Entries in education (6)


Pet adoption and activism events

Adopt An Animal logoThough is still in its infancy, my calendar is gradually filling up with related happenings, and I'm realizing that this non-job is a lot of work! On Saturday, my wife and I attended the North Shore Animal League's "Tour for Life" at the Indianapolis Animal Care and Control center. (Before I forget, check out Shakie to the right, one of the adoptable dogs at IACC. He looks very similar to my dogs Aja and Diva, and it's so tempting to rescue him... but I can't, so maybe you should! Click his pic to go to his Petfinder page, or visit IACC to see him and take him for a walk.)(Updated on 4/29/08: Shakie is no longer available: he was adopted!) NSAL purports to be the world's largest no-kill shelter. I don't know if this is true, but either way, I didn't find out at Saturday's event. It was great to see a lot of no-kill animal rescue organizations represented at the event, but besides a small hand-written poster board and an NSAL pamphlet at one of the booths, I didn't see any presence of the League at all (and their blog currently doesn't have an Indy entry, so perhaps something happened and they couldn't show up.)Shakie - adoptable from IACC At any rate, I met some great people representing some worthwhile animal activism groups, adoption shelters and rescue organizations. I talked to Warren Patitz, president and founder of Move to Act, which has been one of the Humane Society of Indianapolis's most vocal critics (though critics of HSI aren't hard to find, especially after their decision to stop taking in stray animals - read this Nuvo article for the full story.) He told me some more about an upcoming No Kill seminar with author/activist Nathan Winograd, which should be quite interesting (I listened to Winograd's podcast, based on this blog post today; it definitely makes me rethink the comment I left on Nuvo's site in which I mentioned that even if HSI is making a mistake by not taking strays, at least their end goal of finding homes for pets is a noble one. I hope they're doing all they can to adopt out every animal.) So in addition to the Tour for Life and the No Kill seminar, I'll also be attending the HSI Mutt Strut this Sunday with Aja, Diva, Pixie (my dogs), my wife and my parents (and their dog.) I'm sure my dogs don't really care what HSI is doing as long as they get to be around hundreds of other excited, panting dogs. Speaking of dogs, I found it interesting that, at the NSAL event this past Saturday, my wife wanted to take home the smallest dog, Honeybunch (a beautiful little boxer-type mix from Rescue Farm), and I wanted to take home the largest (Titan, a gorgeous malamute from Indy Homes for Huskies, who arguably had the liveliest bunch of dogs available for adoption.) If only we had acres and acres of farmland so we could take in more dogs... When asked why he spent so much time and money talking about kindness to animals when there is so much cruelty to men, George Angell (founder of the Massachusetts SPCA in 1868) replied, “I am working at the roots. When human beings finally learn to honor the spirit of all beings most of the world’s problems will be solved."

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My conversation with the IU School of Informatics Alumni Association podcast

Indiana University School of Informatics Alumni association logoI was interviewed on November 19th of last year by John Blue for the Indiana University Informatics Alumni Association's "Bits of Informatics" podcast, and I'm pleased to say it's now online for your listening pleasure. Over lunch at Aesop's Tables on a cloudy, wintry day, John and I chatted about my telecommunications and new media experiences at the Bloomington and IUPUI campuses; surround-sound production and my 2-song Capstone presentation; how I met my wife in ballroom-dancing class; and List-en up, the Angie's List podcast, which was in its infancy last fall. Though my first name's spelled incorrectly (I'm sure John will fix it soon), I got a kick out of listening to the podcast episode. It's quite strange to hear my voice in a context outside of List-en up, but it was exciting to be the interviewee rather than be the interviewer. It was a bit nerve-wracking, as well — can you tell?

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List-en up! The Angie’s List podcast gets shout out at Bizinformer

Thanks goes out to Gregory Boop at business blog Bizinformer, who just wrote this post about educational opportunities via podcast, and what does and doesn't work. Apparently he thinks the "stories about consumer scams and customer service" in List-en up! The Angie's List podcast are good sources of information. If I'm lucky, he'll think's podcast (link opens in iTunes) is a good source, too. I'm thrilled to see Boop's post, and especially thrilled that the podcast is mentioned right alongside an NPR podcast. Not bad company to be recognized with, in my humble opinion. :)

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One way to choose your presidential candidate

USA Today Candidate Match Game screenshotHaving trouble figuring out which U.S. presidential candidate to root for? The USA Today "candidate match game" is an interesting way to resolve your candidate conundrum. Through a series of 11 questions, the game shows you the top three candidates for the next presidential election that best match your ideas and values. As you answer each question, colored bars change size to show which candidates match your position on key issues ranging from health care to the environment to the war in Iraq. At the end of the 11-question series, you're given the opportunity to weigh each category on how important it is to you compared to the others. This might be the most interesting part: adding substantial weight to certain categories significantly changed some of my top contenders. Unfortunately, none of the top three the game referred me to are even remotely considered true contenders in this tight race. Does this mean I'm vastly different from the average American voter/"caucus-goer"? Or does it mean that taking online polls isn't a great way to find answers to extremely important dilemmas?

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My generation: too demanding at work?

This CNN article is about my generation's increased expectations from our employers. Apparently, we want more money, more vacation time, and better benefits than past generations. Who wouldn't want those things? My opinion is that the young people of my generation (why's it called "Gen Y," anyway?!? How about "Gen Thundercats"?) were raised with certain expectations, and we're just following through on what was reinforced throughout our lives: in the US-of-A, a good education and hard work will land you a dream job, good pay, and good benefits for life. Unfortunately, even as corporate profits rise and the rich get richer, the economy's taken some severe hits (recession, anyone?) that are affecting my generation's ability to secure the jobs we once thought were ours for the taking. And with rising oil prices and the coming of peak oil sure to drastically affect the economy, the term "job security" might be going the way of Arctic Ice.

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