Updates from February, 2011 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Hober Short 6:15 pm on 28 February 2011 Permalink | Reply  

    On Friday, Tycho of Penny Arcade veered into discussion of parenting, and how he deals with his kid wanting to play freemium, micro-transactional games:

    Games of this kind really know how to get their barbs in; my male heir has suffered under their yoke, but I have endeavored to create a buffer. His access to the App Store is gated off by a truly Byzantine, deeply manipulative, and wholly imaginary economy based on “stars” which can be redeemed for things he wants at rates which are constantly in flux. Sometimes he owes us stars. I’m trying to simulate the crushing uncertainties of a capricious universe, and he’s haunted by it. It’s working.

    As I remember it, the fiat currency of my childhood was buttons. I dimly recall a posted sheet with the pegged commodities value of the currency, although how I earned them or spent them, I can’t recall.

    • Bartholomew Xerxes Ogilvie, Jr. 10:59 am on 1 March 2011 Permalink | Reply

      Perhaps I should start giving Laura her allowance in Bitcoins.

  • Hober Short 11:39 am on 11 February 2011 Permalink | Reply  

    I’ve got nothing to say about this story except to point out that banks are gun free zones.

  • Hober Short 11:46 am on 10 February 2011 Permalink | Reply  

    This article on zero tolerance policies in schools is one of the most important things I’ve read in a long time. From the beginning of the piece, talking about the depths of the anti-gun insanity:

    Nine-year-old Patrick Timoney was sent to the principal’s office and threatened with suspension after school officials discovered that one of his LEGOs was holding a 2-inch toy gun. . . . David Morales, an 8-year-old Rhode Island student, ran afoul of his school’s zero tolerance policies after he wore a hat to school decorated with an American flag and tiny plastic Army figures in honor of American troops. School officials declared the hat out of bounds because the toy soldiers were carrying miniature guns. A 7-year-old New Jersey boy, described by school officials as “a nice kid” and “a good student,” was reported to the police and charged with possessing an imitation firearm after he brought a toy Nerf-style gun to school.

    When we harshly stigmatize any simulacrum of a gun this way, is it any surprise that there are two kinds of people these days: those who grew up around guns and those who have a visceral fear of them?

    From later:

    Finally, these policies, and the school administrators who relentlessly enforce them, render young people woefully ignorant of the rights they intrinsically possess as American citizens. What’s more, having failed to learn much in the way of civic education while in school, young people are being browbeaten into believing that they have no true rights and government authorities have total power and can violate constitutional rights whenever they see fit.

    As I said a few weeks ago here on this blog,

    I can only guess at the chilling effect that zero tolerance policies have had on my generation. I know that it’s taught me to thoroughly mistrust authority and never cooperate. Being helpful and cooperative is what got me brought up on criminal charges. All they had on me was hearsay and my own confession.

    I don’t think it can be underestimated what the effect of living under this kind of capricious punishment for 13 years can do to a kid.

  • Bartholomew Xerxes Ogilvie, Jr. 11:12 am on 9 February 2011 Permalink | Reply  

    Just more evidence that the future has arrived: market research shows that as of the fourth quarter of 2010, manufacturers are selling more smartphones than they are PCs. I think it’s now quite justifiable to say that smartphones are the primary computing platform for most consumers, at least for personal use. (I know that has become true for me.)

    This news comes just a couple of weeks after the announcement that Kindle e-books are now outselling paperbacks on Amazon. When you consider how many people have smartphones, iPads, Nooks, and other such devices, I doubt it will be long before e-books become dominant more generally.

    Cue Brad Paisley.

Compose new post
Next post/Next comment
Previous post/Previous comment
Show/Hide comments
Go to top
Go to login
Show/Hide help
shift + esc