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The horrrific 2014 GM rolling sarcophagus deathtraps are here!

What do the words "safety," ''chaotic" and "problem" have in common? They're all on General Motors' list of banned words for employees who were documenting potential safety issues. The revelation of the 68-word list is one of the odder twists in GM's ongoing recall of 2.6 million older-model small cars for defective ignition switches. Last Week Tonight with John Oliver weighs in.
posted by Room 641-A on May 19, 2014 - 78 comments

Systems Thinking

"Systems thinking (PDF) is the process of understanding how things influence one another within a whole...Systems Thinking has been defined as an approach to problem solving, by viewing 'problems' as parts of an overall system, rather than reacting to specific part, outcomes or events and potentially contributing to further development of unintended consequences." -Wikipedia [more inside]
posted by JoeXIII007 on Apr 21, 2012 - 25 comments

The Angel Problem

The Angel Problem. The Angel and the Devil play a game on an infinite chess board...
posted by Wolfdog on Feb 16, 2012 - 37 comments

Horror Stories From Tough-Love Teen Homes

Kathryn Joyce looks at unregulated Christian homes for troubled children.
posted by reenum on Dec 8, 2011 - 39 comments

Thunder, thunder, thundercats LOL!

Thunderlolcats (slty)
posted by Ad hominem on Sep 27, 2011 - 38 comments

Advance Market Commitments

Inducement Prizes -- Best known for the Ansari X Prize, the DARPA Grand Challenge and the Clay Mathematics Millennium Problems, inducement prizes have a long history, but their recent successes have led to increased government interest, viz. challenge.gov, and resulted in the development of vaccines, thanks in large part to the work of Michael Kremer.* [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Jan 6, 2011 - 8 comments

If a train leaves Chicago at noon carrying 20 passengers, 5 of whom smoke, in 4 cars, what is the name of the conductor's dog?

A nearly impossible logic puzzle. Other mindtwisting puzzles. More puzzles of varying difficulty (don't scroll down too far!). XKCD's take. (previously epic post Also: 1, 2)
posted by desjardins on Jul 30, 2009 - 47 comments

“Do not do what I do; rather, take whatever I have to offer and do with it what I could never imagine doing and then come back and tell me about it.”

Mark C. Taylor, the chairman of the religion department at Columbia, offers a radical proposal in The New York Times for the restructuring of the American university system. Two key components of the proposal entail ending tenure and shuttering academic departments—replacing disciplines with problems, and then tackling them with a cooperative and multidisciplinary approach, e.g. The Department of the Future of Water made up of geologists, anthropologists, political scientists, and ethicists. Should we End the University as We Know It?
posted by Toekneesan on Apr 27, 2009 - 84 comments

No, it's not about sex.

MateMaster. Flash chess problems ranging from "mate in 1" to the fiendish "mate in 6." (via JiG)
posted by juv3nal on Apr 8, 2009 - 42 comments

"Hang on a minute, lads, I've got an idea."

The Italian Job: Problem Solved
posted by Artw on Jan 23, 2009 - 43 comments

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