Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘Pasadena

Sunday Reading, A Great Idea Whose Time Has Come

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SFFTV Special Issue CFP: Global Utopian Film and TV in the Age of Dystopia.

* CFP: The Sixth Annual David Foster Wallace Conference, June 27-29, 2019.

* CFP: 20th International Conference of the Utopian Studies Society, Europe.

Pasadena on Her Mind: Octavia E. Butler Reimagines Her Hometown.

* The Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy talks to the great Lisa Yaszek.

* When your stalker signs up for your class.

When massive open online courses (MOOCs) first captured global attention in 2012, advocates imagined a disruptive transformation in postsecondary education. Video lectures from the world’s best professors could be broadcast to the farthest reaches of the networked world, and students could demonstrate proficiency using innovative computer-graded assessments, even in places with limited access to traditional education. But after promising a reordering of higher education, we see the field instead coalescing around a different, much older business model: helping universities outsource their online master’s degrees for professionals. To better understand the reasons for this shift, we highlight three patterns emerging from data on MOOCs provided by Harvard University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) via the edX platform: The vast majority of MOOC learners never return after their first year, the growth in MOOC participation has been concentrated almost entirely in the world’s most affluent countries, and the bane of MOOCs—low completion rates—has not improved over 6 years.

* US academics feel the invisible hand of politicians and big agriculture.

Augsburg University in Minnesota suspended a professor for using the N-word during a class discussion about a James Baldwin book in which the word appeared — and for sharing essays on the history of the word with students who complained to him about it. “Teaching & the N-word: Questions to Consider.” I have always personally abided by the use/mention distinction out of deference to black artists and what I see as an injunction not to rewrite their work for them (which has always seemed, to me, like centering whiteness too, just in a different way). But the social consensus around that is *rapidly* changing; I’m not at all sure what’s best, and it seems like a pedagogical minefield that the contemporary moment is completely unprepared to think through in a careful way.

* Fairfax was preparing to be Va. governor. Then Northam said he was staying put.

Giant Mirrors. Ocean Whitening. Here’s How Exxon Wanted to Save the Planet. Students Are Preparing for the First Major U.S. Climate Strike Next Month. There’s a big hole in the world’s most important glacier. Hell yeah, Upper Midwest. Climate signs.

* The Anthropocene started in 1492. On the Importance of a Date, or Decolonizing the Anthropocene.

* A history of “woke.”

How the Seattle Times is empowering reporters to drive subscriber growth.

“Nothing to me is more revealing of the core pathology of the modern Republican party [than] the way that it sees widening access to the ballot and higher turnout as a threat.”

Trump’s Labor Board Just Gave Its Blessing to One of the Most Deplorable Worker Abuses in the Country.

* ‘Willful Ignorance.’ Inside President Trump’s Troubled Intelligence Briefings.

* Lord of the Rings as D&D Campaign.

Trump Allies Think Ruth Bader Ginsburg Is Hiding or Dead. It Started on QAnon.

The U.S. Needs to Stay Out of Venezuela.

* Snopes officially declares Facebook unfactcheckable.

* Automated background checks are deciding who’s fit for a home.

New York Insurers Can Evaluate Your Social Media Use—If They Can Prove Why It’s Needed.

We Followed YouTube’s Recommendation Algorithm Down The Rabbit Hole.

* As Drug Prices Rise, Is Boston’s Prosperity Based On A Moral Crime?

* Invincible has a solid voice cast, but for some reason I thought this show was going to be live action, and now I’m broken-hearted.

* Cop watch: FBI Warned Law Enforcement Agencies of Threat Posed by Non-Existent ‘Pro-Choice Extremists.’ Revealed: FBI investigated civil rights group as ‘terrorism’ threat and viewed KKK as victims. No Heat for Days at a Jail in Brooklyn Where Hundreds of Inmates Are Sick and ‘Frantic.’ Mentally Ill Prisoners Are Held Past Release Dates, Lawsuit Claims. Prison gerrymandering is distorting democracy in states across the Midwest and nationwide, leaving incarcerated people with inequitable representation—or none at all. ICE Agents Are Using Pennsylvania’s Courthouses as a Stalking Ground. The State Supreme Court Can Stop Them. One Lawyer, One Day, 194 Felony Cases. The criminal justice system also has an ‘alternative facts’ problem. The FBI Has Your DNA Now.

* This was cool: In new research they plan to present at the USENIX Security conference on Thursday, a group of researchers from the University of Washington has shown for the first time that it’s possible to encode malicious software into physical strands of DNA, so that when a gene sequencer analyzes it the resulting data becomes a program that corrupts gene-sequencing software and takes control of the underlying computer.

Wisconsin basketball star has no plans to stop protesting racism during the national anthem.

* Breaking: everyone from uncontacted and isolated tribes is in the Bad Place.

A new study finds Americans take the pain of girls less seriously than that of boys.

* The lost boys of #MeToo.

* Will Anyone Save Black Colleges?

* A spectre is haunting the 2020 Democratic primary.

* Brexit still going great.

Almost 20 years after measles was eliminated in the U.S., 2019 could see the highest rates of the dangerous disease in three decades, an expert has warned.

* Let children be bored again. I ran this parenting suggestion by my seven year old and got a big thumbs down.

* I wish there were a different author than Jesse Singal, but the story is genuinely fascinating: How a Twitter Mob Derailed an Immigrant Female Author’s Budding Career.

* New to podcasts? Choose your genre!

* And these stamps sure are pretty.

Octavia E. Butler Archives – Resources

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A sporadically updated list of materials I’ve either written or used or enjoyed on the Octavia E. Butler Archives at the Huntington Library, hopefully useful for other researchers:

* Octavia E. Butler Collection Finding Aid (500+ pages!);

* my general guide:  “The Octavia E. Butler Papers.” (Eaton Journal of Science Fiction);

* The Huntington’s landing page on Butler, including many images of manuscript documents;

Tracing Octavia Butler’s Footsteps: An Interview with Dr. Ayana A. H. Jamieson (a tremendous read!);

Inside The Octavia Butler Archives With L.A. Writer Lynell George; Butler’s notes from writing Kindred; Celebrating Octavia Butler at the Huntington; So Be It! See To It!; #VisitOctaviaButler tag on the Huntington’s Tumblr; “Archives” category at the OEB Legacy Network; Radio Imagination;

* Audio from the June 2017 Octavia E. Butler: Convergences of an Expanding Field conference at the Huntington (as well as a write-up from the organizers, a description of the associated exhibition, and a Storify of tweets from the event);

* Octavia Butler, remembered by her friend Shirlee Smith;

* Pasadena on Her Mind: Octavia E. Butler Reimagines Her Hometown;

* me on Parable of the Trickster“’There’s Nothing New / Under The Sun, / But There Are New Suns’: Recovering Octavia E. Butler’s Lost Parables.” (LARB);

* me (briefly) on the Fledgling sequel(s): Archives Reveal What Octavia Butler’s Next Books Would Have Been Like. (io9);

* me on Reagan in Dawn, Talents, and Paraclete“Making America Great Again with Octavia Butler.” (University of Illinois Press blog);

* and of course the whole kit ‘n’ caboodle: Octavia E. Butler (Modern Masters of Science Fiction, University of Illinois Press).

octavia-butler

Friday Morning Links!

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The S. T. Joshi Endowed Research Fellowship, for research relating to H.P. Lovecraft, his associates, and literary heirs.

* Candyland and the nature of the absurd. #academicjobmarket

Why some studies make campus rape look like an epidemic while others say it’s rare. ‘1 in 5’: how a study of 2 colleges became the most cited campus sexual assault statistic. Study Challenges Notion That Risk of Sexual Assault Is Greater at College. Justice Dept.: 20% of Campus Rapes Reported to Police.

University Of Missouri-St. Louis Says Ferguson Shooting Caused Enrollment Drop.

* Greenpeace sorry for Nazca lines stunt in Peru. Oh, okay then.

* Yes we can! The measure, championed by Senate Democrats, would cut Pell Grants in order to free up money to pay companies that collect student loans on behalf of the Department of Education.

* Down and Out: The Democratic Party’s losses at the state level are almost unprecedented, and could cripple it for a long time to come.

* 21st-Century Postdocs: (Still) Underpaid and Overworked.

* We asked a legal evidence expert if Serial’s Adnan Syed has a chance to get out of prison. Meanwhile, allow Matt Thompson to tell you how Serial is going to end a week in advance.

* Good news from Rome: “All Animals Go to Heaven.” I’m really glad we settled this.

* My new sabbatical plan: NASA Will Pay You $170 Per Day To Lie In Bed.

* UC Berkeley Lecturer Threatened For Offering Injured Student Protesters Extra Time On Papers. On university administrations and the surveillance state.

CIA defenders are out in force now that a historic report has exposed a decade of horrific American shame. Torture didn’t work, but why aren’t the architects of torture in jail? Every discussion of this question begins from the false premise that the torturers were well-intentioned truth-seekers who “went too far.” The CIA knew, like everybody knows, that the point of torture is to extract confessions regardless of their truth. That’s why they did it.

* First, do no harm: Medical profession aided CIA torture.

* The Supreme Court Just Rejected A Wage Theft Suit Against Amazon. What Does It Mean For Other Workers?

* Capitalism’s gravediggers.

* “Late in life, Michel Foucault developed a curious sympathy for neoliberalism.” A response from Peter Frase: Beyond the Welfare State.

* Also at Jacobin: Interstellar and reactionaries in space.

* Behold the nightmare Manhattan would become if everyone commuted by car.

* Why James Cameron’s Aliens is the best movie about technology.

* Why we can’t have nice things: Marvel Wanted Spider-Man For Captain America 3, But Sony Said No. But the next 21 Jump Street movie can cross over with Men in Black because life is suffering.

* 7 Terrible Lightsaber Designs From the Star Wars Expanded Universe. I love the guy who is just covered in lightsabers from head to toe.

* Elderly man nailed for clever identity theft scheme: prosecutors say he changed victim’s name to his own.

* Censorship (Pasadena, California).

* The nation’s millionaires are #Ready4Hillary.

Student athletes at public universities in Michigan would be prohibited from joining labor unions to negotiate for compensation and benefits under legislation the state House approved Tuesday.

* Meet The Oldest Living Things in the World.

* And this used to be a free country: One of two concealed gun permit holders involved in a rolling shootout down Milwaukee streets and freeways last year was turned down Thursday when he asked a judge to order the return of the gun seized after the incident.

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