Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘Einstein

So I Had A Lot of Tabs Open Links

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* There’s a kind of “deleted scene” from my book out in the new issue of Women’s Studies: “Eden, Just Not Ours Yet: On Parable of the Trickster and Utopia.” It’s in the second half of a special double-issue devoted to Butler, edited by Ayana Jamieson and Moya Bailey.

* I’ll be presenting a little bit of my research at the conference this weekend held by Marquette’s Center for the Advancement of the Humanities. Check it out!

* Thanks to everyone who helped me run ideas for my theory class next semester. Here’s what I went with.

* I really liked The Wandering Earth and I think you should see it in a theater — but if you must see it on Netflix I understand. The Chinese Sci-Fi Epic The Wandering Earth Could Be a Glimpse at the Future of the Blockbuster. And while we’re talking: How Chinese novelists are reimagining science fiction.

* CFP: Special Issue: “Surveilling the Body: Ableism and Anglophone Literature.”

* CFP: Science Fiction and Religion.

* CFP: Contemporary American Science Fiction Film: The Bush, Obama and Trump Years.

* CFP: Global Utopian Film and TV in the Age of Dystopia (a special issue of Science Fiction Film and Television).

* Deadline getting close for SFRA 2019 in Hawai’i.

Marcus Center announces 2019 dates for ‘Hamilton’ in Milwaukee.

* eSports at Marquette and beyond: The booming popularity of esports has started a vociferous debate over whether the NCAA or another entity will regulate the industry for colleges and universities.

‘Now Comes the Hard Part’: 20-Day Strike at Wright State Has Ended.

* Lowbrow Culture and Guilty Pleasures? The Performance and Harm of Academic Elitism.

Multiple UNC Honor System members, including the Graduate and Professional Court’s chairperson and attorney general, will testify at a public hearing Tuesday as graduate student activist Maya Little appeals sanctions brought against her last year.

* It is worse, much worse, than you think. It is absolutely time to panic about climate change. More David Wallace-Wells via MetaFilter. A new simulation finds that global warming could cause stratocumulus clouds to disappear in as little as a century, which would add 8°C (14°F) of extra warming. We broke down what climate change will do, region by region. This map shows you what your city will feel like in 2080 and boy, are we in for a treat. Want to know what your city will feel like in 2080? Look 500 miles south. Use these tools to help visualize the horror of rising sea levels. The Story Behind the Green New Deal’s Meteoric Rise. 7 Reasons Democrats Won’t Pass a Green New Deal. Democrats are climate deniers. This is an emergency, damn it. Climate signs. Polar bears. Who is the Subject of Climate Change? Insurers Worry a Financial Crisis May Come From Climate Risks. Why the White Earth Band of Ojibwe Legally Recognized Wild Rice’s Rights. Massive restoration of world’s forests would cancel out a decade of CO2 emissions, analysis suggests. When Islamophobia, inequality, and climate change collide, well, this is How It Can Happen Here. ‘Moment of reckoning’: US cities burn recyclables after China bans imports. And this January was actually one of the warmest on record, polar vortex and all. But don’t worry, they’ve got this.

How sci-fi could help solve climate change.

For nearly two decades at the Grand Canyon, tourists, employees, and children on tours passed by three paint buckets stored in the National Park’s museum collection building, unaware that they were being exposed to radiation.

Chimpanzees ‘talk’ just like humans. It’s time to realise how similar we are. Rethinking animal cognition. Dolphins Seem to Use Toxic Pufferfish to Get High.

* When you don’t try to solve a problem, it doesn’t get solved.

In the mid-1970s, Jon Armond was traumatized by something he saw on Sesame Street. It was a cartoon about a little girl who encounters creatures formed by the cracks on her bedroom wall—including a horrifying, screaming face who called himself “The Crack Master.”

“Eskimos Have Fifty Words for Snow” is an amazing phrase, because every word in it is wrong. But reversing it—announcing proudly that they don’t—only replicates that wrongness; you can’t say no to a bad question and be right.

* A deep dive into stadium bathrooms.

In this exclusive investigative report from Montreal, Maisonneuve exposes the bid-rigging, violence and sabotage at the heart of an unlikely racket: snow removal.

* All the Bad Things About Uber and Lyft In One Simple List.

* What happens when a school district votes to arm teachers? A Rust Belt educator takes us through the grim realities of training to kill one of his own students. Teachers with Guns.

* Have you ever wondered what goes on in those school shooter trainings your child’s teacher is required to undergo? Vital, must read thread on the nightmare factory that schools have become.

* Rethinking suicide.

* A new history reveals that for female slaveholders, the business of human exploitation was just as profitable—and brutal—as it was for men.

The Rise of the Mega-University.

* U.S. Student Debt in ‘Serious Delinquency’ Tops $166 Billion. Here’s Why So Many Americans Feel Cheated By Their Student Loans. What’s changed about grad school in fifteen years.

* Nearly half of Duke University’s female undergraduates say they have been sexually assaulted since enrolling at the university, a sharp increase from the proportion in 2016, according to a report released on Thursday.

This neuroscientist is fighting sexual harassment in science—but her own job is in peril.

* What is it like to go from a tenured professorship to an hourly wage driving buses? This piece tries to make sense of an unusual transition. An update from Steven Salaita.

Sean Guynes reviews Aimee Bahng’s Migrant Futures: Decolonizing Speculation in Financial Times.

The Bizarre Planets That Could Be Humanity’s New Homes. What would human civilization look like on a tidally locked world?

* Remember Mars One, that company we all knew was a scam but still kinda hoped was real because of how much we liked the movie The Martian? Yeah, it went bankrupt.

* Report Shows ICE Almost Never Punishes Contractors Housing Detainees No Matter How Many Violations They Rack Up.

* 11-Year-Old Arrested After Refusing to Stand for Pledge of Allegiance.

* Some Thoughts on EJ Levy.

Two years in, some people are still expecting one of his scandals to bring him down. I know better. Being Raised by Two Narcissists Taught Me How to Deal with Trump.

* Elizabeth Warren wants to ban the US from using nuclear weapons first. You’re half right!

* Financial Windfalls: 15 Stories of the Money That Changed Everything.

Build your own wealth tax: try your hand at taxing the superrich.

Income inequality is likely worse than before the Great Depression.

A living wage is an antidepressant. It is a sleep aid. A diet. A stress reliever. It is a contraceptive, preventing teenage pregnancy. It prevents premature death. It shields children from neglect.

* Nice work if you can get it.

* When the field gets big, the primaries get weird.

* Hard pass, no thanks.

* The Internet is a nightmare from which I am struggling to awake: The Trauma Floor: The secret lives of Facebook moderators in America. A pediatrician exposes suicide tips for children hidden in videos on YouTube and YouTube Kids. YouTube Kids is just a horror show. The dodgy, vulnerable fame of YouTube’s child ASMR stars. Disney, Fortnite pull YouTube ads amidst concern over a “soft-core pedophile ring” operating in its comments. Apple and Google accused of helping ‘enforce gender apartheid’ by hosting Saudi government app that tracks women and stops them leaving the country. Classroom Technology Is Indoctrinating Students Into A Culture Of Surveillance.

* The past isn’t over, it isn’t even past.

* We need a far more profound conception of white supremacy and how the mainstream press has always been complicit in its maintenance.

The United States Is a Progressive Nation With a Democracy Problem.

State Universities Are Being Resegregated.

Do Racial Epithets Have Any Place in the Classroom? A Professor’s Suspension Fuels That Debate.

* A self-proclaimed white nationalist planned a mass terrorist attack, the government says.

* How neoliberalism normalizes hostility.

* How the United States reinvented empire.

The future is a place where it doesn’t snow anymore, but “snow days” is the term we use for roving service outages caused by striking teachers.

* Pack the court. John Roberts is not your friend.

* Forget Strong Female Characters! We Need Complicated Female Characters Who Screw Up (A Lot).

* The love life of May Parker.

‘It’s eating the world’: Inside the Knicks’ and David Fizdale’s battle with ‘Fortnite.’

Progress in Play: Board Games and the Meaning of History.

* The One Choice You Weren’t Given In Black Mirror: Bandersnatch.

Veale followed the GDPR right of access process to submit his request, and Netflix eventually returned that viewing data through an encrypted email. Veale then posted the results of his request to Twitter for all of us to peruse. The bottom line is that Netflix is recording and storing the choices people make when they watch the episode.

Is Email Making Professors Stupid? I promise it’s not helping.

* Second, someone get this film made.

* Meet me tonight in Atlantic City.

* No, you can’t win.

* Guys, Star Trek is CANCELLED.

* Harvard got so rich it’s even going after Mr. Bartley’s Burger Cottage. Shameful.

* Psychology. Douchey robot bosses. Psyops. Political capital. A Brief History of Life Online. Rapunzel.

* And be warned, traveler: Tetris 99 is extremely very good.

Written by gerrycanavan

February 25, 2019 at 12:14 pm

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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Christmas Eve Eve Links Links

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* There’s a lovely review of my Butler book by Nisi Shawl in the new Women’s Review of Books. It’s not available online so you’ll have to take my word for it, unless your library subscribes…

* And I’m so happy to report that Extrapolation 58.2-3 is finally out, the special issue on “Guilty Pleasures: Late Capitalism and Mere Genre” I edited with Benjamin Robertson. Check out the intro to see what it’s all about, and then check out articles on Dragonlance, the Star Wars and Star Trek expanded universes, Sweet Valley High, Blondie, The Hunger Games, and Game of Thrones and fantasy roleplaying games…

CFP: Academic Track at the 76th World Science Fiction Convention, San José, California. CFP: Punking Speculative Fiction. CFP: Histories of the Future: Proto-Science Fiction from the Victorian Era to the Radium Age. CFP: Chapter Proposals for “Ecofeminist Science Fiction.” CFP: Neukom Institute Literary Arts Awards.

An Incomplete Timeline of What We Tried.

* I thought this was great.

* Consider: Who pursues their goals with monomaniacal focus, oblivious to the possibility of negative consequences? Who adopts a scorched-earth approach to increasing market share? This hypothetical strawberry-picking AI does what every tech startup wishes it could do — grows at an exponential rate and destroys its competitors until it’s achieved an absolute monopoly. The idea of superintelligence is such a poorly defined notion that one could envision it taking almost any form with equal justification: a benevolent genie that solves all the world’s problems, or a mathematician that spends all its time proving theorems so abstract that humans can’t even understand them. But when Silicon Valley tries to imagine superintelligence, what it comes up with is no-holds-barred capitalism. Ladies and gentlemen, the great Ted Chiang.

Science fiction when the future is now. With appearances from Kim Stanley Robinson, Ken Liu, and Lauren Beukes.

* The best anti-Last-Jedi piece I’ve seen is Alyssa Rosenberg’s at the Washington Post. And the best pro-Last-Jedi piece from Dan Hassler-Forest at LARB. Somewhere in the middle is Abigail Nussbuam’s excellent piece at Asking the Wrong Questions.

* Lightsabers, by the numbers. Secret history of the porgs. Star Wars from below. Thank goodness somebody realized how terrible this would be. The Last Jedi and the necessary disappointment of epilogues. The films that inspired The Last Jedi. Behind the scenes. In defense of Canto Blight. Anti-nostalgia and anti-salvation. Star Wars without the Empire. How to Read Star Wars.

* Winter Is Coming: Climate Change in Westeros.

* How the Sesame Street Puppeteers Play Their Characters. It was only a year or three ago that I realized that on a basic level I’d still believed Big Bird was real; I had never thought or processed the fact that his lips were being moved by a puppeteer’s hands.

* So old I can remember when Sweet Briar was an inspiring story about a college being saved.

* On faculty and mental illness.

Study finds humanities and social science Ph.D.s working outside academe are happier than their tenure-track peers.

* Podcast alert: how does Samuel R. Delany work?

* Bang. Pow. To the Moon.

* Comedy writers name their most influential episodes: 1, 2.

* SHOCK REPORT: The tax bill is bad.

This Congress’s clear priorities: corporations, not children.

* It’ll also tax large endowments. Meanwhile in the academy: We Will Not Be Your Disposable Labor: Graduate Student Workers’ Fight Goes Beyond the GOP Assault. ‘A Complete Culture of Sexualization’: 1,600 Stories of Harassment in Higher Ed.

* Defund every agency that had any part in this. Murder Convictions Overturned, Two Men Are Immediately Seized By ICE. What happens to children whose parents are deported? 92 Somali immigrants deported in “slave-ship” conditions. ICE is abusing immigrant detainees with strip searches and threats. Shock of shocks, it turns out legal immigration is bad too.

The majority of US workers live in “employment monopsonies” where there is little or no competition for workers.

Why Doug Jones’s narrow win is not enough to make me confident about American democracy.

* Ghosts of 2012.

* First #J20 defendants found not guilty.

* The media wealth of African Americans in Boston is $8.

* People are using Uber instead of ambulances.

* The New York Times oddly reports on a Harry Reid boondoggle in a way that makes it sounds like aliens might be real.

* The Fred Moten century.

The Adult Bodies Playing Teens on TV.

* Monopolies are bad, no matter how much you like the brands involved. Avengers vs. monopoly.

“Neoliberalism” isn’t an empty epithet. It’s a real, powerful set of ideas.

* The madness of prison gerrymanders.

* Desegregation never happened.

* Climate refugees in Louisiana. Disability and disaster response in the age of climate change. Losing the wilderness.

* The FoxConn boondoggle gets worse and worse.

* The Next Crisis for Puerto Rico: Foreclosures.

* Revising agricultural revisionism.

* Against optimism.

* Against being born.

* On the sadcom.

Your Favorite Superhero Is Probably Killing the Planet.

* Professor X Is a Jerk!

* The Daily Stormer’s style guide.

* Opoids and homelessness. 3,000,000 pills to 3,000 patients in two years. The Opioid Crisis Is Getting Worse, Particularly for Black Americans. What happens after an American city gives a homeless person a one-way ticket out of town.

* The US gymnastics scandal somehow gets worse and worse.

‘The World’s Biggest Terrorist Has a Pikachu Bedspread.’

* The Forgotten Life of Einstein’s First Wife.

* The Ghost Economy.

* WHAT YEAR IS IT: How to prepare for a nuclear attack.

Lumberjanes’ Noelle Stevenson is Rebooting She-Ra for Netflix. Sir Ian McKellen Would Totally Play Gandalf In Amazon’s TV Tolkien Adaptations. The Next Bechdel Test.

* “Paradox,” by Naomi Kritzer.

* The Journal of Prince Studies.

* 80% of workers think managers are unnecessary. The other 20% mistakingly think they are managers.

* It’s not a perfect system, but it’s the one our Founders built: The Donald Trump droid is live at Disney World’s Hall of Presidents.

‘Trump, Trump, Trump!’ How a President’s Name Became a Racial Jeer. 55 Ways Donald Trump Structurally Changed America in 2017. Fascism has already come to America. Life expectancy declines for the second straight year. On brand.

* Heartbreaking interview with Heather Heyer’s mother.

* Jordan Peele, auteur.

* Dilbert: A Reckoning.

Still, it does make you ponder all the ways this industry works in service of power, and by extension those who abuse it. So many of comedy’s institutions are, at their core, PR machines. Branded content is Funny Or Die’s bread and butter. Every week SNL promotes someone’s new movie or TV show or album. Late night talk shows, with few exceptions, use jokes to bookend celebrity press tours. Comedians host awards shows because otherwise we might see them for the rituals they are—the wealthy and famous celebrating their own wealth and fame. Comedy normalizes power; it’s so successful at normalizing power that it feels weird to even write that as a criticism. Well, what’s wrong with normalizing power? Lots of things, but to start it lets monsters play the straight man in comedy sketches. It makes them relatable, which makes them less threatening. But power is always a threat, even more so when it seems innocuous, even more so when it seems… funny.

* 2018 is already terrible: there’ll be no more Zelda DLC.

* And remembering the reason for the season: Behold the official policy for destroying the head of Chuck E Cheese.

Written by gerrycanavan

December 23, 2017 at 10:06 am

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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Liiiiiiiiiiiiiiinks!

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* Once more, with feeling: Should You Go to Graduate School?

* CFP: Not Reading: University of Chicago English Graduate Conference.

* What are Muppets, anyway? Monsters from an evolutionary perspective.

* No.

* The Fictions and Futures of Transformative Justice: A conversation with the authors of Octavia’s Brood.

* The Elements of Bureaucratic Style.

Yikes! New Behind-the-Scenes Book Brutalizes the Clinton Campaign. More. More.

* Dungeons and Dragons and the class system.

* Bruno Latour: The New Climate.

* Which country shall we bomb today?

* Notes on Walls.

* Against “Fearless Girl”: 1, 2, 3. And a counterpoint.

* The Secret at the Heart of A.I.: No one really understands how it works.

Movie written by algorithm turns out to be hilarious and intense.

* How artificial intelligence learns to be racist.

* The new Star Wars theme park seems like a place my kids will completely love.

The Nightmare Scenario for Florida’s Coastal Homeowners.

* The Retail Apocalypse Is Suburban.

California State University cannot justify administrative growth, manager raises, audit says.

The coming British bloodbath.

* The fake news long con: The Anne Frank Center.

The United States of Work.

* Inside Every Utopia Is a Dystopia.

* “I always have SO MANY QUESTIONS about the economies of post-collapse fictional societies.”

* The Ugly Duckling.

* Every Sci-Fi Star Map. Keep scrolling, we’re not done yet!

* Why the FBI Kept a 1,400-Page File on Einstein.

American energy use, in one diagram. 410. There hasn’t been a cool month in 628 months. A closer look at how rich countries “outsource” their CO2 emissions to poorer ones. Countries Need to Move to Zero-Carbon Energy Now–Here’s Why.

* Are zoo animals happy?

* Who Speaks for the Trees?

Ancient stone carvings confirm how comet struck Earth in 10,950BC, sparking the rise of civilizations.

“Somewhere at Google there is a database containing 25 million books and nobody is allowed to read them.”

* Why are doctors giving anti-psychotic drugs to toddlers? Kids Who Use Touchscreen Devices Sleep Less at Night. Let the children play.

* A New Study Confirms What You’ve Long Suspected: Facebook Is Making People Crazy.

* History as a never-ending struggle to delay the Nazi takeover of the world.

* Star Trek: Discovery delayed again, again. Ian McShane says a Deadwood movie script’s made its way to HBO. Every New (and Returning!) Development Thrawn Brings to the Star Wars Universe. ‘Locke and Key’ Pilot From Carlton Cuse Set at Hulu. Can Batman Beyond save the DCEU? And because you demanded it!

Mystery of why shoelaces come undone unravelled by science.

* What’s the most American movie ever made?

NASA announces one of Saturn’s moons could support alien life in our solar system. NASA Considers Magnetic Shield to Help Mars Grow Its Atmosphere. Space Leaves Astronauts Partially Blind, and We May Finally Know Why. Simulation suggests 68 percent of the universe may not actually exist.

* Recycling is in trouble — and it might be your fault.

* Why United Was Legally Wrong to Deplane David Dao. How Much Money Will David Dao Make From United Airlines?

* Moderate drinking is good for you, if you don’t control for wealth.

* Nintendo doesn’t want you to be happy.

* Jeff VanderMeer amends the apocalypse.

* It might be easier to make a list of who isn’t working for Putin.

The Landmark Sexual Assault Case You’ve Probably Never Heard Of.

* Put a rainbow on it.

* There’s just one story and we tell it over and over.

Editing the Constitution: Wisconsin conservatives are pushing for a constitutional convention. What are their motives? Oh, I bet it’s fine.

* Fifteen Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Horror Film and TV Projects with Black Talent to Get Excited About.

* First protected DREAMer is deported under Trump.

* Was Tamerlan Tsarnaev a federal informant?

Trustees of the Whittier Law School said on Wednesday that it would close down, making it the first fully accredited law school in the country to shut at a time when many law schools are struggling amid steep declines in enrollment and tuition income.

* If you want a vision of the future. The thing is though. The hero’s journey.

* And just in case you haven’t heard: Capitalism is violence.

Written by gerrycanavan

April 24, 2017 at 9:00 am

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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Whatchu Talkin’ ’bout, Everyone?

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* Rest in peace, Gary Coleman. Alongside his more famous appearances not enough has been said about his appearance on The Simpsons.

* My friend Traxus is blogging again, this time about apocalypse culture.

* Hillary Clinton is the most popular politician in America. VP in 2012, President in 2016? She’d be 69, which would make her older than everyone but Reagan. But of course women live longer than men.

* Weird collisions between the content of my summer course and links I find on Gravity Lens: A Brief History of Batman-Themed Pornography. Not safe for work.

* Great posts from Crooks and Liars and Digby about how the facts don’t matter when it comes to media pseudo-scandals like the Sestak controversy.

* This world is a strange madhouse. Currently, every coachman and every waiter is debating whether relativity theory is correct. Belief in this matter depends on political party affiliation. Relativity, climate change, and the right.

* And if math class were like English class (and the other way around). Via the Valve. I have to admit I like both versions better our way.

Memento Mori

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It’s obvious that the key to the universe is hidden in this photo of Einstein’s blackboard from the day he died.

Written by gerrycanavan

April 20, 2010 at 11:32 am

Vacation Links

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I have a long Thanksgiving break this year (something I must admit I’m very thankful for). Here’s a few links to celebrate my good fortune.

* Google is now hosting thousands of images from Life magazine dating back to the 1800s. At right: my guy Albert Einstein. More good off-the-top-of-your-head searches at the Valve.

* Boston College will stop offering incoming students email addresses; instead, they will redirect email to a private service of the students’ choice. In other words, the moronic email addresses they made up as a joke in eighth grade will now follow BC students forever.

* The new MacBook Pros (like mine!) come saddled with major DRM problems. The good news is that your machine is only crippled for media you purchase legally; pirated media still works just fine.

* Pushing Daisies has been canceled. It’s a shame.

* Two pop-criticism reviews of Quantum of Solace I liked: “Guilt-Flavored Ice Cream” and “Quantum of Anti-Imperialism.”

* Nabokov, on YouTube.

Einstein vs. The Nation

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“This topic brings me to that worst outcrop of herd life, the military system, which I abhor… This plague-spot of civilization ought to be abolished with all possible speed. Heroism on command, senseless violence, and all the loathsome nonsense that goes by the name of patriotism — how passionately I hate them!

Einstein, anti-nationalist, via Cogitamus.

Written by gerrycanavan

October 15, 2008 at 3:54 am