Jozef Imrich, name worthy of Kafka, has his finger on the pulse of any irony of interest and shares his findings to keep you in-the-know with the savviest trend setters and infomaniacs.
''I want to stay as close to the edge as I can without going over. Out on the edge you see all kinds of things you can't see from the center.''
We read to remember. We read to forget. We read to make ourselves and remake ourselves and save ourselves. “I read the way a person might swim, to save his or her life,” Mary Oliver wrote in looking back on how books saved her. Most of all, we read to become selves. The wondrous gift of reading is that books can become both the life-raft to keep us from drowning and the very water that sculpts the riverbed of our lives, bending it this direction or that, traversing great distances and tessellated territories of being, chiseling through even the hardest rock
Sourcebook of United States Executive Agencies (Second Edition)
Administrative Conference of the United States: “…The purpose of this volume is to make government work better, which is the overall mission of the Conference. For agency general counsels, congressional staff, executive officials, and members of the judiciary, this is the place to broaden understanding of how agencies are organized. For those involved in reorganization and reform of administrative agencies, it will be a treasure trove of sources and ideas. It does not answer all questions, of course, but it answers many, including some that readers may not even have been asking. It is the latter kind of answers that often lead reformers to innovative and creative solutions, to “imagine another reality” in Thomas Mann’s words…”
The Media Ethics Initiative at the University of Texas, Austin “exists to promote and publicize research on the ethical choices involved in media use.” One of the ways it has done this is by creating a large, varied and free online collection of ethics case studies. (more…)
Choosing Right Words: Knowledge@Wharton: “People use words to communicate what they think, feel and believe. But for social psychologists, words can do far more than convey one’s thoughts and emotions. The right combination of words can boost persuasiveness; it can forecast which ads will prompt people to share them and thus go viral. Exposure to the right kinds of words also can spur behavioral changes; word choices can encourage readers to keep perusing long-form content. Words can even predict how well a business could do. At the second annual Behavioral Insights from Text Conference held recently at Wharton, academics from various disciplines came together to share their research on text analysis using natural language processing and related tools. Several of the studies shared a common trait: persuasiveness. Whether it is prompting someone to adopt a pet, click on an online dating profile, share content on social media or keep reading a long blog, choosing the right words can make one more persuasive.
There are two routes people take to persuade, according to David Markowitz, assistant professor of social media data analytics at the University of Oregon. One is the “central route” where people communicate the main purpose of their appeal. This goes to the heart of the message. For example, when a bank customer applies for a home equity loan, he or she can convey to the lender that the funds will be used for a kitchen remodeling. Here, more information is better. “The more words you actually provide in your piece of text, the more likely that persuasion is going to occur,” Markowitz said. The writing style also has an important impact on persuasion. Text that is written more concretely is more persuasive, he added – that is, using words that can be observed by the senses, such as things, places and people, compared to abstract terms such as justice or peace.
The second route of persuasion is “peripheral.” Words that exist on the sidelines of the central message — such as social references like ‘best friend’ or adding descriptions including color or shape — are peripheral, Markowitz said. Such words are added to the main message usually in the belief that it would boost persuasiveness. Instead, his research showed that it could backfire. “These can actually undermine persuasion,” Markowitz said…” SPIRING NOVELIST LEARNS TO LOVE BIG BROTHER: SJW mob shames debut Young Adult novelist Amelie Zhao into withdrawing her novel, surrendering her dream.
The book, which had positive buzz (Barnes & Noble called it one of the most anticipate YA releases of the year), has been the subject of a massive Social Justice Warrior pile-on on social media, as Jesse Singal discussed in a tweetstorm.
Very few people have even read the novel, but the mob attacked it as
racist for a variety of reasons, one of them being that Zhao created a
fantasy world where “oppression is blind to skin color” (this, from the
press release). It’s a fantasy world, and people haven’t even read the
book, but the mob was certain that Blood Heir is racist, and that its author — a young woman raised in Beijing, but now living in New York City — ought to be shut down. Today, they got their wish.