Tuesday, March 31, 2015

when you send your draft as attachment to me, remember to specify your name, & class time in the email heading!

in the email heading: 

Phi 2010 
Paper, 1st draft
John Doe
T,R, 9:15am 

if your email is not properly headed i will send it back. 

Friday, March 27, 2015

"when" and "how" to properly quote from a source

this is a great site (take a look).

Should you paraphrase or quote? 

In general, use direct quotations only if you have a good reason. Most of your paper should be in your own words. Also, it's often conventional to quote more extensively from sources when you're writing a humanities paper, and to summarize from sources when you're writing in the social or natural sciences--but there are always exceptions. In a literary analysis paper, for example, you''ll want to quote from the literary text rather than summarize, because part of your task in this kind of paper is to analyze the specific words and phrases an author uses.

In research papers, you should quote from a source

1. to show that an authority supports your point 
2. to present a position or argument to critique or comment on 
3. to include especially moving or historically significant language 
4. to present a particularly well-stated passage whose meaning would be lost or changed if paraphrased or summarized.  

You should summarize or paraphrase when what you want from the source is the idea expressed, and not the specific language used to express it you can express in fewer words what the key point of a source is.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

hereeeeee's the sausage!

i keep drawing "existence/sausages." sometimes you laugh, "there, crazy triff goes again."

well, i have a surprise for you:

here is a fractal curve: 


the number of segments after the nth iteration of the evolving figure is:



and the length of each segment is given by:


the capacity dimension is: 

 approx 1.36521

(Mandelbrot 1983, p. 48).

what are you looking at?

a minkowski sausage! also referred to as the minkowski cover of a curve.

so, next time you see me drawing an "existence/ sausage" on the board to make a point, you know i can back it up.   

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

why do humans have bigger brains? cooking food!!

the investigations of neurobiologist susana herculano at the federal university of rio de janeiro.
Humans have roughly three times as many neurons (86 billion) than our close primate cousins, like gorillas (33 billion) or chimpanzees (28 billion). The Brazilian scientists found that the number of neurons is directly linked to brain size, as well as to the amount of energy needed to feed the brain. Thus, humans need brains consume 20% of our body’s energy when resting, compared with 9% in other primates – a hefty cost. This begged the question, however: from where did our ancestors get all this extra energy to grow such a large brain in a relatively short evolutionary time frame?
cooked food!

yes, but what did they eat?

the answer is here.

Friday, March 20, 2015

you produced the discussion, now get ready for your paper's first draft in 2 weeks......

T, R classes: april 2

T, class april 9

MWF "honors" classes: april 6

this first draft you will send via email to my mdc inbox: 


i'm reading your discussion assignments & here is the problem: your discussions are as choppy as march ice

in general the overall content of your arguments is pretty choppy + ideas are abruptly presented.

don't be frustrated. this is normal. it's a common problem known as style, which comprises, clarity & coherence, which yields elegance.

this happens because generally you've copied/edited most of your points (yes, you have, and i know it). and so, there is a disconnect between the various parts of your discussion. the paragraphs in your paper need to be connected by an internal thread. you need to connect with connectives. what am i talking about?

proper transition marks.

they will solve all the organization problems but they make your arguments a lot clearer and easier to follow.

let's say your first paragraph has your thesis

P1: Thesis

after you state the thesis and justify it, comes the counterargument with its paragraph, but you just cannot start writing the counter without properly transitioning to your counterargument.

Despite the previous argument, there are reasons to think that...

the phrase in red above is a transition that needs to preface your second paragraph.

here are some examples of transitions:

1. transitions of similarity:
also, in the same way, (just as ... so too), likewise, similarly

2. transitions of contrast:
but, however, in spite of, (on the one hand ... on the other hand), nevertheless, nonetheless, notwithstanding, in contrast, on the contrary, still, yet, despite the previous argument...

3. transitions of example:
for example, for instance, namely, specifically, to illustrate transitions of emphasis even, indeed, in fact, of course, truly

4.  transitions of cause and effect
accordingly, consequently, hence, so, therefore, thus 

5. transitions of evidence
additionally, again, also, and, as well, besides, equally important, further, furthermore, in addition, moreover, then

6. transitions of summary or conclusion
finally, in a word, in brief, briefly, in conclusion, in the end, in the final analysis, on the whole, thus, to conclude, to summarize, in sum, to sum up, in summary

obviously, every time you move from a T -C or C-T you need transitions of contrast.  

to be continued

Thursday, March 19, 2015

it seems there's no factor of causation between fast-food and obesity

read this article in the los angeles times.

this is for all of you exploring the fast-food vs slow food topic. is there a counter to this study?

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

if you are black you should consider becoming a philosopher!


because we need role models!

the MACHOS and WIMPS of physics

physics tells us that 84% of the universe is made up of MACHOS and WIMPS.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

3 reviews for midterm exam, monday, march 9, one review tuesday, march 10

monday, 9 two reviews by four student assistants.

at 10am, conducted by derlin martinez & taga turnier @ idea center, building 2, third floor.

at noon, conducted by christopher acevedo @ idea center, building 2, third floor.

at 2:30 pm. conducted by jeronimo martinez @ building 1, library. 

tuesday 10 (for tuesday 5:40pm class)

at 3pm conducted by anthony prats & julia wirmola @ building 2, 3rd floor (computer courtyard)

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

student assistants, midterm is next week, any ideas?

students assistants should be creative at this point and help their classes for the midterm exam. we need to takes the c's to b's and b's to a's.

here is juan padilla's facebook link, (padilla is a student assistant in my t 5:40pm class).

we need more social media efforts like this, c'mon, you're the social media generation!

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

jibo the family robot

watch this conference by cynthia breazeal, founder and director of the personal robots group at MIT’s media lab. 

there is also care-o-bot (if you can afford it)

a black hole the size of a billion suns

this gargantuan creature is (so far) the oldest black hole in the universe. 
The newfound black hole and galaxy are meas­ured as lying 12.8 bil­lion light years from Earth. Since a light-year is the dis­tance light trav­els in a year, that would mean that from Earth we see the gal­axy as it was that many bil­lion years ago.
ask yourself, what happens inside it? where does all the stuff the black hole swallows go? we're still grappling with those questions.