Friday, April 17, 2015
1. Any fears that our daughter has inherited
Mrs. Van Horn's poor vision were allayed on a recent trip to
Florida. While we were at a swimming pool, Pumpkin told me she saw a
lizard. Naively thinking it might be green, I looked for it and came
"Where is it?" I asked.
"Near a wood chip," she said.
This was not terribly helpful, since we were near a small garden covered with a wood chip mulch.
"It's looking at us," she added.
Several minutes later, I finally spotted a strange-looking lizard whose coloration was a near-perfect match for the mulch. It was about three feet away, and it was indeed looking at us.
2. In an entertaining post about a ramen noodle museum in Japan, a traveler also imparts the lessons in entrepreneurship he learned there, including the following:
Don't wait for your customers to come. Go to them.Ando became quite wealthy from his product, despite not even getting started on it until he was nearly fifty and bankrupt.
When [Momofuku] Ando introduced his [product] to the public, it was deemed ... a luxurious item because of the relatively high price point. It costs 6 times more than a bowl of traditional noodles. Although it did well, Ando felt that the product wasn't reaching enough people and he need[ed] people [to] spread the [word].
Instead of just waiting passively, he expanded his sales channel and directly targeted places like news stations and police stations. These places have the right demographic[:] people who worked late-night and [did]n't cook. This move paid huge dividends for [his company,] Nissin. [italics added]
3. The longest-running Wikipedia hoax known to date was recently exposed. The obscurity of the subject matter, Australian Aboriginal religion, probably helped it along, but we should still use the research tool with a healthy degree of skepticism:
On Monday night, [Gregory] Kohs wrapped upan experiment in which he inserted outlandish errors into 31 articles and tracked whether editors ever found them. After more than two months, half of his hoaxes still had not been found -- and those included errors on high-profile pages, like "Mediterranean climate" and "inflammation." (By his estimate, more than 100,000 people have now seen the claim that volcanic rock produced by the human body causes inflammation pain.)And checking other sources is complicated by a phenomenon known as "citogenisis".
4. The author has mixed philosophical premises, but I can't help but wonder whether an opinion piece titled, "Skip the Sharing Kids", might reflect Ayn Rand's cultural influence:
How will they understand the importance of property rights to growing a free and prosperous society?The article also incidentally reminds me of my childhood reaction to my kindergarden's weekly "Share a Toy Day": not wanting the other kids to trash any of my favorites, I took a big, blue, metal, indestructible tractor I cared nothing about every single time. To her credit, my mother did not make a huge deal of this when the teachers inevitably caught on.
And this whole business about having some authority divvy up our spoils and arbitrarily decide who is most deserving of them sounds more like a socialist utopia than a practice for training our children to be democratic citizens.