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Archive for the ‘Education’ Category

If a Creator God exists, would He or She or It…  prefer a kind of sodden blockhead who worships while understanding nothing?  Or would He prefer His votaries to admire the real universe in all its intricacy?
    —    Carl Sagan
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On This Day In:
2020 Insensitive To Silence
Weaker, Sicker And Poorer
2019 Don’t Be Small
2018 Persistence
2017 Are You A Loser?
2016 Constitution And Conscience
2015 Separate, Fearful And Imprisoned
2014 Something Worth Making
2013 Absolutely
2012 Can Do
2011 Wise Criticism

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Both borderline science and many religions are motivated in part by a serious concern about the nature of the universe and our role in it, and for this reason merit our consideration and regard.  In addition, I think it possible that many religions involve at their cores an attempt to come to grips with profound mysteries of our individual life histories, as described in the last chapter.  But both in borderline science and in organized religion there is much that is specious or dangerous.  While the practitioners of such doctrines often wish there were no criticisms to which they are expected to reply, skeptical scrutiny is the means, in both science and religion, by which deep insights can be winnowed from deep nonsense.
    —    Carl Sagan
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On This Day In:
2020 Early Knowledge
Seen Any Messages Lately?
2019 I Don’t Think We’ll Be Serving Them Cake
2018 New And Old
2017 Ever
2016 At The Center
2015 True Value In Life
2014 A Potential To Be Concerned
2013 Fine No More
2012 Have You Checked Your Height Lately?
2011 Are You Convinced?

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Much education today is monumentally ineffective.  All too often we are giving young people cut flowers when we should be teaching them to grow their own plants.
    —    John W. Gardner
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On This Day In:
2020 Heroes Die Too
Front Update
Still More Hope Than Fact
2019 The Ones Worth Remembering, Anyway
Boot Edge Edge (My New T)
2018 To Reach The Next Threshold
2017 Streaking Tales
2016 Singular Reality
2015 He Says It’s Hard To Get There From Here
2014 Question From A Founding Father
2013 Make Heroes
2012 See And Hold
2011 Am Not, Are So

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Variety in practice is most important.  Repeating monotonously over and over again in a treadmill fashion is the very worst kind of practice.  It is both stupid and unnecessary… using your brains and your ingenuity, and your practice will not be a bore to you.
    —    Josef Lhévinne
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On This Day In:
2020 Mo, Cilla, Mushy Peas And Rain
No New Wars
2019 An Epitaph For #45 (#LyingDonald)
2018 Before And After
2017 Verbs
2016 Not Too Tidy
2015 Little Understanding
2014 Open Early
2013 Movies And A Lifetime Of Lyrics
This Truth
2012 Cheaper To Hold
2011 Resistance Is Futile
One Great, One Enjoyable, One Terrible…
Unfortunately, No Approval Is Required

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We have found that scientific laws pervade all of nature, that the same rules apply on Earth as in the skies, that we can find a resonance, a harmony, between the way we think and the way the world works…
As a boy Kepler had been captured by a vision of cosmic splendor, a harmony of the worlds which he sought so tirelessly all his life.  Harmony in this world eluded him.  His three laws of planetary motion represent, we now know, a real harmony of the worlds, but to Kepler they were only incidental to his quest for a cosmic system based on the Perfect Solids, a system which, it turns out, existed only in his mind.  Yet from his work, we have found that scientific laws pervade all of nature, that the same rules apply on Earth as in the skies, that we can find a resonance, a harmony, between the way we think and the way the world works.
When he found that his long cherished beliefs did not agree with the most precise observations, he accepted the uncomfortable facts, he preferred the hard truth to his dearest illusions.  That is the heart of science.
    —    Carl Sagan
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On This Day In:
2020 Up Again
2019 Advice From #1 To #45
2018 How Much I Will Miss The Trump Administration
2017 We Need To Continue Experimenting
2016 Consistently
2015 We Must Dissent
2014 Now What?
2013 Judgement
2012 Stuck In My Mind
Life’s Hope
2011 Just Getting Up
Directions Please

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The low cost of generic drugs makes them essential to global public health.  But if those bargain drugs are of low quality, they do more harm than good.  For years, politicians, regulators and aid workers have focused on ensuring access to these drugs.  Going forward, they must place equal value on quality, through an exacting program of unannounced inspections, routine testing of drugs already on the market and strict legal enforcement against companies manufacturing subpar medicine.  One model is the airline industry, which through international laws and treaties, has established clear global standards for aviation safety.
Without something similar for safe and effective drugs, the twin forces of subpar medicine and growing drug resistance will be so destructive that developed countries won’t be able to ignore them.  As Elizabeth Pisani, an epidemiologist who has studied drug quality in Indonesia, put it, “The fact is, pathogens know no borders.”
    —   Katherine Eban
From her article: “The Worldwide Threat Of Generic Drugs
Appearing in Time Magazine, dtd: 3 June 2019
The article also appears online at:  https://time.com/5590602/generic-drugs-quality-risk/
[I personally subscribe to the hard copy of Time Magazine.  This quote is being offered without permission or authorization.  I make no claim of ownership or authorship.  I am receiving no compensation from the author or the magazine for posting this quote.  I found the article interesting and am simply offering the quote for your consideration.    —    KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2020 Life’s Mysteries
2019 I Doubt I Ever Will
2018 Who Will Thank (If Not Remember) Me
2017 Reinforced Learning
2016 I Choose To Believe
2015 What They Don’t Teach You At School
2014 Still Trying To Die (5)
2013 Honest Doubt
2012 Choice
2011 Ownership Of Thought

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I am convinced that every effort must be made in childhood to teach the young to use their own minds.  For one thing is sure:  If they don’t make up their minds, someone will do it for them.
    —    Eleanor Roosevelt
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On This Day In:
2020 My Thoughts On #LyingDonald’s Corona Briefings
2019 As I Recall
2018 Effective Violence And A Government At Risk
2017 Playing The Same Music
2016 Survival Instinct
2015 Tears
2014 Bourne Again (4)
2013 God’s Protection
2012 Happy Easter!!
Edge, Class, Clash, And Flight
The Value Of Bureaucracies
2011 Logic Cuts

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Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts.  Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one’s lifetime.
    —    Mark Twain
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On This Day In:
2020 First Buds
To Fly
2019 What If Nobody Believes Them Either
2018 It’s About Heart Not Skill
2017 Winning So Much I’m Already Tired Of It (Not)
2016 Punishing Red Binge
2015 Bits In The Soup
2014 More Beef, Less Bull
2013 Where Are Your Mountains
2012 Spherical Knowledge Of Hamsters
2011 Taking Stock Over Time

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There is an old saying “Genius is the ability to pay attention to details”.  If you really understand this statement, you will see that anyone can be a genius.  It should really be understood backwards.  What we call genius is the result of enough time spent developing a great awareness and sensitivity to something, by continually focusing our attention on it in an intense way.
   —   Jamie Andreas
From her book: “Principles of Correct Practice For Guitar
Jamie’s web site is:   https://guitarprinciples.com
[The quote above reminded me of two similar quotes (both) from Isaac Newton (a widely regarded genius / polymath)…]
If I have ever made any valuable discoveries, it has been due more to patient attention, than to any other talent.
    —    Sir Isaac Newton
If others would think as hard as I did, then they would get similar results.
    —    Sir Isaac Newton
[I have recently begun trying to learn how to play acoustic guitar.  I’ve been watching a lot of YouTube videos from various authors and following links to the video creators various web sites.  Some I now follow and some I’m able to download material from which I then go back and read.  Jamie Andreas is a guitar instructor and has the first two chapters of her book available for free download in PDF format.  I’ve downloaded them (the single file) and am currently reading through them.
Also, I’ve recently become aware some countries require folks to disclose if a referenced item (a mentioned book, movie, product of value or other remuneration / compensation) has been received (by yours truly) as consideration for its being mentioned on my blog.  I have no recollection of ever receiving a “free” anything which I have subsequently reviewed on this blog.  In any case,…
I have not received a promotional copy of Jamie’s book, nor am I mentioning it in this post to secure income for myself or Jamie.  I am only posting this quote because it contains an idea which I find interesting.  Because this is a direct quote, I did ask Jamie (via email) if I could use the quote (and any others I find as I continue reading her book) as a post on my blog.  Jamie has graciously agreed to allow me to quote her book.    —    KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2020 Repercussions For Health
2019 Chained To #45
2018 Some Men Make Their Office As Small As Themselves
2017 Too Many
2016 Not Yet, Anyway
2015 On Pornography
2014 Nudge, Nudge
2013 The Journey Will Be Joy
2012 Hopeful Flights
2011 Irrationally Predictable
Lawful Restraint

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We do not have to become heroes overnight.  Just a step at a time, meeting each thing that comes up, seeing it is not as dreadful as it appeared, discovering we have the strength to stare it down.
    —   Eleanor Roosevelt
[Sarah, Happy Birthday!!
Congrats on your recent certificate!  Keep taking your steps.  We are proud of you!!
Love Always,
Mum & Dad]
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On This Day In:
2020 Giving Thanks
2019 One A Day
2018 Try
2017 You’re Starting To Make Us Feel Old
2016 Focus
2015 Challenging Legacy
2014 Happy 21st Birthday!
2013
2012 Trust Him Smile
2011 Why Change?

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No process yet disclosed by the historical study of scientific development at all resembles the methodological stereotype of falsification by direct comparison with nature.
    —    Thomas S. Kuhn
From his book:  “The Structure of Scientific Revolutions
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On This Day In:
2020 Fate, Agency And Dumb Luck
2019 You Too Can Choose
2018 In Line
2017 Just Get It Right
2016 In Support Of Common Core
2015 Oscillation
2014 Truth Shift
2013 Real Heroes
2012 Controlling The Beast
2011 1,002

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But we don’t yet know whether the Universe is open or closed.  More than that, there are a few astronomers who doubt that the redshift of distant galaxies is due to the doppler effect, who are skeptical of the expanding Universe and the Big Bang.  Perhaps our descendants will regard our present ignorance with as much sympathy as we feel to the ancients for not knowing the Earth went around the Sun.  If the general picture, however, of a Big Bang followed by an expanding Universe is correct, what happened before that?  Was the Universe devoid of all matter and then the matter suddenly somehow created, how did that happen?  In many cultures, the customary answer is that a God or Gods created the Universe out of nothing.  But if we wish to pursue this question courageously, we must of course ask the next question: where did God come from?  If we decide that this is an unanswerable question, why not save a step and conclude that the origin of the Universe is an unanswerable question?  Or, if we say that God always existed, why not save a step, and conclude that the Universe always existed?  That there’s no need for a creation, it was always here.  These are not easy questions.  Cosmology brings us face to face with the deepest mysteries, questions that were once treated only in religion and myth.
    —    Carl Sagan
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On This Day In:
2020 Increasing Importance
And Now Joe
2019 But Yours
2018 And Smile More Often
2017 He’s Keeping The Light On For Us
2016 The Results Of Trying Too Hard
2015 Make Me Look
2014 Fresh Drink
2013 Good Business
2012 Unsure Spirit
2011 A Lost Valuable

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Be patient with the belligerence of the simple-minded.  It’s not easy to understand that one doesn’t understand.
   —   Marie von Ebner-Eschenbach
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On This Day In:
2020 Sometimes Human Nature Stays The Same
2019 Sometimes Too Subtle
2018 A Lot Like Teaching
2017 Wake Up
2016 I Like Dreaming
2015 Importance
2014 Unearned Humility
2013 Science Is Trial And Error
2012 Franklin’s Creed
2011 First Steps
2010 Home Ill…

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Generations imply some giant disruption in the universe.  I like curves more.  Moore’s law (always more transistors), Metcalfe’s law (bigger networks are more valuable), experience curves (making things gets cheaper when you learn by doing), and so forth.  I like these thumbnail rules because they encapsulate the Great Muchness more than some theory of intergenerational strife.  It’s terrible that we’re headed into global climate catastrophe, but then again, we’re only facing doom because for 75 years no one started a nuclear war.
So our sleep will be transcribed and robots will deliver our sneakers, which will themselves be computers.  Technology will not solve bad marriages, bad eating, or racist thoughts, nor stop DisneyWarnerNetflixQuibiPlus from making superhero movies.  I find it profoundly helpful, then, to not just reject the concept of generations but to invert it: The immense changes in technology show us, again and again, year after year, that we are basically the same as ever, just reacting to our place along curves of life well out of our control.  One can get very mixed up about what makes us human.  And it would, in fact, behoove all of us on the grayer side to get to know and love our peculiar youths, so that they might speak well of us when we do not matter anymore.
   —    Paul Ford
From his article: “Generation Vexed
Appearing in Wired Magazine, dtd: March 2020
Online the article is titled: “How Technology Explodes the Concept of ‘Generations’
The link is: https://www.wired.com/story/millennials-genx-technology-explodes-generations/
(You may have to go through a “pay-wall” to view the article.)
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On This Day In:
2020 Pay It Forward
2019 From My Sullied Prison
2018 In My Room (2)
2017 Pretending
2016 And Songs Too…
2015 On The Road To Failure
2014 Each Moment
2013 Conversation
2012 4 Down, 11 Done (At Last)
I’m Not Afraid
2011 Who’s Risk Is It, Anyway?

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It is paradoxical that many educators and parents still differentiate between a time for learning and a time for play without seeing the vital connection between them.
   —   Dr. Leo F. Buscaglia,
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On This Day In:
2020 All You Can
2019 No Wall And Not One Dollar
‘Cause It Makes Me Scratch
2018 Mirror, Mirror
2017 Keep On Keeping On
2016 Reflections
2015 Is It Time Yet?
2014 Ask Any Follower
2013 Cornered Or Surrounded?
2012 Escape
2011 Achievement
Not Unreasonable Enough

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