by Stephen Downes
Jul 30, 2015
Are newsletters making a comeback? As social media becomes less and less useful, maybe people are turning to (as this We Media updates suggests) that 'one thing' that they can rely on to be relevant. I've long since given up making any guarantees :) so I'm quite happy to pass along this notification. Because I do like media. "You can’t keep up with everything. But you can manage One Thing, the newsletter from Andrew Nachison. No promises on format or frequency. Get it by email." And Doug Belshaw, your survey kept timing out on me, but I think a daily newsletter from you would be welcome too.
That 'Useless' Liberal Arts Degree Has Become Tech's Hottest Ticket
I like this of course because my own degrees are in philosophy. “Studying philosophy taught me two things,” says (Slack CEO Stewart) Butterfield. “I learned how to write really clearly. I learned how to follow an argument all the way down, which is invaluable in running meetings. And when I studied the history of science, I learned about the ways that everyone believes something is true–like the old notion of some kind of ether in the air propagating gravitational forces–until they realized that it wasn’t true.” This caused me to reflect on what I've learned from philosophy as well.
I am not sure what Kevin Carey is imagining here….
I mentioned Kevin Cartey's post in another item a few days ago; this post is a good antidote to the specious reasoning Carey offers his New York Times readership. Based on the example of college athleete cheating scandals, Carey argues, "colleges/universities are 'not coherent' when it comes to consistency, standards, classroom excellence." This is in itself a terrible argument, but then Carey goes on to argue that there isn't much difference between what you learn in the elite colleges and the other colleges. True enough. But as Steve Krause rejoinds, "then that means that there actually is a lot of consistency and coherence in higher education." The article is classic Carey, running a contradiction to prove whatever he wants. And as Krause observes, "I guess what bothers me the most about Carey’s views here and in other places, notably in The End of College, is the amount of airtime it gets in places in the mainstream media like The New York Times." Too true.
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