image
1

The Days of Microsoft Internet Explorer Are Numbered—But Its Sorry Legacy Will Live On

Starting today, Microsoft will no longer support most versions of Internet Explorer, one of the most contentious pieces of software in history. … By insisting on following its own path with IE rather than follow generally accepted standards, Microsoft dictated web design by years. That probably drove many aspiring web developers [to] careers that didn’t require trying to figure out why the margins between images looked different from one browser to…

Screen Shot 2015-12-27 at 4.10.08 PM
2

Rest assured, there will soon be enough Rey toys to monetize the imaginations of the little girls who grew out of princess worship

The problems of female characters being under-represented in geek merchandise is real. But when it’s a secondary character like Gamora or Black Widow, at least toy companies have an excuse. When the girl is not just the star of the movie, but of the whole franchise, that’s another story. That character, of course, is Rey, the main character of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and the latest problem has to…

image

When Asking the Question is Part of the News Story (New Example: Clinton Supporters)

I ask my journalism students to avoid using the phrase “When asked about…” as a default transition in news stories. While they are taught in freshman comp classes to introduce their quotes and then explain the significance of the quotes, to a journalist that’s just filler. This story from the Daily Mail (a UK publication which has a reputation for being gossipy and conservative) covers shows pictures of teens and…

Screen Shot 2015-12-27 at 4.10.08 PM

Rey is not a role model for little girls (major spoilers ahead)

The headline is silly clickbait — of course Rey is a role model, but not *just* for little girls. Aside from that, Mike Adamick writes lucidly and passionately about a key scene in The Force Awakens. Very important if there are young girls in your life, or if you are interested in the relationship between gender and heroics in action movies. (Obviously, don’t read the essay unless you’ve seen the…

Screen Shot 2015-12-22 at 11.27.29 AM
1

How Bad Design Wrecked Steve Harvey’s “Universe”

The consequences weren’t as serious as the infamous Palm Beach County Butterfly Ballot; however, Eric Thomas has taken it upon himself to redesign the illogical “Miss Universe” results card. First, I’ve updated the brand to match. Just because this is simple and utilitarian doesn’t mean it can’t match the rest of the show. After that, I tackled the hierarchy. Now our “2015 Miss Universe” is now way more obvious. I’ve even…

MessOPottage-480x320

An Open Letter to Reuters Reporters Nate Raymond and David Ingram

How did Reuters happen to get a picture of the arrest of Martin Shkreli (the pharmacy bro who bought the rights to a drug and raised the cost an obscene percentage)? Why is that question at least as important as what Martin Shkreli looks like while being arrested? There are two subjects on which Reuters could have informed its audience, two sets of questions it could have answered: Subject One:…

PICT1_750

Final week of Pict Classic Theatre’s Oliver Twist (NEXTpittsburgh)

Today is Carolyn’s day off from Oliver Twist… the show’s final week starts tomorrow, and ends with two shows on Saturday Dec 19. Now, the iconic story of Oliver Twist makes its U.S. premiere in a production with local ties and significance for one Pittsburgh-based theater company. If you have yet to catch PICT Classic Theatre‘s Oliver Twist—which opened on December 3rd—you have six more chances to experience this timeless tale of redemption, charity and…