It seems like every year, starting with November, the damned wheels fall off for Chelsea. It’s been baffling. This November wasn’t the Greek tragedy that the last couple have been, but it wasn’t awesome, either. The Blues kicked this season’s chokefest off by losing to Newcastle. They tied West Brom, and in the Champions League found a way to lose to Basel. (In fairness, they’d lost to Basel before November, too.) So not a complete disaster, but that’s five points dropped in the league that a legitimate elite side simply doesn’t drop. Continue reading
Weird thing happened this morning. I stopped at a little gas station/convenience store to fill up. Ran inside to grab a drink. As I was standing there I got this odd feeling. Something was wrong. I couldn’t put my finger on it, but something just didn’t feel right. I walked around the place, looked down the aisles, nothing. Continue reading
US drawn into the toughest group in the 2014 Copa. You heard it here first.
FIFA held the draw for the 2014 World Cup this morning, and I was really disappointed to be proven right. I predicted back in November that the US national team was screwed. Today we got official confirmation, as the USMNT was drawn into a group with Germany, Ghana and Portugal.
At the end of the 2010 World Cup I predicted that the 2014 final would feature Germany and Ghana. Continue reading
Mandela is dead.
Hopefully this will be an example to all those corrupt professors responsible for NCAA football cheating.
Our friend Otherwise called this one to my attention.
HILLSBOROUGH, N.C. — A former professor at the center of an academic scandal involving athletes at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has been charged with a felony, accused of receiving $12,000 in payment for a lecture course in which he held no classes. Continue reading
PTC technology wasn’t in use thanks to our political leaders’ refusal to invest in our infrastructure.
Yesterday Cal policy professor and former Labor Secretary Robert Reich used the fatal Metro-North train derailment in New York City as an opportunity to offer up some thoughts on the sorry state of America’s infrastructure, a topic my Scholars & Rogues colleague Dr. Denny has written about a number of times. It sparked a bit of sniping on one of my Facebook threads. Continue reading
Shortly after yesterday’s epic Iron Bowl – I don’t use that word “epic” very often, but they’ll be talking about this one a century from now, assuming American football is still being played – I heard a pundit opine that Alabama quarterback AJ McCarron’s Heisman Trophy hopes were now dead.
Seriously? Continue reading
This is where I do my best thinking: seven feet off the ground on the roof of a dented dodge; one story up from doorsteps on silver- coated tar; leaning out windows with wind blowing the smell of growth and damp and something else I don't have a name for. Continue reading
The nation gives thanks … for what?
I was never a William Burroughs fan, but I nonetheless find myself thinking about his 1986 “Thanksgiving Prayer,” surely one of the most caustic (and insightful) takes on our great American holiday. I’m in this sort of mood for a reason. Or two, or three.
First off, you may have noticed all the static around the news that more and more businesses will be open today, getting a jump on tomorrow’s appalling orgy of consumerism, Black Friday. That term originated in the early 1960s, apparently, with bus drivers and the police, who used it to describe the mayhem surrounding the biggest shopping day of the year. Continue reading
Google recently implemented their new “Hummingbird” organic search algorithm, perhaps the company’s most significant overhaul in more than a decade. Thomas Claburn at Information Week explains that Hummingbird is an expansion of Google’s Knowledge Graph, which was
“introduced last year as a way to help its search engine understand the relationships between concepts rather than simply matching keywords in documents. The Knowledge Graph structures data, so that a search for, say, Marie Curie, returns facts about her contributions to science, her life, her family and other related information, not all of which are necessarily contained in the same document.” Continue reading
Yes, PowerPoint sucks. Here’s why, plus some suggestions about how to fix the problem.
Imagine a widely used and expensive prescription drug that promised to make us beautiful but didn’t. Instead the drug had frequent, serious side effects: It induced stupidity, turned everyone into bores, wasted time, and degraded the quality and credibility of communication. These side effects would rightly lead to a worldwide product recall. – Edward Tufte Continue reading
Periodically we find ourselves needing to remind everyone about our comment policy, which is quite a bit different from what you find on other sites. This isn’t a problem for a vast majority of those who visit us, but every once in awhile…
So, here’s the link to the policy, which not only lays out how we do it but also, in a good bit of detail, explains why. In general, I’d note the big difference in how we do it. Other places work off the assumption that all comments are accepted unless they cross a line and need to be removed. We don’t assume that any comment should be accepted automatically, and we don’t post anything without reading it and actively approving it. Continue reading
Courtesy of Upworthy and WGBH we get this audio of the moment when the audience learns that Kennedy has been assassinated.
A progressive utopia, World War 3 or something in between?
Sensitivity to initial conditions means that each point in such a system is arbitrarily closely approximated by other points with significantly different future trajectories. Thus, an arbitrarily small perturbation of the current trajectory may lead to significantly different future behaviour. – Wikipedia
Today marks the 50th anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s assassination – which I’m guessing you already knew. Just about everyone with Internet access is weighing in with a take, and I’m not sure I’ve seen any that get to the ultimate cultural importance of the event like the two pieces we have here, penned by Drs. Denny and Booth. Please, make a few minutes to read those posts and perhaps share them with your friends. Continue reading
I saw a Free Bradley Manning sticker on a car as I walked my dog this morning and it got me to thinking. Some months back I produced the New Constitution series, which set forth the principles upon a more just and workable American government might be based. The final “deliverable,” as we say in the business world, was 20 articles – some barely modified from the original Bill of Rights, some more aggressively revised, and some that are entirely new.
What that sticker and my morning walk have me wondering is if I need to add a 21st amendment protecting whistleblowers. Continue reading
For years my career has revolved around solving communication problems. One of my specific charges has been to “make the complex simple.” I’ve played along because many of the companies I’ve dealt with (not all, but a majority) think this way. When they do, boat rocking and cage rattling is rarely a winning strategy for advancement.
But the truth is that I’m not interested in making the complex simple. Continue reading
So, it’s been kind of a confusing story to follow, but Andy Kaufman’s brother announced that Andy faked his death to escape the spotlight, is still alive and living in hiding, and has a daughter. Then the daughter materializes. Then it’s revealed that she’s an actress and it’s all an elaborate hoax.
Or is it? Continue reading