This 8-Year-Old Chess Champion Will Make You Smile

In a homeless shelter in Manhattan, an 8-year-old boy is walking to his room, carrying an awkward load in his arms, unfazed by screams from a troubled resident. The boy is a Nigerian refugee with an uncertain future, but he is beaming. He can’t stop grinning because the awkward load is a huge trophy, almost as big as he is. This homeless third grader has just won his category at…

Why Student Athletes Continue to Fail

When student athletes were asked how much they care about athletics, they rated their interest a healthy 8.5 on average, on a scale of 1 to 10. But when asked the value they place on academics, the result was higher than 9 on average. If anything, the average student athlete cares more about his studies than his sport. #StudentBeforeAthlete indeed. So why do they underperform in their classes? One possible and intriguing…

This is what happened when a KDKA-TV journalist showed bias

Social media platforms are full of people who complain “the media is biased” against whatever side they support. When my students repeat this claim, I ask them to supply an example. They usually point to a meme that supplies a biased headline to a real news story. The story itself is fine, but the text in the meme makes it look like a wildly inaccurate or unfair statement from “the…

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The Big Goodbye (TNG Rewatch, Season 1, Episode 11)

The first of (far too) many “trapped on the holodeck” episodes. Exhausted while preparing for a high-stakes diplomatic ritual, Picard takes a break in a virtual-reality simulation of a 1940s detective novel. I remembered enjoying Brent Spiner’s portrayal of Data adapting to the noir setting, but on my rewatch I was delighted by Gates McFadden’s physical comedy when Dr. Crusher joins the party. Picard dominates a staff meeting by enthusing…