Check Out These Blog Posts From Steve McEllistrem

Fate May Rule Us All

I’ve written about free will before because I find it a fascinating subject, but I still struggle with some of the concepts around the idea. Mostly, I want to believe I have it, even as I increasingly believe none of us really do. Many physicists believe (like Einstein) that we live in a deterministic universe, where the laws of physics are already written, which means there cannot be any such thing as free will. It only seems like we have ...
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Plants Are People Too (Not Really)

We now know that plants are intelligent – not in the same way people or animals are intelligent, perhaps, but they are able to learn and communicate, share nutrients with fellow plants, and even move in their own way. In short, they’re not as different from us as we like to believe. This is all relatively new science, but I find it fascinating. I long suspected that there was more to plants than people believed, but I never pursued that ...
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Save the World a Little at a Time

I’ve noticed a few troubling trends lately – a correlation between obesity and dementia, a correlation between pollution and obesity, and a correlation between pollution and diseases like Parkinson’s and ALS. It’s like the world is conspiring to get back at us for everything we’ve done to it. If pollution, particularly air pollution, is leading to an increase in obesity as well as neurological diseases like Parkinson’s and ALS, and if obesity is leading to an increase in dementia, then ...
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Superficial Knowledge

When we learn things, we generally acquire a superficial level of knowledge about them. For example, we learn that leaves turn color in the fall, and perhaps we understand that that’s because they stop their food-making process. The chlorophyll breaks down and since chlorophyll is what makes leaves look green, the leaves now take on a yellow, orange or red hue. But how many of us truly understand what’s happening – how the chemical reactions inside the plants actually work, ...
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