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.: March 2007 --> March 2007

March 2007

» The Power and Peril of Praising Your Kids. Based on my own experience, I completely concur with this article's conclusions. I'd much rather raise a hard-working child than one who believes that either things come easily to her, or she simply can't do them.  [ 03.01.07 ]

» Is the US geographically unable to perceive global warming?  [ 03.02.07 ]

» I'm in China. Entries are scheduled. Comments are off. I'll be back soon.  [ 03.03.07 ]

» The United States needs to import Chinese-style Foot Massage ASAP. That is all.  [ 03.05.07 ]

» The image-soaked future: Graphic novels are the new literary superheroes, but what’s their secret?

So, why is this rebirth of the serious graphic novel different? Because this new wave arrives when the ascendancy of the image — presciently described by George Steiner, in 1971, in his book In Bluebeard's Castle — has begun to dwarf the power of the word. [...] Thanks to computers, even when we are obliged to read words, we expect them to be arranged in helpful modules, with plenty of graphics. The computer normalises the graphic novel as a form. The graphical user interface may one day be seen as the most important invention of our time.

(via wl)  [ 03.06.07 ]

» A query: Who is doing the best work right now on blogging in education? / (6) Comments / [ 03.07.07 ]

» How is the US Drug Enforcement Agency battling drug smugglers in the Arizona desert? By enlisting the Shadow Wolves, a Native American tracking unit.  [ 03.07.07 ]

» So awesome: A man accused of a stealing underwear from a shop in a knifepoint raid believed he was a female elf at the time, Belfast Crown Court has heard. Dear Judge: throw the book at him. Even elves are required to abide by the law. (via br) / (1) Comments / [ 03.08.07 ]

» "The chief executive of Chase Card Services, one of the nation's five largest credit card issuers, will apologize to Congress today for charging a financially strapped customer $7,500 in interest charges and late fees on purchases of $3,200. Um....

Here's another choice quote: "Ed Yingling, head of the American Bankers Association, said the actions by Citigroup and Chase reflect a 'recognition in the industry that things have become too complicated and that it's working to address these issues voluntarily.... I think you are going to see more of it.'" Too complicated? I'd say it reflects a recognition that any reasonable person would consider their practices to be unconscionable, and that Congress is going to step in if they don't toss a bone or two.

This is one of those situations in which I'd prefer regulation no matter what concessions the banking industry offers. If an industry has demonstrated their willingness to engage in predatory practices, and those predatory practices have only increased over time, I don't trust them to change their behavior any more or any longer than they have to in order to escape scrutiny. / (1) Comments / [ 03.08.07 ]

» You may need to manually synch your computer (and other devices) to Daylight Savings Time, which comes early this year. Here is a list of resources to help you find more information specific to the operating systems and versions you are running. (via wl)  [ 03.08.07 ]

» Never Forget. (via sos) / (1) Comments / [ 03.09.07 ]

» Well, this surprised me. George W. Bush's Crawford ranch is off-grid, with geothermal heating and cooling, black and greywater systems, and a passive solar design.  [ 03.09.07 ]

» Slate Explainer: Why does daylight saving time save energy? Remember to spring forward on Sunday!

A grammar note: According to, it is Daylight Saving Time, not Daylight SavingS Time. That is all. / (2) Comments / [ 03.09.07 ]

» Best of 2006: Reading lists for adults and children. This should get us through to summer.  [ 03.12.07 ]

» Salon: Think you know how to read, do you? A new throng of authors wants to save literature from our nefarious English departments and teach us how to read their way. Now, class, pay attention.

The author misses the essential point that many readers love the idea of reading as much as they love reading itself (and I am one such). Witness the stacks of books most readers have of books waiting to be read. This article, like the books it deconstructs, will appeal to any one of those people. Enjoy! / (1) Comments / [ 03.12.07 ]

» It's that time. Fork & Bottle's list of Organic, Biodynamic, Heritage & Heirloom Seed Sources  [ 03.13.07 ]

» How to write your name in Elvish in 10 minutes. (via br) / (1) Comments / [ 03.14.07 ]

» Are you an elementary school teacher? My sister (whose first book will be out this summer!) writes:

For next year, I am considering putting together an monthly online book club, which would involve multiple authors discussing a previously selected book. Students could participate in the chat, could send questions and comments ahead of time, or could simply use the chat transcripts as a conversation starter in their classrooms. If you would have an interest in this, please email me.

Librarians, you might want to weigh in, too, if this would be interesting to you. (While you're on her site, check out her latest "Piggy-gram" discussing Poem in your Pocket Day)  [ 03.14.07 ]

» Remember this one? I used to have it linked on one of my Web design pages, back in the day. The Brand Called You, Tom Peters. Here's a Personal Brand Equity Test to help you get focused on what you are doing, and what you need to do to. / (1) Comments / [ 03.14.07 ]

» Fabulous. Cake Tourism: Eating cake around the globe. I strongly recommend they try the Dutch Apple Pie. (And who says there aren't any new ideas for blogs anymore? ) (via jh)  [ 03.15.07 ]

» Slate: Which microlender makes the best use of my $20? is a good rundown of the strengths and weaknesses of 6 microloan charities. In November, Cool Tools founder Kevin Kelly offered his own rundown of microlenders.  [ 03.15.07 ]

» WSJ: Mind the gap. Some "generic" drugs are simply not that much cheaper than their name-brand counterparts.

Stores say they regularly review prices. At Inc., generic simvastatin until recently had been at $125 for the common 30-tablet dose, compared with $135.99 for Zocor, even after the six-month exclusivity period ended in late December. After a reporter called to inquire about the price, on Friday dropped simvastatin to $27.99, which the company said was part of a regular review. Zocor now costs $139.99. On, simvastatin's price hadn't fallen after the six-month period's end. After a reporter inquired about it in late February, it dropped to $89.99 from $129.99. A spokeswoman said the price had already been under review.
[...] At Costco Wholesale, whose Web site yesterday listed the common dose of generic Zocor at $11.96, the company says that even at such prices, Costco is making a profit. Charles Burnett, senior vice president of pharmacy at Costco, says the company can acquire the 30-tablet, 20-milligram dose of simvastatin for $2.71. He says the price on today will fall to $10.66. Patients are allowed to use the pharmacies of clubs such as Costco and Sam's Club, even if they aren't members.

And that's the biggest lesson here: Shop around, and be sure to try the clubs. (thanks, David!)  [ 03.15.07 ]

» Dave Winer: The Future of Twitter. This is Dave at his best: smart, generous, and insightful. Project management! / (2) Comments / [ 03.16.07 ]

» The Several Habits of Wildly Successful Twitter Users. The only useful application of this service I've ever heard of is using it to discern who was at which bar at SXSW. / (3) Comments / [ 03.16.07 ]

» Ramit interviews Courtney Kingston on how she transitioned from a Web design job to her dream of managing her family's wine business.

It was a tough transition. One of the biggest challenges for me was going from a job that was reactive (e.g. a highly scheduled day managing other people) to starting a business with a blank slate every morning. Every day, there were a thousand things that seemed urgent that I needed to do to get things going. It was a little paralyzing and I didn't know where to start. My friend Rob gave me a great piece of advice: decide what *one thing* is critical to your concept's success. Write "ONE" on a little yellow stickie, and stick it on your computer monitor as a daily reminder to accomplish one thing-no matter how small--that will get you one step closer to that goal each and every day.
For Kingston Vineyards, our biggest challenge in the beginning was finding a talented pinot noir winemaker who wanted to explore the new frontier of making pinot in coastal Chile. My "network" in Napa consisted of only two people when I started. And they weren't even winemakers! But with that little yellow stickie reminder, every day I sifted through the thousands of urgent-but-not-important distractions to get one step closer to our goal of finding a winemaker.

Also useful: Ramit's digression on "The Shrug Effect".  [ 03.16.07 ]

» I love this concept for teaching preschoolers good eating habits: anytime foods and sometimes foods.  [ 03.19.07 ]

» A Hillary Clinton/1984 Apple Super Bowl ad mashup is on YouTube—but no one knows where it came from. ["Hillary 1984" represents] "a new era, a new wave of politics ... because it's not about Obama. It's about the end of the broadcast era." Peter Leyden, director of the New Politics Institute. / (2) Comments / [ 03.19.07 ]

» 10 Things Your Auto Dealer Won't Tell You. Better read this before you buy a new or used car. (via dm) / (1) Comments / [ 03.20.07 ]

» Wow this chart is interesting. It's the Economist on the percentages of women in senior management, by country—and I would never have predicted these results. What explains Brazil? (via dm) / (5) Comments / [ 03.21.07 ]

» Dahlia Lithwick argues that the Bush administration has taken a seemingly reasonable line of argument and applied it in such a way that —by their reasoning—they have the power to do pretty much anything they want. "Look, death is worse than torture, but everyone except pacifists thinks there are circumstances in which war is justified. War means killing people. If we are entitled to kill people, we must be entitled to injure them." John Yoo, former legal counsel to the Bush administration and professor of Law at the University of California, Berkeley. / (3) Comments / [ 03.22.07 ]

»  Mortgage crisis overwhelming credit counselors. "We knew it was going to be bad, but we didn't think it would be this bad. [...] All the predatory lending that has gone on, all of the pushing of exotic loans on people of color, female-headed households, families with children, people with disabilities -- it's all coming home to roost." Kaye Britton, a foreclosure counselor. / (3) Comments / [ 03.23.07 ]

» History 1980-2000 has disappeared into the ether. Sorry.

I have recently spent many hours in the National Archives, ferreting through the wartime records of MI5. The sheer richness of written material is overwhelming: letters, memos, telephone transcripts, diaries, scribbled notes in the margins. You can smell the pipe smoke and personalities wafting off the pages.
When MI5’s current files are released decades hence, historians will have a far drier time of it. Electronic messages not deemed to be of “archival” value are routinely deleted by civil servants...

(via dm)  [ 03.26.07 ]

»  Retirees find Wii not just for the grandkids. Absolutely. We played Wii golf with my 95-year-old grandmother (an avid golfer until she was 90) and boy did we all have fun. Every retirement home should have a few of these. "It's a very social thing and it's good exercise ... and you don't have to throw a 16-pound bowling ball to get results. We just had a ball with it. You think it's your grandkids' game and it's not." Flora Dierbach, 72, chair of the entertainment committee at a retirement community in Chicago.  [ 03.26.07 ]

» Your do-not-miss link of the day is this article by Hart Seely: If You Want the Yankees to Win, the Key Plays Are at Home.

As a child, I personally led the Yanks to several world championships. When the team needed help, I ran out back and pitched a tennis ball against the garage. I served up home runs to Mickey Mantle and blew fastballs past the hapless Willie Mays. The garage fell apart, but the Yankees always won.
Unless they lost. That happened because my sister hid the ball, or I just didn’t concentrate hard enough. For me and countless others, Rizzutonian metaphysics long ago became part of life.
While the Yankees are playing, we are working.

I'm not even a sports fan and I loved this one.  [ 03.27.07 ]

» A US-specific 24-point checklist of the steps you should take if you are the victim of identity theft. (via sos)  [ 03.28.07 ]

» Gimme that old-time religion: Students give up social networks for Lent. Why not? I do think it's a cheat, though, to substitute one site for another. "Some of my friends think it's silly, since people usually give up food. I wanted to give up something that's really hard for me." Emily Montgomery, 16, who has given up logging onto MySpace for Lent. / (6) Comments / [ 03.29.07 ]



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