New Book

February 17, 2015. Following his recent article How We Can Alleviate The Global Poverty, our graduate Cheikh Mo Bachir Mbodj has published yet another article, titled A New Modern World through Draft 2 Digital publishing as an e-book which he developed through AIU. His work can be viewed here: Cheikh has completed a Doctorate program in Business Administration at Atlantic International University. We are very proud of his achievements, and we hope that he continues with this success, that is a byproduct of the effort and dedication that he has always shown.

Article published

April 18, 2015. Marien Nahimana has written an article titled: “Syntactic Errors Made by INES-RUHENGERI Students: Types, Causes and Solutions”, that she has developed during her studies with AIU and has been published by Lambert Academic Publishing. Her work can be viewed through this link: by-ines-ruhengeri-students_nahimana-marien_paperback_ 9783659578670 Also available for purchase through Amazon: Ruhengeri-Students/dp/3659578673 Marien has completed a Doctorate program in Educational Linguistics in Atlantic International University. We wish Marien the best on all her future projects and we congratulate her for this great achievement.

Lecturer Position

April 5, 2015. Bernice Welbeck has recently obtained a part-time lecturer position to teach Negotiations and Conflict Management (HRM) at the EMBA Level, at the Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA). It is one of the renowned public universities which offers undergraduate, graduate and professional training for students in Ghana and the sub-region. The Dean of the School, described her as excellent, outstanding, an achiever and a goal getter. She will start her new job position in June 2015 on a part time basis. Bernice completed both a Bachelors and Masters program in Human Resources Management as well as a Doctorate in Business Administration program at AIU.

With Honors

April 14, 2014. These graduate students completed the majority of the requirements to obtain honors. Februar y 2015
• Itamar Rogovsky Doctor of Philosophy, PhD in Organizational Development. SUMMA CUM LAUDE Apri l 2015
• Holly Fourchalk Doctor of Philosophy, PhD in Nutrition. CUM LAUDE
• Itamar Rogovsky Doctor of Business Administration in Organizational Management,. CUM LAUDE Congratu lati ons!

10TH International Conference on Design Principles and Practices

Call For Papers. This Conference will be held 25-27 February 2016 at the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil. We welcome submissions from a variety of disciplines and perspectives and encourage faculty and research students to jointly submit proposals, discussing design principles and practices through one of the following themes: Design Education
• Design in Society
• Designed Objects
• Visual Design
• Design Management and Professional Practice
• Architectonic, Spatial, and Environmental Design
Proposal Submissions and Deadlines
The current review period closing date for the latest round of submissions to the Call for Papers (a title and short abstract) is 25 April 2015*. Please visit our website for more information on submitting your proposal, future deadlines, and registering for the conference. If you are unable to attend the conference, you may still join the community and submit your article for peer review and possible publication, upload an online presentation, and enjoy subscriber access to The Design Collection of Journals. *Proposals are reviewed in rounds adhering to monthly deadlines. Check the website often to see the current review round. Visit the website:

International Conference Smart on Learning Environments

September 23-25, 2015. Sinaia, Romania. The International Conference on Smart Learning Environments (ICSLE 2015) aims to bring together researchers, practitioners, and policy makers to discuss issues related to the optimization of learning environments to enhance learning. The focus is on the interplay of pedagogy, technology and their fusion towards the advancement of smart learning environments.

Confirmed Keynote:
Prof. Dr. Rob Koper of the Open University of the Netherlands. He is the founder of Educational Modelling Language (EML), currently known as the IMS Learning Design specification (

Dr. Koper is leading the development and implementation of a new educational model for the Open University. His interests are researching and developing new media and learning technologies that make learning more attractive, efficient and accessible in all life phases.

He works with a combination of new development and research methodologies, and uses these systematically to develop new technologies as well as new knowledge. All products are open source and open content. In the past, Prof. Koper was responsible for the development of serious games and the OU’s digital learning environment Studienet, the research into learning networks and the development of the international open standard IMS Learning Design.

Conference Outcomes:
• Proceedings in Springer’s Lecture Notes in Educational Technology series.
• Extended versions of selected papers will be invited for Springer’s Smart Learning Environments journal (Open access journal).
• Authors of cutting-edge research will also be invited to highlight their innovations under “Inspiring Stories” section of the International Association of Smart Learning Environments website.
Important dates:
Main conference paper submission: 04·27·15
Acceptance/Rejection notification: 06·01·15
Camera ready papers: 07·01·15
Author registration: 07·01·15
More information icsle/2015/

Graduation Ceremony

May 2015

José Manuel Lucombo
Doctor of Science
Environmental Science
Hamid Ali Kareem
Bachelor of Science
Civil Engineering
Itamar Rogovsky
Doctor of Business Administration
Organizational Management
Kety Yane Barrantes Reyes
Doctor of Philosophy
Maria Belvânia Fatela
Bachelor of Economics
Carlos Alberto Velásquez Arévalo
Bachelor of Environmental Engineering
Management and Environmental Study
Danielle Elias El Osta
Doctor of Science
Dietetics and Nutrition
Liliana del C. Calderon Soriano de Acosta
Doctor of Finance
Victorino Tchipilica Ferramenta
Bachelor of Philosophy
Abdoulaye Keita
Doctor of Economics
Saleh Abdulrab Ahmed Alhayashi
Master of Business Administration
Business Administration
Omar Francisco Castro Zeballos
Master of Science
Civil Engineering
Walter Augusto Zamba Alexandre
Bachelor of Education
Adult Education and Comm unity Development
Gloria Marina Cospin De Hernandez
Doctor of Philosophy
Alice K. Phiri
Bachelor of Science
Project Management
Kanamugire Emmanuel
Master of Science
Computer Networking
Antonio Maria Nunes Rondon Filho
Doctor of Finance
Corporate Finance
Claudia Roxana Colindres Bran
Bachelor of Science
Business Administration
Claudia Dörfer
Doctor of Education
Luís Cassandra Pires dos Santos
Master of Science
Civil Engineering
Sao Tome and Principe
Holly Fourchalk
Doctor of Philosophy
Phanuel Amankwa
Doctor of Philosophy
Business Management
Ivonne Adriana Valerio Contreras
Doctor of Education
Educational Psychology
Hassan Said Mohamed
Master of Science
Banking and Finance
Juan Rogelio Grisolle Gómez
Doctor of Education
Pedagogy and Languages
Renato Alonso Alvarado Medina
Bachelor of Industrial Engineering
Strategic Management
El Salvador
Judite Pedro Maurício
Master of Clinical Psychology
Clinical Psychology
Samwel M. Medukenya
Bachelor of Science
Civil Engineering
Adolfo Panduro Guevara
Bachelor of Science
Mechanical Engineering
Maria Tjandra Resele
Master of Science
Kammelu Cherry
Bachelor of Engineering
Chemical Engineering
Servet Demir
Master of Science
Industrial Engineering
Luke Makinishi
Bachelor of Social Science
Labor Studies
Matthew J. Bruhin
Doctor of Philosophy
Addiction Psychology
Lucian P Hodge
Master of Science
Electrical Engineering
Saad Majed Al Hariri
Bachelor of Science
Information Technology
Romance Chanda Sampa, Jr.
Doctor of Energy Economics
Maria Jackeline Triviño Barrezueta
Bachelor of Science
Health Science
Ángel Luis Marrero García
Doctor of Philosophy
Health Science
Akinyosotu Clementina Wumi
Bachelor of Education
Educational Management

Special group: Guatemala Bachelor of Business Administration Management


Joyce Hilda Banda
Bachelor of Social Science
September 16, 2011

“Whatever you do... strive to do it to the best of your abilities...” These words of wisdom from the former President of Malawi, Hasting Banda, PhD, are of great inspiration to me. Going by the demands, intricacies, requirements and the dynamics that go with the modern world as it goes towards placement of gender at the core of development agenda in the context of many leadership portfolios that I find myself in and prospectively those coming in my way no course remained much more relevant and necessary for me to pursue than Gender and Development. However as somebody who is holding a very senior position in government, it was quite impossible for me to attend full time classes owing to the very demanding nature of my job. This however, as already pointed out, had to be viewed against a background of the prominence that gender discourse has acquired in the modern world. As a leader, I strongly believe that having greater technical know-how of the field of the gender and development is not only important but also quite imperative and pre-requisite to provision of modern and progressive leadership. Faced with this dilemma, what I needed was to find a system of education that would be sensitive to my situation and address it: the kind of education system that would fit into my demanding and tasking schedule with minimum inconveniences possible while at the same time providing me with an opportunity to develop my knowledge of the field of gender and development. Thank God AIU was my answer. AIU provided me with that opportunity to study Gender and Development as a must do course for any modern and dynamic leadership while I continue attending to the many demands of my work with minimal disturbances. What is even more captivating to me is both the nature of areas that the programme tackles which are not only modern but also every relevant to my own expectations and philosophy; and the manner in which the course is structured and offered .i.e. its interactive nature. These aspects of the programme as offered by the AIU coupled with the ever open and efficient help lines/services and forum that the University put in place, simply made my pursuit of the programme more interesting and enriching. Another interesting aspect of the AIU Programmes is the interactive nature in which it is administered. As already pointed out, the programme is structured and administered in such way that it goes beyond meeting the academic needs of its students. The online setup is made in such way that it also creates an interface for digital social interaction not only among students and advisors but also the entire University community and other stakeholders.


Rita Shililifa
Masters in Public Health
April 5, 2015

“The knowledge I assimilated through AIU cannot be overemphasized. I could not believe that I am rounding up my Master program. The day I started was just like yesterday. I had listened to many people saying Education is a passport to progress in life but I did not really understand this phenomenon until I enrolled for the program in this Institution. The knowledge I acquired is of such a nature that I cannot compare it to other trainings I have received in the past. The quality of mentorship and learning skills I obtained quantifies AIU to be ranked among the highest institutions that I have had an honor to be part of. ... This type of teaching enables one to be independent and self-reliant. I have learned the importance and developed skills of researching through books, journals, webpages, online libraries to mention a few. Having passed through this kind of learning has exposed and equipped me with knowledge and skills that will enable me to face any challenges that may come my way in future. The most interesting part of it is my ability to source for information without being guided and the knowledge and skill obtained are helping to improve in my daily activities. The institution has passed through me in various ways; I have been made to know that Education is not only in learning but to develop ones potential. I have developed myself rationally, rational thinking has added value to me both in communication with the patients and interpersonal relationship with my colleagues at work. My dream has been to become a researcher but, I could not fulfill it because of lack of knowledge in researching. Having undergone this course will enable me to accomplish that dream. I feel confident in the knowledge and skill imparted upon me and I am assertive that is all that was lacking for me to reach greater heights. I would like to extend my gratitude to my tutor, advisor and admission counselor for guiding all the way. Without their mentoring I could not have realized my dream.


By Holly Fourchalk | PhD in Nutrition, graduated with honors CUM LAUDE | Part 1/3

I was born early in the morning, on the brink of a brand new day, emerging as the yin became yang. I was on time, yet underdeveloped due to a chromosomal disorder. In addition, my mother had lost my elder brother during the third month of pregnancy which doubled the impact of the chromosomal disorder. Despite being underweight and my mother having no milk due to the trauma she was still involved in; there were no incubators available and the hospital had run out of formula. So I was put on cow’s milk instead. Everyone thought I was doing wonderfully well, not realizing that the cow’s milk was creating a cow’s metabolism in this underdeveloped metabolism (which doesn’t fully mature until between the ages of two–three). This would cause lots of issues later on. I slept well from day one; I put on weight right away; I was quiet and non-intrusive. Everyone thought I was a wonderful anecdote to my mother’s loss. She would come in, in the middle of the night; pick me up; and use me to soothe her pain. It set up my life purpose. I was always told I was a psychologist long before I became a psychologist. At the age of about 4, I would spend a huge amount of time sitting on the foot of my bed, knowing that I should be able to move through the wall –not understanding why; but trying to figure out. Today, I understand why, but have no idea how to achieve it. At the age of 4 my “shining knight in white armor” fell off his horse –my dad got lost in the fog on the way out to what would be our new summer house, we were renting it for the Thanksgiving weekend. I told he was making the wrong turn –I was in effect told to shut up, the problem was, I was right. My Dad was wrong.

Lesson: My words didn’t count. My Dad could be wrong –which was worse.
At the age of 5, my father wondered if I needed a psychologist because I would sit in front of the hall mirror and practice different emotions. I would act them out to see how they felt in my body.
Lesson: As opposed to the emotional repression my parents engaged in, I learned to develop a healthy connection with my emotions.
My uncle, who lived across the street got lung cancer from smoking. But he spent his last few weeks at home. I would walk across daily and hold his cigarette for him to take a few puffs before he coughed and went back to sleep –didn’t realize at the time that it was the cigarettes that caused the cancer.
Lesson: Was it the first or second lesson in dying?
Alas, came school, it was wonderful… so much to learn… but I came out as the class idiot. I thought because Cs were higher than As and Bs, that must make me smarter –it turned out it made me even “dummer” just for thinking that. After much harassment, I vowed I would never be called stupid again.
Lesson: Friends can be very hurtful.
My first B came in grade three with arithmetic –I loved it. Numbers made sense… they were fascinating. Throughout school, however, my top marks were always in English. It took me to grade seven to get straight As –finally!!!
Lesson: Determination could change your marks. You don’t always get the top marks in the courses you like –which means that passion doesn’t equate to marks
During grade one and two I learned another important lesson. In grade one at Janet’s birthday party –all the girls were identified for one characteristic and the rest of the girls sang “For she’s a jolly good fellow” about each gal for the chosen characteristic. I was thrilled –I was the pretty one and I knew how important that would be to my mother. But when I rushed home to tell her, her response was that it was Janet’s party and I should have let that be about Janet! I was horribly disappointed. The next year, at MY birthday party, the girls did the same thing. And again I was chosen as the pretty one. I couldn’t wait till after the party to tell my mom. Her response was: It was your party, you should have made it about everyone else.
Lesson: I didn’t count –ever.
As we progressed through the grades, there was an interesting side step… one of my mother’s favorite phrases was “God gave you a brain, try using it”. It used to hurt so much when she made that comment. The message to me was that I was dumb. But in grade five, I got angry and I wanted to know the answer. So I went to my teacher. She claimed that the question was easy and that she knew that I knew the answer. But that she also knew that wasn’t what I was meaning to ask… she started working with me helping me to learn how to ask what I really wanted to know… a great teacher.
Lesson: Mom was so smart.
The following year, I couldn’t go to the teacher as I had a crush on him… oooh was he good looking… but the church pastor on the way home from school was a “god send”. Pardon the pun. He took me even further. He talked me how to figure out the peripheral questions I wanted to know the answers to… that was great fun. But the finale came with my grade seven teacher… she taught me how to put it all together… she was inspiring. But she also got frustrated with me one time, when I didn’t take the “new girl” under my “wings” as she had expected I would… her disappointment in me would stay with me forever and I would never forget to take care of the underdog again!
Lesson: Cognitive learning had gone far beyond the academics that the school curriculum provided. Psychological learning: always take care of the underdog. With the car accident that happened in the summer prior to grade five, there was a huge upheaval in the family. My parents were in the hospital for ages; my brother in a coma –and he died just after my birthday in November. We had gone up to visit him every night; held his hands; sang his favorite songs; he died.
Lesson: Again, how different people deal with death: acceptance, anger, hurt or depression. My grandmother also taught me very clearly that I didn’t matter, I was just a kid; so stay out of the way. I spent my initial grieving with one my second moms –she lived next door. But there was an intersecting story amidst my family story. There was another boy in my brother’s ward who was wrapped up in bandages –from head to foot. We got to be good friends. I helped him with his math and his English even though he was a year ahead of me. Then I found out –his father had set him on fire.
Lesson: People went beyond being cruel.
Just after turning 10 my period started –horribly frustrating nuisance that was… but I had already learned how to get “second moms” who provided the nurturing that my “caretaker” mom didn’t provide. My mom responded as if getting my period was a big nothing… it was horrible. As much as I didn’t want it; I wanted to be acknowledged for growing up. I couldn’t get the tampax to work and she was no help. But I got the recognition of being a grown up from a second mom.
Lessons: Recognition comes from others. The same occurred for wearing a bra. As it turned out, throughout most of my childhood, the real recognition and nurturing that I wanted, always came from others. My great aunt died of cancer –I learned more about my uncle’s cancer when I was younger.
Lesson: How people handle dying so differently.
Having grown up in the Baptist church… although I was the only one that went to church… my parents came only if I was performing in the choir or in a play… but I was studious with my bible. I had read the New Testament four times and the Old Testament by the time I was 12 years old… and bombarded the pastor with all the contradictions and inconsistencies. He was terrific, but didn’t know what to do with me… but then neither did my mother. So when I read the biography of Edgar Cayce, at the age of 14, I was in awe. He provided all kinds of answers that the church and the Bible could not give me. But then I was in massive conflict… I can remember how my whole system would change walking down the road to the Church. My beliefs at home, supported by my mother, were entirely different than my beliefs at church. And my whole body energy system had to repeatedly change to accommodate both systems. It was always a weird feeling.
Lesson: There are more options out there than the Church provide.
But then my life went into upheaval again at the age of 18 when I read Autobiography of a Yogi. New answers, outside my prior range of understanding… I had to change again.
Lesson: Keep exploring; who knows what else you will find.
I had completed the school requirements for high school graduation early, so I asked the principal if we could have a course in world religions. He said if I could get a teacher to teach it; 12 students to attend it; and I wrote the curriculum, I could have it. I did, they did and I did –so I got the course. It was great… although the teacher was a Christian… so he didn’t really play as an objective role as he might have…but I loved the course. During this time, I had lost several other people: my favorite second mom; both my grandfathers; and a pseudo uncle. Lesson: The different ways I handled death and dying. To be continued...

To Study and to Know

By Dr. Rosa Hilda Lora M. / Advisor at AIU / [email protected]

To study in the society in which we live, means to enroll ourselves in an institution that is dedicated to teaching and learning of science or technique to achieve a degree, allowing us to grow as human beings, and earn an activity which we will receive financial resources “to be and to have”. When we say “being”, we are referring to goods we buy but the results are reaching values. For example, I buy a book and they sell it as a good but my purpose to buy it is to read what is there to be a better person. The seller does not care what he sells to me for; what he matters is the sale itself, and for the company is the revenues. When we speak of “having” we mean everything material we buy in the society in which we live. We go to what study is: to study involves knowing what theories, principles and formulas of the activity we call science are. Science is the system that explains with methods, procedures, laws and theories what we call reality. In the study centers and universities we learn what these systems are, to pass upon graduation to enterprises, to resolve situations or create means to enrich the lives of human beings by offering greater welfare and quality of life. So far everything is wonderful; we know that the world situation talking about the economy is not very good, but as students we hope that for us everything will be better than what we hear and read. We’re at university, we are passing courses of the program of science area that we have chosen and we think with the wonderful grades that we are obtaining, we will reach a good paying job and a good company. But, oh surprise! Companies in addition to the good evaluations want results. Here comes something that is not sold, and that is achieved through the development of life through adulthood and it is called “knowledge”. Companies in quieter times than in the globalized society, could afford, or perhaps would say others waste, that recent graduates of universities may learn to apply what science says to create quality of life or for troubleshooting. Today, the form of globalized trade and digital communication make the commercial movement, in any aspect, quick and also resources cannot be spend for College students to learn to work because if something does not produce, it means loss. Today we must have studies and also “know”. What “know” is? It is something that seems like Illuminated people or grandparents. “Because wise is not the one who knows many general principles, nor can explain everything through safe theories but who can distinguish in every circumstance substantially behind appearances, who can integrate into a particular unit the apparent manifestations of an object; wise is also one that in each individual situation, can better distinguish what is truly important, and he has a more sagacious sight than the others “. Villoro (2009, p. 226). According to Villoro, college gives us science but little knowledge because it is specific to social services in some countries, in a practice with the theory in others and at the end we have a lot of theory and a little knowledge; a few knowing sight. At Atlantic International University (AIU), students have the privilege that their works that they submit for their academic degree have as normativity that in addition to theory they are required to have the practical application of it for solving situations classifiable as local, national or international.

Students have the wonderful benefit to go developing know! They have the opportunity to learn to distinguish what is truly important, in addition to have the best graphs, to have the latest theories and if someone asks, they know everything as if they were Einstein or Russell themselves; they learn to see what the essential is, they learn to realize what is the object of study and they learn to solve or give quality of life in the business world where you have to have the wisdom to give quality service at the lowest possible cost.

The application of works as a local can be done by research in government circles about social programs, which are in different science areas, and from there to structure the solution as if they were to execute: to analyze what is the problem, what is the applicable theory, what is the process of the project, how many would be the human resources, what would be the cost. And also what Non- Governmental Organizations (NGOs) can help them. They can do this exercise, as AIU tells them: locally at first, and when you have more practice, at national and international level. If we say about the (NGOs), we open a window to “Study and Know” because in them and through them, we can learn to study using science in the real world and reaching wisdom seeing what is truly important from the activity we do as work. NGOs have been developed because of the inability of States to generate rapid changes from the digitization of trade and to the higher quality of life of the population; this makes that more resources and more services are demanded. To learn how to study and to achieve the knowledge can be done by belonging or creating an NGO.

NGOs are nonprofit organizations whose aim is to give a service which the State has failed. These organizations need a business infrastructure as any other; the difference is that the others sell goods and NGOs provide a service. NGOs need to “sell” that societies need a service, to “sell” that they need contributors and sponsors, to “sell” that they need donors, organize the financial and human resources to sustain themselves and have people to whom is necessary to pay them their services.

As companies have a legal relationship with the State; the difference is that NGOs are non-profit associations but there is a legal regime for your organization. AIU supports you “to Study and to Learn” because if you’re creating your own NGO during your program you will receive scientific support to make it and instead when you finish your studies and you get a job creating your own business and helping you to have a better world. By studying in this way at the end of their program, students have a knowledge that might be capitalized when they are seeking or creating work because they know what happens in profit or not-forprofit organizations, and they are not full of theories and lack of knowledge.

Humanity’s Heritage

As a child, I was raised by native Hawaiian elders ... The year is 1963. We’re at the ocean. It’s twilight. We’re watching the rising of the stars and the shifting of the tides. It’s a stretch of beach we know so well.

The smooth stones on the sand are familiar to us. If you saw these women on the street in their faded clothes, you might dismiss them as poor and simple. That would be a mistake. These women are descendants of Polynesian navigators, trained in the old ways by their elders, and now they’re passing it on to me. They teach me the names of the winds and the rains, of astronomy according to a genealogy of stars. There’s a new moon on the horizon. Hawaiians say it’s a good night for fishing. They begin to chant. When they finish, they sit in a circle and ask me to come to join them. They want to teach me about my destiny. I thought every seven-year-old went through this. (Laughter) “Baby girl, someday the world will be in trouble. People will forget their wisdom. It will take elders’ voices from the far corners of the world to call the world into balance. You will go far away. It will sometimes be a lonely road. We will not be there. But you will look into the eyes of seeming strangers, and you will recognize your ohana, your family. And it will take all of you. It will take all of you.” These words, I hold onto all my life. Because the idea of doing it alone terrifies me. The year is 2007. I’m on a remote island in Micronesia. Satawal is one half-mile long by one mile wide. It’s the home of my mentor. His name is Pius Mau Piailug. Mau is a palu, a navigator priest. He’s also considered the greatest wave finder in the world. ...

Their tradition is so extraordinary that these mariners sailed three million square miles across the Pacific without the use of instruments. They could synthesize patterns in nature using the rising and setting of stars, the sequence and direction of waves, the flight patterns of certain birds. Even the slightest hint of color on the underbelly of a cloud would inform them and help them navigate with the keenest accuracy. When Western scientists would join Mau on the canoe and watch him go into the hull, it appeared that an old man was going to rest. In fact, the hull of the canoe is the womb of the vessel. It is the most accurate place to feel the rhythm and sequence and direction of waves. Mau was, in fact, gathering explicit data using his entire body. It’s what he had been trained to do since he was five years old. Now science may dismiss this methodology, but Polynesian navigators use it today because it provides them an accurate determination of the angle and direction of their vessel.

The palu also had an uncanny ability to forecast weather conditions days in advance. Sometimes I’d be with Mau on a cloud-covered night and we’d sit at the easternmost coast of the island, and he would look out, and then he would say, “Okay, we go.” He saw that first glint of light –he knew what the weather was going to be three days from now. Their achievements, intellectually and scientifically, are extraordinary, and they are so relevant for these times that we are in when we are riding out storms. We are in such a critical moment of our collective history. They have been compared to astronauts –these elder navigators who sail vast open oceans in double-hulled canoes thousands of miles from a small island. Their canoes, our rockets; their sea, our space. The wisdom of these elders is not a mere collection of stories about old people in some remote spot. This is part of our collective narrative. It’s humanity’s DNA. We cannot afford to lose it. The year is 2010. Just as the women in Hawaii that raised me predicted, the world is in trouble. We live in a society bloated with data, yet starved for wisdom. We’re connected 24/7, yet anxiety, fear, depression and loneliness is at an all-time high. We must course-correct. An African shaman said, “Your society worships the jester while the king stands in plain clothes.” The link between the past and the future is fragile. This I know intimately, because even as I travel throughout the world to listen to these stories and record them, I struggle. I am haunted by the fact that I no longer remember the names of the winds and the rains.

Mau passed away five months ago, but his legacy and lessons live on. And I am reminded that throughout the world there are cultures with vast sums of knowledge in them, as potent as the Micronesian navigators, that are going dismissed, that this is a testament to brilliant, brilliant technology and science and wisdom that is vanishing rapidly. Because when an elder dies a library is burned, and throughout the world, libraries are ablaze. Watch the complete TED Talk here: elizabeth_lindsey_curating_humanity_s_heritage?language=en

The Giant Lobster

An international team of archaeologists has discovered a giant inhabitant of Earth’s primeval oceans that would have dwarfed all others. Aegirocassis benmoulae was a two-metre-long lobster-like sea creature, which had a long segmented body and flaps on its belt that it used to get around. Other than its enormous bulk, relative to other creatures at the time, its most recognisable feature was probably a net-like appendage that it dragged through the water to collect the plankton it consumed. For a long time, fossils of the creature were thought to have been several different animals. Their appendages were thought to be shrimp, their mouths jellyfish and their bodies sea cucumbers. But between 1985 and 2011, researchers figured out that it was actually one creature. Initially it was thought to be a predatory animal, like many of its evolutionary relatives. But that changed when Moroccan fossil collector Ben Moula, who the creature is now named after, discovered a very well-preserved filterfeeding system.

What all this means, in additional to being an interesting glimpse at a monster of the ancient seas, is that we now have the oldest evidence yet of predatory species undergoing an evolutionary shift to filtering plankton. Sharks and whales did the same thing much later on, and it’s thought that crocodiles may have done so too –reaching massive sizes. The fin-like swimming appendages on the belly of Aegirocassis benmoulae have now also been spotted on its evolutionary relatives, which were previously thought to lack limbs entirely. If it weren’t for this discovery archaeologists might not have spotted them.

“When I discovered these flaps, with the implications for the evolution of limbs, I thought ‘jeez, is this really true?,’” said Peter Van Roy, who co-authored the study, in an interview with The Verge. “And so for weeks, I went back to the fossils every day just to make sure that ‘yes the flaps are there, I’m not being crazy, I’m not seeing things.’” Van Roy says that he’s planning to move on to other types of arthropods next, but believes there is much still to be learnt from the group of anomalocaridids that contains Aegirocassis benmoulae. He and his team published their findings in www.nature. com Source: Meet the giant ‘lobster’ that roamed Earth’s primeval oceans, by Duncan Geere.