I Know What You Did Last Summer

Most of us use features on our phone that require GPS or geolocation. This means that our phones collect, store, and transmit data about our present, past, and (depending on Facebook) possible future locations. We tell it everything. 

This is convenient for me when I want to find my way around traffic or navigate to a new place. It’s great when I want to check in somewhere with a friend. 

It might not be great if you’re up to something, or if you just want a little privacy. Going to rob a bank? Geolocation will find you. Going to do a little Christmas, birthday, or Valentine’s Day shopping for that special person? Geolocation knows. 

Crimes have been solved using these features, cheating spouses have been caught and lies unfolded. Houses of vacationing people have been robbed. 

“What,” you say. “I’m honest.” So am I. So, for me, the convenience of having all things Google, geolocation notwithstanding, outweighs the risk of privacy. I’m fairly public and out there. You can read my thoughts or just ping me and ask. I’ll tell you. And I don’t get out much these days. Google doesn’t have that much to track… 

Or does it… 

Is there too much information out there? Even for the honest person? You decide. 
Review this Learnist board and add to the comments, both on the board and for this blog post. 

Polite War

This video was contributed by Jamaal Ross as an addendum to our discussion of British colonization and military methods.

We see evidence of this in Alice in Wonderland. This story takes place at the height of the Age of Imperialism. By 1750, the British East India Company under Elihu Yale (of Yale University) placed India under British rule, enslaving many Indians. The 1783 Treaty of Paris saw the end of British colonization in America, but by 1881, the “Scramble for Africa” had divided Africa up into European colonial strongholds, and the British were looking toward China.

This video is a humorous look at the American view of the British military, but it fits nicely into the context of British colonization as a whole. Thanks, Jamaal!

Falling Down the Rabbit Hole

At the same time as the American Civil War was just wrapping up, Alice in Wonderland was taking England by storm. Lewis Carroll, born Charles Dodgson, the son of a preacher and one of eleven children, all of whom survived into adulthood, was an author, professor, and photographer. 
His legacy is highly controversial.  Read through this Learnist board on Carroll and decide–was he a genius or a deviant?  When deciding, it’s important to look at the context of the times. Can we judge people, ideas, and situations in history by today’s standards? People often do. After reading through the Learnist board, please offer your opinion on the life and times of Carroll and Alice in Wonderland focusing on the following: 
1. History: There are so many references to the Age of Imperialism, the roles of women in society and social history. 
2. Fantasy and Imagination: Some of the best innovators fall into this category. How has fantasy and imagination resulted in inventions and innovations that make the world a better place?
3. The Rabbit Hole: Have you ever encountered a person or idea that changed your life forever? That made it so you never saw the world the same way again?  How can this help you change the world? You might not have had this experience yet. If not, think of someone you admire who has had an epiphany and been that kind of game changer as a result. 
Regardless of where you fall on the issue of Carroll, his stories are inspiring. “Sometimes, I believe as many as six impossible things before breakfast.” 
That’s exactly the kind of thinking that makes us magic. 

Genius Hour Pitches

So, you have an idea. You’re running with it. And then…

You realize that there’s something missing.  You’ve left something out. A big something. A project-crippling something.

You need to organize. You need to answer the BIG QUESTIONS. You need to write your pitch. If you were stuck in an elevator for two minutes with your idol, what would you want to say about your passion–about your project? How could you make it unforgetable?

1. What is your passion? What’s your project all about?

2. What problem are you solving? How does your project make the world better?

3. How do you attend to accomplish this? What secret ingredient does YOUR group have that will make the world AWESOME or solve the problem you intended to tackle?

4. Ask for something. What do you want your audience to do? Support your cause? Donate? Watch your video? Join your organization? Shop fair-trade? Eat more vegetables? Be clear. Be direct. Ask.

Make your presentation beautiful, clear, and exciting. The world is at your door…