Quick Roundup 446

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Hobnobbing in the Hub

I enjoyed my first half-day of OCON, especially meeting or renewing acquaintances with a fair number of people, most of whom I originally knew through blogging. Making the new acquaintances has been very amusing, because people apparently are expecting to meet some big, burly guy based on my writing. One New Yorker, upon learning my pen name, said "Get OUT!" This doesn't always happen, but I've gotten similar reactions in the past.

I am, in fact, of a little less than average male height and have a slight build, at least when I'm not blogging.

Perhaps I should start saying, "Don't make me angry. You wouldn't like me when I'm angry," when introduced...

On a more serious note, I do second LB's sentiment about OCON. I'd forgotten how nice it is being surrounded with intellectually inclined people who haven't the slightest trace of political correctness, religion, or modern kookiness about them.

Note to Self

Going through the backlog in my feed reader, I ran across a couple of things this morning that I meant to blog some time ago.

First, Andrew Medworth reminds me to stop by ARC TV from time to time...

No Dilemmas for these Prisoners

.. and then Craig Ceeley points to a very interesting story I forgot to blog by Robert Garmong about teaching philosophy to a bunch of prisoners.
My students, too, were singularly unprepared for a class on abstract thought. Many of them had never heard of philosophy and few even knew what the word meant. They were in my class because a federal grant paid their tuition, and a class on just about any topic represented an element of novelty. They were predominantly African-American and in their early 20s, and had mixed educational backgrounds. Yet, as one of my students -- who is serving a life term -- said on the first night of class, "We've got nothing to do but think."
That last line reminds me of a conversation my Mom and I once had about why our native Mississippi is so notable for producing writers and musicians despite its low population. Our partial answer: In a hot, agrarian state like that, we have nothing to do but think, either!

Give Diplomacy a Chance in Honduras

An HBLer alerted me to an outstanding article about Honduras by Roger Noriega. I'd noticed it before, but had been put off by its subtitle ("As the OAS stumbles, give diplomacy a chance.").
Common sense is useful here too: If a traffic cop roughs up a drunk driver at the scene of an injury accident, I doubt anyone would argue the importance of getting the drunk back behind the wheel as the best way to chastise the policeman.
Read it all.

Objectivist Roundup

Stop by One Reality for the latest installment. It includes a good handful of Tea Party posts.

The Chrome OS

Well, I guess I now know when the Linux version of Google Chrome will come out. Having played with Chrome a little bit, I don't care much for it, but I still find this article about "Five Things Google's Chrome OS Will Do for Your Netbook" an interesting read (HT: Paul Hsieh).

-- CAV


Kyle Haight said...

Sorry I missed you at OCON last night, Gus. My wife and I are actually staying in Boston another week after the conference to do tourist things; if you're going to be around maybe we should get together for dinner some evening.

Martin Lindeskog said...

Good to hear that you are enjoying OCON. Is this your first Objectivist conference?

All the Best,

P.S. Did you get my email regarding guest blogging?

Gus Van Horn said...

Heh! See y'all next week.

Gus Van Horn said...


No. Attended Telluride a couple of years back.

No guest blogging yet.


z said...

I can't wait for Fort Lauderdale, my hometown!

Gus Van Horn said...

I hadn't looked ahead to see where the next ones would be, but did hear about that last night. Las Vegas is next year and Ft. Lauderdale the one after that.

Of the two, I'd be more likely to attend the latter as things currently stand.

Paul Hsieh said...

BTW, here's an interesting article that's more skeptical about Chrome OS from Farhad Manjoo:


Gus Van Horn said...

Catching up after oversleeping AND forgetting that Peter Schwartz was at 10:15 am.

Looking forward to it.