Coding Bootcamps and the New For-Profit Higher Ed

There are actually a number of narratives – some of them competing narratives – at play here in the recent push for coding bootcamps, MOOCs, and other ed-tech initiatives: that everyone should go to college; that college is too expensive – “a bubble” in the Silicon Valley lexicon; that alternate forms of credentialing will be developed (by the technology sector, naturally); that the tech sector is itself a meritocracy, and…


I worked in a video store for 25 years. Here’s what I learned as my industry died.

If you’re actually in a video store, the stakes are different. You’re engaged. You’re on a mission to find a movie — the right movie. You had to get out of bed, get dressed, and go to a store. You had to think about what you want, why this movie looks good and not that one, perhaps even seeking guidance or advice. Whether it’s from nostalgia, advertising, packaging, reputation, recommendation,…

Dennis G. Jerz | Associate Professor of English -- New Media Journalism, Seton Hill University |

Defunct Web Pages are Not Dead Ends to Journalists

In my “News Writing” class, I first warned students about doxing — the troll technique of harassing people by posting personal details (which enables pranks like ordering unwanted pizza deliveries or serious crimes like reporting fake hostage situations in order to send SWAT teams to the addresses of people you want to harass). I warned them not to dox anyone. Then I showed students how to use the Internet Archive’s…


So Long Blogging. Hello—Yep, We’re Going to Say It—Plogging

I still blog, because I want control over my own archives, so that I can link back to my own posts to provide context (such as this 2004 post on the emerging SHU blogging community, or this 2011 post on the switch from MovableType to WordPress). Your past pretty much doesn’t exist if you post it to Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, because those communities are built around the now.   Facebook…

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Male Microsoft Leaders Ignored Women Who Really Hated Clippy

I hated Clippy, not because it looked like it was leering at me, but because it was so intrusive. [T]he engineers in the room were willing to throw out the focus-group-provided data—data which they paid hundreds of thousands of dollars for—because it didn’t cohere to their expectations. The software shipped with 10 male assistants and two female assistants, she adds.It turned out to be one of the most unpopular features…


Thespian robot doesn’t let stiff acting stop it from applying for Screen Actors Guild card

A clever little stunt, getting a little publicity for the robot and the dance troupe. A robot has taken the first step towards becoming a working actor by applying for a Screen Actors Guild (SAG) card.The robot, whose acting style could be considered stiff, is named IRB 2400. It made its screen debut recently by costarring in an America’s Got Talent dance routine with a group called Freelusion. The video has…