Saturday, February 17, 2007

Reset. Go!

Chinese New Year is fast approaching, and so too my opportunity to begin the year in better fashion.

Most importantly, on Monday we'll be moving house after four very long months of upstairs neighbours re-defining my understanding of self-absorption and testing my faith in the next generation. I'm seriously counting on finally being able to work during the day and sleep through the night, which I'm hoping will also finally allow me to meet some long overdue deadlines. Really, I had underestimated how difficult the rest of life becomes when one's home is no longer a sanctuary - or even somewhere you want to be. It's hard to be professional, or even happy, in this situation.

So now I've got some packing to do. It's an unpleasant task for sure, but today I'm boosted by the thought of getting to unpack it somewhere better and knowing that it won't be me who is moving it all in -20 degree weather. Be back next week!

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Research that makes people laugh and then think

"Humor is intrinsically a risky business, since it succeeds only if those present respond in the desired way. In mixed groups where some people are highly vulnerable in various ways and others are extremely secure, it is not an accident that humor tends to be initiated by the secure. It is also not an accident that the readiness of others to become secondary agents increases in proportion to the security and power of the joke's initiator ... If all the people involved are peers, then much of the moral danger involved in acts of humor is avoided. This is not because nothing can go wrong, but because if it does, there is some chance of a direct response. The situation is quite different if the people involved are non-peers." (Harvey, J. 1995. "Humor as social act: Ethical issues." The Journal of Value Inquiry 29:19-30.)

Tomorrow in class we'll be discussing the role of humour in science and technology, and the possibilities of humour as social and cultural critique.

Using the Ig Nobel Prizes and one of my favourite blogs - Improbable Research: Research that makes people LAUGH and then THINK - as case studies, we'll be talking about humour, power and exactly what it is that people can laugh at and think about in these scenarios.

What about science and technology makes you giggle - or laugh so hard you snort liquid out your nose? And what do you think after that?

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Saturday, February 10, 2007

In the pipe, amongst other things

Everything below will be posted online as it becomes available.

"Touchpaedia 1.0" - an 'encyclopaedia of touch'

(For Touch.)

"Mobile Publics and Issues-Based Art & Design" - a book chapter that, amongst other things, takes a critical look at what we mean by 'public.'

or Sampling the Spectrum, edited by Barbara Crow, Michael Longford and Kim Sawchuk.)

"Seams and Scars, Or How to Locate Accountability in Collaborative Work" - an essay that, amongst other things, looks for evidence of erasure.

(For Uncommon Ground, edited by Cathy Brickwood and David Garcia.)

"Towards issues-based art and design research" - a presentation on, amongst other things, how to do 'public' research.

(For Mobile Nation Conference, Mar 22-25, 2007.)

"Blogs as Modern Equipment?" - a paper about, amongst other things, methods of anthropological inquiry.

(From dissertation to journal submission.)

"Ubiquitous Computing as Technosocial Research Agenda" - a paper about, amongst other things, how claiming that ubicomp already exists confuses the issues.

(From dissertation to journal submission.)

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Thursday, February 8, 2007


Being an Unperson from silentmiaow

This is one of the most astounding things I have ever seen.


About Being Considered "Retarded"

In My Language

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Student Day of Action to Reduce Tuition Fees

Reduce tuition fees now!

2006/2007 Carleton University PhD Tuition: $6378.03

Ottawa Day of Action

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Web 2.0 ... The Machine is Us/ing Us

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