It is with a heavy heart that I report that Joanna Russ has passed away. Perhaps it is fortunate that her hospice care was not prolonged. We have lost an imaginative author and fierce scholar. She will be missed. Read more: Locus Online News » Joanna Russ 1937-2011.
BBC America’s HD coverage of today’s wedding between Prince William and Kate Middleton is impressive. The detail is amazing and the cinematography is very smart. In part, the terrific shots are made possible by an insane number of HD cameras on remote gimbals. What make and model cameras did they use?
Say what you will about royalty, but this is a very nice wedding. However, I prefer the homespun flavor of Y’s and my wedding presided by the Rev. Seth Johnson. I don’t know how Y and I would have handled thousands of adoring subjects cheering us on!
Also, which major event today has more total support staff: the Royal Wedding or the Space Shuttle Endeavour launch?
Mark Warbington, my friend and a Doctor Who expert, sent me an email earlier today about the passing of Elisabeth Sladen, the actress who played one of the most well-known and loved Doctor Who companions Sarah Jane Smith. Sladen established the companion as a more important role in the Doctor Who universe than a didactic role. Her popularity also led to her reprising her role as Sarah Jane Smith beyond her first work in the Doctor Who universe as companion to the third and fourth Doctors (Jon Pertwee and Tom Baker, respectively) from 1973-1976. She played Sarah Jane Smith in subsequent Doctor Who television and radio dramas, and she starred in the spin-off series The Sarah Jane Adventures. Sladen will be missed.
The Wikipedia articles on Sladen and Sarah Jane provide a wealth of information on her life and work. Naomi Alderman has a nice reflection on Sladen in the Guardian here. Dan Martin contributed her obituary in the Guardian here.
Ars Technica is featuring a story today about a pending lawsuit against Georgia State University by publishers over the university’s use of course e-reserves. In academia, students might have some books to buy for each course, but professors might also give students some readings via handouts (okay by fair use doctrine). With the advent of personal computers and the Internet, universities have increasingly shifted toward a model of providing hosting for professors’ course reading handouts. So, instead of having the university or the professor pay for handouts, each student may download the readings to his or her computer and then them on-screen or print them out to read. Due to some professors giving students more and more materials to read rather than purchase or pay a licensing fee for a course packet (essentially an anthology of readings put together by the professor), some publishers have decided to sue one university in particular, Georgia State University, for their extensive e-reserves for students. The judge presiding over the case has already dismissed certain claims, but the publishers made an amended claim of contributory copyright infringement, which has yet to be resolved. This case could maintain the status quo or restrict options that professors have to put materials in the hands of students who otherwise might not or cannot purchase the readings that they need. Read the full coverage here:
My friend and colleague Aidan-Paul Canavan of the University of Liverpool alerted me to this awesome online auction called Genre for Japan. It ends Sunday, so you will need to act fact and place your bid in the comments on the site. The auctions are by science fiction, fantasy, and horror writers and publishers with the proceeds going to the Red Cross in Japan. Of note, there are several author critiques available. Happy bidding!
I noticed today on the main English NHK website that the NHK offers a daily dose of Fukushima Daiichi ‘data’ here. This ‘data’ is provided by Tokyo Electric Power Co. TEPCO, and the data, at least the parts in English, are divorced from any reference to what precipitated the necessity of this data. This made me curious about what other groups were collecting data and how was that data being framed in reference to the earthquake and tsunami that occurred in Japan.
The Japan Atomic Engery Agency (JAEA) posts daily reports on “Situation and response of JAEA to the earthquake in northeastern Japan” here. Their reference is to earthquake in the title, but the reports specifically call what is going on at Fukushima an ‘accident.’
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is also keeping a log of what they call an ‘accident’ here.
The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission posted a review of what they call an ‘event’ here.
There is something between the data, accident, and event that needs further study. Have you come across other sources of data on the nuclear disaster? How are other non-media sources framing what is going on in Japan following the 9.0 magnitude earthquake?
Governor John Kasich of Ohio couldn’t wait to sign the Republican-led anti-public union bill known as SB 5, which restricts the collective bargaining rights of over 100,000 public employees including teachers. Analysis of the overwhelming public opposition of the bill is available here on the Daily Kos. The Kent Stater has a good write-up of the vote today including how many signatures will be needed to initiate a referendum here. Kasich signed the bill at 7:20pm tonight according to WYTV here.