates with BAT): https://brave.com/Universal Basic Income as the Social Vaccine of the 21st Century (Medium): https://medium.com/basic-income/universal-basic-income-as-the-social-vaccine-of-the-21st-century-d66dff39073--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/zengineering-podcast/support
Howdy, Zengineers!It's time. What time you might ask? Time to talk about the Scientific Method. Yeah. That method! The scientific one. Yikes! This conversations has been a long time coming and we're so happy to finally be talking about it.The core here is establishing a clear understanding of deductive versus inductive reasoning. We cannot, according to the philosophy of science, deductively prove things in our universe. We can only deductively DISPROVE them. As Albert Einstein famously said (or said something along these lines) "No amount of experimentation can ever prove me right, yet a single experiment can prove me wrong."Over time experimenting against inductively based reason creates solid foundational knowledge that we expect to consistently describe the behavior of the world around us. If ever an inductive conclusion is deductively proven wrong, then we must adjust that theory and all branching knowledge. This is the scientific method and what makes this incredible technological and philosophical innovation so damn powerful. Dig it? You should, and you will.This episode is kind of part of a series. They don't really require that you listen in any particular order, but you may want to check these out too:Episode 044 — On Experts, Algorithms, and Scientific Thinking: https://zengineeringpodcast.com/episode-044-on-experts-algorithms-and-scientific-thinking-7f9e0e8ba128Episode 046 — On Experiments, and their Limits in Meat Space: https://zengineeringpodcast.com/episode-046-on-experiments-and-their-limits-in-meat-space-25c8902085c0Episode 048 - On STEAM Education & The Importance of Curiosity: https://zengineeringpodcast.com/episode-048-on-steam-education-and-the-importance-of-curiosity-906bf0790946We hope you enjoy the convo. Support the show: http://support.zengineeringpodcast.com and visit our website for more episodes: https://zengineeringpodcast.comCheers,Adam & BrianShow NotesWhat is science and why is it so special? (Towards Data Science): https://towardsdatascience.com/what-is-science-and-why-is-it-so-special-79e166e667c0What exactly is the scientific method and why do so many people get it wrong?: http://theconversation.com/what-exactly-is-the-scientific-method-and-why-do-so-many-people-get-it-wrong-65117--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/zengineering-podcast/support
Howdy, Zengineers!This week, we're joined by our good buddy, Dave McCarty, a professional structural engineer and an amateur climber and spelunker. Yes, that's the correct word for one that adventures in caves.Together we explore the life of a licensed engineer, and how that impacts Dave's professional and personal activities. We discuss building codes, engineering accidents, and how being an engineer factors into hobbies.Finally we conclude with one of Brian's favorite stories to retell and embelish, Dave's adventure to the bottom of Ellison's Cave, the deepest, unobstructed underground pit in the continental United States.We hope you enjoy the convo. Support the show: http://support.zengineeringpodcast.com and visit our website for more episodes: https://zengineeringpodcast.comCheers,Adam & BrianShow NotesEllison's Cave (wikipedia):https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ellison%27s_CaveWhat is the PE Exam:https://ncees.org/engineering/pe/How to use climbing ascenders (YouTube):https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2LK20hvHQyAHow to choose climbing rope:https://www.ems.com/f/ea-how-to-choose-climbing-ropes.html--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/zengineering-podcast/support
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