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Dave Cortright
Silicon Valley, CA
Technologist · Designer · Environmentalist · Conservationist · Vegan · Singer
Recent Activity
I recently gave a talk titled Reasoning you way to happiness with science and logic. I includeed a resources slide at the end, but wanted to put that list hear so it's easier to access, and because I can more easily make changes to it in the future. (I already... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at KPAO by Dave Cortright
This blog post deserves more in depth research and citations, but there is a lot of evidence supporting the fact that humans (and our extinct predecessors) are not omnivores, herbivores, or carnivores like other mammals, but rather a brand new classification: the coquivore. We cook our food, and as the... Continue reading
Posted Mar 7, 2019 at KPAO by Dave Cortright
I just recently learned the story of John Wesley Hyatt, an American engineer and inventor who is credited with creating the first true commercially viable plastic: celluloid. He was inspired to do so by Michael Phelan, an Irish immigrant who became “the father of American billiards”. Mr. Phelan created a... Continue reading
Posted Mar 5, 2019 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
So the Windows 10 built in software update seems to do well getting smaller updates, but it doesn't always pull down and install the big ones (like the most recent Windows 181o update from October 2018. Hence the numbering scheme they use.) What you'll want to do is download the... Continue reading
Posted Mar 1, 2019 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
OK, I know this is pretty far afield from IT, but it does qualify as technology that can seriously help wildlife conservation groups out there. One common scenario in human-wildlife conflict (HWC) ocurs in livestock-herding communities living at the edges or even amongst wild carnivore ranges. If the livestock are... Continue reading
Posted Feb 27, 2019 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
specious—superficially plausible, but actually wrong facile—appearing neat and comprehensive only by ignoring the true complexities of an issue; superficial. insidious—proceeding in a gradual, subtle way, but with harmful effects ostensibly—apparently or purportedly, but perhaps not actually purportedly—as appears or is stated to be true, though not necessarily so Continue reading
Posted Feb 4, 2019 at KPAO by Dave Cortright
I sent this to all 3 of my congressional representatives over the weekend. So far I’ve received one response, and it was boilerplate. Disappointing. 😕 Regarding the government shutdown, I understand that you are on the side of reason. So asking you to do all in your power to help... Continue reading
Posted Jan 23, 2019 at KPAO by Dave Cortright
Wildlife Conservation Network—my previous non-profit employer—updated their web site last year. I only just noticed that they also changed the URL for their RSS news feed. Now I realize I’m one of less than a dozen people who probably still use a news reader to consume WCN news, but just... Continue reading
Posted Jan 22, 2019 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
A friend of mine who is on the board of The Greater Sum recommends Giving Assistant over Amazon Smile. It works with thousands of online stores including eBay, Macys, and Home Depot, and it generates on average about 3% (vs ½% for Amazon Smile). Granted, ½% is better than nothing... Continue reading
Posted Jan 15, 2019 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
I am finally getting in the groove of meditation and realizing that the way it is portrayed by them is misleading. Or the more compassionate interpretation: maybe they actually believe their portrayal. Here's how I perceive it. In order to get to inner peace and a higher plane of existence,... Continue reading
Posted Jan 4, 2019 at KPAO by Dave Cortright
I think all of the protagonists in Moving Pictures’ 1982 hit “What About Me” are suffering from learned helplessness and if they would only empower themselves with a healthy sense of agency, they wouldn't need to blame the world around them for their perceived deficiencies. Or maybe it’s just me... Continue reading
Posted Dec 31, 2018 at KPAO by Dave Cortright
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This is the most profound concept about life that I have ever encountered. Your [thinking] mind is an instrument; a tool. It is there to be used for a specific task, and when the task is completed, you lay it down. 80–90% of most people’s thinking is not only repetitive... Continue reading
Posted Dec 30, 2018 at KPAO by Dave Cortright
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WASHINGTON (DC) — Admitting that there is “pretty much a regrettable disaster every day,” the administrators for US Federal buildings today announced that—for efficiency’s sake—they would just leave their flags at half-mast for the next two years. “We initially lowered them in remembrance after the death of former president George... Continue reading
Posted Dec 21, 2018 at KPAO by Dave Cortright
Amazon Smile is a program that allows Amazon shoppers to designate a certain 501(c)(3) non-profit and have ½% of their purchases go to that org. It’s certainly a nice sentiment, but there are a few things wrong with it: People need to remember to go to smile.amazon.com in order for... Continue reading
Posted Dec 19, 2018 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
Many have tried to fix the problem of dirty, unhealthy, and unsustainable cooking fires used by so many people around the world. This article does a good job of summarizing the efforts to date as either too expensive to be sustainable, or too cheap to be reliable. Inyenyeri—a company in... Continue reading
Posted Dec 14, 2018 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
2018 and suddenly the Christmas song “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” is in the crosshairs. And sure, I get it, from a particular viewpoint it can appear sinister (like if Bill Cosby were singing the ‘wolf’ part.) This Quartz article does a good job of going in-depth on on the song,... Continue reading
Posted Dec 14, 2018 at KPAO by Dave Cortright
I remember reading Daniel Quinn’s Ishmael close to 20 years ago. It is a great book and made me understand the origins of the bible and Judeo-Christian religions. The Story of B was an even better book. In his writings, Daniel Quinn talks of The Great Forgetting. To paraphrase, we... Continue reading
Posted Dec 8, 2018 at Darwin’s Razor
Most of the community-based conservation orgs I help out have some sort of alternative livelihood program to help establish businesses that bring money into the community that don't involve exploiting the local environment or wildlife. The most obvious one is by hiring them as staff to help with the project.... Continue reading
Posted Dec 8, 2018 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
In a meeting between the Dalai Lama and a group of American psychologists in 1990, one of the psychologists brought up the concept of negative self-talk. Since there are no words in Tibetan that translate into low self-esteem and self-loathing, it took quite a long time for the psychologists to... Continue reading
Posted Dec 6, 2018 at KPAO by Dave Cortright
So now that I've had some time to think about it, I feel like Darwin’s Razor might not be so optimal. Darwin can mean so many things and to have it just reflect homo sapien evolution and the environment they evolved in during the past couple of million years is... Continue reading
Posted Dec 3, 2018 at Darwin’s Razor
A couple of years ago I wrote a long, detailed post about procurement in general. I want to highlight one tool here, because it definitely can and will save you money. The strangely-named but very useful price tracker site CamelCamelCamel. If there is any particular thing you buy with regularity,... Continue reading
Posted Dec 3, 2018 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
The research findings of Dan Buettner shows that places in the world where people live their lives more closely to how band societies did during the last half of the Pleistocene and early Holocene. The key components of his Blue Zones theory: Moderate, regular physical activity Life purpose Stress reduction... Continue reading
Posted Dec 1, 2018 at Darwin’s Razor
OK, I realize this is a weird post for an IT blog. But I support wildlife conservationists who work in very remote areas. The water they use is from boreholes or wells and the quality of the water is, well, whatever it is. As long as it's not noxious, they... Continue reading
Posted Nov 29, 2018 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
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I sold a CD on Amazon to a Mr. Darrold R Shanks from Elizabeth, Illinois. I happened to take a picture of the booklet and disc just before I packaged it up and sent it (below). After he received it, he requested a return claiming: He called this CD "Pristine,... Continue reading
Posted Nov 21, 2018 at KPAO by Dave Cortright
Emotions clearly have value for survival and reproduction. They are complex and costly, so if they didn't, they would have never made it this far in the process of natural selection. Fear is an obvious one and that is probably our oldest emotion and we share that with many (perhaps... Continue reading
Posted Nov 12, 2018 at Darwin’s Razor