Author Archives: Tim Barry Jr.

Facebook, Google, and the Power of Data

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With the recent Facebook Cambridge Analytica scandal there’s been a lot of concern over, not just Facebook, but all tech companies and the massive amount of personal data they collect from their users. Most people don’t realize how much personal data they willingly relinquish to tech companies in exchange for their services. Nor do people realize just how valuable their personal data is. Continue reading

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The Link Between Anxiety and Intelligence: Imagination

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Anxiety is a sign of intelligence because anxiety is essentially imagining the future. That’s how humans became so intelligent compared to other species. We developed an ability to imagine the future. To see different factors and anticipate something to happen before it does. As a result, we were able to set traps to kill prey. And realize if we plant a seed today, crops will grow weeks or months later. Or predict that we will fall if we step off a steep cliff. Imagination is possibly even the origin of consciousness itself. Continue reading

The Importance of Space Exploration

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Space travel is the most important thing the human species can do. With all the possible existential risks in the future, it’s almost certain that all life on Earth will eventually go extinct. Some kind of disaster, either natural or technological, will wipe out the whole planet. It’s only a matter of time, whether it’s a hundred years from now, a thousand, or a million. Continue reading

How to Self-Edit Your Writing

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No piece of writing is done until you’ve edited it. I’ve mentioned before how I’m not a fan of editing. I find it the most tedious part of the writing process, but it needs to be done. You can’t expect others to read something full of typos and mistakes. But finding all your typos can be difficult because your brain naturally corrects mistakes in your head as you read, so you don’t even notice them. The best thing to do is hire a professional editor. But not everybody can afford to do that. (Especially for a blog post like this.) So I’ll share some tricks I’ve used to help self-edit my own writing. Continue reading

Social Anxiety in Movies: Her

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As a big fan of Spike Jonze‘s previous films, I was anticipating Her before its release in 2013, and I really enjoyed it when I first saw it in the theater. But upon rewatching Her, I realize it’s even better than I initially thought. The premise may sound preposterous and overly comedic: in the near future, a man falls in love with the operating system on his phone. However, while the film is funny at times, both it and the science behind “Samantha” are quite serious. Her is not some broad comedy about falling in love with “Siri.” It’s actually quite scientifically accurate as far as artificial intelligence (AI) and its potential. Something similar to this could actually happen. The film explores the future of AI technology and how it will affect humanity, particularly in the areas of loneliness and social anxiety. Continue reading

Idea Inception: Outlining and the Future of Writing

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My favorite part of writing might be outlining. Not actually creating a formal outline, but the moment I first hatch the idea and jot notes down. It’s more like free-writing. The ideas come to me rapidly, and I just try to get it all down as fast as I can. They come out of order: plot points, characters, action scenes, settings… My mind naturally sculpts the ideas into stories with three acts: a beginning, middle, and end. In a half hour, I could have a page or two—and it may look like a mess—but it’ll contain the structure of an entire screenplay/novel. I can see the entire story in my head like a movie. My mind fills in the gaps between the scenes. It feels complete. I don’t even need to write it—other than to share it with other people. Continue reading