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George Station
Worked at California State University, Monterey Bay
Attended California State University, Monterey Bay
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George Station

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Lately, I've heard a lot of people talking about the "fake news" problem and about the need for better fact-checking. I suspect that this entire conversation may be looking at the wrong problem -- a conversation which would make perfect sense in a different time and place, but not here.

During the 2016 election, we heard a lot of brazen, blatant lies. These typically were fact-checked by the media; the result would be stories like "Data: Immigrants don't actually cause hemorrhoids," which nobody who wasn't already perfectly aware of that fact would read. Instead, these would just give more publicity to the original quote, and people who were enthused by it would be just as excited to see it again.

The fact is that fact-checking simply didn't make a difference -- it's not that people thought that these statements were true, but that they didn't care if they were true. In Gingrich's formulation, they speak to a "deeper truth" which is more important than simple facts.

This is far from an original idea; the discussion below is about Hannah Arendt's discussion of it back in 1951. This "deeper truth" that Gingrich likes to talk about is "what must be true in order for something else to be true" -- in this case, that a sufficiently strong leader could "Make America great again" by sheer force of will, by pushing out all of those dirty immigrants, Muslims, and so on. Or in other cases, that all this talk about people's lives mattering or people having a right to use public restrooms -- talk which suggests that maybe you're going to have to make some real changes for other people's sake -- doesn't really matter, and you're actually OK and can be proud of how your life has been.

That is, the truth of these statements doesn't matter in their own right; it's that these are statements which, if you believe them, let you do something. It's the wish to do something, or to believe that doing those things will make your life better, that's really at issue here.

I think that whenever someone raises the idea of more fact-checking, we should take a serious look at whether that actually addresses the underlying problem at all. My very strong sense is that we've misidentified the question, following the traditional instincts of journalism in a democracy ("and the truth shall make you free") at a time when those instincts are simply dead wrong.

h/t +J Stone for the link.

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New this week: Allo launch, Google+ in GFW, YouTube Heroes

Fall is in the air and there are updates galore! This week’s top updates: 

YouTube Heroes program announced

Google Allo launches with Google Assistant

Google+ becomes a core Google Apps for Work Service

Plus Google Trips, Google - and Bing! - get AMP’d, Yahoo's 2014 security breach, and more tips and updates for Hangouts, YouTube, Google+, Blogger, AdSense, Google Maps, Google Docs & Slides, and more.

Upcoming this week:

29 September: Join #AskAdSense on Google+ and Twitter every Thursday

29 September: Google Feed API ceases operation

29 September:, the Search Box gadget on Blogger blogs will only present search results from the blog. Search results from pages linked in posts, from the Web or from the Blog List and Link List gadgets will not be presented anymore.

29 September: the Blogger Slideshow gadget will no longer function, and will be removed from your blog

2 October: Brazilian Creators: Apply to be part of the next class of YouTube NextUp 2016 São Paulo

Get all this week's updates and tips:
http://www.peggyktc.com/2016/09/weekly-update-september-24-2016-youtube.html

Image: Painting "Autumn Leaves" by Sarah Jane Prentiss(1823-1877), public domain
This week’s top updates: YouTube Heroes program announced Google Allo launches Google+ becomes a core Google Apps for Work Service Plus Google Trips, Google - and Bing! - get AMP’d, Yahoo's 2014 security breach, and more ti...
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Buster Benson of SlackHQ has made this nifty, simple diagram explaining exactly why and how you're wrong. - Laszlo Xalieri - Google+
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John Magoonian III (https://medium.com/@jm3) made the remixed image.
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Ol' +Mike Elgan, waiting for the smoke to clear with Google #Spaces  

#socialmedia   #chat  or whatever, nobody's sure yet

Cc +Laura Gibbs +Mathieu Plourde (I can't plus "our" Liz from this account, if one of you would be so kind to do so in a comment)
 
Google Spaces' fatal flaw

(Read my column: http://goo.gl/lwTFMR )

Google this week introduced Spaces, which is not quite a social network and not really a messaging app. Spaces is a Googly cross between Slack and Snapchat, available from an app on iOS and Android, a Chrome extension and online at spaces.google.com.

Like Slack and Snapchat, Spaces is not a place for big celebrities, big social media stars or big conversations involving hundreds or thousands of people. It's better for small groups of between three and 100.

Spaces is part of Google's brilliant new (and old) judo strategy of making social a feature, instead of a product.

The social-as-a-feature strategy is perfect.

But for now, Spaces has no hope of succeeding because of one fatal flaw:

http://www.eweek.com/cloud/google-spaces-fatal-flaw-it-requires-too-much-mental-energy.html

#Spaces #Google #GoogleSpaces
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Dude, this is a whole world I didn't know existed...
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Testing w/ no frills... +Laura Gibbs What do you see at your end???????
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Privacy Alert: Your Headphones Could Be Listening to You

Microphones and speakers have a lot of similarities. In fact, they are so similar that a team of researchers at Israel's Ben Gurion University was able to create a hack that allowed them to treat regular headphones as microphones and listen in on conversations -- even when the headphones were plugged into the headphone jack (which is supposedly output-only) rather than the microphone jack on computers.

The hack relies on the ability of RealTek audio codec chips to treat an output channel as an input channel. The chips are used very widely, so the hack works with computers running both Windows and Mac including desktop and laptop models. It worked so well that the team was able to pick up conversations taking place over 20 feet from the computer. Of course, the recording could then be sent over the internet to anyone.

We already knew that hackers could gain access to the cameras and microphones on computers. Some users with extreme concerns about privacy have actually gone into their computers to disable those. Now we see that the output channels are potentially just as much of a risk for invading people's privacy, so those would have to be disabled, as well. Either that, or you could simply turn off your computer.
Israeli researchers show that even if you're paranoid enough to remove your computer's microphone, malware can convert your headphones into spy bugs.
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Everything said by George Orwell wasn't said by George Orwell... Or at least, we're not quite sure.
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The Google Assistant logo in Allo reminds me of the Wonder Bread logo

I wonder how many ways Google Assistant helps build strong bodies.

#GoogleAllo #GoogleAssistant #WonderBread
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Sharing this #history  post to remind "other me" that it might be a #GPPOTD  :-)
 

23 August 237 BCE, #onthisday, on the traditional site of the battle between Horus and his uncle Set in Apollinopolis, present day Edfu, between Assuan and Luxor on the western bank of the Nile, King Ptolemy III Euergetes ordered the begin of the construction of the Temple of Edfu.


Hellenism blended quite nicely with the thousands of years old local culture of the Nile valley. The old Egyptian gods finally bore the names Herodotus had given them already 300 years before and a few new ones were added. Now, Hellenes and Egyptians revered deities like Zeus Ammon, Osiris became Serapis and Toth Hermes. A few retained their old names like Isis. The old struggle between Horus and Set appeared in a new guise of Apollo fighting Typhon but with the old imagery, going through their ages-old struggle dressed up as Greeks. Thus, the third Ptolemy ordered a new temple for and old sacred site, a project that would drag on for the next 180 years into the reign of Ptolemy XII, father of Cleopatra, the last ruler of the line.

But read more on:

http://wunderkammertales.blogspot.de/2015/01/laying-of-first-stone-of-temple-of-edfu.html


#ancienthistory #history #mythology
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The "me" you see in class
Introduction
If you are a CSUMB student in my class, you have the right person. Please do add me to an appropriate Circle. (Red "add" button under my profile image.)

If you are CSUMB faculty or staff, yeah, it's me. +Kevin Cahill snapped that fine photo you're looking at. But the more interesting conversations about education and other topics will be with my "public" non-edu Google presence. (Link below.)

If you are anyone else, you might have the right person. I tend to have course-based interactions here with my First Year Seminar (Tech & Society) students. Some posts will be Public, others internal to the class. If you want full conversations about teaching & learning, faculty life, sci-fi, or other topics, you may prefer to follow my "outside" G+ profile:

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I know the difference between an ocean liner and an iceberg. I'm sitting on one and looking at the other.
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  • California State University, Monterey Bay
    2007
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harmonygritz
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Lecturer (AKA "adjunct faculty" in other systems)
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  • California State University, Monterey Bay
    Lecturer
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