📺 The Bridge S1, E3-5 (FX)

The Bridge, Season 1 Episodes 3 - 5 from FX
When a body is found on the bridge connecting El Paso and Juarez, two detectives, one from the United States and one from Mexico, must work together to hunt down a serial killer operating on both sides of the border.

Things have gotten a bit better in these next few episodes. Some of the characters still seem awfully disjointed and I’m still waiting to see where it goes.

There are a few interesting plot points, so I suppose I may as well continue on, but I’m really hoping for some great pay-off in the final two episodes.

I’ve also just noticed the production years, so I can’t hold out too much hope for a series that went two years and disappeared.

📺 The Bridge S1, E1 & E2 (FX)

The Bridge, Season 1 Episodes 1 & 2 from FX
When a body is found on the bridge connecting El Paso and Juarez, two detectives, one from the United States and one from Mexico, must work together to hunt down a serial killer operating on both sides of the border.

An interesting little series. I was kind of hoping it was going to be the Denmark/Sweden version, but I suppose Shine’s Americanized version will have to suffice for now.

There are some interesting and quirky characters and some generally good acting. I’m not sure why I should care about Sonya Cross. Though there is a short mention that her sister died, it isn’t really explored at all. Some better earlier character development would have helped.

The first two episodes, though only an hour long seemed to drag on forever and don’t seem to go anywhere. I’ll try a few more before potentially giving up.

Watched on Hulu.com.

📺 Leg Waxing at 28,000fps – The Slow Mo Guys | YouTube

Leg Waxing at 28,000fps by The Slow Mo Guys from YouTube
While most of the comments on these videos are about the gnarly slow motion footage, many have commented on how hairy Gav and Dan are. Only one thing for it.
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📺 25 Airbag Rainbow Explosion in 4K – The Slow Mo Guys | YouTube

25 Airbag Rainbow Explosion in 4K by The Slow Mo Guys from YouTube
Sometimes ideas get too big for our backyard so in this video, Gav, Dan, a camera crew go to a Quarry to make the biggest and most colourful mess yet. Whip out your 4K TVs!

These are exactly the kind of relatively mindless, fun videos that 18 year olds must be watching. Short, sweet, and just enough entertainment to burn through a handful in a half an hour or so.

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📺 Diving into 1000 Mousetraps in 4K Slow Motion – The Slow Mo Guys | YouTube

Diving into 1000 Mousetraps in 4K Slow Motion by The Slow Mo Guys from YouTube
Gav and Dan spend 4 hours setting up 1000 mouse traps and then 4 seconds setting them all off.
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📺 Crushed by a Giant 6ft Water Balloon – 4K – The Slow Mo Guys | YouTube

Crushed by a Giant 6ft Water Balloon - 4K by The Slow Mo Guys from YouTube
Gav and Dan love a good old Giant Balloon video. Why don't we do a few? In this one Dan gets flat.
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📺 Domains2017 Conference: Tuesday June 6, 3:00pm with the OU Crew | YouTube

Tuesday June 6, 3:00pm with the OU Crew from YouTube
For more information see the blog post for the event at http://virtuallyconnecting.org/blog/2017/05/31/domains17/

Indieweb for Education: Some thoughts after the Domains 17 Conference

There’s some interesting discussion of Indieweb-related principles in this live-streamed (and recorded) conversation (below) from the Domains 2017 conference for educators and technologists which covers a lot of what I’d consider to be Indieweb for Education applications.

In particular, some asked about alternate projects for basing education projects around which aren’t WordPress. Some suggested using WithKnown which is spectacular for its interaction model and flexibility. I suspect that many in the conversation haven’t heard of or added webmentions (for cross-site/cross-platform conversations or notifications) or micropub to their WordPress (or other) sites to add those pieces of functionality that Known comes with out of the box.

Another section of the conversation mentioned looking for ways to take disparate comments from students on their web presences and aggregating them in a more unified manner for easier consumption by the teacher and other students (as opposed to subscribing to each and every student’s RSS feed, a task which can be onerous in classrooms larger than 20 people). To me this sounded like the general concept of a planet, and there are a few simple ways of accomplishing this already, specifically using RSS.

I was also thrilled to hear the ideas of POSSE and PESOS mentioned in such a setting!

An Invitation to Attendees

I’d invite those in attendance at the Domains 17 conference to visit not only the Indieweb wiki, but to feel free to actively participate in the on-going daily discussions (via IRC/Slack/Matrix/Web). I suspect that if there’s enough need/desire that the community would create a dedicated #education channel to help spur the effort to continue to push the idea of owning one’s own domain and using it for educational purposes out into the mainstream. The wiki pages and the always-on chat could be useful tools to help keep many of the educators and technologists who attended Domains17 not only connected after the event, but allow them to continue to push the envelope and document their progress for the benefit of others.

I’ll admit that one of my favorite parts of the Indieweb wiki is that it aggregates the work of hundreds of others in an intuitive way so that if I’m interested in a particular subject I can usually see the attempts that others have made (or at least links to them), determine what worked and didn’t for them, and potentially find the best solution for my particular use case. (I suspect that this is some of what’s missing in the “Domains” community at the moment based on several conversations I heard over the past several days.)

If you’d like, please add yourself to the growing list of Indieweb related educators and technologists. If you need help connecting to any of the community resources and/or chat/IRC/Slack, etc. I’m more than happy to help. Just call, email, or contact me via your favorite channel.

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📺 Domains17 Conference: Tuesday June 6, 12:30pm with Lee Skallerup Bessette, Jesse Stommel, Jim Luke | YouTube

Domains17: Tuesday June 6, 12:30pm with Lee Skallerup Bessette, Jesse Stommel, Jim Luke by Domains 17 from YouTube
For more information see the blog post for the event at http://virtuallyconnecting.org/blog/2017/05/31/domains17/
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📺 Scientific Studies: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO)

Scientific Studies: Last Week Tonight by John Oliver from HBO
John Oliver discusses how and why media outlets so often report untrue or incomplete information as science.

This episode reminds me a bit about a short snippet I wrote in 2015 about the Evolution of a Scientific Journal Article Title (from Nature to TMZ)

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📺 Food Waste: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO)

Food Waste: Last Week Tonight by John Oliver from HBO
Producers, sellers, and consumers waste tons of food. John Oliver discusses the shocking amount of food we don’t eat.

This episode dispels a lot of common misconceptions about food and food donations in the United States.

Some of the potential legislation discussed here could be tremendously helpful not only to a lot of Americans, but to other countries as well. I find it difficult to believe that legislators work on a bunch of knucklehead things when “simple” things like this are left to fester away. Not only could it help out millions of people, but could create jobs, and drastically effect world efficiency as well as improve the economy.

If Jeremy Cherfas, hasn’t seen this, I highly recommend it. Perhaps a more in-dept episode of Eat This Podcast on the numbers, policy decisions and science?

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📺 Federal Budget: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO)

Federal Budget: Last Week Tonight by John Oliver from HBO
Donald Trump's federal budget plan proposes large funding cuts with largely negative consequences. John Oliver examines the troubling priorities of the new administration.

It’s amazing how much civics lesson one can sneak into a comedy show.

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📺 Marijuana: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO)

Marijuana: Last Week Tonight by John Oliver from HBO
Under federal law, even legal marijuana is illegal. John Oliver explains why conflicting drug laws pose serious problems.

Our government should spend a bit more time worrying less about flashy headlines and spend more time working on things that will help and improve the lives of the most people. Getting the hundreds of thousands of low-lying marijuana offenders out of the criminal justice system and helping them be productive members of society would certainly help. If we’re going to penalize marijuana users like this we should also do it with alcoholics too.

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📺 Paris Agreement: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO)

Paris Agreement: Last Week Tonight by John Oliver from HBO
Donald Trump plans to withdraw the United States from the Paris agreement on climate change. That's bad news for anyone who happens to live on this planet.
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📺 A Universal Theory of Life: Math, Art & Information by Sara Walker

A Universal Theory of Life: Math, Art & Information by Sara Walker from TEDxASU
Dr. Walker introduces the concept of information, then proposes that information may be a necessity for biological complexity in this thought-provoking talk on the origins of life. Sara is a theoretical physicist and astrobiologist, researching the origins and nature of life. She is particularly interested in addressing the question of whether or not “other laws of physics” might govern life, as first posed by Erwin Schrodinger in his famous book What is life?. She is currently an Assistant Professor in the School of Earth and Space Exploration and Beyond Center for Fundamental Concepts in Science at Arizona State University. She is also Fellow of the ASU -Santa Fe Institute Center for Biosocial Complex Systems, Founder of the astrobiology-themed social website SAGANet.org, and is a member of the Board of Directors of Blue Marble Space. She is active in public engagement in science, with recent appearances on “Through the Wormhole” and NPR’s Science Friday.

Admittedly, she only had a few short minutes, but it would have been nice if she’d started out with a precise definition of information. I suspect the majority of her audience didn’t know the definition with which she’s working and it would have helped focus the talk.

Her description of Speigelman’s Monster was relatively interesting and not very often seen in much of the literature that covers these areas.

I wouldn’t rate this very highly as a TED Talk as it wasn’t as condensed and simplistic as most, nor was it as hyper-focused, but then again condensing this area into 11 minutes is far from simple task. I do love that she’s excited enough about the topic that she almost sounds a little out of breath towards the end.

There’s an excellent Eddington quote I’ve mentioned before that would have been apropos to have opened up her presentation that might have brought things into higher relief given her talk title:

Suppose that we were asked to arrange the following in two categories–

distance, mass, electric force, entropy, beauty, melody.

I think there are the strongest grounds for placing entropy alongside beauty and melody and not with the first three.

Sir Arthur Stanley Eddington, OM, FRS (1882-1944), a British astronomer, physicist, and mathematician
in The Nature of the Physical World, 1927

 

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