Paid Editing?

The editor of a Wikipedia article on medical devices discovered attempts to change the description of 13WSZXDE45TFCkyphoplasty, a back procedure, from “controversial” to “well documented and studied.” The writer was an employee of a company that manufactured the (expensive) device. So begins an Atlantic article by Joe Pinsker on “paid editing” of Wikipedia articles, and what it means for reliability of information.


Iraq: Saving History

The National Library of Iraq in Baghdad is digitizing it’s collection, including many documents from the Ottoman period. According to an article in Lebanon’s The Daily Star (August 5, 2015), the project has taken on urgency because of the threat to the holdings by the current insurgency, which has already resulted in the destruction of books and manuscripts in Mosul. Thousands of documents from the National Library were lost following the US-led invasion in 2003.

Ebook Reading

Fifty-four percent of ebook buyers sometimes read on their smartphones, according to a Nielsen survey in late 2014, up from twenty-four percent in 2012. Fourteen percent 2012 read primarily on their phones.

Strong Predictor

According to the World Health Organization’s World Heath Statistics 2013, “Literacy is a stronger predictor of individual’s health status than income, employment status, education level and racial or ethnic group.”

“… best thing I’ve seen … “

“I saw it last night on Comcast as I missed the PBS broadcast. It’s the best thing I’ve seen about books and the digital age.”

Bruce Joshua Miller, editor

Curiosity’s Cats: Writers on Research

Libya, Jews in Roman Times


Menora engraved in a rock in Cyrenaica from 1stc AD, survives millennia.

Pew Research Center on American Teenagers

One out of four American thirteen to seventeen year-olds is on line nearly constantly, four out of five are on line at least several times a day.

Clary Shirky Banned Laptops

“…I’m a pretty unlikely candidate for internet censor, but I have just asked the students in my fall seminar to refrain from using laptops, tablets, and phones in class… … Multi-taskers often think they are like gym rats, bulking up their ability to juggle tasks, when in fact they are like alcoholics, degrading their abilities through over-consumption…”
Why Clay Shirky Banned Laptops, Tablets and Phones from His ClassroomMediashift, September 15, 2014

Tal Gross, Colombia U

“…enormous, world-changing benefits of computers have to be weighed against the costs. We are becoming a distracted nation, constantly alt-tabbing to our e-mail and peeking at our phones. We should not be so quick to throw out our pens and pencils.This year, I resolve to ban laptops from my classroom, The Washington Post, December 30, 2014