Nearly two years ago, prompted by a Columbia professor’s decision to ban laptops in his classes, we discussed classroom computer and phone policies. The subject has been gaining more traction recently, owing to recent studies and an op-ed last week in The New York Times by University of Michigan education, public policy, and economics professor Susan Dynarski. (more..
These videos, wherever they are made, however they come to be made, and whatever their conscious intention (i.e. to accumulate ad revenue) are feeding upon a system which was consciously intended to show videos to children for profit. The unconsciously-generated, emergent outcomes of that are all over the place… (more…)
Our current political situation is so horribly distressing that it is easy to lose sight of even more horrible things that may be on the horizon. (more…)
Daniel Dennett (Tufts) is visiting the UK to promote his new book, but most of this interview with The Guardian is about US politics.
Some excerpts, including a bit about how some philosophy might be responsible for our current political predicament: (more…)
Can science help us answer philosophical questions? Hanoch Ben-Yami, professor of philosophy at Central European University (CEU), in an interview at 3:AM Magazine, suggests that the question is too broad. The answers are different for different scientific inquiries. (more…)
Margaret Crouch, a philosophy professor at Eastern Michigan University, was team-teaching a large group of students with two other professors, while, unbeknownst to the three, many of the students were using the class time to post hostile and vulgar remarks about them via Yik Yak. (If you don’t know Yik Yak, think of it as a local anonymous twitter feed in which old..
Do any of you use virtual worlds or video games in your teaching of philosophy, and if so, how? In conversation the other day a colleague expressed an interest in creating a virtual world in which an epidemic was taking place, and having students immerse themselves in it to learn about addressing some of the various ethical challenges that confront agents in such si..
Many departments are turning towards the use of Skype and other forms of video-conferencing for first-round interviews, and such interviews are sometimes among the first times candidates and search committee members have used such technology. Noting this, Professor Mitzi Lee, placement director at the University of Colorado, writes in with a request to discuss some ..
I settled on my New Year’s resolution while giving a lecture to 85 masters students. It was one kid who unintentionally suggested the idea. He was sitting in the back row, silently pecking away at his laptop the entire class. At times, he smiled at his screen. But he rarely looked up at me. I had a choice. I could disrupt the class to single him out. Or I could do w..
After more than four hours of tight play and a rapid-fire endgame, Google’s artificially intelligent Go-playing computer system has won a second contest against grandmaster Lee Sedol, taking a two-games-to-none lead in their historic best-of-five match in downtown Seoul. The surprisingly skillful Google machine, known as AlphaGo, now needs only one more win to claim..
Luciano Floridi (Oxford) has been selected by Google to be a member of an advisory panel to help the company handle requests from European residents asserting their newly acquired legal “right to be forgotten” (also here).
The American Philosophical Association (APA) has partnered with Guidebook to make a mobile app for its Eastern Division meeting later this month. The old paper program was clearly the idea of the same sadist who invented books with endnotes; this is clearly an improvement. Download the Guidebook app for your device, enter in the redeem code from your registration em..
Over the past few years more and more philosophy departments are moving to a model of hiring that ditches the interviewing of candidates at the Eastern Division meeting of the American Philosophical Association and replaces them with interviews over Skype or other video-conferencing technology. The case for doing so seems quite strong. It is less expensive for candi..
Would you buy a car that would drive you off a cliff, to your death, in order to save the lives of several pedestrians your car would otherwise run over? The world of driverless cars will likely soon be upon us, and with them a number of questions like that and scenarios that make something like this seem simple. Aeon Magazine has a new article from Tom Chatfield on..