06 JAN 2018 by ideonexus

 The Case Against Reading Too Broadly

The real problem with telling young writers to fan out across genres and forms is that it doesn’t help them find a voice. If anything, it’s antivoice. Learning the craft of writing isn’t about hopping texts like hyperlinks. It’s about devotion and obsession. It’s about lingering too long in some beloved book’s language, about steeping yourself in someone else’s style until your consciousness changes colour. It’s Tolkien phases and Plath crushes. It’s going embarrassingly, un...
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31 MAY 2015 by ideonexus

 Tyrrany Sets Up Its Own Echo Chamber

I think it was Utz who first convinced me that history is always our guide for the future, and always full of capricious surprises. The future itself is a dead land because it does not yet exist. When a Czech writer wishes to comment on the plight of his country, one way open to him is to use the fifteenth-century Hussite Rebellion as a metaphor. I found in Prague Museum this text describing the Hussites' defeat of the German Knights: ''At midnight, all of a sudden, frightened shouting was he...
Folksonomies: tyrrany
Folksonomies: tyrrany
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08 APR 2013 by ideonexus

 Human Scientific Achievement is Greater Than the Magic of...

And Harry raced back up the stairs and shoved the staircase back into the trunk with his heel, and, panting, turned the pages of the book until he found the picture he wanted to show to Draco. The one with the white, dry, cratered land, and the suited people, and the blue-white globe hanging over it all. That picture. The picture, if only one picture in all the world were to survive. "That," Harry said, his voice trembling because he couldn't quite keep the pride out, "is what the Earth look...
Folksonomies: science magic reality
Folksonomies: science magic reality
  1  notes

None of the Wizards have gone to the moon. Rational Harry Potter baffles them by showing them a picture of the Earth from space.

08 APR 2013 by ideonexus

 Harry Potter and the Fundamental Attribution Error

“You saved them from You-Know-Who,” McGonagall said. “How should they not care?” Harry looked up at McGonagall and sighed. “I suppose there’s no chance that if I said fundamental attribution error you’d have any idea what that meant.” McGonagall shook her head. “No, but please explain.” “Well...” Harry said, trying to figure out how to describe that particular bit of Muggle science. “Suppose you come into work and see your coworker kicking his desk. You think, ‘...
  1  notes

Rational Potter explains to McConagall that people are projecting onto him powers he does not have.

04 AUG 2012 by ideonexus

 Study is More Efficient Than Contemplation

吾嘗終日而思矣,不如須臾之所學也。吾嘗跂而望矣,不如登高之博見也。登高而招,臂非加長也,而見者遠;順風而呼,聲非加疾也,而聞者彰。假輿馬者,非利足也,而致千里;假舟楫者,非能水也,而絕江河。君子生非異也,善假於物也。
Folksonomies: education learning study
Folksonomies: education learning study
  2  notes

[Translated] Once I spent an entire day in thought, but it was not as good as a moment of study. Once I stood on tiptoe to gaze into the distance, but it was not as good as climbing to a high place to get a broad view. Climbing to a high place and waving will not make your arm any longer, but you can be seen from farther away. Shouting down the wind will give your voice no added urgency, but you can be heard more distinctly. By borrowing a horse and carriage you will not improve your feet, but you can cover a thousand li. By borrowing a boat and paddles you will not improve your ability in water, but you can cross rivers and seas. The noble person is by birth no different from others, but he is good at borrowing from external things.

31 MAY 2012 by ideonexus

 Questioning Reality is Futile

All possible truth is practical. To ask whether our conception of chair or table corresponds to the real chair or table apart from the uses to which they may be put, is as utterly meaningless and vain as to inquire whether a musical tone is red or yellow. No other conceivable relation than this between ideas and things can exist. The unknowable is what I cannot react upon. The active part of our nature is not only an essential part of cognition itself, but it always has a voice in determining...
Folksonomies: empiricism reality
Folksonomies: empiricism reality
  1  notes

It's all we have to go on, so make the best of it.

22 MAR 2012 by ideonexus

 Save Species to Eat Them

The creativity behind social marketing can be alarming. A recent television ad depicted water disappearing into a storm drain as a voice warned that lawn fertilizer in the spring can wind up in the Chesapeake Bay. "No crab should die like this," the announcer opines. Later, the announcer appears on screen with a small tub in hand, exclaiming "they should perish in some hot, tasty melted butter!" This promotion by the Chesapeake Bay Program, a subsidiary of the U.S. Environmental Protection Ag...
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A different way to reach people concerning endangered species is to point out they will no longer be available as lunch.

03 JAN 2012 by ideonexus

 Primitive Aliens Encountering a Laptop

“I have a suggestion,” said Scriber. His voice was slurred from the effort of concentrating over Scrupilo’s thoughts. “When you touch the four/three square and say”—he made the alien sounds; they were all very easy to do—“the screen shows a collection of pictures. They seem to match the squares. I think we … we are being given choices.” Hm. “The box could end up training us.” If this is a machine, we need some new definitions. “ … Very well, let’s play with it....
Folksonomies: technology magic
Folksonomies: technology magic
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Vinge describes a clan of alien wolflike being with mideval technology encountering a computer carried by a human alien visitor.

15 DEC 2011 by ideonexus

 Science and Technology Dictate our Language

Science and technology multiply around us. To an increasing extent they dictate the languages in which we speak and think. Either we use those languages, or we remain mute.
Folksonomies: science culture technology
Folksonomies: science culture technology
  1  notes

Either keep up with science and technology or lose your voice.

06 SEP 2011 by ideonexus

 Modern Explorers Must Change Their Methods

Today there remain but a few small areas on the world's map unmarked by explorers' trails. Human courage and endurance have conquered the Poles; the secrets of the tropical jungles have been revealed. The highest mountains of the earth have heard the voice of man. But this does not mean that the youth of the future has no new worlds to vanquish. It means only that the explorer must change his methods.
Folksonomies: exploration adventuring
Folksonomies: exploration adventuring
  1  notes

If they want to venture into new realms of knowledge. Andrews may be talking about scientific methods here as a means to seeing previously explored settings with new eyes.