Tag: Vice (page 1 of 4)

The 9-5 shift is a relatively recent invention

As a Xennial, I have all of the guilt for not working hard enough — along with a desire to live a life more fulfilling and holistic than my parents. Generations below, including Gen Z and then of course my kids, think that working all of the hours is a bit crazy.

This article is about a viral TikTok video of a Gen Z ‘girl’ (although surely ‘young woman’?) crying because the 9-5 grind is “crazy… How do you have friends? How do you have time for dating? I don’t have time for anything, I’m so stressed out.”

It’s easy, as with so many things, for older generations to inflict on generations coming after them the crap that they themselves have had to deal with. But it doesn’t have to be this way. As the article says, the 9-5 job is a relatively recent invention and I, for one, don’t follow that convention.

Someone sitting back in a chair with a BBQ in the middle of a cubicle office

When the video – which has been viewed nearly 50 million times across TikTok and Twitter – first started to spread, the comments weren’t sympathetic. She was trashed by neoliberal hustle and grind stans – most of whom seemed old enough to be her parents. “Gen Z girl finds out what a real job is like,” one X (formerly Twitter) user sneered. “Grown-ups don’t prioritise friends, or dating. Grown-ups prioritise being able to provide,” another commenter wrote, neglecting the fact that if you’re young, single, and have no friends, there isn’t really anyone to “provide” for.

But then the tide began to turn. People started to point out that “Gen Z girl” was right, actually. Work sucks! No one has any time for anything! Within days, she had become the figurehead for an increasingly common sentiment: We don’t want our lives to revolve around work anymore.


It doesn’t feel like an exaggeration to say young people have been gaslit by older generations when it comes to work. As wages stagnate and costs rise, the generation that got free university education and cheap housing have somehow convinced young people that if we’re sad and stressed then it’s simply a problem with our work ethic. We’re too sensitive, entitled, or demanding to hold down a “real job”, the story goes, when really most of us just want a decent night’s sleep and less debt.


It’s always worth reminding ourselves that the 9-5 shift is itself a relatively recent invention, not some sort of eternal truth, and hopefully soon we’ll see it as a relic from a bygone age. “It was set up to support our patriarchal society – men went to work and women stayed at home to cook and look after the family,” says Emma Last, founder of the workplace wellbeing programme Progressive Minds. “Things have obviously changed a lot since then, and we’re trying to find the balance between cooking meals, looking after ourselves, spending time with family and friends, and having relationships. Isn’t it a good thing that Gen Z are questioning it all?”

Source: Nobody Wants Their Job to Rule Their Lives Anymore | VICE

AI generated images with subliminal messages

You’ve probably seen some of these already. Someone discovered that if you use the generator for QR codes but feed it something different, it can create words from images.

There are lots more examples at knowyourmeme and you can try creating your own using KREA.

Nike subliminal AI images

ControlNet uses the AI image-generating tool Stable Diffusion, and one of its initial uses was generating fancy QR codes using the code as an input image. That idea was then taken further, with some users developing a workflow that lets them specify any image or text as a black-and-white mask that implants itself into the generated image—kind of like an automated, generative version of the masking tool in Photoshop.

“What happened there was that this user discovered that if they used the QR Code ControlNet but instead of feeding it a QR code, they fed it some other black-and-white patterns, they could create nice optical illusions,” said Passos. “You can now send a conditioning image and the model blends in a pattern that satisfies that while still making a coherent image at the same time.”

Source: AI-Generated ‘Subliminal Messages’ Are Going Viral. Here’s What’s Really Going On | VICE

When it’s getting too hot for plants to photosynthesize, you know we’ve got a problem

I used to run a site called extinction.fyi which documented the climate emergency. This definitely would have been an article I would have featured on there.

As would the news that French nuclear power stations had to stop running when the water in the rivers next to where they’re situated became too hot. The additional heat of water coming out of the cooling circuits would raise the temperature further, killing aquatic life.

Leaves in the world’s tropical forests are approaching critical temperatures at which photosynthesis breaks down—and a fraction have likely already passed that threshold—raising alarms about the fate of these essential ecosystems under the most pessimistic projections of human-driven climate change, reports a new study.


The ECOSTRESS data, along with follow-up measurements from the ground, showed that tropical canopy temperatures tend to peak at around 34°C, though some regions experienced temperatures that exceeded 40°C. Because there is a surprising amount of temperature variation between the individual leaves on a single tree, the researchers estimated that about a tenth of a percent of all leaves in tropical forests are annually pushed beyond the critical threshold of 46.7°C that marks the breaking point of photosynthesis.


As global temperatures continue to rise, more tropical leaves will be pushed beyond their photosynthetic capabilities, causing plants to perish. While the researchers emphasized that there is a lot of uncertainty in their models, they warned that an increase in global air temperatures of about 3.9°C could trigger a major photosynthetic meltdown for tropical forests. This estimated increase is within the range of climate models that project a future where human greenhouse gas emissions don’t begin to fall until after 2080.

Source: It’s Getting Too Hot for Tropical Trees to Photosynthesize, Scientists Warn | VICE