Category Archives: reviews

How not to write about public education

Public higher education is the largest chunk of American academia.  That makes bad writing about it especially annoying. Today’s case study is entitled “Halting the Erosion of State Support for Higher Education”, written by Sheldon H. Jacobson (University of Illinois … Continue reading

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Reviewing _Homo Deus_, alas

In my work I have to track various attempts to predict or model possible futures.  Partly this is so I can follow methodological and professional developments.  Partly it’s to improve my thinking about the ways humanity could change. Sometimes this … Continue reading

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What happened to public higher ed? Reading Chris Newfield’s essential new book

The Great Mistake is one of the most important and useful books about higher education this decade. (That’s one reason I was delighted to get the author onto our weekly videoconference discussion, the Future Trends Forum. Here’s the session.) The … Continue reading

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Thoughts on Alien: Covenant

My son and I watched Alien: Covenant today.  We were the only ones in the theater, so Owain and I could indulge in our bad habit of talking while a movie plays. Here I’ll continue my infrequent practice of blogging movie … Continue reading

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Rogue One: the weird ferocity of nostalgia

We saw Rogue One in a theater yesterday.  “We” includes my son, Owain, who’s a serious Star Wars fan, plus myself, my wife, and our friend Elena, who all loved the first movie when it came out in 1977, when … Continue reading

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The doom of an extraordinary mind: the case of Geoffrey Pyke

What makes the creative mind tick? How can unusual approaches to problems succeed, and what makes them fail? The Ingenious Mr. Pyke (2015) is a very engaging, inspiring, and sad biography of an odd thinker. Geoffrey Pyke is best known as … Continue reading

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Finishing _The Water Knife_: the end of the world and what comes next

In July we launched our near-future science fiction reading project with The Water Knife, Paolo Bacigalupi’s dark vision of a desertified American southwest.  Last week I posted notes on the first half of the book.  Alan Levine wrote a fantastic post … Continue reading

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