layla: grass at sunset (Default)
This is so cool: the Atlas of True Names. In a way, it takes our real world and makes a fantasy map out of it -- except it's all real!

Too bad they're sold out at the moment; I really want to buy one. Actually, I'm posting the link in part to remind myself to buy it when it's back in stock!

In other news, it was 93 degrees today -- I realize that the rest of the country is probably laughing at our pain, but look at it this way: most people in Alaska don't have air conditioning. I think I'm wilting.

In OTHER other news (but more important than my trivial stuff by far) DOMA IS DEAD, HOORAY! \o/ (And Alaska's Sen. Lisa Murkowski recently became the third(?) Republican senator to come out in favor of marriage equality. Good for her!)

Heh

Apr. 23rd, 2007 10:14 pm
layla: grass at sunset (Default)
Oh my God, they've discovered real-life Kryptonite!

Sort of. Apparently they found a mineral that happens, coincidentally, to match the purely fictitious "pulled it out of our asses" composition of Kryptonite.

But still! This made my inner geek very happy.
layla: grass at sunset (Default)
70-year-old American tourist is set upon by armed mugger, kills said mugger with his bare hands:

Link to story here. Way to go, badass old guy! (And they didn't press any charges against him, either; apparently plenty of witnesses confirmed that he was just defending himself.)
layla: grass at sunset (Default)
Interesting link from [livejournal.com profile] klostes -- The Power (And Peril) of Praising Your Kids

The gist of it: contrary to conventional wisdom, studies show -- with fairly convincing results, IMHO -- that telling kids they're smart not only doesn't help them perform well in school, but makes them do worse due to performance anxiety and fear of failure. Praising kids for working hard and praising specific areas of performance, however, makes them do better. It's fairly common-sensical, actually, but as the article writer (speaking as a parent) points out, quite difficult to put into practice!

On top of that, the mammalian brain appears to have a delayed-gratification circuit that actually can be trained to function better -- an "if at first you don't succeed, try again" circuit that atrophies if it's not used. Kids who learn to try harder will find it easier to keep trying harder -- and the way to get them to do that is by telling them that intelligence is not innate and has to be exercised in order to remain functional.

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Layla

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