Content is the least stable and least valuable part of education. Reports continue to emphasize the automated future of work (pfdf). The skills needed by 2020 are process attributes and not product skills. Process attributes involve being able to work with others, think creatively, self-regulate, set goals, and solve complex challenges. Product skills, in contrast, involve the ability to do a technical skill or perform routine tasks (anything routine is at risk for automation).
This is where adaptive learning fails today: the future of work is about process attributes whereas the focus of adaptive learning is on product skills and low-level memorizable knowledge. I’ll take it a step further: today’s adaptive software robs learners of the development of the key attributes needed for continual learning – metacognitive, goal setting, and self-regulation – because it makes those decisions on behalf of the learner. (Source)
A description on how the set of I Love Lucy was optimized for black and white television.
This knowledge of the contrast secret is further revealed in the décor of the sets. These are painted in various shades of grey. props likewise follow the ethical demands of correct contrast, as do the wardrobes of the players. Even newspapers, when they are to appear in a scene, have to be tinted grey. Such overall uniformity of colors or tones in the scenes make rigid demands on the lighting and has resulted in the careful illumination formula which Freund and his gaffers now regular employ in lighting the sets. (Source)
> The secret to why podcast audiences are growing and attracting new voices might be authenticity. In addition to being more diverse, podcast hosts are better at sounding like themselves. Even tightly edited podcasts like “Serial” and Gimlet Media’s “ Startup” allow people to speak spontaneously and conversationally. Some voices aired are slow and others accented. Not only do audiences listen in spite of this authenticity, they appear to listen because of it. Online courses, on the other hand, sometimes sound like infomercials promoting expert knowledge rather than inquiries tempered by humility or curiosity. If we want to build engaging content, this is a mistake.
“Listeners want you to be real, a real person…I think the more human you are, the more people can then relate to you. The whole point is…people will want to take my hand and come along. It’s so they feel like they trust me enough to come down the road with me,” observes Kelly McEvers, host of the NPR podcast “ Embedded.” (Source)
To me, the idea of human scale is critical. It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking that every idea must scale. That thinking is distracting, closes us off from great opportunities, and invites unnecessary complexity.Turn down the amplifier a little bit. Stay small. Allow for human correction and adjustment. Build for your community, not the whole world.At this scale, everybody counts. (source)
Reality Ends Here was an environmental game at the USC School of Cinematic Arts (SCA) where students would secretly enter a hidden, optional, and unofficial game designed to serendipitous spark collaborative media-making. Don’t call this gamification.
Gamification is the application of points and badges and other representations onto real-world behaviors under the assumption that such application will motivate or “incentivize” said behaviors. We believe that gamification is a crude behavioral control system masquerading as innocent marketing. That is not what games are, or have been, or ever will be. We define a game as a set of rules and procedures that generates problems and situations that demand inventive solutions. A game is about play and creativity and surprise. Real play isn’t about motivating people to do things; it’s about channeling and challenging motivations that are already there in order to create new meanings and possibilities. Gamification is about “checking in” and ticking off boxes. Never confuse the two. At the very least, you will piss off any game designers within earshot (source).
A longer, more formal, explanation of Reality exists in dissertation form. (Article)
The idea that Mrs. Clinton is less likely than Mr. Sanders to let government get in the way of the Valley’s creativity and enterprise is one of her strongest selling points. Another is her pedigree as a Washington insider.
Al Gore, Bill Clinton’s vice president, was the White House’s ambassador to the tech community and helped connect public schools to the internet. In the years since, battles over net neutrality, intellectual property and privacy have shown companies here the value of friends in Washington. This has helped raise millions for Mrs. Clinton, with more on the way. (source)
Sizing and spacing type, like composing and performing music or applying paint to canvas, is largely concerned with intervals and differences. As the texture builds, precise relationships and very small discrepancies are easily perceived. Establishing the overall dimensions of the page is more a matter of limits and sums. In this realm, it is usually sufficient, and often it is better, if structural harmony is not so much enforced as implied. That is one of the reasons typographers tend to fall in love with books. The pages flex and turn; their proportions ebb and flow against the underlying form. But the harmony of that underlying form is no less important, and no less easy to perceive, than the harmony of the letterforms themselves.
This page is a piece of paper. It is also a visible and tangible proportion, silently sounding the thoroughbass of the book. On it lies the textblock, which must answer to the page, The two together – page and textblock – produce an antiphonal geometry. That geometry alone can bond the reader to the book. Or conversely, it can put the reader to sleep, or put the reader’s nerves on edge, or drive the reader away. (p. 145) source
> After all we are a world of imitations; all the Arts that is to say imitate as far as they can the one great truth that all can see. Such is the eternal instinct in the human beast, to try & reproduce something of that majesty in paint marble or ink. Somehow ink tonight seems to me the least effectual method of all — & music the nearest to truth. (Source)
Susan Sontag echoed Woolf in arguing that music is the highest of the arts. Article
Message discipline could be compared to the hypothetical use of the drum machine, the human effect is lost even though it can be closely simulated by expert programmers. Any movement, organisation or political party that designs in message discipline designs out the fluidity and freedom that allows for a virtuosic interpretation of values and ideals to the detriment of wider goals. You get the precision, but what people really react to is the pocket – not a place where you hold a message but where a message gently holds you. (Source)
> The more choices technology gives us in nearly every domain of our lives (information, events, places to go, friends, dating, jobs) — the more we assume that our phone is always the most empowering and useful menu to pick from. Is it? The “most empowering” menu is different than the menu that has the most choices. But when we blindly surrender to the menus we’re given, it’s easy to lose track of the difference: (Source)
> For socially marginalized science-fiction fans and computer geeks, the virtual world could help people enjoy a level of social status and acceptance they lacked at home. Using a computer granted them a level of godlike power, because they had skills most people lacked. In advertisements for Habitat, the early online community was billed as a “place full of drama and adventure,” where each user could seize the rare opportunity to “reflect his real self-image, from toe to head.” A player could literally snap off his avatar’s head and pop a new one on. (Source)
> Japanese audiences, unlike American audiences, don’t understand Motoko to be a Japanese character, just because she speaks Japanese and has a Japanese name. This speaks to the racial mystery zone that so much anime exists in, allowing viewers to ignore such unpleasant dynamics as oppression and discrimination even as they enjoy stories that are often direct responses to those dynamics. (Source)
Ghost in the Shell is the product of and response to decades of physical erasure and technological alienation. It’s pop cultural fallout, a delicately layered croissant of appropriation upon appropriation. It’s as timely as ever, but it feels wildly inappropriate for an American studio and the British director of Snow White and the Huntsman to pick it up and sell it back to us. At the same time, Japan and the US have been stealing and selling images to each other for decades, and the result hasn’t always been awful. I would still argue, though, that the knotty history that leads to Motoko Kusanagi will be lost in translation. This isn’t The Matrix or Pacific Rim, this isn’t just a look and a vibe being lifted. This is the entire history of Japan’s relationship with itself, the US and technology, and without that, you’re left with nothing but an empty prosthesis. (Source)
According to the former SVP of Publishing and Electronic Marketing, much of the decline of Tower Records wasn’t because of the inability to think about the digital technology as the future, but the inability to bring the music labels alongside with them. Thus, much of the early digital offerings were limited to public domain songs.
One of the very real problems we ultimately faced was the reticence of license holders. Even though Liquid Audio (whose visionary founder Gerry Kearby died in a car accident in 2012) had created a secure digital wrapper, we could not persuade the powers that be at major labels to license us the content, so we were stuck selling the equivalent of musical shovel ware, old public domain songs no one really wanted. (Source)
Skeumorphism is a phrase primarily used to described the way designers mimic the look of natural objects in their design. Kelsey Campbell-Dollaghan argues that it’s not just a design aesthetic, but also a way in which we design perceived affordances, a term coined by Don Norman.
So skeuomorphism isn’t a trend or a binary. It’s not Forstall against Ive, or shadows versus flatness.
It’s more like a spectrum, or a color palette, that designers have at their disposal. At one end, we have gross misuse: Fake wood, fake leather, fake shadows. At the other, we have thoughtful use of perceived affordances: A digital clock face that looks a lot like a normal watch, because it’s easier to read. Great design assumes users are smart enough to do without the fakery—but it also knows how to use existing cultural references to its advantage. (source)
Campbell-Dollaghan also says for human-machine interaction to take place, we must continue to explore perceived affordances as a useful design tool
It’s the language that human designers have written to let humans talk to machines. That’s not something we should hate. If anything, its return marks the settling of new technological frontiers, unexplored territories that we need a little help to navigate.
Steve Jobs is known for his love for skeumorophism. It has been described by one former Apple designer who worked closely with jobs as “visual masturbation.” Article.
Samuel Hulick identifies Slack as a platform that is neither asynchronous or synchronous. It’s asynchronish. He argues the results of this are not pretty:
At first I thought this sounded delightful — it would be the best of both worlds! I was always free to drop someone a line, and if they were feeling chatty, a full-fledged conversation could simply spring up, with no need to switch platforms.
After getting to know you better, though, I’ve found that your “asynchronish” side is less impressive than I first thought. It leads to everyone having half-conversations all day long, with people frequently rotating through one slow-drip discussion after another, never needing to officially check out because “hey! it’s asynchronous!”
In an asynchronish environment, you’re always checked in, and discussions never end.
But you can check out when you need to, right? Hulick argues that this is not possible, because decisions that impact you can be made at anytime:
This is awesome for speeding up the tempo of company directives, but it also places a ton of pressure on everyone involved to maintain even MORE Slack omnipresence; if any discussion might lead to a decision being made, that provides a whole lot of incentive to be available for as many discussions as possible.
As such, Slack gives power to the people who can afford to stay on Slack and takes power away from those can’t.
Hulick suggests some changes that could mitigate the issue (autoresponders, Do Not Disturb statuses, etc), but there may be a flaw in the very heart of the asynchronish model.
Amber Case argues that technology should interrupt us only when there is action needed. See Tea Kettle Tech
These issues fall into an area of psychology called human factors. Here is a textbook treatment of Human Factors Psychology and Workplace Design.
A thought to get down here: Twitter is in many ways a community, the way a BBS is a community. But the loosely coupled nature of the community means that Twitter has no way to protect itself from the effects of scale. If there is a summary for the Tragedy of Twitter, this is it.
Facebook is different than Twitter, both because it is less of a community in itself: it is more a home for different communities, There’s not really a Facebook identity the way there is a Twitter or Tumblr identity.
For a story of a facebook group implosion, see Death of the Longest Shortest Time Mamas
Here are some suggestions on Reducing Abuse on Twitter, which involve giving the community some tools, albeit on an individual basis.
Researchers have found that Anger Spreads Fastest through Twitter-like networks.
The Federal Three Strikes law was underused by federal prosecutors in the first years after its enactment. This led to the 1995 Three Strikes Memo, encouraging prosecutors to make better use of the law in their existing cases.
This provision should play a key role in every district’s anti-violent crime strategy. To help us make the most effective use possible of this potential tool, please ensure that state and local prosecutors are aware of the federal “Three Strikes” provision and your willingness to coordinate prosecutive decisions in cases that are “Three Strikes”-eligible. You should have in place a referral mechanism, perhaps through your violent crime working group, to ensure that appropriate “Three Strikes” cases are presented to you for potential prosecution.
In determining whether to bring prosecutions under this statute, you should be guided by the Principles of Federal Prosecution. Trial of an eligible defendant under “Three Strikes will often provide a more effective punishment than a prosecution under,other federal statutes. For the state prosecutor, “Three Strikes” provides a vehicle to take the most dangerous offenders out of the community and keep them out. This is particularly important in states where prison overcrowding results in early release even for violent criminals. (Source)
Robert Caro discusses his shock at understanding how seemingly neutral infrastructure decisions were being used to enforce segregation. Here he discusses Robert Moses, a mayor who built racism into the city’s architecture. The example: he built 180 or so bridges too low for buses to pass under, effectively keeping black users of public transport out of broad swaths of the city.
I remember his aide, Sid Shapiro, who I spent a lot of time getting to talk to me, he finally talked to me. And he had this quote that I’ve never forgotten. He said Moses didn’t want poor people, particularly poor people of color, to use Jones Beach, so they had legislation passed forbidding the use of buses on parkways.
Then he had this quote, and I can still he him saying it to me. “Legislation can always be changed. It’s very hard to tear down a bridge once it’s up.” So he built 180 or 170 bridges too low for buses.
We used Jones Beach a lot, because I used to work the night shift for the first couple of years, so I’d sleep til 12 and then we’d go down and spend a lot of afternoons at the beach. It never occurred to me that there weren’t any black people at the beach.
So Ina and I went to the main parking lot, that huge 10,000-car lot. We stood there with steno pads, and we had three columns: Whites, Blacks, Others. And I still remember that first column—there were a few Others, and almost no Blacks. The Whites would be go on to the next page. I said, God, this is what Robert Moses did. This is how you can shape a metropolis for generations.
Ruth Bader Ginsburg also discussed Sexist Architecture.
> New figures show that the number of suicides in Russia has dropped to its lowest level in 50 years. Such low levels were last seen at the end of Nikita Khrushchev’s rule and in Leonid Brezhnev’s first years in power
Immersive virtual experiences are immersive precisely because they do not display “overt assemblage”. The design is covert, hidden. While this creates engagement and fluidity, it also puts the structure of the information (and its attendant conclusions) beyond the reach of the player.
From a description of the early 2000 edutainment piece The Lost Museum:
That was our intention. We quickly learned, however, that we had fallen
into a pattern that is seemingly intrinsic to the spatial interactive game
approach. Instead of expanding the historical imagination of users and
promoting their active inquiry, we had actually limited the choices open to
them, in particular curtailing their ability to make informational linkages
and to draw their own conclusions. In short, the narrative outcomes were
preordained, confirming only the predominance of designers over users—
as demonstrated by ‘test’ audiences of teachers and students who gleefully
clicked on different 3-D exhibits but professed utter bewilderment about
the significance of what they found. (On the coercive power of the multimedia
designer, see Cubitt 2000, pp. 167–168.)
From Popular Communications, June 1991:
On April 20th, The Press Democrat, of Santa Rosa, Calif., reported that a scanner owner had contacted the police in the community of Rohnert Park to say that he was overhearing cordless phone conversations concerning sales of illegal drugs. The monitor, code named Zorro by the police, turned over thirteen tapes of such conversations made over a two month period.
Police took along a marijuana-sniffing cocker spaniel when they showed up at the suspect’s home with a warrant one morning. Identifying themselves, they broke down the door and found a man and a woman, each with a loaded gun. They also found a large amount of cash, some cocaine, marijuana, marijuana plants, and assorted marijuana cultivating paraphernalia. (Source)
The Moon has a far side (a side that is always facing away from earth) but has no dark side. As the moon passes between us and the sun the far side is bright side. As the Moon goes around the other side, the near side is the bright side (and we see it in the sky).
As the far side has generally been more exposed to objects from deep space it is also the more rugged of the two sides.
The title of this post is from the end of the Pink Floyd album Dark Side of the Moon. At the end of it, the doorman to Abbey Road studios says “There is no dark side of the moon, really. As a matter of fact it is all dark.” He’s talking about the lack of an atmosphere, presumably. But what a great way to end that album.
The typical gap between speech turns in conversation is just 200ms. The small gap is possible because we construct our response while the other person is speaking.
When we talk we take turns, where the “right” to speak flips back and forth between partners. This conversational pitter-patter is so familiar and seemingly unremarkable that we rarely remark on it. But consider the timing: On average, each turn lasts for around 2 seconds, and the typical gap between them is just 200 milliseconds—barely enough time to utter a syllable. That figure is nigh-universal. It exists across cultures, with only slight variations. It’s even there in sign-language conversations.
“It’s the minimum human response time to anything,“ says Stephen Levinson from the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics. It’s the time that runners take to respond to a starting pistol—and that’s just a simple signal. If you gave them a two-way choice—say, run on green but stay on red—they’d take longer to pick the right response. Conversations have a far greater number of possible responses, which ought to saddle us with lengthy gaps between turns. Those don’t exist because we build our responses during our partner’s turn. We listen to their words while simultaneously crafting our own, so that when our opportunity comes, we seize it as quickly as it’s physically possible to. (Source)
Implications here for interface design. Think about related issues — Calm Tech, etc.
Some people are overconfident about the the truth of what they think, some are underconfident. Unsurprisingly, this varies by gender and major, with women being (on the whole) less confident than men and people in the humanities being less sure than those in areas like political science, law, and economics.
David Wiley believes if you run the logic of the microcredential to ground you get to a place where higher ordered qualities are valued.
Gardner Campbell replies that in composition, CBE has been a failure, because you end up with a curriculum about comma splices. Measure precisely and you will begin to value the things that can be precisely measured.
Phrase coined by Ward Cunningham in 2014 denoting the coming disaster of Internet of Things incompatibility, bugginess, and security issues. The problem? We don’t own the pieces we think we do. The smart device is built on a substrate of constantly shifting licenses, end-user agreements, APIs, and marketing agreements.
This is how the internet of things will work. All the things will be interesting. We will think we own them because we will have bought them. But we won’t own all the pieces that give them utility.
The pieces will include some service that promised to provide value unless you read the fine print. Companies will be bought and sold. Databases will accumulate mistakes. Things will stop working. The compounding of complexity will make it in no ones interest to go fix the thing, even if it is just one line missing.
I’ve been asked why I run wires throughout my house to connect together sensors. Wouldn’t radio be better? Yes, but those sensors (and radios) still need power. I’d rather do without the weak link of anything that needs routine attention, even if just once a year.
See also Trash Crash
Lewy body dementia, the second most common type of progressive dementia after Alzheimer’s disease, causes a progressive decline in mental abilities. (html)
People with Lewy body disease have Lewy bodies in the mid-brain region (like those with Parkinson’s disease) and in the cortex of the brain. It’s believed that they usually also have the “plaques and tangles” of the brain that characterize Alzheimer’s disease. Conversely, it’s believed that many people with Alzheimer’s disease also have cortical Lewy bodies. Because of the overlap, it’s likely that many people with Lewy body disease are misdiagnosed (at least initially) as having either Parkinson’s disease or Alzheimer’s disease. A big factor in the misdiagnosis might be that Lewy body disease is relatively unknown. (html)
The incidence of the disease is largely unknown. Studies have pointed to over a hundred new cases per 100,000 for those over 65 to estimates less than five new cases per 100,000 over 65 a year.
Clara Peeters was the earliest significant woman painter of the Dutch Golden Age. From Wikipedia:
Clara Peeters (probably Antwerp 1594 – possibly after 1657) was a still-life painter who came from Antwerp and trained in the tradition of Flemish Baroque painting, but probably made her career mostly in the new Dutch Republic, as part of Dutch Golden Age painting. From dates on her paintings, she was fully active between 1607 and 1621, but after that the picture is less clear, though works were produced until the mid-1630s. Many aspects of her life and work remain very unclear, especially outside the period 1607 to 1621, when she was between 13/14 and 28 years old according to the usual dating. As Seymour Slive puts it “Not a single uncontested document has surfaced about her life but there is reason to believe she was active in both Flanders and Holland.”
As the only Flemish artist who exclusively painted still-lifes in the 17th century, she was also one of the first known artists to incorporate self-portraiture into still-life paintings.
One way to attack campaign finance is to argue it results in corruption. This is an argument about outputs, and it ends up being a complex and slippery argument to prove or measure. An alternate way is to take an “equality of inputs” approach:
Equality of inputs is a measurable standard, particularly if we measure it in terms of money contributed. By contrast, corruption is ultimately impossible to prove because it requires agreement on what the political system would produce absent some said corruption. If you can find me a universal definition of the public interest measured in policy outcomes, please send it. I’ve never seen one. All I’ve seen is vehement disagreement over the public interest.
Equality of inputs is an interesting approach to some issues in education as well.
> A fan-created ASCII version of the 1999 sci-fi classic The Matrix is the oldest known torrent that’s still active. Created more than 12 years ago, the file has outlived many blockbuster movies and is still downloaded a few times a week, even though the site from where it originated has disappeared. (Source)
From the New York Times, December 1985, a screed against portable technology:
WHATEVER happened to the laptop computer? Two years ago, on my flight to Las Vegas for Comdex, the annual microcomputer trade show, every second or third passenger pulled out a portable, ostensibly to work, but more likely to demonstrate an ability to keep up with the latest fad. Last year, only a couple of these computers could be seen on the fold-down trays. This year, every one of them had been replaced by the more traditional mixed drink or beer.
The author goes on to note that:
But the real future of the laptop computer will remain in the specialized niche markets. Because no matter how inexpensive the machines become, and no matter how sophisticated their software, I still can’t imagine the average user taking one along when going fishing. (Source)
Gradually, then Suddenly describes the pattern whereby many inventions get slow starts in a market, only to see growth explode when the environment, infrastructure and capabilities improve.
The rhythm of the Iggy Pop song “Lust for Life” came from a beep pattern from Armed Forces Radio. The New York Times explains:
Mr. Pop and Mr. Bowie, seated on the floor — they had decided chairs were not natural — were waiting for the Armed Forces Network telecast of “Starsky & Hutch.” The network started shows with a call signal that, Mr. Pop said, went “beep beep beep, beep beep beep beep, beep beep beep,” the rhythm, which is also like a Motown beat, that was the foundation for “Lust for Life.” Mr. Pop recalled, “He wrote the [chord] progression on ukulele, and he said, ‘Call it “Lust for Life,” write something up.’” (Source)
A much older Iggy Pop lip syncs the song below:
Just covering astronomy, for example, would require 25 million articles, according to the estimates, and this is growing all the time.
ECO is a game where you build a world and observe ecosystem effects. (website)
Deepak Chopra’s Wikipedia article calls into question the credentials of a figure believed by many to be a new age charlatan. It is a good example of why articles on persons are necessarily contentious — there are important issues at stake here, and it is not for the person in question to resolve them. (post)
To make bullet points, start each bulleted item with an asterisk and a space, like this:
* This is the first item * This is the second item
There are many ways to use Wikity, but this is the most common:
- Research something you don’t know about.
- Learn things
- Write a short article on the subject, capturing what you learned.
Did you ever wonder where people got the idea to steam milk in coffee and call it a cappuccino? Research it. Summarize it in an article called Birth of Cappuccino.
Did someone mention an artist you never heard of? Find out who they are. Write something.
The biggest misconception of new Wikity users is that you should write on things you know about. NO! (is that forceful enough?). Be curious. Learn new things. Share your learning.
Become a person who wonders things on a daily basis. Move from wondering to thinking “I should write a Wikity article on that.” If there’s already an article in Wikipedia, write a better one, a shorter one, a longer one, a more opinionated one, a less opinionated one, a less biased one, a more appropriate one for a class.
When you are done, look for other things in Wikity your article connects to and link them.
The Wikity model is Wonder Things > Research Things > Share What You Found > Connect It To Other Things.
Wikity pulls images from online locations and makes a copy of the image for you. To pull an image into your site, just use the Markdown syntax for images: ![Picture of a boat](http://acroom.wikity.cc/files/2016/01/myboat.jpg "This is a boat!") If you leave the quotes empty, like this, Wikity will automatically create an image credit as the hover text. Note that image syntax is identical to link syntax, but has an exclamation point in front of it.
To create a footnote write the footnote at the bottom of the page, and add a "link target" with a unique name preceded by a hash ('#') and enclosed in square brackets, like this: 1. See also Miller, Jane. *Thoughts on Leaving*, p. 23 Then link in text like this: Miller also noted the discrepancy.(#millerp2)