Archive | August 2011

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The Research Monopoly

There is an interesting feature of life in academia. Research is often funded with public funds via grants from the NIH, NSF, and other sources. The results often make headlines in the popular press. The press cites a scholarly journal in which the full results are published, and offers a take (often neglecting numerous provisos […]

Criminal Libraries?

Even though I love reading a variety of material, I don’t usually keep track of the latest developments in the library world. Thanks to Beth Transue (librarian at Messiah College) for pointing out this article about a recent ruling that might have life-changing impact on libraries and students! Here is a quick synopsis from the […]

A New Invasion of Privacy?

Thanks to Messiah College Information and Mathematical Sciences Department colleague Gene Rorhbaugh for pointing me to this somewhat scary post at Apparently some Facebook users don’t watch their profile security very carefully (shocking, I know). A researcher at Carnegie Melon in Pittsburgh gives a glimpse of what could be to come. According to a […]

Update: Some People Should Be Quiet

Sorry to offend any of my readers who are Glenn Beck fans, but I think I need to add him to my list from a few days ago (with Pat Robertson, based on his comments on Hurricane/Tropical storm Irene. I realize that he is a convert to Mormonism, and thus not an evangelical, let […]

A TED Talk About Conflicts of Interest

Today’s TED talk (via their Facebook page) was a really thought provoking 5+ minute talk about conflict of interest, and the effect this has on science. As TED talks go, this is very short, but is still as thought provoking as those of us who are TED fans have come to expect. You can see […]

What Do We Uncover in Our Courses?

Thanks (again) to Messiah College colleague John Fea for pointing out this interesting article discussing the way we teach our courses. The author, Mark Sample, challenges faculty to think about what we are really teaching our students, and what we really want them to learn. We often think very deeply about what we cover, and […]

Update: Tropical Storm Damage

While we got off pretty easy here in central PA, that is not true everywhere. Just read this article about the damage in Vermont. Here’s a taste, but you really need to read the whole thing to understand the damage. And if you can find a photo gallery somewhere, check it out. Amazing. (There is […]

Beware the Good Review

According to this article (HT: Messiah College colleague John Fea’s lovely Sunday Night Odds and Ends column), many of the reviews on internet sites like Amazon, Yelp, etc. are not authentic and may have been written by reviewers who never read the book or stayed in the hotel they are reviewing. They are simply being […]

Hurricane Data

Found this article from the Technology Review blog very interesting for those in computer science, applied mathematics, and statistics. (HT: Gene Rohrbaugh, CS prof. here at Messiah College) The predictions of the track of Hurricane Irene were remarkably good. Days ahead of time, forecasters had the track nailed down closely. They knew where it would […]

Are there Learning Styles?

Thanks to former Messiah College mathematics education major, and current Assistant Professor at Southern Nazarene University, Nick Zoller for the link to this interesting NPR take on the issue. In short, it seems the scientific literature does not support the distinctions that many educators and psychologists have come to accept as obvious. Here is a […]