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Welcome to The Practical Utopian! Our mission is to identify and promote principles, values and actions that will result in a brighter future for humanity. Browse through our most recent content additions below, or visit our Explore Page when you're ready for a deeper dive into the site.

Recent Posts

Teamwork climbing a mountain

Patterns of Human Cooperation

As humans our superpower is the ability to work cooperatively with others of our species. But these seemingly simple ideas of cooperation and coordination turn out to be devilishly complex in practice, especially in large undertakings.

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History

Understanding Human History

When I was in school, history was one of my least favorite subjects: It just seemed like a bunch of arbitrary names and dates and events that I had to memorize. In hindsight, I realize now, the problem I had with the subject was that it had been “storified.”

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Markdown Mark

Why I Use Markdown (And Why You Should Too)

What is Markdown, and why should you care? Let's just start by saying that Markdown is a deceptively simple tool for writers.

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European reactions to Trump victory

What Trump Gets Right

As we move into the 2020 election season in the US, I thought it might be useful to point out some things that Donald Trump gets right. If you're concerned about electability, then please pay attention to how your candidates navigate their ways through these seven minefields.

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The White House

Assessment of Democratic Presidential Candidates - Jan 2020

This is my assessment of the Democratic candidates for the US presidency, following the debates on the evening of 14 Jan 2020.

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Working On A Metal Lathe

Dethroning the False God of User Experience Design

The problem is that we've had something valuable stolen from us along the way. And the whole modern notion of UX design is one of the thieves that has robbed us.

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View of Earth seen from space

My Prayer for a More Integral New Year

As 2019 winds to a close, and we pause briefly to compose ourselves before finding out what 2020 has in store, I want to take a moment to offer up a prayer – not to God, but to all of us – for a more integral sense of who we are in the new year.

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Pillars outside of the US Supreme Court

The Personal vs. The Institutional

The problem here is that this conflict between the personal and the institutional is a false dichotomy.

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Engineer Inspecting the System

The System is Working Very Well, Thank You

(It's Doing Exactly What It Was Designed To Do)

We need to realize that the current system is, in fact, not broken. Instead, in truth, it is doing exactly what it was designed to do.

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Symbols of three world religions - Judaism, Christianity and Islam

Rejiggering Our Religion

When it comes to religion, the main question for most people is whether to keep the one we were raised with or to lose it altogether. But now I'm starting to wonder whether, instead of losing my religion, it might not be better just to rejigger it a bit?

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