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January 16 2014


Judge John Hodgman Episode 142: The Department of Corrections | Maximum Fun

Save the M-W editor's two cents, only poor Tom's contribution to this episode was of any value. Know-it-all Kira knows very little about the English language. Anyone who advocates only for a fix "proper" or "correct"' English should also feel comfortable wishing we spoke the English of Beowulf, or possibly even the PIE. Language changes -- at its lexical, morphological, syntactic, and discourse levels. Even an individual's language use changes from hour to hour (or minute to minute!) as we tend to adjust our usage based on our audience's expectations. And sure, stick with Standard/General during the cover letter and job interview. But the fact that "Mary and I" can also be uttered as "Me and Mary" around almost any company of people in the US, or that "firstly" and "most importantly" are now frequently used as sentence modifiers is of little consequence. People use all of the above. Speakers of the language, even fairly low-proficiency non-native speakers, understand what's being said. Also, unkindly Kira doesn't understand that her argument lies in kowtowing to a variety of American English that has the most prestige, at least in her world. Hearing her utter, "I just want my husband to sound as smart as he is," she unconsciously follows a false belief that using a more prestigious variety of English is the same as being or being perceived as "intelligent." The Kiras of the world often judge the intelligence or worth of Southerners, New Englanders, rural Americans, or racial/ethnic minorities in the US for their shifted vowels, unfamiliar lexicon, or less often heard morpho-syntactic variations without knowing anything about how well those speakers (or writers) are adhering to the conventions of the variety of American English that they were raised to use. What we have in Kira is a person who simply feels the need to put other people down, especially her husband. Her grammatical "corrections" probably serve as one tool for dominating their relationship. (Hear Tom's "I feel tense," and "I'll let her lead by example.") From the sound of things, this character trait is so fundamental to her that I suspect to question the underpinnings of this corrective wont would probably never occur to her, even after this episode. http://maximumfun.org/judge-john-hodgman/judge-john-hodgman-episode-142-department-corrections

January 08 2014


Open source experimental incubator build up

This is a call for participation in a project aimed to build up an open source based experimental incubator which can be used for variety of food, beverage and bio hacking projects allowing for easy control and monitoring of internal condition like temperature and humidity. Working groups will be established to develop prototypes which can be easily and relatively cheaply assembled. Securing funding and establishing a portal to effectively share the news and knowledge within the groups and wider community will be major part of the first phase. One of the basic devices needed for experimenting with growth of variety of microbes for many different purposes ranging from bio luminescence art, magic mushrooms or to more frequently persuaded food and beverage fermentation is incubator. Ranging from the fields of extreme hard core bio-hacking to traditional home experimentation, device where one can easily control some of it’s internal conditions like for example temperature or humidity and record corresponding data is needed. Decently priced well established and supported open source version is not available yet. The aim of this project is to establish product which is developed by people and groups interested in the subject and which is shared by the community based on the open source paradigm and importantly continuously developed, so upgrade and update of future generations is secured. The long term goal is development of easy to assembly kit’s and complete device which people interested in can buy (from variety of entities, open source). This talk will be “officially” launching this project announcing it to the wider community calling for participation. The basic goals, budgeting and concepts for the first year or so will be established already, anticipating participation of people interested in, giving for sure some space for changes because of new people being involved. The short time goal will be to establish several working groups participating more intensively in design of first prototypes, securing funding for this effort and also building proper portal to share the news on development. For more details check our pages, this project will be quite intensively developed in the next few months, after few years of relative hibernation. http://events.ccc.de/congress/2013/Fahrplan/events/5566.html Day: 2013-12-28 Start time: 18:15 Duration: 00:30 Room: Saal 6 Track: Hardware & Making Language: en
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