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Q&A with Vincent Katz about Black Mountain College

Q&A with Vincent Katz about Black Mountain College

Happy Wednesday! Here’s our Q&A with Vincent Katz, editor of  Black Mountain College: Experiment in Art. Unavailable for several years, this generously illustrated book documents the most successful experiment in the history of American arts education. Vincent Katz is a poet, translator, and curator based in New York City.

Pac-Man and Blinky Hack

Pac-Man and Blinky Hack

At MIT, practical jokes aren’t reserved for April Fools’ Day–students “hack” throughout the year. A “hack” is an ingenious, benign, and anonymous prank or practical joke, usually requiring engineering or scientific expertise and often pulled under the cover of darkness. Nick Montfort, author of several books, including Twisty Little Passages and 10 PRINT, and Associate Professor of Digital Media here at MIT, comments on the recent “Pac-Man and Blinky on the Great Dome” hack.

Grace Hopper

Grace Hopper

For our final National Women’s History month blog post, we share an excerpt from Grace Hopper and the Invention of the Information Age by Kurt Beyer. Hopper left a teaching position at Vassar College to serve in the Navy during World War II. After her training, Hopper was assigned to work on the first-ever computer located at Harvard University. 

World Meteorological Day

World Meteorological Day

With Saturday serving as “World Meteorological Day,” we are commemorating the occasion with a look at Kristine C. Harper’s Weather by the Numbers,a book that details the transformation of meteorology in the 20th century from an unrespected “guessing science” into a complex scientific discipline based on mathematical calculation and advanced computer models.

Recoding Gender and “Leaning In”: A Q&A with Janet Abbate

Recoding Gender and “Leaning In”: A Q&A with Janet Abbate

For our fourth  Women’s History Month post, we interviewed Janet Abbate, author of Recoding Gender: Women’s Changing Participation in Computing. Janet Abbate is Associate Professor of Science, Technology, and Society at Virginia Tech and is also the author of Inventing the Internet. 

Happy Birthday, Žižek

Happy Birthday, Žižek

Today is Slavoj Žižek’s birthday! We’re celebrating this famous philosopher-cultural critic by sharing a snippet from The Parallax View. This book not only expands Zizek’s Lacanian-Hegelian approach to new domains (notably cognitive brain sciences) but also provides the systematic exposition of the conceptual framework that underlies his entire work. In this brain “tickler,” philosophical and theological analysis, detailed readings of literature, cinema, and music coexist with lively anecdotes and obscene jokes.

Q&A with Peter Dauvergne and Jane Lister

Q&A with Peter Dauvergne and Jane Lister

Today, big-brand companies seem to be making commitments that go beyond the usual “greenwashing” efforts undertaken largely for public relations purposes. In Eco-Business, hot off the press, Peter Dauvergne and Jane Lister examine this new corporate embrace of sustainability. Here, they answer a few questions about their new book.

Doing Psychoanalysis in Tehran

Doing Psychoanalysis in Tehran

Our third post for Women’s History Month looks at Doing Psychoanalysis in Tehran by Gohar Homayounpour. The book details Homayounpour’s return to Iran to practice psychoanalysis after a twenty year absence.

Pi Day Q & A

Pi Day Q & A

In honor of Pi day, here is a Q & A with Sanjoy Mahajan author of Street-Fighting Mathematics. Bonus: click this link to view the Creative Commons edition for free. 

From Divine Unanimity to Two-Thirds Majority

From Divine Unanimity to Two-Thirds Majority

Now that the papal conclave is under way, we decided to take a look at the history of electing popes. Here’s an excerpt from Josep M. Colomer and Iain McLean’s chapter, “Electing Popes: Approval Balloting and Qualified-Majority Rule,” which is part of Robert I. Rotberg’s Politics and Political Change.