"When I get new evidence I change my mind. What do you do?" John Maynard Keynes
- Teaching Cartoons: On Context
- Paolo Freire – Last Interview
- Complex World
- Visual Experiment: Real Voodoo #1
- Kamelmauz Update
- The Ark
- Strip Teases
- Thinking About Libraries
- Awesome Photos from the Library of Congress on Flickr
- Stephen Brookfield & the Incremental Rhythm of Learning
- Another Ladybug Moment
- Teaching Cartoon: Living At Home
- Context in Two Shakes
- Just Go For It
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- "It requires a very unusual mind to undertake the analysis of the obvious." - Alfred North Whitehead
Cleveland Heights, Ohio
- If, during the long course of ages and under varying conditions of life, organic beings vary at all in the several parts of their organization, and I think this cannot be disputed; if there be, owing to the high geometric powers of increase of each species, at some age, season or year, a severe struggle for life, and this certainly cannot be disputed; then, considering the infinite complexity of the relations of all organic beings to each other and to their conditions of existence, causing an infinite variety in structure, constitution, and habits, to be advantageous to them, I think it would be a most extraordinary fact if no variation ever had occurred useful to each being’s own welfare, in the same way as so many variations have occurred useful to man. But if variations useful to any organic being do occur, assuredly individuals thus characterized will have the best chance of being preserved in the struggle for life; and from the strong principle of inheritance they will tend to produce offspring similarly characterized. This principle of preservation, I have called, for the sake of brevity, Natural Selection. [Charles Darwin (1859) On the Origin of Species]
- “It is essential to such a government, that it be derived from the great body of the society, not from an inconsiderable proportion, or a favored class of it; otherwise a handful of tyrannical nobles, exercising their oppressions by a delegation of their powers, might aspire to the rank of republicans, and claim for their government the honorable title of republic.” James Madison
- All the property that is necessary to a Man, for the Conservation of the Individual and the Propagation of the Species, is his natural Right, which none can justly deprive him of: But all Property superfluous to such purposes is the Property of the Publick, who, by their Laws, have created it, and who may therefore by other laws dispose of it, whenever the Welfare of the Publick shall demand such Disposition. He that does not like civil Society on these Terms, let him retire and live among Savages. He can have no right to the benefits of Society, who will not pay his Club towards the Support of it. -Benjamin Franklin
Thinking Outside the Agora
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- For now, Resurrection's trappings are hiding its flaws March 10, 2014Last night, Resurrection premiered and valiantly tried to put its mark on the "loved ones back from the dead" idea. And, thanks to the cast and a commitment to a exploring these ideas in depth, it mostly succeeds.Read more... […]
- NASA unveils a gorgeous new gallery of celestial images March 10, 2014To get you sufficiently pumped for the new Cosmos re-make, NASA has put together a stunning set of 43 cosmic images that are guaranteed to instill a sense of wonder and awe. Read more... […]
- Canadian student has "out of body experiences" whenever she wants March 10, 2014After attending a lecture on "out of body experiences," a 24-year-old student from the University of Ottawa approached her professor saying, "I thought everybody could do that." She can apparently do this at will — making her the first person with this condition to be studied. Read more... […]
- Let's write some six-word scifi! March 10, 2014We love a good science fiction story, whether it comes to us in the form of 60,000 words or just six. The six-word stories you wrote us last time were wonderful and now we want to hear more. Read more... […]
- This Week's TV: Will Believe bring Alfonso Cuarón's movie magic to TV? March 10, 2014
- Print the Legend: Exclusive First Look Preview March 9, 2014
- TI’s New LaunchPad and Cloud Connectivity with Exosite March 9, 2014
- StarBots Animatronic Kits: Another Kickstarter Success Story March 9, 2014
- Calling All Austin Makers! SXSW 3D Printed Scavenger Hunt March 8, 2014
- Join FAA-Conquering Drone Lawyer Brendan Schulman in a Conversation with MAKE March 8, 2014
Monthly Archives: April 2012
One of the interesting features of our contemporary media culture is that groups of (what may be called) very serious people are convened to publicize their willful and shameless individual effort to pretend absolutely no one in the audience can figure out when something amazingly ignorant; or misinformed; archly absurd; or divorced from reality, wanders from his or her brain to all the way out of their mouths.
Paul Krugman is clearly the academic and social scientist and person with a good connection to reality in this unintentionally ridiculous and horrifying confab from Sunday. Here is his post today:
Update: So you see what I mean. We have a terrible failure of demand — and Carly Fiorina thinks the key problem is excessive taxes on corporations (our effective rate is actually fairly low). Hey, if only we had low rates like Ireland, we could have 14.7 percent unemployment … oh well, never mind.
As it often happens, practiced ideologues re-version the ‘little boy with the hammer’ by suggesting their favorite clever trick would have just the right positive effect. Such august people do this with a straight face. I am not smarter than Carly Fiorina, yet, I would be smarter than she was on Sunday in my refusal to spout my most ludicrous hunches on a coast-to-coast television show.
Something anyone may do if they choose to do so, would be to investigate a subject matter of our current events. If you possess a modest set of researcher’s chops, it is possible to investigate a subject without either encumbering or over-determining findings by dumbly using an ideological lens, or, otherwise employing the means for doing solely ideologically-flavored investigation.
I did this when I realized it was necessary to do so if I wanted to understand how the real estate and derivatives crisis came about. My investigation required me to sort through numerous ideologically inflected accounts and to offset these eventually with actual academic research; the kind that eventually followed on the heals of the crisis. My understanding ended up being both superficial and weakened by my lack of mastery of technical subjects, yet, it also ends being more secured to the facts of the events than 99% of the pseudo-analysis the public was subject to at the surface of the media’s informational onslaught.
To do this act of investigation is to intelligently inform yourself about a subject matter. The payoff is you might find that you end knowing more about this subject of research than all but the actual experts and the small number of people who have taken the same trouble.
One could do the same were one to want to know more about why we’re subjected to so much public, pseudo-intellectual blather and idiocy, and, let’s face it, also subjected to very very smart and upper echelon elite successful people saying incredibly stupid things.
One of the research vectors could be: why does this happen when, in the equivalent of the emperor having no clothes, there would be any number of persons in the audience who see right through the ‘presentations.’
Scale of the Universe Partition a half hour out of your striving and dig this…by far the most humbling experience the inter tubes have provided me.
What happens sometimes is start a post and then don’t wrap it up and then its time ends up having gone by. Kaput. So it was with a post on Rich Santorum. He interested me because of his arch way of hiding under the cloak of his practiced–and daffy–”Catholic-like” traditionalism that he was actually a typical “picker and chooser”. Besides, my now buried riff gave me an opportunity to provide trenchant observations about policing bedrooms, and, rhyme Herman Caine with Maratain.
Still, I work in, today, my collection of jpegs of hippie man light switches. These were also in the old post.
h/t to Thinking Outside the Agora
As I’ve mentioned before, only Charles Schultz is in Dik Browne‘s league as a creator of crystalline teaching cartoons. This example is subtle and squares a handy comeback with a didactic undercurrent.
Sonny is coming up on five months. My niece was visiting and offered that he’s might have some Maine Coon cat in him. He is very lean, very fast, very kinetic, very friendly, and he can climb stuff like a monkey. I mean: he can hoist himself where there’s no place to leap to. Although he is outnumbered by his much older lady roommates, he has established himself in the two spot, of four spots, in the pecking order, on most given days.
One day Rabi’a needed a piece of cloth, so she gave a man three silver coins to buy one.
After he’d already started his way, he turned back.
“My lady,” he said, “I forgot to ask: what color do you want?”
“So, it’s become a question of color, has it?” she replied.
“Give me my money!” And she threw it into the Tigris River.
Version of Rabi’a of Balkh; in Doorkeeper of the Heart, Charles Upton
The objective of this exercise is to observe the materials, then contemplate, the most negative possible answer to the following question:
What events could constitute the most horrific unintended consequences of a war between Israel/United States and Iran?.
You might as well own those thoughts yourself; as long as very few less thoughtful people want to indulge thoughts like the kind you could have. Now, of course, it is not like anyone should want to have those kinds of thoughts, but, before the arrival of the terrible bloodletting, it is a point of hope and hope against those dastardly “worse cases/any cases” that at least a self-chosen minority look into a darkened future.
The diverse materials presented here last about six hours.
Self-portrait, then Photobooth, Photoshop, on OSX.
Part of the series of visual jokes. Susan doesn’t like the precursor in this very short series, so I have to figure out where to hang the framed one.