Educational

How Checkers Was Solved

Skaki 4d AP Zak Bickel The Atlantic

The story of a duel between two men, one who dies, and the nature of the quest to build artificial intelligence Alexis C. Madrigal  The Atlantic Marion Tinsley—math professor, minister, and the best checkers player in the world—sat across a game board from a computer, dying. Tinsley had been the world’s best for 40 years, a time during which he’d lost a handful of games to humans, but never a… How Checkers Was… Read More »

Tachjian’s ‘Daily Life in the Abyss: Genocide Diaries, 1915-1918’ Published by Berghahn Books

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NEW YORK—Vahé Tachjian’s book, Daily Life in the Abyss: Genocide Diaries, 1915-1918, was recently published by Berghahn Books. TheArmenianWeekly Tachjian is the project director and the chief editor of the Berlin-based Houshamdyan website, which aims to reconstruct Ottoman Armenians’ local history and life stories. Historical research into the Armenian Genocide has grown tremendously in recent years, but much of it has focused on large… Tachjian’s ‘Daily Life… Read More »

Ironists of a Vanished Empire

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Edge of Irony: Modernism in the Shadow of the Habsburg Empire by Marjorie Perloff The New York Review University of Chicago Press, 204 pp., $30.00 Marjorie Perloff is one of America’s leading critics of poetry, having spent a long career writing on the work of avant-garde poets from Frank O’Hara to Charles Bernstein. But though she is the author of many books, she wrote in her 2004 memoir, The Vienna Paradox, “when I see [my] name in print…there is always ... Read More »

How to Go the Resistance Distance: Pop-Up Schools for Novice Activists

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Modeled after the Civil Rights Era’s citizenship and freedom schools, the new Sojourner Truth School for Social Change Leadership teaches skills for the… Chuck Collins yes! More than 200 people crammed into a meeting room at Smith College to listen to Dr. Beverly Daniel Tatum speak at the May 4 opening ceremony of the… The new school provides in-person training opportunities in activism in five… How to Go… Read More »

The Greek Word that can’t be translated

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‘Love of honour’, its official translation, is a utilitarian yet insufficient attempt to convey the constellation of virtues squeezed into the word’s four syllables. Stav Dimitropoulos BBC In his second summer in the lonesome Greek village of Tolo on the east coast of the Peloponnese, German senior civil servant and writer Andreas Deffner committed a cultural blunder that led him to the celebrated concept of Greek philotimo. “Good morning, how are you?’ Grandma Vangelió, owner of the pension where he… ... Read More »

Commencement speaker warns graduates: ‘You are entering a low social esteem, often thankless, profession’

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Commencement speeches are, by and large, moments when a speaker tries to “uplift” graduating students with hopeful expectation for the… Valerie Strauss The Washington Post By his own admission, speaker Elias Vlanton did something a bit different Friday, when he delivered the address to graduates of the Master of Arts in Teaching program at St. Mary’s College of… [The greatest commencement speech ever] Vlanton, who taught social studies in… Commencement speaker warns… Read More »

Empowering Children to Lead Positive Social Change

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Children have great capacity to affect the lives of those around them, writes Dr Andrea Lemon, CEO and founding co-director of Kids… Andrea Lemon Pb When children are given the skills, responsibility and opportunity to think and act creatively and independently, spectacular things can happen  –  to them, and to their whole… I have just returned from the National Rural Health Conference in Cairns, where Kids Thrive was invited to present the… Empowering Children to… Read More »

There’s no such thing as a ‘pure’ European—or anyone else

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When the first busloads of migrants from Syria and Iraq rolled into Germany 2 years ago, some small towns were overwhelmed. Ann Gibbons Science The village of Sumte, population 102, had to take in 750 asylum seekers. Most villagers swung into action, in keeping with Germany’s strong Willkommenskultur, or “welcome culture.” But one self… There’s no such… Read More »

A Zen master explains why “positive thinking” is terrible advice

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Have you ever been told to just “think positive” and your problems will go away? Or that to achieve your goals in life, all you have to do is visualize it with positive intent? The Power of Ideas Inspirational Ideapod blog It’s a philosophy that’s been popular for decades thanks to books like How to win Friends and Influence People and Think and Grow Rich.  But is it really helping us live more meaningful and fulfilling lives? Not exactly… A ... Read More »

Gabriel García Márquez: working magic with ‘brick-faced’ realism

Gabriel García Márquez 1a Edgard Garrido Reuters

One Hundred Years of Solitude’s author took cues from Kafka – and his grandmother – to tell an impossible story that disarms the reader’s scepticism Sam Jordison The Guardian When asked how he started writing fiction, Gabriel García Márquez told the Paris Review that it began with Kafka’s The Metamorphosis: “The first line almost knocked me off the bed. I was so surprised. It reads: ‘As Gregor Samsa awoke… Gabriel García Marquez… Read More »

A Zen master reveals the giveaway signs of a toxic person and the most powerful way to deal with them

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We’ve all come across toxic people before. You know, the type of person that can be manipulative, judgmental and inconsiderate of anyone’s feelings. Hack Spirit It can hard to deal with these people, especially if you’re forced to every single day. That’s why I thought the advice below from a Zen master on Reddit was quite remarkable. But first, let’s define what a… A Zen master… Read More »

Supporting people in crisis a real privilege

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This week is National Volunteer Week, an annual celebration to acknowledge the contribution of Australia’s volunteers. Adrian Momber The West Australian I have been one of Lifeline WA’s volunteer crisis supporters for nearly two years. The reason I volunteered was that I grew up understanding and supporting my mother, who had bipolar disorder and had attempted suicide more than once, and I always intended to… Supporting people in… Read More »

After Seeing These +15 Maps You’ll Never Look At The World The Same

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The reason why certain countries looks bigger or smaller than others is because of something called the Mercator Projection. Bored Panda  Putting a 3D planet on a two-dimensional map was something of a challenge for early cartographers and so a Flemish geographer and cartographer named Gerardus Mercator came up with a solution. In 1569 he designed a… After Seeing These… Read More »

The 100 most innovative universities in Europe 2017

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KU Leuven tops Reuters’ 2017 ranking of the strongest institutions for advancing science and inventing new technologies. Ellie Bothwell Source: iStock KU Leuven, Imperial College London and the University of Cambridge have topped a new ranking of Europe’s most innovative universities. The Belgian institution again takes pole position in Reuters’ second annual ranking of Europe’s Most Innovative Universities in part due to… The 100 most… Read More »

Record books sales as e-reading loses out to words on a page

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Scottish publishers have welcomed record book sales, including a boom in printed titles at the expense of the e… Alistair Dalton The Scotsman Books, digital books and journals combined notched up a new high of £4.8 billion last year, the Publishers Association… Sales of printed books were up by 8 per cent to £3bn – the highest for four years – but e-books were down by 3 per cent to… Non-fiction titles put on 9 per cent to £884m, boosted ... Read More »

The Strong Evidence Against Spanking

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A review of the available research finds that physical punishment is significantly linked to bad outcomes for kids. JULIE BECK TheAtlantic Around the world, an average of 60 percent of children receive some kind of physical punishment, according to UNICEF. And the most common form is spanking. In the United States, most people still see spanking as acceptable… The Strong Evidence… Read More »