The Myth of the Visionary Leader.
"But just knowing that great leadership is not always going to look great, or even make us feel inspired, could help gird us against the power of big personality and encourage us to make more sober choices."
posted by Sticherbeast
on Nov 11, 2013 -
I signed up for an account on Healthcare.gov last week. It wasn’t the smoothest process, but I was able to create an account. Some parts are slow; sometimes you have to reload a page to make progress. But it’s starting to work. It will be fixed, because it has to be. And now that the launch and inevitable crash has finally happened, in a way the worst is over. Real-world traffic is providing programmers all the debugging data that they could ever want, and “all bugs are shallow with the president watching,” as Paul Ford writes in Bloomberg Businessweek, paraphrasing the open-source-software advocate Eric Raymond’s assertion that “with enough eyeballs, all bugs are shallow.”
-- Rusty Foster
in The New Yorker
posted by jim in austin
on Oct 22, 2013 -
Take the twitch out of platforming with Bump
, a delightful new little turn-based randomly-generated roguelikelike by clever game dev and creative fellow Aaron Steed
. Jump at or on or over things! Collect diamonds with head-bumping! Avoid and/or destroy spikes and bad guys! Try not to die! Die anyway! It's a good time. [more inside]
posted by cortex
on Mar 17, 2013 -
The learning paradox
is at the heart of “productive failure." While the model adopted by many teachers and employers when introducing others to new knowledge — providing lots of structure and guidance early on, until the students or workers show that they can do it on their own — makes intuitive sense, it may not be the best way to promote learning. [more inside]
posted by unSane
on May 1, 2012 -
In which "the author tries—and fails—to cash in on a big idea"
. Warning: skippable full-screen ad alert. Behind it is an article in the Atlantic (the magazine, not the ocean). Of possible interest to fans and critics of the popular science genre of books, Wikipedians, and underdog/failure sympathisers.
posted by nthdegx
on Nov 18, 2011 -
Milton Glaser on fear of failure
"This is the way to professional accomplishment: You have to demonstrate that you know something unique that you can repeat over and over and over, until ultimately you lose interest in it. The consequence of specialization and success is that it hurts you. It hurts you because it doesn't aid in your development. The truth of the matter is that understanding development comes from failure." [more inside]
posted by heatherann
on May 25, 2011 -
Articles on the failed musical Dude
cocreator Gerome Ragni
. Where to start? Well, there is this summary of the disaster
by the New York Times, which is just mind-boggling: "He also made demands, phoning Adela Holzer at 2 A.M. to say he wanted a hundred butterflies let loose into the audience before each performance. No? Well then what about having a couple of oinking pigs and chickens run down the aisle at intermission?" [more inside]
posted by Astro Zombie
on Jun 20, 2010 -
"For Dirk McLauren, Wedesnday January 19 2381 has begun very poorly.
" The Zybourne Clock
was to be a hundred-hour long electro-punk-themed RPG made by members of the SA
subforum BYOB. After only a few weeks, the project collapsed in drama and failure, leaving only hilarious snippets of text, original "artwork," and level designs. More effort and skill
went into parodying
The Zybourne Clock than into creating
posted by Optimus Chyme
on Nov 19, 2009 -
1995 Contractor Study Finds that U.S. Analysts Exaggerated Soviet Aggressiveness and Understated Moscow's Fears of a U.S. First Strike.
During a 1972 command post exercise, leaders of the Kremlin listened to a briefing on the results of a hypothetical war with the United States. A U.S. attack would kill 80 million Soviet citizens and destroy 85 percent of the country's industrial capacity. According to the recollections of a Soviet general who was present, General Secretary Leonid Brezhnev "trembled" when he was asked to push a button, asking Soviet defense minister Grechko "this is definitely an exercise?" This story appears in a recently released two-volume study on Soviet Intentions, 1965-1985, prepared in 1995 by the Pentagon contractor BDM Corporation, and published today for the first time by the National Security Archive. [more inside]
posted by DreamerFi
on Sep 14, 2009 -
How designers fail
— "During college at the University of Arizona in 1992, I learned with other design freshman that revisions were part of the discipline; if you cried at critique you were a wimp, and the computer was just a finishing tool. . . . But something has happened since I was a college student in 1992: students just don’t believe these things."
posted by camcgee
on Mar 27, 2009 -
The savings and loan’s decision not to settle the lawsuit made no economic sense for a solvent institution, but it made perfect sense if their principle objective was to maintain the false appearance of solvency for as long as possible. The savings and loan was undoubtedly inflating all of their assets, including my homely little lawsuit, to postpone the inevitable.
What reminded me of that incident from my late, unlamented law practice was the persistent failure of financial institutions to modify mortgages voluntarily. It makes perfect economic sense for a safe and sound institution to avoid the ruinous costs of foreclosure by agreeing to reduce the principal and monthly payment for homeowners who can pay a mortgage, but not the one they’ve got. But according to the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys, fewer than ten percent of mortgage modifications in November reduced the principal. About half added late payments and penalties to the principal, and either increased monthly payments or added payments at the back end of the mortgage. If a borrower was in default already, what’s the chance the borrower can make a higher monthly payment?
, US Congressman for the Thirteenth District
of North Carolina
advances a possible motivation for the apparently illogical behavior of US banks.
posted by orthogonality
on Feb 5, 2009 -
When programmers kill.
[pdf] In 1982, Atomic Energy Canada, Limited, introduced the now-infamous Therac-25, a solely software-driven successor to its earlier medical linear accelerators. Six patients
received massive amounts of radiation, and three died, before AECL was compelled to supplement the (faulty) software-only error-checking with hardware interlocks to prevent overexposure. [more inside]
posted by enn
on May 20, 2008 -
It could have been the greatest disaster in US history. On January 18, 1978, 30 years ago today, the 1400 ton 2 1/2 acre roof of the Hartford Civic Center
, covered by a blanket of snow and ice, suddenly and completely collapsed
, damaging almost all of the seats underneath. Just four hours earlier there was a basketball game packed with 5000 fans. Had it collapsed then, many, if not most, of the fans and players could have died. [more inside]
posted by eye of newt
on Jan 18, 2008 -