community Service means Business!

18 June 2004

redistribution of the Bling

Richard Mitchell: The Graves of Academe: "WHEN we find ourselves wondering about the meaning of conditions and events, it is always useful to ask, who profits? The problems and disorders in education have become more and more visible in the last few years, of course, and even the ordinary citizen who happens to have no children in the schools suspects that something is very wrong, but he will never understand exactly what is wrong until he realizes that all our educational problems and disorders, none of which are new, although they are more obvious, provide endless and growing employment for the people who made them. "

old skool rhetoric

Richard Mitchell: The Graves of Academe: "And the "argument" put forth in support of that thesis is itself a dramatic example of worthy disregard for mere information:
It was not illiterate, backward men who spiked our residential skylines with steel forests of television antennas, spoiled our rivers with the defecations of a hundred "growth" industries, fouled our air with the sooty contrails of a thousand jet planes taking off daily, or choked our cities with automobiles that cost as much to park as to buy. That work was accomplished by men whose schooling enabled them to develop transistors, no-deposit-no-return bottles, pressurized cabins, and a 36-months-to-pay economy.

You say you want to understand how a modern technological society works? Well, now you know. Men with schooling cunningly trick the multitudes into buying television antennas and driving expensive cars. Educated elitists force decent citizens to travel in airplanes and callously require them to dispose of bottles at their own expense. It isn't the "illiterate, backward men" who visit these horrors on us; untainted by "excellence narrowly defined," they can manage only rape, murder, arson, and an occasional gas-station stickup.
This amazingly stupid oversimplification is perfectly typical of educational theory."

Life as We Know it

Designing Culture:
"Living, working systems come with mission critical, primary objectives built in.
First comes maintaining the status quo, or the inertia of doing the same thing the same way unless acted on from outside.
Second in priority is system growth.
Third, and only in the more efficient system does it ever occupy so high a priority, is the reason the system was formed in the first place.
Corporate cultures, teams, work processes, and most any system you care to imagine all seek these primary objectives."
( could follow the money-trail, or simply meditate on why (most) buildings don't fall down...jim.)
"How do we change the current situation?
As well understood as the situation is, and for all the description of the outcome sought, the real hidden problem is the lack of a plan to get from one system state to another. Mistaking data about the problem for information about the solution is, as always, part of what’s wrong.
So too is the inertia of the status quo all systems seek to maintain. The paralysis by analysis endemic to the information age is not an information age problem, but one of data processing as sole corrective step.
In processing data about the system, you find yourself part of the system. And quickly find yourself an expert in the assumptions which make the problems seem unchanging and unchangeable.
With information work, like the schoolgirl trying to spell the word banana, success lies not so much in the processing but in knowing when to stop."

The Trouble With Information

The Trouble With Information:
"Vital Definition: Information. A definition suitable for both technology and business use. What guidelines should we give for development of a definition?
One, any definition should point out how information is different from data, and fundamentally so.
Two, it should be accessible to and meaningful for the average person.
Three, while it may concern how structures in software are developed, it should be independent of and transcendent of structures.
The objective is to raise the technology to the level of the definition. Not to lower the bar until any and every technology developed automatically qualifies.
A suitable definition would seem to rule out technology built around data being indistinguishable from and interchangeable with technology built around information. Or that data technology would simply turn into information technology over time in the absence of a clear idea how the two differ. You can find a model here."

(...what possible trouble could there be with information? i've got this here, "vital definition thingy", to ward off any, so-called, trouble...jim)

Who presented this paper? Promega!

DNA Databanking Laws
"This paper is about the enforcement of DNA statutes in the prison setting (1). It stems from one case, Sanders v. Coman (2), in which a convicted murderer challenged North Carolina's right to extract blood samples pursuant to the state's DNA legislation (3), by force if necessary, from imprisoned felons. The murderer lost, the State's legislation emerged constitutional, the prisons properly continue to extract blood samples with or without the inmates' cooperation, and the case stands as an encouraging precedent for other states."
..."Apart from providing information and acting as an initial resource for other states should their legislation be subject to similar attacks, one hopes that this paper will perhaps also bolster efforts to enact such legislation in states where it presently does not exist."
(...such as in Europe where: "Besides forensic casework, Y-STR markers are also valuable for paternity analysis and anthropological studies.
Y-STRs are particularly useful in cases where males are separated by more than one generation."
"Therefore, Y markers are gaining popularity in certain countries as a tool to determine eligibility for immigration.")

About Promega:
Promega Overview
World Class Products and Support
"Understanding the needs of today's life science researchers and helping those individuals achieve success is a priority at Promega. Through advanced technologies, we offer quality reagents and one-to-one support when needed to help researchers reach their goals faster and with greater success."

"We offer over 1,200 fully integrated products to help researchers successfully explore gene, protein and cellular interactions."
Company Facts:
Founded: 1978

Founder: William A. Linton, Chairman and CEO

Ownership: Employees and investors; privately held

Number of Employees: 758

Number of Products: 1200+

Number of Patents: 83 US; 82 foreign patents

Patent Leadership:
- Nucleic acid purification
- Human identification
- Bioluminescence
- Coupled in vitro transcription and translation
- Cell biology

Annual Revenues: Over $137 million

Percent of Revenues Invested in R&D: 13%

Countries Served: over 90

A Short History of DNA

an from the files of the City Journal
"A major reason DNA fingerprinting remains stalled in the U.S. is the opposition of civil libertarians. They claim that collecting DNA data is "Orwellian," or—mixing dystopias—that it heralds a nightmarish "Brave New World," as ACLU associate director Barry Steinhardt ominously puts it. When Maryland law enforcement officials proposed taking genetic profiles of all the state's violent felons, an ACLU rep warned, "I don't think anyone should ever be comfortable that the government is collecting a database of personal information." The ACLU has launched court challenges to DNA data banks in California, Massachusetts, and other states. The U.S. Supreme Court has yet to address the constitutionality of DNA data banks."

(...this is an excellent intro to the dna issue that we're discussion...jim)

House Republican Caucus

House Republican Caucus
"Maitland’s bill would expand the list of offenses for which DNA samples would be taken to include all felonies under Pennsylvania law. In addition to requiring that samples be taken upon a felony conviction, Maitland’s bill would also include all individuals convicted of a felony who are serving prison terms when the law goes into effect, even if they were convicted before the effective date of the new law."

this relates to a discussion that is happening at the Prison Talk Online site.

What Hollywood Actors Say in Japanese

Japanese Phrases of the Day
Ogori da. (The drinks are on the house.) - Cocktail
"Ogori" means, "a treat". This phrase can be used for personal treat as well. This is also a male speech. Women would say "Ogori yo". The verb form is "ogoru".

Hazukashikunai no. (Shame on you!) - Edward Scissorhands
"Hazukashikunai" is negative form of the adjective "hazukashii (shameful, to be embarrassed)". "No" is a sentence particle used by female speaker or a child to indicate an explanation or emotive emphasis.

(..this is as close as i'll come to actually pursuing my studies in spoken Japanese language...jim)

17 June 2004

"Like human persuaders, persuasive interactive technologies can bring about positive changes in many domains, including health, business, safety, and education. With such ends in mind, we are creating a body of expertise in the design, theory, and analysis of persuasive technologies, an area called "captology."

(...This is some very smooth and sexy stuff...jim)

16 June 2004

low carb bread and sparkling water, bitte!

Drug addict gets free gym pass
Probation chiefs have come under fire for reportedly giving a drug addict free membership of a top-notch gym that normally costs £50 a month.
09:35 Saturday 12th June 2004

(...i'm sorry, which party was under the influence? jim)

mr. push vs ms. shove: the saga continues

Kansas, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, North Dakota, and Pennsylvania will get up to 10 percent less in federal funds, according to an analysis by the Center on Education Policy, an independent education advocacy organization in Washington, D.C.

just read in
Jennings said. “By asking for more from all while giving less to most, the federal government is undermining support for the law and challenging the ability of states and districts to comply with the law’s demand for improved performance.”

any questions?

prison talk

Re-entry: Giving ex-offenders a fighting chance
By JULIE DelCOUR Editorial Writer

Most help-wanted ads aren't written with the former burglar, car thief, embezzler or drug dealer in mind.
They're not aimed at hiring anybody who's commited violent crimes -- acts bad enough to get offenders locked up for years but not bad enough to keep them in prison. permanently
PrisonTalk Online
(..please spend some time browsing through this site. i can assure you that much of what we intend or pretend to be as a society is revealed in the letters of those people you'll find in these pages. all the pathos and heart wrenching drama that we seek in our vicarious pleasures is being lived by the people you'll find here. real voices, real tragedy and really our responsibility...jim)

see the worlds' 1st digital newscaster

(...i've been diggin' on this lady for some time now. i know it's wrong but she just looks so right...jim)

do we get fries in this 'Burgher?

i've been listening to Mark for several months and his site helps to put some of our local issues into focus. my organization, Bidwell Training Center, is going to position itself into the current crisis in the public school arena either with a clear strategy or by default(there are few options for students to gain low/no-cost vocational training.)

read his latest missive

who you callin' a stud?

Are You Cultured?
Global Web design and the dimensions of culture
by Aaron Marcus
New Architect
March 2003

When a company decides to globalize its site, the Web team often learns the taboo colors and appropriate dress codes of a given culture, translates the text, and launches. But cultural differences run deeper than visual appearance or language; they reflect strong values. Rarely do globalized sites incorporate the nuances of a culture's social hierarchy, individualism, gender roles, time-orientation, or truth-seeking attributes.

quien mas macho?

see which cultures are considered uber-masculine
(...i would have considered the united states to be more masculine oriented than our asian island friends. and the arabic countries seem to be portrayed as totally male-dominated...jim


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