What we’re reading

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This past week, President Obama addressed the buzz about the Ebola virus in his weekly address entitled “What You Need to Know about Ebola” by saying that, “we can’t give in to hysteria or fear.” In the past few weeks, we’ve heard arguments for travel bans and other actions seeking to curb the spread of this virus to the United States. In Nate Silver’s “Why An Ebola Flight Ban Wouldn’t Work,” he maps out what a flight ban to West Africa would look like and why it would be ineffective.

On the topic of public health, have you ever thought about public wifi being a public health hazard? According to Mauritis Martijn, we might want to be more cautious when using a public Wi-Fi server. If you’re curious how a hacker can learn intimate details about strangers using public wifi or, like us, are terrified by the prospect of having some stranger looking at the last five things you googled, give “What we give away when we log on to a public Wi-Fi network” a read.

Another way to take care of yourself is to learn some serious hangover cures from some of the most famous heavy drinkers. Did you know that Zelda Fitzgerald’s hangover cure was to go for a morning swim? Or that Brenda Frazier would take a bottle of Coca-Cola, shake it, and then mix it with cold milk?

In education, two particular articles generated a great deal of discussion this week. The first being David Edwards’ “American Schools Are Training Kids for A World That Doesn’t Exist” which discusses what Edwards feels must change in our education system. He argues that we will have to shift from teaching students to “learn and then do” to a different framework that stresses discovery and adapting to an ever-changing world.

As the world changes and we redefine norms, it is interesting to see how various institutions adapt to said change. The New York Times published  a piece this week called “When Women Become Men At Wellesley,” tracing the long histories of all-women’s colleges and how they have been adapting to accept those who identify outside of the normative gender binary.

With the newest rise of tech-start ups, we are also starting to drastically change the way that we do business. Claire Cain Miller’s “When Uber and Airbnb meet the Real World” discusses some of the most pressing issues that arise when companies that identify as online platforms do most of their work in the “office world.”

Speaking of things that are old, SNL is in its 40th season! If you are even a semi-regular viewer, you probably enjoy saying the Title Sequence out loud along with Don Pardo (the voice) since forever (1975). Since Don Pardo passed away this past summer, Darrell Hammond has agreed to be the new SNL announcer. Ever wondered how they film and put the whole SNL Title Sequence together? Read all about it here.

In entertainment this week, Ernest Baker wrote a piece in Grantland  called “I’m in Love with Shia LaBeouf.” Baker traces LaBeouf’s history of misdemeanors and faux pas and argues that he isn’t “a guy who’s been so consumed by his own celebrity that he has failed to execute as an artist. It’s more that he’s so consumed by his own artistry that it screws with his standing as a celebrity.”

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