The Canon Is Sexist, Racist, Colonialist, and Totally Gross. Yes, You Have to Read It Anyway.

You’ve writ­ten that “it is pos­si­ble to grad­u­ate with a degree in Eng­lish lan­guage & lit­er­a­ture by exclu­sive­ly read­ing the works of (most­ly wealthy) white men.” It is pos­si­ble to grad­u­ate a lot of ways, and every Eng­lish major is respon­si­ble for tak­ing advan­tage of the boun­ty of cours­es the depart­ment offers to attain a full and deep edu­ca­tion. What is not pos­si­ble is to reck­on with the racist, sex­ist, colonist poets who com­prise the canon—and to tran­scend their failures—via a “see no evil, hear no evil” pol­i­cy.

I created Godwin’s Law in 1990, but it wasn’t a prediction — it was a warning

Ear­li­er this month, my email and social media alerts start­ing going off when friends let me know a pseu­do­ny­mous num­ber-crunch­er had “proved” Godwin’s Law.

This struck me as odd, giv­en that I designed Godwin’s Law a quar­ter-cen­tu­ry ago in a way that (I hoped) would make it insus­cep­ti­ble to sci­en­tif­ic proof or disproof—at least by any­one who inter­pret­ed Godwin’s Law as a pre­dic­tion.

The Environmental Toll of a Netflix Binge

Data-cen­ter oper­a­tions man­agers love to talk about ener­gy systems—or, more specif­i­cal­ly, effi­cien­cy in their use of ener­gy sys­tems. The fact that com­pa­nies increas­ing­ly fore­ground this sus­tain­abil­i­ty infor­ma­tion when engag­ing with jour­nal­ists demon­strates a grow­ing pub­lic inter­est in The Cloud’s envi­ron­men­tal impact. But real­ly artic­u­lat­ing and mea­sur­ing that impact is dif­fi­cult. It basi­cal­ly requires tak­ing apart the con­stituent parts of the data cen­ter itself.

You Can Do Research Too

As a prac­tic­ing aca­d­e­m­ic researcher, I’m per­son­al­ly thrilled by the degree of excite­ment regard­ing CS research today in the broad­er tech­ni­cal com­mu­ni­ty. Read­ing papers and doing research have always been favorite activ­i­ties for me, and it’s tremen­dous­ly heart­en­ing to see orga­ni­za­tions like Papers We Love and its many mem­bers shar­ing their excite­ment as well. Research is a very human way to engage with our curios­i­ty, and curios­i­ty deserves cul­ti­va­tion, cel­e­bra­tion, and shar­ing.

At Tampa Bay farm-to-table restaurants, you’re being fed fiction

With the tagline “Local, sim­ple and hon­est,” Boca Kitchen Bar Mar­ket was among the first wave of farm-to-table restau­rants in Tam­pa Bay to make the asser­tion “we use local prod­ucts when­ev­er pos­si­ble.” I’ve reviewed the food. My own words are right there on their web­site: “local, thought­ful and, most impor­tant­ly, deli­cious.”

But I’ve been had, from the snap­per down to the beef.

Games have basic, huge accessibility problems (that we celebrate)

Most of us take it upon our­selves to show the peo­ple we love how spe­cial video games can be. We often for­get that when we play, we bring years and some­times decades of flu­en­cy in this medi­um. It’s rare that some­one with­out that back­ground can pick up a con­troller and play with­out guid­ance. Books are easy to share because every­one learns to read. Not every­one spends the hours nec­es­sary to learn how to play what we con­sid­er to be “core” games.