Can we use data to improve education? Most assuredly, and this is one of the things that makes the Khan Academy give me so much hope. However, it only works if we accept the validity of metrics. A lot 0f people are bothered by the concept.

Nine famous movie villains who were right all along. Some of these I had actually already come to the defense of (Senator Bill Kelly). Others had never occurred to me (The Wicked Witch).

As most of you know, I have long been bearish on China. I don’t believe that they are going to maintain the edges that they have as they continue to industrialize and I am skeptical that they have been doing enough right to create a new edge. So you knew I would have to flag this article.

From NPR, a modern look at manners.

Shortly after we first met, my wife told me that my drinking habits made me a borderline alcoholic (it was an observation, not a condemnation). That, to me, suggests that the definition for alcoholic is absurdly broad. I thought of that when I read Confessions of a Binge Drinker.

A really odd look at Sweden’s confederate subculture. As in… Confederate Flag and KKK shirts. It would be insanely weird to be in Sweden and run across that.

The communion wafer industry. My church back home switched to actual bread for a while. I thought it was kind of cool. Anyway, the quote of the piece: “Advertising our altar bread is a positive thing for Cavanagh Company. We take a lot of pride in putting our family name on a product that will eventually become the body and blood of Jesus.”

A story of a disgraced weatherman, a con job, and the Russian mafia.

100 Incredible Views Out Of Airplane Windows. My favorites are London, Rio, Qatar, and the one from Hong Kong that looks like a screaming face (#75), though really almost all pictures of Hong Kong are cool.

Why do we have so many firemen?

A long while back, Abel wrote about and linked to a piece on stray dogs in Eastern Europe.

Category: Newsroom

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3 Responses to Linkluster Years Since Pluto Was First Photographed

  1. ? says:

    I love the picture, btw.

    As much as it warms my heart to see Swedes waving the Stars and Bars, I sincerely doubt they have a full understanding of, let alone embrace, its full cultural context as understood in America by either its supporters or its detractors.

  2. trumwill says:

    Absolutely. It’s all about aesthetics. I should write a post on this.

  3. trumwill says:

    Also, a piece of nit-pickery: The “Stars & Bars” and “The Confederate Flag” are actually two different flags. The S&B has three horizontal stripes and a blue box with stars in the upper left-hand corner. It was the official flag of the Confederacy for a time (until it got confused with the American Flag). The Confederate Flag (also known as the Confederate Battle Flag, the Confederate Jack, or the Rebel Flag*) was used as a war banner and the design was used on the national flags that replaced the Stars & Bars. The emblem would go on the upper left with the rest of the flag left blank or (until confusion reigned again, this time with a white flag of surrender) a red vertical bar along the right-hand side.

    They probably should have just stuck with the Bonnie Blue (a white star on a blue flag), or gone all-in with the Jack, which is (in my mind) a spectacular looking flag, setting its associations aside. The simple-yet-recognizable design is, I think, one of the reasons that it was adopted as a southern symbol after the PCSA folded. And, I think, why it might be popular in Sweden. They’d have to really know their history to dredge up the actual Stars & Bars, which these days is mostly used in historical contexts (during my lifetime, I’ve seen the Jack replaced by the S&B in history books and monuments).

    * – Although, with the exception of the Rebel Flag (which may not have ever been used after the war, I’m not sure), these names are oversimplifications. A lot of flags were used in battle. Even the more specific name, the Confederate Navy Flag, is also imprecise because multiple flags were used. They, of course, had other things to concern themselves with besides flag uniformity.

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