EduLinks – a mixed bag of seduction and pleasure

Goodies to read…and some goodies to watch today too.  Good times.

From Time – How Computers Know What We Want — Before We Do:

Recommendation engines introduce a new voice into the cultural conversation, one that speaks to us when we’re at our most vulnerable, which is to say at the point of purchase. What is that voice saying? Recommendation engines aren’t designed to give us what we want. They’re designed to give us what they think we want, based on what we and other people like us have wanted in the past.

Which means they don’t surprise us. They don’t take us out of our comfort zone. A recommendation engine isn’t the spouse who drags you to an art film you wouldn’t have been caught dead at but then unexpectedly love. It won’t force you to read the 18th century canon. It’s no substitute for stumbling onto a great CD just because it has cool cover art. Recommendation engines are the enemy of serendipity and Great Books and the avant-garde. A 19th century recommendation engine would never have said, If you liked Monet, you’ll love Van Gogh! Impressionism would have lasted forever.

The Atlantic – How to Save the News

Great journalism may change, but it won’t go away, according to Google employees.  Google are working on making news work, even if the advertising models have moved.

Loughborough LipDub

Yay!  LipDub in the UK!  @ChrisTuesPeel informed Times Higher Education that Queen’s ‘Don’t Stop Me Now’ has been given the LipDub treatment by Loughborough.  It’s good to see some UK LipDubs after I found nothing last year.

Wolverhampton LipDub

And another UK LipDub uncovered. Do you know of any others? Let me know!

Search Engine Land – Facebook’s New “Simple” Privacy Settings Still Pretty Complex

Are you happy with your Facebook privacy yet?  Don’t leave everything open for all to see.  If you’ve never changed your privacy settings, the world may have its eye on you…

School Gate – Which is the hardest university to get into? Well, that depends…

Cambridge has the highest entry grades, Manchester has the highest number of applications, and LSE gets the most applications per place.  There is no particular university that’s hardest to be accepted at.  An excerpt:

The number of applications per place is obviously a better measure of competitiveness, but even this has its limitations. Oxford and Cambridge, for example, both have fewer than five applications to the place because many potential candidates believe that they stand no chance of getting in. That is not only half the number chasing each place at the most competitive universities, but only just above average for all universities.

Stepcase Lifehack – 11 Practical Ways to Stop Procrastination

I would introduce this link, but I’m a bit busy right now.

Don Sull (FT) – The seduction of routine (and other obstacles to spotting opportunities)

Routine “discourages experimentation and hampers learning”, experts may value their knowledge but they should recognise their limitations too, weak ties are just as important as strong ties, and people in power shouldn’t get too insulated.  Some great lessons here.

Fast Company – Why Change Is So Hard: Self-Control Is Exhaustible

Get ready to tell people, “I’m not lazy, I’m exhausted”.

And be sure to blame it on the radishes…

Stephen Fry: What I Wish I’d Known When I Was 18

A pleasant ramble with some good advice.  Give yourself a 30 minute break over the weekend and enjoy this.


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