Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Visiting the monuments in DC

From Wikipedia: Capitol Building

We are in D.C. visiting my Mom. She is here working as an Einstein Fellow for NSF and has a great basement apartment in a row house right near Capitol Hill.

More pictures to follow.

Kate keeps helping me type. I will post more when the kiddos are in bed.

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Powerpoint, I love you . . . I hate you.

The Cotton Beltwide meeting has a contest each year where the graduate student with the best presentation wins a cash prize. I won every year when I was a graduate student. I have a hard drive full of powerpoint presentations. I use them at work to present data, proposals, ideas, just about anything. I love powerpoint. I am "good" at powerpoint.

I hate powerpoint though. I used to sit in classes where the prof relied on powerpoint and fall asleep as soon as the lights went down. My favorite teachers spurned powerpoint for transparencies with a projector or chalkboards. (Plant Phys with Bruce Smith was an exception. That man could not stay out of his own projector's way. Three months of trying to read the Calvin Cycle off of his shirt pocket and bulky ties. The only day he was a great teacher was when he put the projector away and taught us about schizophrenia. His sons both suffer from clinical schizophrenia and he was a devoted advocate for people that suffer from mental illness. A day I will never forget.)

This Potential powerpoint slide captures it perfectly (Yes, I know it is ironic/sad/contradictory that a powerpoint slide communicates this so clearly. . . That is why I love powerpoint. Wait, I hate power point. . . So confused.)

Edward Tufte - Check out his explanation about powerpoint and the shuttle explosion.