Saturday, March 01, 2003

I'm getting personal with a purpose today. Personal because it's the nature of the story. And the purpose is...well I'm getting a little ahead of myself.

My friend's in a battle for his life. He's been diagnosed with multiple myeloma, a type of bone marrow cancer. The downside is that it kills most victims within a decade of diagnosis. The upside is that my friend is definitely not one to play the role of victim.

He's a "young" man in his 40s. He's strong and intelligent. He cares about people and issues. He's big guy with big voice and big heart. He's the kind of guy who sends a lot of love out into the world.

He's also got a formidable sense of humor, as you'll hear in:

Myeloma* (mp3)
[to the tune of My Sharona]

If I were a cancer cell I don't think I'd want to hang around in the bones of a guy with that kind outrage and talent.

If I could talk directly to these mutant cells I'd say, "You don't belong here. Give up the fight. Sure, this guy somehow let you sneak in. And he's been a fine host. Until now. But you're no longer welcome. Not by him. Not by his friends and family. Not by his kids. Not by his wife. We stand united on this and you're outahere!"

About his wife. She's my sister. I introduced them a few years ago, thinking they'd probably like each other. They did. And do. And will. For a long time. In short he's got a lot of live for.

So about the song -- pretty good stuff, aye? My purpose? Just to make you think? Yeah, mostly. Think about the people who are important to you, and -- to radically change musical styles here -- do what Garth Brooks urges his listeners, "...tell that someone that you love just what you're thinking of if tomorrow never comes."

"One person can make a difference. Two people can make a miracle."
--Brian Novis

p.s. If you like to cuss, cuss those dog gone cancer cells. If you're feeling generous consider a contribution to The Huntsman Cancer Institute or The International Myeloma Foundation. And if you're a praying person, put in a good word for my friend Dan Bammes.

*lyrics by Dan Bammes, vocals and musical performance and production by Robert Lund. Based on My Sharona, copyright 1979, The Knack. All rights reserved by the respective artists and companies.


Friday, February 28, 2003

A few more insights about Fred Rogers:

Commentary on Rogers' Retirement in Nov 2000
NPR Weekend Edition - Sunday

Neighbors (Davy Rothbart's 20 minute story)
This American Life - WBEZ - Chicago

Local fan says 'Mister Rogers' helped make him a better father
Tallahassee Democrat

"If only you could sense how important you are to the lives of those you meet; how important you can be to people you may never even dream of. There is something of yourself that you leave at every meeting with another person." --Fred Rogers

A few of the early childhood resources at UEN are: K-3 Strategies with Technology, The Five Senses, and of course the many pre-school and ITV broadcasts on KUED and KULC.

Found while looking for something else: Daypop News Bursts


Thursday, February 27, 2003

I’m going to miss Mr. Rogers. He died from cancer early today at his Pittsburgh home. Millions consider him a friend. I do too. About 20 years ago when KUED brought him to Salt Lake for a special event, I got to meet the man. So did my wife, son and daughter. He autographed postcards that the kids--now college students--still have in their scrapbooks. More importantly he took a few minutes to talk with them individually. In his actions with our little family, he said in an unmistakable way “You are special.” He believed this about all people. The work of his life shows it. A few years ago I wrote to him regarding that memorable day. He wrote back. What an incredible influence for the well being of children – and all of us.

“You are my friend. You are special to me. You are the only one like you. Like you, my friend, I like you.”
--Fred Rogers (March 20, 1928 – February 27, 2003)

Finding Comfort - a new page set up today by Family Communications, Fred Roger's production company

Found while looking for something else: Yahoo Buzz Index


Wednesday, February 26, 2003

I've been thinking about fathers and mothers quite a bit lately. Not necessarily the parents of human children, but those who brought a big idea into the world. Women like Hedy Lamar and Harriett Tubman. Men like Thomas Stockham and Philo Farnsworth.

First I thought about Thomas Stockham, the father of digital recording. I heard him lecture here at the University of Utah in the early 70's as he started to experiment with digital restoration of Enrico Caruso recordings. Now as I listen to Caruso on CD (or any CD for that matter), or edit audio on the desktop, it seems fitting to remember Stockham.

Next Philo Farnsworth came to mind. Probably because of a Doug Fabrizio interview on KUER with Dan Stashower, author of The Boy Genius and the Mogel, The Untold Story of Television. I also remember the way producer Kirk Strickland used Farnsworth's medium to portray a young Philo in a public service announcement for Pioneer, Utah's Online Library.

To be honest about it, Lamar and Tubman weren't top-of-mind names to me. I found them browsing Women Inventors online. You could call Hedy Lamar the mother of spread spectrum cryptography. She titled it A Secret Communications System in her 1942 patent. The impact today? Pagers, cellular phones, Internet bandwidth and military anti-jamming devices.

About Tubman. Last night at the dinner table I posed this trivia quiz, "Who is Harriet Tubman?" To my delight our sixth grader nailed it in about 15 seconds, "Didn't she start the underground railroad?" But course what Tubman "invented" wasn't at all trivial.

A few related resources at UEN include Ideas, Invention and Communication at Themepark, Civil War Newspaper in Lesson Plans and in the UEN Rubric Tool.

"You cannot hope to build a better world without improving individuals."
--Marie Curie

Found while looking for something else: 1959 Geloso G256


Tuesday, February 25, 2003

With the dusting of snow we got last night it’s hard to believe that we’re so close to spring, but there it is on the calendar Vernal Equinox just 23 days away. On the UEN Events page we’ve got a link from March 20 – First Day of Spring to the University of Michigan’s UCAR site. It gives detailed explanations and provides several charts diagramming the summer and winter solstices and the vernal and autumnal equinoxes (literally “equal nights”).

A few of the many UEN “astronomy” resources include Physics 1270 – Conceptual Astronomy (an SLCC Telecourse starting in June on KULC), Constellations: Pictures in the Sky in Lesson Plans, and Asteroids at Activities.

“All of the books in the world contain no more information than is broadcast as video in a single large American city in a single year. Not all bits have equal value.” --Carl Sagan (1934-1996)

Found while looking for something else: Technical Services Shared Vision


Monday, February 24, 2003

A tech item or world news is usually number one on Daypop's Top 40. Today provided an exception with the honors going to a "persuits and retreats" essay in the online version of The Atlantic Monthly. The headline: Caring for Your Introvert.

Writer Jonathan Rauch says, “Leave an extrovert alone for two minutes and he will reach for his cell phone. In contrast, after an hour or two of being socially 'on,' we introverts need to turn off and recharge. My own formula is roughly two hours alone for every hour of socializing.”

Before reading this article I wouldn’t have labeled myself one way or the other, I’d just say, “Sometimes I’m gregarious, sometimes I’m not.” Now, given a black and white choice, I’d say have to say “introvert” – but I’m glad I live in a continuous tone, multi-colored world. At least most of the time.

A few of the many “personality” resources at UEN are: Self Exploration in ThemePark, Self-Awareness in Lesson Plans, and UVSC’s popular telecourse Psychology 1010 (starts April 28) on KULC.

“Self-revelation is a cruel process. The real picture, the real ‘you’ never emerges. Looking for it is as bewildering as trying to know how you really look. Ten different mirrors show you ten different faces.” --Shashi Deshpande

Found while looking for something else: Wireless Laptops Gain the Edge


Sunday, February 23, 2003

William Marbury didn't get what he'd been promised. So he sued and lost, but in the process U.S. citizens became winners. Marbury's fight against James Madison established the doctrine of judicial review which acts as a check on executive and legislative power. Read more about this landmark case in Sunday's Deseret News. Also see UEN's online resources and watch Ted Capener host a Utah discusssion of Marbury vs. Madison, Monday at 10 a.m. on KULC and 1:30 p.m. on KULC.

Also see Bicentennial of Landmark Supreme Court Decision by Scott M. Matheson, Jr. in Sunday's Salt Lake Tribune.

"What spectacle can be more edifying or more seasonable than that of liberty and learning, each leaning on the other for their mutual and surest support?" --James Madison (in letter to W. T. Barry, August 4, 1822)

Found while looking for something else: Famous Trials