St Thompson Techlaw fThe 3d printer promises to become “a photocopier of stuff,” and creative people have already begun to use them for fun as well as practical ends.

But will vending machines that fabricate homemade Legos or Warhammer figurines be the next target of filesharing lawsuits? It’s great to be able to download a Herman Miller Aero chair, but what if you only can afford the trial version, and you’re sitting on it when it crumbles into polymer dust 30 days later?

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Why lose $20 reselling that engineering book or Shakespeare reader, when you can pay Amazon $5 and keep your notes in the cloud when you’re done?

Amazon Lets Students Rent Digital Textbooks http://news.slashdot.org/story/11/07/18/1654246/Amazon-Lets-Students-Rent-Digital-Textbooks

“Amazon has unveiled a new digital textbook rental service, allowing students to choose how long they’d like access to an eBook-version of a textbook via their Kindle or app — with the retailer claiming savings as high as 80%. Kindle Textbook Rental will let students use a text for between 30 and 360 days, adding extra days as they need to. Any notes or highlighted text will be saved via the Amazon Cloud for students to reference after the book is ‘returned.’ Amazon said tens of thousands of books would be available to rent for the next school year.”

While iPads have been getting the headlines, there are plenty more e-readers to choose from.

Study This: E-Textbook Readers Compared

The iPad was supposed to wipe out standalone e-readers, but they’re still here, and they’re a big deal on campus.

http://feeds.wired.com/~r/wired/index/~3/koZon8SFfJA/

Well, not exactly–but Steve “Woz” Wozniak did recently argue that American education should focus more on sustained long-term projects. The UMaine New Media department is doing its part by showcasing senior capstones at the Collins Center for the Arts on Tuesday 19 April from 7 to 9pm.

Press on this year’s capstones:

http://newmedia.umaine.edu/feature.php?id=957

A complete list:

http://nmdprojects.net/student_work/capstone_2011/

The word from Woz:

http://tech.slashdot.org/story/11/04/08/1927218/The-Dying-DVR-Box-and-Woz-Wisdom?utm_source=rss1.0&utm_medium=feed via Byline

“At SNW in Santa Clara this past week, a diverse group of techies shared insights into their industries….Steve Wozniak attacked the American education system, saying students should be graded on a single, long-term project rather than a short learning/testing cycle. ‘In school, intelligence is a measurement,’ he said. ‘If you have the same answer as everyone else in math or science, you’re intelligent.’”

Young people in their 20s and 30s seem increasingly uninterested in starting the long climb up the ladder of economic respectability. So they’re foregoing employment in favor of staying at home with their parents, moving to India, or robbing convenience stores dressed as Darth Vader.

This New York Times article reminds me of a recent story that the Italian finance minister was willing to offer cold cash to 30-something men who left their mother’s house (and so presumably contributed to the Italian economy, not to mention global overconsumption).

http://feeds.nytimes.com/click.phdo?i=69874bd2032e732d4710b0952b1c4438

They move back in with their parents. They delay beginning careers. Why are so many young people taking so long to grow up?

For those who’ve worn out their welcome on mom’s couch, India’s looking pretty good these days.

http://chronicle.com/article/What-I-Did-When-I-Couldnt/66281/

“It was a bit of a shock, losing all expectations. For years—all my life, really—parents, teachers, and guidance counselors had told me that if I went to a good college and did well, I would be able to find a job after graduation that would, with a little ladder-climbing, keep me comfortable and financially secure. After I graduated in May 2009, in political science, I moved back home to St. Louis to start my career, but there simply were no jobs to be found.

“Over several months, I sent out more than 500 résumés for all sorts of jobs all over the country, but I got only two interviews and no offers.

“I couldn’t find a job, but neither could anyone I knew. Now, more than a year after graduation, most of my college friends still live at home, and many of those who have moved out are borrowing money from their parents to eat and pay rent. A few have internships, but most of those are unpaid, and few are likely to lead to jobs. Two friends who studied psychology for four years now work off the books at a sandwich shop. Another, who got her master’s in development studies from Cambridge, became a barista at Starbucks.

“Some are applying to grad school just to have something to do, but the prospect of racking up thousands more dollars in student debt is crushing. The rest are still looking, sending out résumés, going to career fairs, volunteering for experience, and networking. Some have given up. We are a whole generation graduating into a job market that has no room for us.

“So I moved to India.

“Two years earlier, I had spent a semester abroad in the Nepali-speaking regions of northeastern India, learning the language and culture through a fantastic study-abroad program at Pitzer College. In India, I met Pema Wangchuk, editor and publisher of Sikkim NOW, the most popular local English-language daily newspaper in the state of Sikkim. A couple months into my job hunt, I sent Pema an e-mail asking if he knew anyone who might be interested in hiring a young, enthusiastic American college graduate. “We’d be quite keen to have you here,” he wrote back.

“After lots of e-mails and late-night international phone calls, I got on a plane and went. I had been unemployed for eight months.

“My arrangement with NOW is informal. I help out doing a little photography, a little feature writing, and a lot of copy editing. Native-level English proficiency is a rare skill in much of the developing world. I take garbled press releases from local nongovernmental organizations and government departments, and equally garbled correspondent reports from remote districts of the state, and fix the punctuation, syntax, usage, and spelling to turn them into real news stories.

“I also write feature pieces for our `Sunday edition, interviewing NGO’s about their projects and local experts about social trends. I’m learning a lot about reporting, writing, and running a small newspaper, not to mention life and politics in northeast India and Asia in general. I suspect I am getting more intimate and comprehensive journalism experience here than I would in almost any internship, temp position, or entry-level job that I could have found back in the States.

“In exchange for my work, Pema found me a flat to stay in and arranged for my meals. The cost of living here is so cheap that, with my room and board taken care of, I can live comfortably on around $10 a week. If I were back in the United States, even with the most austere lifestyle, I would be costing my family far more than that by just eating their groceries, running their utilities, and burning their gas….”

And if India doesn’t pan out, there’s always a trusty light saber.

http://entertainment.slashdot.org/story/10/07/23/1310207/Darth-Vader-Robs-Long-Island-Bank?from=rss via Byline Apparently the destruction of the second Death Star has stretched the Galactic Empire’s coffers so thin that Lord Vader himself is robbing banks. From the article: “Impotent Rebel Alliance security forces tell Newsday (paywall) that Vader marched into a Chase bank in Setauket around 11:30 a.m. today. Brandishing a completely unnecessary handgun—as he had the power to choke the oxygen out every teller’s throat—the fallen Jedi demanded cash.”

350.org has launched a glocal event–locally engaged, globally networked–to send a message to our political leaders that we want to work for positive life-affirming goals for our communities and families.

You can see two local Orono events as well as nearby events on the map
EVENT
9 October 2010 – 10:00am – 2:00pm
Learn sheet mulching techniques for both Apple Orchard guilds, and raised beds.

It’s hard to believe that a high-schooler wouldn’t know about copyrighted music–but then it’s amazing what high-schoolers don’t know these days. Not to mention how little the recording industry seems to know about public relations, given how much they are asking per song. (At least it’s not the full $150,000 bizarrely permitted them under US copyright law. Is this a kinder, gentler RIAA, settling for a mere $30,000 because the defendant is a cheerleader?)

http://yro.slashdot.org/story/10/09/22/1717245/Supreme-Court-May-Tune-In-To-Music-Download-Case?from=rss via Byline droopus writes “The U.S. Supreme Court is weighing into the first RIAA file sharing case to reach its docket, requesting that the music labels’ litigation arm respond to a case testing the so-called ‘innocent infringer’ defense to copyright infringement. The case pending before the justices concerns a federal appeals court’s February decision ordering a university student to pay the Recording Industry Association of America $27,750 – $750 a track – for file-sharing 37 songs when she was a high school cheerleader. The appeals court decision reversed a Texas federal judge who, after concluding the youngster was an innocent infringer, ordered defendant Whitney Harper to pay $7,400 – or $200 per song. That’s an amount well below the standard $750 fine required under the Copyright act. Harper is among the estimated 20,000 individuals the RIAA has sued for file-sharing music. The RIAA has decried Harper as ‘vexatious,’ because of her relentless legal jockeying.” As one Slashdot commenter runs the numbers:

Downloading 24 songs -> 1.92 million dollars

Producing wilfully misleading documents in regards to royalties owed to the natives who’s land you are pumping gas from (for 25,949 violation days) -> 5.2 million dollars (65 songs)

Filling falsified audits for 4 years overstating pre-tax income by more than $1 billion (really was 1.4bill). -> 7 million dollars (88 songs)

Causing more than 300 oil spills (the largest being 100,000gallons into Nueces Bay, TX), illegally discharging crude oil totalling 3million gallons of crude leaking into ponds, lakes, rivers and streams across 6 states over a period of 7 years. All due to negligence and improper maintenance. -> 35 million dollars (437 songs)

Seems fair to me. 229 gallons of leaked crude oil into natural environments per mp3 copied. That means that my personal music collection is as bad as dumping 1.15 million barrels of oil across the countryside. To try to imagine how much that is: It is 357 average sized US homes filled with oil.

Given his McCarthy-esqe methods, it’s easy to dismiss Wertham as a power-hungry quack. Some of his observations about air rifles and knives being advertised alongside violent comics, however, suggest layers of influence that go beyond even what we expect from videogames Wertham would have freaked to see Grand Theft Auto, but might have been consoled by the rarity of in-game advertisements.

http://news.slashdot.org/story/10/08/30/1624221/Library-of-Congress-Opens-Records-of-Anti-Comic-Book-Shrink?from=rss via Byline eldavojohn writes “Some light is being shone on comic book history today as the Library of Congress opens up the 222 boxes of a German psychiatrist’s evidence and papers against comic books. Dr. Fredric Wertham is well known by comic book fans as the author of Seduction of the Innocent, a bestselling book linking comic books and juvenile delinquency — leading to a full blown congressional investigation (some say witch hunt) of the comic book industry. Wertham was long involved with criminal trials before campaigning against comic books and promoting industry and government censorship for children. Ars adds a little more context for the younger crowd and notes that he later tried to move against television violence but couldn’t find the publisher backing he had against comic books.”


09lucerne Lego Naboo Mini smaOr, how my twelve-year-old got featured in Wired, BoingBoing, and News.com, by purchasing a product and then doing the opposite of what it says on the instructions. It’s a lesson on how to make work that goes viral.

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Another item for your checklist of what to do after graduation: change your name.

http://tech.slashdot.org/story/10/08/18/1512200/Googles-CEO-Warns-Kids-Will-Have-to-Change-Names-to-Escape-Cyber-Past

Google’s Eric Schmidt says that people’s private lives are so well documented now that the young will have to change their names when reaching adulthood to avoid their youthful indiscretions. In an interview with the Wall Street Journal Schmidt says: “I don’t believe society understands what happens when everything is available, knowable and recorded by everyone all the time.”

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This interesting and worrisome study suggests creativity is declining among younger generations. I’m with the Slashdot commenters who blame standardized tests, tinker-proof technologies, and not enough time outside.

An anonymous reader writes with this quote from an article at Newsweek: “For the first time, research shows that American creativity is declining. … Like intelligence tests, Torrance’s test — a 90-minute series of discrete tasks, administered by a psychologist — has been taken by millions worldwide in 50 languages. Yet there is one crucial difference between IQ and CQ scores. With intelligence, there is a phenomenon called the Flynn effect — each generation, scores go up about 10 points. Enriched environments are making kids smarter. With creativity, a reverse trend has just been identified and is being reported for the first time here: American creativity scores are falling. Kyung Hee Kim at the College of William & Mary discovered this in May, after analyzing almost 300,000 Torrance scores of children and adults. Kim found creativity scores had been steadily rising, just like IQ scores, until 1990. Since then, creativity scores have consistently inched downward. ‘It’s very clear, and the decrease is very significant,’ Kim says. It is the scores of younger children in America — from kindergarten through sixth grade — for whom the decline is ‘most serious.’”

http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/NXTy2rYSvUQ/The-Creativity-Crisis via Byline

This interesting and worrisome study suggests creativity is declining among younger generations. I’m with the Slashdot commenters who blame standardized tests, tinker-proof technologies, and not enough time outside.

An anonymous reader writes with this quote from an article at Newsweek: “For the first time, research shows that American creativity is declining. … Like intelligence tests, Torrance’s test — a 90-minute series of discrete tasks, administered by a psychologist — has been taken by millions worldwide in 50 languages. Yet there is one crucial difference between IQ and CQ scores. With intelligence, there is a phenomenon called the Flynn effect — each generation, scores go up about 10 points. Enriched environments are making kids smarter. With creativity, a reverse trend has just been identified and is being reported for the first time here: American creativity scores are falling. Kyung Hee Kim at the College of William & Mary discovered this in May, after analyzing almost 300,000 Torrance scores of children and adults. Kim found creativity scores had been steadily rising, just like IQ scores, until 1990. Since then, creativity scores have consistently inched downward. ‘It’s very clear, and the decrease is very significant,’ Kim says. It is the scores of younger children in America — from kindergarten through sixth grade — for whom the decline is ‘most serious.’”

http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/NXTy2rYSvUQ/The-Creativity-Crisis via Byline

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With job openings scarce for young people, the number of unpaid internships has climbed in recent years, leading federal and state regulators to worry that more employers are illegally using such internships for free labor. Convinced that many unpaid internships violate minimum wage laws, officials in Oregon, California, and other states have begun investigations and fined employers. ‘If you’re a for- profit employer or you want to pursue an internship with a for-profit employer, there aren’t going to be many circumstances where you can have an internship and not be paid and still be in compliance with the law,’ said the acting director of the US Deptartment of Labor’s wage and hour division.”

http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/WZxSB8mekX0/Regulators-Investigating-Unpaid-Internships

With job openings scarce for young people, the number of unpaid internships has climbed in recent years, leading federal and state regulators to worry that more employers are illegally using such internships for free labor. Convinced that many unpaid internships violate minimum wage laws, officials in Oregon, California, and other states have begun investigations and fined employers. ‘If you’re a for- profit employer or you want to pursue an internship with a for-profit employer, there aren’t going to be many circumstances where you can have an internship and not be paid and still be in compliance with the law,’ said the acting director of the US Deptartment of Labor’s wage and hour division.”

http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/WZxSB8mekX0/Regulators-Investigating-Unpaid-Internships

CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS BY 15 MARCH 2010 CATHARINE CLARK GALLERY 150 MINNA STREET, GROUND FLOOR SAN FRANCISCO, CA 94103 www.cclarkgallery.com

Teen Age: You Just Don’t Understand Curated by Ken Goldberg An art exhibition at the Catharine Clark Gallery in San Francisco during ZER01 / 2010 01SJ Biennial Art Exhibit andFestival in Fall 2010. Seeking proposals for works of art by collaborative teams that include at least one person under 18 andone person over 21.

“High school’s full of phonies, and all you do is study so that you can learn enough to be smart enough to be able to buy agoddam Cadillac some day, and you have to keep making believe you give adamn if the football team loses.” –D.Salinger, The Catcher in the Rye.

Teenagers push the boundaries of accepted behavior in every era. They thrive despite raging hormones, clueless parents,ridiculous authority figures, and the dawning recognition that the entire status quo is absurd. They will define the future ofnew media.

Teen Age: You Just Don’t Understand is the working title for an exhibition that aims to illuminate and challenge the shiftingroles of new media in contemporary life, from Facebook to Flickr to texting to Twitter. We seek to encourage collaborationbetween teens and more experienced artists. Submitted artwork can addressany contemporary issues at the intersection ofart, technology, and culture and can be in any format or medium (electronic, painting, photography, sculpture, etc.), but must be submitted by collaborative teams that includes at least one person under 18 and one person over 21.

Accepted works will be exhibited at Catharine Clark Gallery in San Francisco to coincide with the 2010 01SJ Biennial:”Build Your Own World”: http://zero1.org/01sj/2010-biennial ; Submissions are due 15 March 2010

Submission Guidelines:

Submit the URL of a website that briefly describes your proposal listingthese 6 characteristics: 1) Title, 2) Concept Description (up to 500 words), 3) Images (up to four), 4) Bios of team members (up to 200 words each),5) Format and Technical Requirements: list hardware and software neededto present your work, spatial and soundrequirements, what equipment you will provide, and what you will need fromthe gallery, and 6) Contact information.

Sorry, no attachments or other formats accepted. Please email the URL to email info [AT] cclarkgallery [DOT] com with the subject line Teen Age Exhibition Proposal.

For questions about submissions, contact Catharine Clark Gallery at (415)399-1439.

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CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS BY 15 MARCH 2010 CATHARINE CLARK GALLERY 150 MINNA STREET, GROUND FLOOR SAN FRANCISCO, CA 94103 www.cclarkgallery.com

Teen Age: You Just Don’t Understand Curated by Ken Goldberg An art exhibition at the Catharine Clark Gallery in San Francisco during ZER01 / 2010 01SJ Biennial Art Exhibit andFestival in Fall 2010. Seeking proposals for works of art by collaborative teams that include at least one person under 18 andone person over 21.

“High school’s full of phonies, and all you do is study so that you can learn enough to be smart enough to be able to buy agoddam Cadillac some day, and you have to keep making believe you give adamn if the football team loses.” –D.Salinger, The Catcher in the Rye.

Teenagers push the boundaries of accepted behavior in every era. They thrive despite raging hormones, clueless parents,ridiculous authority figures, and the dawning recognition that the entire status quo is absurd. They will define the future ofnew media.

Teen Age: You Just Don’t Understand is the working title for an exhibition that aims to illuminate and challenge the shiftingroles of new media in contemporary life, from Facebook to Flickr to texting to Twitter. We seek to encourage collaborationbetween teens and more experienced artists. Submitted artwork can addressany contemporary issues at the intersection ofart, technology, and culture and can be in any format or medium (electronic, painting, photography, sculpture, etc.), but must be submitted by collaborative teams that includes at least one person under 18 and one person over 21.

Accepted works will be exhibited at Catharine Clark Gallery in San Francisco to coincide with the 2010 01SJ Biennial:”Build Your Own World”: http://zero1.org/01sj/2010-biennial ; Submissions are due 15 March 2010

Submission Guidelines:

Submit the URL of a website that briefly describes your proposal listingthese 6 characteristics: 1) Title, 2) Concept Description (up to 500 words), 3) Images (up to four), 4) Bios of team members (up to 200 words each),5) Format and Technical Requirements: list hardware and software neededto present your work, spatial and soundrequirements, what equipment you will provide, and what you will need fromthe gallery, and 6) Contact information.

Sorry, no attachments or other formats accepted. Please email the URL to email info [AT] cclarkgallery [DOT] com with the subject line Teen Age Exhibition Proposal.

For questions about submissions, contact Catharine Clark Gallery at (415)399-1439.

Bookmark this category
Here’s more fuel to vaccine skeptics who claim that bugs introduced intravenously don’t engage the immune system in the deeper way of bugs introduced via the skin.

The Slashdot comments touch on another revelation of recent research: that autoimmune disorders such as Lupus tend to appear in societies that have artificially blocked their citizens’ natural exposure to germs.

From Slashdot:

Researchers from the School of Medicine at the University of California have shown that the more germs a child is exposed to, the better their immune system in later life. Their study found that keeping a child’s skin too clean impaired the skin’s ability to heal itself. From the article: “‘These germs are actually good for us,’ said Professor Richard Gallo, who led the research. Common bacterial species, known as staphylococci, which can cause inflammation when under the skin, are ‘good bacteria’ when on the surface, where they can reduce inflammation.”

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