The University of Pennsylvania is now offering a course where students are required to do nothing but "stare at the screen for three hours, only interacting through chat rooms, bots, social media and listservs." So basically, it’s like every other college course, accept there’s no lecture going on in the background.
The goal of the class “Wasting Time on the Internet" isn’t totally clear, but has something to do with pondering the literary value and poetry of stuff like the junk on YouTube and listicles filled with GIFs of old Saved by the Bell references. The professor/poet behind the course told VICE, he was inspired to start the course because he was “very tired of reading articles in The New York Times every week that make us feel bad about spending so much time on the Internet, about dividing our attention so many times." Either that, or he just wanted to teach a class that simply involves him just sitting around while students aimlessly goof around on their laptops ... Discuss
Teenage Pakistani activist and education advocate Malala Yousafzai has announced that she is donating $50,000 to the U.N. Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees to assist in the building of schools in Gaza. The agency is currently rebuilding more than 60 schools in the region that suffered damaged during the most recent, week’s-long violent conflict between Israel and Hamas. The 17-year-old, who just won the World's Children's Prize (which came with the $50,000 that is being donated), as well as a Nobel Peace Prize, for her work advocating for education rights for young girls—told reporters,
Innocent Palestinian children have suffered terribly and for too long. We must all work to ensure Palestinian boys and girls, and all children everywhere, receive a quality education in a safe environment. Because without education, there will never be peace.
Malala famously survived an assassination attempt by the Taliban after taking a stand for girls’ education, and has since started a global foundation dedicated to the cause ... Discuss
The app Handwrytten lets you convert digital messages like emails into a actual printed letters that appear to be actually written by a careful human hand, because, as they claim “good old fashioned handwritten notes really stand out.” But, as you can see from this video that’s making the rounds this week, even though the notes look like they were thoughtfully scribed by a human hand, it’s actually just some trained robot behind the pen. Between equipping robots with skills like writing letters that look like they were created by loving humans and actually training them for tournament combat, we can’t help but to think this is going to end badly ... Discuss
Bon Iver frontman Justin Vernon is starting a new music festival in his hometown of Eau Claire, Wisconsin. Recent permit applications indicate that the two-day festival, scheduled for next summer, will sell enough tickets for 25,000 attendees a day, and will feature artists (selected by Vernon) on three different stages. As The Current notes, the Eaux Claires Music and Arts Festival isn’t the first time the artist and producer has brought music to the region: “Vernon has long been a champion for the Eau Claire area, staying anchored in his hometown and building his April Base studio in the nearby town of Fall Creek" ... Discuss