Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Wireless carriers are rolling out a horrible new way to track you | The Verge

Wireless carriers are rolling out a horrible new way to track you | The Verge:

"...the message is clear: there's a lucrative business in tracking users across the web, and carriers want in on it."

'via Blog this'

What are your thoughts on this article?
  • Do you think that what these companies are doing is ok?
  • Why or why not?
  • Is there anything we can do to prevent this from happening without our consent?

Friday, October 24, 2014

Ear Bud Headphones Causing Deafness

Ear-bud headphones proven to cause Deafness

Ear Bud Headphones Causing Deafness
Because the tiny phones inserted into the ears are not as efficient at blocking outside sounds as the cushioned headsets, users tend to crank up the volume to compensate.
“I have an audiologist friend at Wichita State University who actually pulls off earphones of students he sees and asks, in the interest of science, if he could measure the output of the signal going into their heads,” Garstecki said. Often he finds students listening at 110 to 120 decibels. 
“That’s a sound level equivalent to measures that are made at rock concerts,” said Garstecki. “And it’s enough to cause hearing loss after only about an hour and 15 minutes.”

1.  Take a look at the following articles from some of the most respected news sources on the planet. 

  • What do they have to say about hearing loss and earphones? 

  • What are the most alarming facts, in your opinion, from the articles linked below?

2.  What are your thoughts about these articles?

  • Do you know someone who has suffered hearing loss due to prolonged exposure to loud noise?
  • Is this an issue that we should take more seriously? 

Should Alabama abandon DST?

Daylight Saving Time ends next Sunday, November 2nd, and the biannual brouhaha over the topic has begun yet again.  The State of Utah is seriously considering abandoning the practice of moving the clocks twice a year. Should Alabama do the same?

  1. Why do we have Daylight Savings Time?
  2. In your opinion, what are the best arguments for and against DST?
  3. Do you think we should keep using DST?

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

‘Silent Dilemma’ in Digital Skills Divide

"Nearly a third of Americans have trouble navigating the Internet, says one researcher...
A new challenge is emerging from the cracks of the digital divide: digital readiness — helping those who have Internet access, but lack the skills to use it effectively. And librarians could play a huge role in turning the tide, some experts say.

'via Blog this'

  • According to the article, what problems are facing Americans, and why are they important to deal with now?
  • What are the possible repercussions of not addressing these growing issues?
  • What solutions have been proposed?
  • What will you do to address this problem, personally?

Monday, October 20, 2014

Training Kids for a World That Doesn't Exist

American Schools Are Training Kids for a World That Doesn't Exist | WIRED:

"Are Americans getting dumber?Our math skills are falling. Our reading skills are weakening. Our children have become less literate than children in many developed countries. But the crisis in American education may be more than a matter of sliding rankings on world educational performance scales. Our kids learn within a system of education devised for a world that increasingly does not exist."

'via Blog this'

  1. Do you agree with this article?
  2. According to the article, what are some of the biggest problems we are facing today?
  3. What do you think about the solutions suggested in the article?

Thursday, October 16, 2014

The Backbone of the Internet?

Yes, the Internet has a backbone, and it's something we rely on everyday...

"The Internet backbone refers to the principal data routes between large, strategically interconnected networks and core routers on the Internet. These data routes are hosted by commercial, government, academic and other high-capacity network centers, the Internet exchange points and network access points, that interchange Internet traffic between the countries, continents and across the oceans of the world. Internet service providers (often Tier 1 networks) participate in Internet backbone exchange traffic by privately negotiated interconnection agreements, primarily governed by the principle of settlement-free peering."

Read the articles linked above on the Internet backbone.  Click on the links in the Wikipedia page to further enhance your understanding of this subject.  

Once you have a good grasp of the topic, answer the questions below:
  • What, exactly, is the "backbone" of the internet? 
  • How long has it existed? 
  • Why is this structure so important, and what impact does it have on our way of life?
  • How is the computer you are using right now connected to the backbone?

Thursday, October 9, 2014

How Videogames Like Minecraft Actually Help Kids Learn to Read | WIRED

How Videogames Like Minecraft Actually Help Kids Learn to Read | WIRED:

'via Blog this'

  • Do you agree that games like Minecraft actually help you read, like the article suggests?  
  • Why or why not?  
  • What has been your own personal experience with games like this?

Monday, October 6, 2014

Big Brother is Teaching You: Huntsville students learn about life in the surveillance state: opinion |

Big Brother is Teaching You: Huntsville students learn about life in the surveillance state: opinion |

"At Huntsville City Schools, for the last 18 months, school officials have been monitoring your social media accounts. When I was your age, we called this "spying," but my generation has not only accepted institutional and corporate nosiness as an unavoidable fact of life, we've let our authorities put bland and deceptive labels on things that were once verboten. Torture is now enhanced interrogation. Government kidnapping is extraordinary rendition..."
'via Blog this'

  • What is your reaction to this article?