I and a dear friend experienced David Strathairn’s performance of this one man show about another man at the Shakespeare Theatre Company in Washington DC, October 9, 2021. It was touching, deep, and disturbing. It speaks as much to our time as to our history.
I had the pleasure of seeing this performed in 1997 with dear friends from my days at Hampshire College. It was performed by Ossie Davis, Susan Sarandon, Mandy Patinkin, Pete Seeger and others. Quite a thought provoking night.
Richard Hamming was a 20th century mathematician who contributed greatly to our understanding of information and information encodings. In this talk he shares his thoughts on how to be good at what you do. In short: work on the right problem, at the right time, and using the right methods. Were it so easy!
I’m often taken in by restoration and conservation stories. Recently, the thoughtful machine learning algorithms at YouTube suggested to me a set of videos related to Alec Steele and company’s efforts to install an industrial power hammer in their steelwork shop.
This is industrial equipment at a scale with which I have no experience. Yet, the sheer joy and curiosity exhibited by this crew as they work to address practical, physical, and design issues with making this equipment functional is glorious.
The Machine Stops, a story ahead of its time being published in 1909, foretells of a society in which individuals are almost completely physically isolated from one another in an underground enclave where communication is achieved only with technology and all life’s necessities are attended to by a vast, unseen network of tubes.
What happens when, as always must happen, the machine stops?
I like this recent GOTO conference talk about the role of linguistics in understanding the language of coding. It touches upon many issues I’ve noted over the years as well as newer-to-me issues in non-English programming.
Here, Charlie speaks to an issue that’s near to my heart and that too many people have forever gotten far too wrong: sex & consent. He speaks well and he speaks honestly. I commend you, lend an ear.
In this age of people doing awful things to one another and yet somehow justifying it to themselves, consent is fundamental. As humans, we should be able to discuss it and manifest it in meaningful ways.
Despite the reality that we use tools and techniques every moment of every day that have been devised and revised through the constant questioning and reflecting process we callÂ science, far too many people don’t believe they understand what science is, don’t consider themselves scientists, and don’t trust the expert opinions of the scientific community. How can that possibly be?
“We’re not really listening, unless we’re willing to be changed by the other person.” ~ Alan Alda
Science and Communication—Alan Alda and Neil deGrasse Tyson at the 92nd Street Y in New York City