Category Archives: Uncategorized

How can we reform the adjunct system?

How can American academia’s adjunct situation be improved?  What’s the best way to address this humanitarian crisis?  Can we fix this labor disaster? This question surfaced during a Twitter discussion today.  Several of us were criticizing the increased casualization of … Continue reading

Posted in future of education, research topics, Uncategorized | 32 Comments

A law school sacrifices the queen

An American law school has joined colleges and universities in making harsh cuts to its core academic mission. Cooley Law has announced its own version of what I call the queen sacrifice. This case has many of the queen sacrifice’s now-established … Continue reading

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Hotel internet connectivity: how bad is it?

Frequent travelers know what hotel internet connectivity can often be frustrating.  But I hit upon a principle, many years ago, that lets us understand the connection between hotel and WiFi. I called it Alexander’s Iron Law of Hotel Connectivity, and … Continue reading

Posted in technology, Uncategorized | 11 Comments

The power of convenience

Make magazine cites me in a recent newsletter.  They liked one of my lesser-developed arguments: “We should never underestimate the power of convenience,” Alexander said. “Wearable computing can make things easier for users, and that’s enough to drive adoption.” True … Continue reading

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A Hawaii university sacrifices the queen

Another American campus decided to make a queen sacrifice, as Hawaii Pacific University laid off faculty.  This looks like it follows the familiar pattern. Faculty let go, check: “18 out of 251 full-time professors did not have their contracts renewed … Continue reading

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A western college sacrifices the queen

Northern New Mexico College (NNMC) has made serious cuts to staff, faculty, and programs.  It seems like another queen sacrifice, the strategy whereby a campus cuts previously well-regarded programs and faculty for financial reasons. I wrote “seems” because there isn’t … Continue reading

Posted in research topics, Uncategorized | Tagged | 5 Comments

Left and right agree on critiquing higher education

Two highly visible commentary sources slammed American higher education this week.  Interestingly, each came from the opposite end of the nation’s political spectrum. Left-liberal Salon ran an article by Thomas Frank with the polemical title “Congratulations, class of 2014: You’re … Continue reading

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Quinnipiac sacrifices the queen, apparently

Quinnipiac University announced it would lay off fifteen professors, according to a local newspaper.  This looks like another case of what I’ve been calling “sacrificing the queen“, when a campus cuts full-time faculty and significant programs for reasons of revenue … Continue reading

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Towards peak scholarship

If American academia has just passed its peak, perhaps we might also experience peak scholarship.  That is, the amount of research produced will plateau, then decline in the near future. How could this happen?  Through several mechanisms.  Please note that these … Continue reading

Posted in future of education, Uncategorized | Tagged | 6 Comments

A digital story about the holiday spirit and avoiding cannibalism

I made another digital story on the Cowbird platform.  It’s called “The night we almost ate the bankers“.  Cowbird liked it so much they recommended it as their story of the day – thanks, guys! Cowbird is a fascinating, perhaps … Continue reading

Posted in digitalstorytelling, personal, Uncategorized | Tagged | 2 Comments