“Open the pod bay doors, please,” astronaut Dave implores Hal 9000. We command, the machines execute. If they fail, they do so politely: “I’m sorry, Dave. I’m afraid I can’t do that.” W. Wayt Gibbs –Whatever You Say (Scientific American) Yeah, after they have killed our astronaut partner, but that’s not the point the author’s trying to make.
Playwright Arthur Miller, on anabolic steroids: “Let’s imagine you’re a young playwright, trying to stay clean… But over at the Virginia you know there’s a writer shot up with more Lasix than a Kentucky thoroughbred and he’s going to take your ticket-buyers, your house, your money, your troubled and needy movie-starlet wife.” –Surrey with the Syringe on Top (Morning News) Thanks, anonymous link-suggester.
“A gap between how web designers and ordinary surfers think is causing frustration on the net.” –Web Design “Causes Confusion” (BBC) Nothing really new here, but it’s good to see the mainstream press covering usability issues.
“A Writer’s Perspective on an Emerging Medium” –What’s Happening on the Web?
“Someone made a mistake and forgot to get you a glittery Token Autistic Author with three Ph.D.s and a Nobel prize. Instead they accidentally got you one out of the trash heap you put us in after you are done putting up with us in school.” –The Conference Presentation I Won’t Make (But Want To) (autistics.org)
“A threatening letter from her lawyer and an opportunity to retake an exam hours before graduation helped a West Valley high school student get her diploma last month.” –Student Gets Diploma After Threatening Lawsuit (Arizona Republic) “I weep for the future,” writes Matt, a former student of mine.
“The principal of Franklin Elementary School in Santa Monica . . . banned the children’s game of tag–for reasons that included issues of self-esteem–from the playground late last month.” –At This School, “It” Is a Touchy Subject (LA Times)
(University of Illinois press release) “When dads or other father figures get personally involved, kids do better in school. The finding, says a University of Illinois researcher, suggests that schools should encourage male interaction, especially with at-risk kids.” – Personally Involved Father Figures Enhance Kids’ Learning in School
“The study of English is whatever people within the community of inquiry known as ‘the English department’ happen to count as the study of English. There is no objective referent, such as “the nature of literary language,” to use as an arbiter among approaches. The foundation has not shifted–it has vanished.” Louis Menand –Unidisciplined (Wilson Quarterly)
“The National Science Foundation’s annual symposium concluded Monday, with the 1,500 scientists in attendance reaching the consensus that science is hard.” –National Science Foundation: Science Hard (The Onion)