📗 Started reading The History of the English Language, 2nd Edition by Seth Lerer

cover of The History of the English Language by Seth Lerer

I’d gone through the first edition several years back and thought I’d do a quick review, particularly in relation to some history of memory I’ve been working on and thinking about.

Throughout the day and commuting in the car to class, I’ve listened through lecture 4.

📖 14% done with The History of the English Language, 2nd Edition by Seth Lerer

cover of The History of the English Language by Seth Lerer

Listened to Lecture 5 and the first several minutes of 6 today while cooking in the kitchen.

There’s some interesting history about the ideas of law, ligatures, and links. He also has an interesting history of the words ‘apocalypse’ and ‘revelation’ which ultimately mean the same thing. Apocalypse essentially means to ‘take away the cover’. He doesn’t go into it, but this word also has historical relation to the removal of the curtain within the holy of holies, or in the New Testament the rending of said curtain at the death of Jesus. Subsequently there has obviously been a lot of semantic shift to create our modern day meaning of apocalypse.

📖 28% done reading The Unteachables by Gordon Korman

Another school-centric story. And again with alternating chapters from the different perspectives of the characters. It’s certainly a good way to breed empathy for the characters and also not a bad way to get the readers to identify with one or more of them along the way.

Book cover of The Unteachables by Gordon Korman featuring a cartoon image of a middle school desk and a trash can on fire

📖 15% done with Ruined by Design by Mike Monteiro

📖 15% into reading Ruined by Design: How Designers Destroyed the World, and What We Can Do to Fix It by Mike Monteiro

Read Chapters: The Ethics of Design, How Designers Destroyed the World, and Moving Fast and Breaking Things

I was very reticent about this book at first, but it is way more essential than I initially thought! I knew I was going to know almost all of the examples, and I’ve generally been right on that account so far, but he’s going beyond the problems with potential solutions. I was worried it was going to be something that I would appreciate and heartily recommend to others without getting much out of it myself, but it reads quickly and easily and there’s a lot here that I want to come back and ponder about further.

Despite the fact that I don’t feel like a professional web designer by trade, what he’s talking about here are standards of human care and interaction that anyone who makes anything should be thinking about on a daily basis. Whether you’re building or creating things for others or even making your own daily life, at heart, you’re designing something.

If Chuck Chugumlung hasn’t come across this book yet with respect to his Design X Pasadena group, I’ll recommend it heartily to him.

I also find myself thinking a lot about how people are building and designing technologies in the edtech space. May of the researchers, professors, and instructional designers I know are immersed in some of the ethics and morals behind using these technologies. Generally I hear them talking about what they “wish” they had as tools, but often they seem to be stuck with things they don’t really want and are then attempting to figure out ways around these technologies after-the-fact so that they can use them in an ethical manner. They really need to stand up, refuse to use what they’re given, and demand better design from the start. Even if they’re incapable of building their own tools, they’re slowly, but surely going to loose the war if they don’t move upstream to where the actual decisions are being made. Fortunately some of the work I see in the OER space is being done at the grass roots where people have more choice and say in the design, but I worry that if they’re not careful, those tools will be siloed off with bad design choices by for-profit companies as well.

Title and author on a white background at the top with a red filtered view of an atomic mushroom cloud explosion on the Bikini atoll in the Pacific Ocean

📗 Started reading Ruined by Design: How Designers Destroyed the World, and What We Can Do to Fix It by Mike Monteiro

📗 Started reading Ruined by Design: How Designers Destroyed the World, and What We Can Do to Fix It by Mike Monteiro

📖 Read pages 31-50 of 324 of Japanese From Zero! 1 by George Trombley Jr. and Yukari Takenaka

📖 Read pages 31-50 of Japanese from Zero! 1: Proven Techniques to Learn Japanese for Students and Professionals (Volume 1) 6th Edition by George Trombley and Yukari Takenaka (From Zero!, , ISBN: 978-0976998129)

It’s been far too long since I’ve had this opened and practiced. I really need to get back to it on a regular basis.

Reviewed over pre-lesson D and Lesson 1

📖 Read pages 60-66 of 272 of The Demon in the Machine by Paul Davies

📖 Read pages 60-66 of 251 of The Demon in the Machine: How Hidden Webs of Information Are Finally Solving the Mystery of Life by Paul Davies

So far there’s nothing new for me here. He’s encapsulating a lot of prior books I’ve read. (Though he’s doing an incredible job of it.) There are a handful of references that I’ll want to go take a look at though.

📖 Read pages 21-28 of 528 of Abstract and Concrete Categories: The Joy of Cats by Jirí Adámek, Horst Herrlich, George E. Strecker

📖 Read pages 21-28 of Abstract and Concrete Categories: The Joy of Cats by Jirí Adámek, Horst Herrlich, George E. Strecker

Read while having dinner at UCLA before class. Covered categories, examples, and duality.