Category Archives: reviews

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

Posted in reviews, technology | 29 Comments

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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Dying and death in America: reviewing _Being Mortal_

This is a hard book to review, and not an easy one to read, despite the author’s fluency. Being Mortal is, after all, about inescapable death, and the problems we currently have in grappling with physical decline and personal extinction. … Continue reading

Posted in demographics, reviews | 11 Comments

Towards the new caste system: looking back at The New Digital Age

This is a tricky book to categorize and review, because it’s not clear what The New Digital Age is supposed to be. I think I figured it out in the end, but that doesn’t help too much. The book seems … Continue reading

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Good analysis of higher ed trends and strategy: Jon McGee’s _Breakpoint_

Jon McGee’s Breakpoint (2015, Johns Hopkins) offers a  very solid, useful, and accessible analysis of current trends in higher education. In the book’s first half McGee does a great job of exploring transformative forces in economics, demographics, and culture. Demographics: … Continue reading

Posted in future of education, reviews, trends | 2 Comments

Warpping up Richard DeMillo’s Revolution in Higher Education

After finishing the last scheduled chapter of Richard DeMillo’s Revolution in Higher Education, I belatedly realized there was an unread portion.  The book concludes with an epilogue, and I wanted to touch on it before adding some summative comments. The epilogue is quite … Continue reading

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