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Text to Speech

–Text to Speech (Jerz’s Literacy Weblog) Over the summer when I spend little time in the office and a lot of time outdoors, I often fall behind in my reading. The past few weeks I have been using TextAloud, a fairly simple but interesting program that converts text files to MP3s. I then put the MP3s on my PDA, and have listened to student papers that were submitted to finish off…

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Bizarre Sign

What is it for? Why is it there? Did whoever put it up realize that if there were no sign, there would be no need to warn about it? Is this a joke from the developers? Is it a lesson in recursiveness? Is it a philosophical prop? –Bizarre Sign (Lushlush) Does it mean “Don’t forget to knock your head here?” Obviously, it would be much less painful to bang into a…

Vertical farming in the big Apple

The idea is simple enough. Imagine a 30-storey building with glass walls, topped off with a huge solar panel. | On each floor there would be giant planting beds, indoor fields in effect–Jeremy Cooke –Vertical farming in the big Apple (BBC) What will they think of next — maybe, taking an urban residential skyscraper, tilting it on its side, and chopping the apartments into separate structures — each with their own…

Living Free, Dying Hard, and All That Jazz

Back in the projector room, five hairy men wearing nothing but overalls, hardhats, and grime were toiling away, trying to get things under control. “It’s too powerful! It can’t take no more!” they yell as they hopefully pull levers and turn valves. “The movie is living up to the franchise! We’re going down!” Meanwhile, in the audience, we all gasped at the disturbing site of celluloid going to pot. But,…

Dead wrestler's Web page was altered

Investigators are looking into who altered pro wrestler Chris Benoit’s Wikipedia entry to mention his wife’s death hours before authorities discovered the bodies of the couple and their 7-year-old son. –Dead wrestler’s Web page was altered (Yahoo! | AP (will expire)) I wasn’t particularly following this story, but this is an interesting wrinkle. When I first started teaching journalism at Seton Hill in 2003, it was common for mainstream publications to…

The History Of Zork

However, perhaps this is not a simple matter of cause and effect. Perhaps it‘swrong to assume that the availability of good graphics technology caused the decline of games like Zork. If “interactive fiction” has migrated to the margins of the computer gaming industry, it could be due simply to a lack of good marketing, not evidence of some inherent limitation of the genre. It’s quite possible that one day, when…