Saturday, May 02, 2009

Saturday Studies

Soaring through some morning reading on a grey Saturday that promises to rain on my hiking trip.

Support: Study claims that encouragement is more effective than criticism in improving an athlete's performance.
"Dr Paul Freeman said that a player's game is definitely affected by their frame of mind and negative feedback could have the opposite effect.
'There are times when the hairdryer treatment works but as a general rule positive support is going to have more long term benefits,' he said.
'Over a longer period I definitely think this support is more affective.'
"A similar scene took place in five other City Hall courtrooms yesterday where 200 children from Philadelphia-area schools acted as "jurors" in "trials" based on "The Three Little Pigs," "Goldilocks and the Three Bears" and "Jack and the Bean Stalk."
The Law Day program, in which the Philadelphia Bar Association's Young Lawyers Division acted as attorneys, defendants and witnesses, was planned to help pre-kindergarten through third grade children learn about the justice system."
Sad: Video poll: "How many millions in a trillion?"
Solved?: A new theory for Ripperologists to argue over. Can it really be that there never was an actual "Jack The Ripper", and that all those deaths in Whitechapel in 1888 were committed by different people?
"In his book Jack The Ripper: Case Closed, [Dr. Andrew Cook] argues that the famous letter bragging about the killings - signed 'Jack the Ripper' in the first-ever
use of that name - was actually forged by journalists desperate to sell their newspaper.
The Star only unveiled the notorious letter from 'Jack the Ripper' in the midst of a drastic fall in sales after the exoneration of a bootmaker it had identified as a key suspect.
Handwriting expert Elaine Quigley, recruited by Dr Cook to examine the letter, has identified it as the work of Star journalist Frederick Best."


truepeers said...

It's kind of amazing that people can still sell Ripper books in this day and age. Should we really trust the "handwriting expert" not to do what the sellers of print allege in regards to the perennial corruption of powerful MSM?

But in any case, it's instructive that people remain more interested in grizzly stories of murder than in precise understanding of numbers. Human reality is built around the imperative to avoid human on human violence, a fear we can never fully escape or forget; but this reality works best when we have mediated it so well that we don't have to think too often of it and can make do with distant stories. One consequences is that too many want to trust the man to know what a trillion is, until they find out his "expert" mediation can't save them this time, not that in forever kicking the can down the road of more and more debt he ever really could...

truepeers said...

p.s. you've been giving us some good links the last week or so; hope to see more,

Dag said...

The Marine Building again! Looking at the zepplin is a treat. The zepplin is one of those transitory feats of engineering genius and aesthetic wonder that might have been the acme if only for a day but now lives with us only on a lintel and in the mind. An odd and graceful step of the mind that didn't lead where the rest would go. Lovely in itself. "How beauteous mankind is!"

Charles Henry said...

Zeppelins are fascinating for being symbols of a future that never came. Everybody "knew" that the airship was the next step up from the sea-going passenger ship, until one night in Lakehurst New Jersey showed everyone that it wouldn't be.

Goes to show how sometimes no one can know the future, whether it's transportation... or the weather, since it didn't rain on me yesterday after all.

Dag said...

A reprise of zeppelins would be a poor commercial idea. But to have thought of them, and then to follow through and make them and make them fly, that's worthy of Man. No, they didn't fly in the long run, but to reach out and try the impossible and find it is possible after all; and to find out the possible isn't as good as one could have expected and hoped; and to try again in some other imaginative and daring way is Human beauty writ large across the sky, and eventually, written in stone.