Models are always imperfect, and the ones we choose greatly shape our experience

Picture Jupiter’s moons orbiting the planet. Do you see small dots bouncing back and forth in straight lines as if bound to Jupiter by springs, as Galileo once did? Or an overhead view of small bodies circling the planet in elliptical orbits? Or maybe you see Jupiter and its moons in helical motion, each body careening through space and time on its own set path? None of these models is false – each one presents a truth about reality. But as this short animation from MinutePhysics demonstrates, the models that we embrace significantly shape our perspective, and can lead us to neglect other, equally valid representations of reality.

Video by MinutePhysics

Essay/Metaphysics

Bun or bump?

Does the mother contain the foetus or is it a part of her? On the metaphysics of pregnancy, and its ethical implications

Suki Finn

Idea/Beauty & Aesthetics

The revolutionary figure of the beautiful, self-improved soul

Justine Kolata

Video/Ethics

Pain leads to empathy and self-preservation: should we make robots ‘feel’ it?

12 minutes

Essay/Ethics

Moral luck

Two people drive drunk at night: one kills a pedestrian, one doesn't. Does the unlucky killer deserve more blame or not?

Robert Hartman

Idea/History of Ideas

Before you can be with others, first learn to be alone

Jennifer Stitt

Video/Meaning & the Good Life

Late in life, Fred finds joy – and a ‘rhythm in all things’ – through tap dance

6 minutes