Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘geography

Friday Night Links!

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* I have two SF reviews coming out in LARB the next few weekends, the first on Margaret Atwood’s The Testaments and the other on Cixin Liu’s Supernova Era. Keep an eye out!

* In the meantime: Margaret Atwood and Bernardine Evaristo Share Booker Prize. As the first black woman to win the Booker Prize, Bernardine Evaristo deserved to win alone.

* If you’re a Mac user, don’t update your OS! A ton of legacy applications just won’t work anymore.

* CFP from the Center for the Advancement of the Humanities: Urban Spaces, Creative Places: A Blueprint for the Humanities in the City.

* CFP: Star Trek Novels. CFP: Imagining Alternatives – Speculative Fiction and the Political, 11th Annual Conference of the Gesellschaft fuer Fantastikforschung.

* Great job at a great program in a great place to live! UNC Greensboro is looking for a fiction professor.

* ‘The Bob Dylan of Genocide Apologists.’ Fascism and the Nobel prize.

* Five Indigenous Speculative Fiction Authors You Should Be Reading. The Rise of Indigenous Horror.

Ken Liu on Chinese sci-fi, ‘silkpunk,’ and his distrust of labels.

* The Tiptree Award is becoming the Otherwise Award.

Climate fiction is imagining a future beyond the climate crisis.

* Not a day goes by when I don’t think about how Octavia Butler prophesied our present and our futures.”

Humans Will Never Live on an Exoplanet, Nobel Laureate Says. Here’s Why.

* For Jodi Dean, the class war is on — and academics need to pick a side.

* He lived to see it.

* Meanwhile: some grim accounting.

* Alt-ac y’all.

* Weaponizing student evaluations, part I, II, III.

* Sallie Mae flies more than 100 employees to Hawaii to celebrate $5 billion in sales while student debt crisis tops $1.6 trillion. Sales!

* Ecological Politics for the Working Class. Jane Fonda is arrested leading environmental protest at the Capitol. Capitalism and addiction. The new age of megafires. Crisis in the Amazon. The inequality of climate change. Global finance is funding 4C temperature rise. This climate problem is bigger than cars and much harder to solve. In 2025, the economic craze for millennials is going to be cheap housing in flood zones. Climate change and the end of the Olympics. Extinction Rebellion and the Birth of a New Climate Politics. The New Green Scare. ‘They should be allowed to cry’: Ecological disaster taking toll on scientists’ mental health.

* I think a lot of academics have been plagiarized by mainstream outlets at one time or another — I certainly have — but this story is truly next-level.

* Aaron Bady interviews Jedediah Purdy at The Nation. David M. Perry interviews llhan Omar, also at The Nation.

New — It’s Adjunct Barbie™!

Chicago teachers are on strike today. A high school teacher explains to us why the strike is the union’s best tool to fight for better conditions in the city’s schools and an end to austerity.

* The class war is also an intergenerational war.

* In the future, “Frequent Flyer Miles” may refer to a tax penalty, or even a criminal misdemeanor.

Can We Turn Down the Temperature on Urban Heat Islands?

* Biden just isn’t very good at this. Neither is Beto. And Bloomberg won’t be either! Bernie Sanders And Elizabeth Warren Take Aim At Corporate Interests Gutting Journalism. I’m with Nobody.

Trump’s Worst Betrayal Yet. Ethnic cleanser very excited about ethnic cleansing.

* This G7 thing is just wild. Truly not even pretending anymore. Never-Before-Seen Trump Tax Documents Show Major Inconsistencies. The 30-minute phone call that could end Trump’s presidency. Only once has Gallup seen more support for removing a president. Nixon was gone four days later. The Senate is likelier to remove Trump after impeachment than you think. Donald Trump Isn’t Julius Caesar. He’s Republic-Killer Tiberius Gracchus.

Rudy Giuliani’s Twitter Feed Is a Boomer Conspiracy-Theory Sh*tshow.

Once Trump is gone, the U.S. must completely reform the presidency. The Sick Video Played at a Pro-Trump Conference Is a Glimpse of the Dark Energy in American Politics. A lot of policy debates these days turn on Republicans threatening to kill a lot of people. Life Under the First Thousand Days of Donald Trump.

* Why did Trump win?

So we must build geography right into the analysis. Once we start looking at electoral college-weighted, county-level correlates of the Trump swing—Trump’s vote share less Romney’s vote share—a very different pattern emerges. The three strongest predictors of the Trump swing are college graduation rate, population growth rate, and growth in deaths due to drug overdoses in 2003-2017.

* A professor spoke about whiteness at Georgia Southern University. Students burned her book.

California becomes first US state to ban animal fur products.

Trump Turns Back the Clock in America’s Meat Plants.

* Seven Supreme Court cases that will destroy America in 2020.

* California accidentally destroys freelancing.

* Try to escape the gig economy with this artist collective’s new video game.

* The X-Men’s New Age Is Here, and It’s Horny as Hell. Adding in a free love element when it seems like they’re all definitely being drugged or mind controlled might not be the best story decision, but let’s see where it goes…

Science confirms Storm is main character of X-Men.

* Providence gets it.

* Tesla is Enron, exhibit XXIV.

* But wait! A new competitor has entered the fray! WeWork shuts 2,300 office phone booths over health scare.

Pickens County Schools pulls controversial transgender policy. This moral panic, ginned up out of absolutely nothing, just infuriates me. I’m not sure you can find even a single example of an inclusive bathroom policy harming anyone, while the ordinary operation of every high school in the country leads to rampant sexual abuse.

* A Floating Jail Was Supposed to Be Temporary. That Was 27 Years Ago.

The big business — and questionable effectiveness — of mass shooter trainings. “Questionable” seems… generous.

* This man owed $134 in property taxes. The District sold the lien to an investor who foreclosed on his $197,000 house and sold it. He and many other homeowners like him were left with nothing.

* The Midwest Is One of the Worst Places for African Americans to Live.

Meet America’s newest military giant: Amazon. Amazon Workers May Be Are Watching Your Cloud Cam Home Footage.

* Today in the nightmare society.

* Truly horrible story out of Fort Worth. Fort Worth Officer Charged With Murder In Killing Of Atatiana Jefferson In Her Home. Policing just needs to be rethought completely in this country, on every level.

UK to deport academic to Democratic Republic of Congo – which she has never visited. And here at home: The New War on Naturalized Citizens.

* Tough week for fans of the use/mention distinction.

* Neil deGrasse Tyson going for the ultra-rare triple-reverse cancellation-uncancellation-recancellation.

* New federal data: suicide rate of children age 10 to 14 “nearly tripled” between 2007 and 2017.

The movement to decriminalize sex work, explained.

* The Joy of Being a Horrible Goose in a Time of Moral Crisis. Honks vs. Quacks: A Long Chat With the Developers of ‘Untitled Goose Game.’

* No, I simply refuse to admire Shep Smith, not even a little bit.

* Now NBC killed its Weinstein story.

* I think you could write a very interesting cultural history of contemporary America about the way it loses its mind every time the First Lady role seems like it might get disrupted. Today’s chapter: Rosario Dawson.

* A whole new twist on institutions abusing Title IX.

* A month away from 40, BA, MFA, PhD, professor for seven years, and I still regularly have dreams where it turns out I missed some requirement and have to go back to high school.

* God, you know, I just can’t stop thinking about this.

* A two-year-old’s reaction to seeing the Hulk go bananas for the first time.

* Miracles and wonders: A Drug Was Made For Just One Child, Raising Hopes About Future Of Tailored Medicine.

* Joker today, Joker tomorrow, Joker forever.

* Alas, @dril.

* I refuse to consider the possibility that Watchmen will be remotely good. I don’t care how many critics say otherwise! The Never-Ending Challenge of Adapting ‘Watchmen.’

* It’s back! How many European cities can you name?

Ancient ‘lost city’ of the Khmer Empire uncovered in Cambodia.

* The intelligence of plants.

Paris zoo unveils the “blob”, an organism with no brain but 720 sexes. Take off and nuke it from orbit, it’s the only way to be sure.

* Spotted on Facebook, and it checks out.

* Gaming out season two of Picard.

* One thing I like to do at Target is pretend their novelty coffee mugs are gravestone epitaphs.”

* And this Studio Ghibli news is (for a particular sliver of the population) a genuinely shocking development and a huge coup for HBO Max. I know for me it flipped from “lol no” to “well, I guess I’ll be subscribing to that” in an instant…

Written by gerrycanavan

October 18, 2019 at 2:51 pm

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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Blogging from the Mid-Atlantic, But the Other Way

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An awakening anatomy of the average life’s two years of boredom, 6 months of watching commercials, 67 days of heartbreak, and 14 minutes of pure joy. 14 minutes of joy seems low even for a single day. What are you people doing with yourselves?

* The Voyager records, as art.

* I’m With™ Clinton’s ‘Innovation Agenda’ for Higher Ed.

* Republicans seem pretty obviously right about this one. I don’t see how there’s any case for its propriety, but here’s a try.

The Humiliating Practice of Sex-Testing Female Athletes.

Estimate of U.S. Transgender Population Doubles to 1.4 Million Adults.

* For 20 years, the center has blocked off female-only hours to accommodate the area’s large Hasidic population. The pool has no male-only hours, and some Hasidic men swim during the hours that are open to all genders. An anonymous complaint was lodged recently with the city’s Human Rights Commission, which sent a notice to the parks department this spring saying that the policy might violate a city law barring gender discrimination in public accommodations.

Using the budget usually reserved for the committee, they created a program called Dudes Understanding Diversity and Ending Stereotypes, or DUDES.

He said he’s glad colleges have found the research useful, but he is cautious about the institutions that are taking it as an absolute. Mr. Sue said his goal had always been to educate people, not punish or shame them, if they engage in microaggressions.

* Boris Johnson and the Cuckoo Nest Plot. Now even Gove says he won’t Brexit before the end of the year. Sanders and Corbyn: The Survivors. Brexit Might Never Happen. Brexit: a disaster decades in the making. So you want to con a country. Based on a close reading of Frank Bruni’s Brexit commentary, “A Bachelor Named Britain, Looking for Love” (reproduced below the question), please describe the bearing of the New York Times op-ed staff on the collapse of serious political argument in American establishment institutions in the early 21st century.

How J.R.R. Tolkien Found Mordor on the Western Front. Bonus Tolkien! How To Tell If You Are In A J.R.R. Tolkien Book.

A wizard has roped you into a quest because one of your ancestors invented golf.

* Westeros Is Poorly Designed. A Followup: It’s Okay That Westeros Is Poorly Designed. Some more nerdery on the subject.

When asked how fast the ships in Babylon 5 travel, creator J. Michael Straczynski replied that they travel “at the speed of plot.”

How big is Westeros? “Plot-sized.” How many people live there? “Plot thousand.” How do they make their living? “Tilling the plot.”

Game of Thrones season 6 was good TV that shows why the series will never be great.

Why did the Stars Wars and Star Trek worlds turn out so differently? Please Stop Marrying Fictional Characters to People They Met as Children, It’s Creepy. I started thinking absently about Steve Rogers’ jogging route during my run today and then i couldn’t STOP thinking about it because there’s literally NO WAY it makes sense unless you accept that he is specifically fucking up his entire morning routine to get another look at the cute boy he clocked on his run.

* How to Get Tenure. Counterpoint: You Probably Won’t Get Tenure.

* How to Give a Conference Paper.

* Elsewhere on the academic beat: Study Finds First-Year Students Who Take 15 Credits Succeed. Why Can’t My New Employees Write? The New McCarthyism. Right-Wing Elites Love Your Abigail Fisher Hot Take.

* Rationalia has already garnered some powerful enemies.

* Amazing, awful: Author Gay Talese disavows his latest book amid credibility questions.

Unprecedented’: Scientists declare ‘global climate emergency’ after jet stream crosses equator. The Window for Avoiding a Dangerous Climate Change Has Closed. The Day After Tomorrow Happened 30,000 Years Ago. Geoengineering at the CIA.

Physicists just confirmed a pear-shaped nucleus, and it could ruin time travel forever. Not if I undiscover it yesterday!

* America is lying about its involvement in Africa: AFRICOM’s reports simply don’t add up.

* Secret History of the AOL Disc Campaign.

* More from the twilight of the law schools.

* “This is the single greatest panel ever published in a Transformers comic.”

* Trumpocalypse watch! Another boondoggle. And another. And another. And another. This one is probably the best yet. 4 Ways Cleveland’s Colleges Are Bracing for the Republican Convention. Who will win the presidency? Why not play along at home! And if you want a vision of the future: imagine Trump’s vice-presidential candidates stomping on a human face, forever.

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Written by gerrycanavan

July 1, 2016 at 9:00 am

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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Surprise Sunday Links! Watch Out!

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* The route Google Maps recommends if you’re headed to Ferrum College from the west involves what may be the loneliest and most roller-coaster-like stretch of roadway ever to earn a state route number from Virginia. It’s a narrow ribbon of pavement with no center line, a twisting trail you drive imagining that if you go over the edge, weeks could pass before anyone found the wreckage. Only at the other end do you spot a yellow sign that reads, “GPS Routing Not Advised.” Small, Rural Colleges Grapple With Their Geography.

* A friend recommended the short Cuban SF novel Super Extra Grande to me, which I liked a lot. Some profiles on the author: 1, 2.

* Horrific terror attack at historic Orlando gay night club leaves 20 dead.

* Scientists think they’ve figured out the Antikythera Mechanism.

* Being Tig Notaro.

* In search of Cervantes’s grave.

* Old and busted: AI. New hotness: IA.

* Landscaping in the Anthropocene.

As an added experiment, the researchers applied their model to the current distribution of human populations on Earth. They found that, under all the same assumptions, 12.5 percent of the global population would be forced to migrate at least 1,000 kilometers, and up to a third of the population would have to move more than 500 kilometers. 

In a paper published in the May issue of the journal Astrobiology, the astronomer Woodruff Sullivan and I show that while we do not know if any advanced extraterrestrial civilizations currently exist in our galaxy, we now have enough information to conclude that they almost certainly existed at some point in cosmic history.

…what our calculation revealed is that even if this probability is assumed to be extremely low, the odds that we are not the first technological civilization are actually high. Specifically, unless the probability for evolving a civilization on a habitable-zone planet is less than one in 10 billion trillion, then we are not the first.

Twitter must fix this. Its brand is increasingly defined by excessive harassment.

* More on The 7-1/2-Hour O.J. Simpson Doc Everyone Will Be Talking About This Summer.

Because poetry is considered so small, so irrelevant, it’s tempting for poetry critics to look for the BIG themes in poems to demonstrate that poetry matters. I continue to learn from critics who take on this labor. However, because ALL African literary criticism is assumed to matter the more it focuses on the BIG SOCIOPOLITICOECONOMICDISASTERTHATISAFRICA, I am inclined to turn to quieter moments—spaces for the intimate, the friendly, the quiet, the loving, the depressed, the depressing, grief, and melancholy. I’m drawn to the register that is not the shout, and never the headline. I linger at the quotidian to insist that the African imagination considers livability and shareability.

For everyone, he claims, is shortchanged when the guiding principle and “key driver” of the institution is no longer thought, but money (ix). Faculty are silenced, yes, by the drive to conformity and homogeneity. But students are also cheated when they are treated simply as “human capital”: “When the university is reduced to the function of preparation for jobs and not for life, life itself gets lost under the jobs” (85). Most broadly and seriously of all, society as a whole suffers as the university abandons its traditional role as “that institution that has a responsibility to counter the incipient violence of natural force” (40). The fate of the university is bound up with the fate of democracy and citizenship at large. If society is to change, and injustice and inequality challenged, we need now more than ever an institution whose role is to be “’critical’ of the existing world state of affairs, dissident with respect to it” (6).

* I sometimes wish tenure were what its enemies believe it is.

* White supremacist PACs and Trump. The stain of Trump. “A GOP senator might vote for Hillary Clinton. Here’s how rare that is.” Trump has underperformed the real estate market by a mere 57% since 1976. Alas, Mitt.

* I’m calling it: Trump will drop out of the race by July 5 at the latest. He will blame the unfair media and political correctness, allude to some wack-ass conspiracy involving Black Lives Matter and/or Hezbollah, and go to his grave telling everyone he knows that if he had stayed in the race, he would’ve beaten Clinton.

* You may be done with your quasi-legal homebrew server, but your quasi-legal homebrew server is not done with you: The FBI has been conducting a criminal investigation into Hillary Clinton’s handling of classified information for months.

We narrowed Clinton’s vice-presidential possibilities to 27. Now you pick one. For a long time I’ve thought it definitely be one of the Castro brothers, probably Julian, but Elizabeth Warren has made such a push lately I’ve started to think it could actually be her. Of course you can pick Trump’s too, from such a weak field it includes his own daughter.

Let me close with a broad statement. In the news you will see some rather hysterical statements about how all bets are off this year. That is true to an extent: on the Republican side, the national party’s positions and their rank-and-file voters’ preferences are far out of whack. In a deep sense, their decision process in 2016 became broken. But that does not mean that opinion is unmeasurable. Far from it. In the aggregate, pollsters still do a good job reaching voters. And voters are still people whose opinions move at a certain speed. To my thinking, polls may be the best remaining way to assess what is happening.

* But just in case: I Spent the 90s Fighting Fascists on the Streets of Warsaw.

* According to multiple federal complaints, young black students in New York City are being forced out of school after being sexually assaulted.

* If you’re not sick of these yet: What Hamilton Forgets About Hamilton.

* The gentrification of Sesame Street.

* Review: Warcraft Is The Battlefield Earth Of The 21st Century. Warcraft, Hollywood, And The Growing Importance Of China’s Box Office.

* Because you demanded it! Kevin Smith Says That His Mallrats Sequel Will Be a 10-Part TV Series.

* Same joke but for The Passion of the Christ 2.

Sixty Million Car Bombs: Inside Takata’s Air Bag Crisis: How the company’s failures led to lethal products and the biggest auto recall in history.

* The case for Lady Stoneheart showing up in season six of Game of Thrones. Let me say I have my doubts.

* What to do if you find a goose than lays golden eggs. Machine Learning: A Flowchart. If you read Kafka’s stories backwards, they all make great kids’ movies.

* And the moral cowards at Wikipedia have moved to suppress my work again.

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Written by gerrycanavan

June 12, 2016 at 9:00 am

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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Sunday Morning Links

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* Call for applications: The 2015-16 postdoc seminar at Rice, “After Biopolitics.”

In the absence of sparrows: the front page story says you’ve been missing since / November 22, 2012. Everything else it doesn’t say. / In the absence of sparrows: you simply wandered off, past the Sunoco, pockets stuffed. / The door to your apartment is open still—

Together, these forums, initiatives, and spy teams constitute a sustained effort to suppress meaningful resistance to the university’s privatization program by placing strict boundaries on dissent. Policing Civility.

* Elsewhere in campus civility: The Pentagon Is Giving Grenade Launchers to Campus Police.

Hence I propose that, roughly speaking, one’s privilege level correlates with the likelihood that expressing anger will make people take your concerns more seriously rather than less — or at the very least, that it will prompt a reaction to you as an individual rather than triggering an immediate generalization about your demographic profile. This is one of the most intimate and insidious things about privilege dynamics: even the right to express perfectly natural and justified human emotions can’t be taken for granted.

* The Paris Review interviews Ray Bradbury.

If I’d lived in the late eighteen hundreds I might have written a story predicting that strange vehicles would soon move across the landscape of the United States and would kill two million people in a period of seventy years. Science fiction is not just the art of the possible, but of the obvious. Once the automobile appeared you could have predicted that it would destroy as many people as it did.

* …and translates Umberto Eco.

They affect us because we realize that if they are monsters it is because we, the adults, have made them so. In them we find everything: Freud, mass culture, digest culture, frustrated struggle for success, craving for affection, loneliness, passive acquiescence, and neurotic protest. But all these elements do not blossom directly, as we know them, from the mouths of a group of children: they are conceived and spoken after passing through the filter of innocence. Schulz’s children are not a sly instrument to handle our adult problems: they experience these problems according to a childish psychology, and for this very reason they seem to us touching and hopeless, as if we were suddenly aware that our ills have polluted everything, at the root.

* God, I wish these J.G. Ballard books for children were real.

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* Previously unknown final chapters of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

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Detroit’s Under-Funded Fire Departments Use a Soda Can For a Fire Alarm.

* Gape in amazement as The New Yorker‘s famous fact-checkers seriously drop the ball.

* Vox gets nostalgic for the 1994 AT&T “You Will” ad campaign.

As fast-food workers demonstrate nationwide for a $15 hourly wage, and congressional Republicans fight off a $10 federal minimum, little SeaTac has something to offer the debate. Its neighbor, Seattle, was the first big city to approve a $15 wage, this spring, but that doesn’t start phasing in until next year. SeaTac did it all at once. And, though there’s nothing definitive, this much is clear: The sky did not fall.

i.chzbgr* The way we live now.

* Profiles in courage: Obama to delay his big move on immigration until after election.

* Saving some time before the next invasion.

* Not really how it’s supposed to work: An atheist airman at Creech Air Force Base in Nevada was denied re-enlistment last month for refusing to take an oath containing “so help me God,” the American Humanist Association said Thursday.

* Peace activism vs. environmental activism.

* Geographers prove no one likes the Jets.

* “I’ve decided to ignore economic data and assume the challenges facing your generation are the same as those mine faced.”

* A marathon for Milwaukee?

* The gig economy won.

Apple Wants You To Pay For Things With An iPhone — But There’s One Nagging Problem, It’s an Obviously Terrible Idea That No One Would Ever Want.

* Female privilege is real: Sharks nine times more likely to kill men than women, study says.

* The eight white identities. I’m not 100% clear on the daylight between White Traitor and White Abolitionist, but otherwise it seems to taxonomize approaches to white supremacy I see on the Internet all the time.

* Could it be possible that police departments are lying when they say suspects handcuffed behind their backs are shooting themselves in the chest with hidden weapons that were somehow not found when they were searched? Truly, a bold provocation. Perhaps it will always be a mystery.

* Exhausted Noam Chomsky Just Going To Try And Enjoy The Day For Once.

* And: you fools: every day is Bill Murray Day.

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