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Kelly J. Cooper

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Mobility and Autonomy [Mar. 13th, 2014|08:57 pm]
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[mood |thoughtfulthoughtful]

This is an introductory video (4:48 minutes long) and website introducing the Go Baby Go! project and the idea of modifying ride-along toys to be used by kids with various movement-related disabilities.

http://www.nationswell.com/babiesdrivingracecars/

It seems to me that our community would be a good one to churn a bunch of these out. I wonder how we might do that... Cuz they look WAY more fun than wheelchairs.
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Massachusetts, You Aggravate Me! [Mar. 5th, 2014|01:38 pm]
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According to the MA Supreme Court out today (Wednesday, 5 March 2014), "up-skirt" videos and pictures are not covered under Massachusetts' "Peeping Tom" laws, dammit!

Boston Magazine does a nice job of hitting the highlights here:

http://www.bostonmagazine.com/news/blog/2014/03/05/mbta-court-ruling-upskirt-photos/

PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE contact your Senator & Representative and tell them you want the law changed to reflect new & emerging technologies!

For my Somerville peeps, if you don't have your Senator & Rep emails handy, go here & fill out the form with your address & you'll get delicious LINKY goodness to their web pages where their emails are handy:

http://www.wheredoivotema.com/bal/MyElectionInfo.aspx
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The King In Yellow [Feb. 19th, 2014|02:03 am]
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If you're watching TRUE DETECTIVE on HBO and are curious about THE KING IN YELLOW written by Robert W. Chambers and published in 1895, you can grab it for free in a variety of formats (including Kindle) from Project Gutenberg here:

http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/8492

I didn't know PG did Kindle until I went looking for the link to write this post. I was just gonna mention I got it for free from Amazon:

http://www.amazon.com/King-Yellow-Robert-William-Chambers-ebook/dp/B00847UYWA

It's actually a collection of short stories, four of which include references to THE KING IN YELLOW (which is a play discussed and quoted within the stories). If you only want to read those four because old weird stories aren't really your thing, check out the Wikipedia page for details:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_King_in_Yellow

HP Lovecraft considered Robert W. Chambers one of his biggest influences & incorporated some of Chambers' materials into his works. Robert W. Chambers in turn was influenced by Ambrose Bierce (of THE DEVIL'S DICTIONARY fame). In particular, he seemed to like the names Hastur & Carcossa & lifted them from 2 different Bierce short stories (although Wikipedia claims it was just the names & the stories are unrelated or at least don't appear to be an influence).
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Defining Anosognosia [Feb. 5th, 2014|12:50 am]
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"It may well be our brains are wired up to be slightly more optimistic than they should be." - V.S. Ramachandran

From part 4 of "The Anosognosic’s Dilemma: Something’s Wrong but You’ll Never Know What It Is"

Part 1 is here: http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/06/20/the-anosognosics-dilemma-1

...and part 4, where the quote resides, is here:

http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/06/23/the-anosognosics-dilemma-somethings-wrong-but-youll-never-know-what-it-is-part-4/

Also, part 3 is absolutely terrifying in terms of its implications about the causes of WWII.
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TRUTH: RED, WHITE & BLACK [Jan. 27th, 2014|12:30 am]
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Finally got a chance to read TRUTH: RED, WHITE & BLACK, the graphic novel from Robert Morales and Kyle Baker. Tony brought in a kinda banged up used copy and priced it at $24.95. I snapped it up because I've been curious about it for years and years, but haven't been able to put my hands on it. (For the record, I paid full price & didn't take my employee discount.)

It's an... enrichment of the Captain America origin story. It's a story of three families, it's the story of race relations in America, it's a World War II story, and it's the story of 300 African American men, soldiers who were given the super soldier serum in various experimental doses order to perfect it. And it's the story of those very few who survived the process. It's a superhero origin story by way of Tuskegee.

There's so much packed into it that I had to read it twice, then pick through different scenes to make sure I understood continuity. I'm not sure if that's a critique of the writing or a wish that it had been a little longer or allowed to have more detail. It's beautiful -- Kyle Baker's art is a joy to see and he uses a very loose line in this. And it's deeply affecting -- from the racism, through the eugenics, and on to the Holocaust -- this is some very intense stuff. And it all hangs together well. It's definitely stood the test of time thus far as it was originally printed in 2004 but could've come out yesterday.

I wish it were still in print. I think it's cowardly to let it languish.
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Friends Are Awesome! [Dec. 13th, 2013|08:26 pm]
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I love my friends SO MUCH! I worked ~45 hours of MYP-related time this week (the vast majority as shift work) and another 4-6 hours of consulting time for a client and I'm pretty sure I used up all the brains I had available sometime late Wednesday, maybe early Thursday.

But then rmd loaned me some neurons so I could solve a problem and later i_leonardo pointed out how awesome it was that I was _able_ to do that. And their perspectives made it (my perspective, my aches, my spacey brain) so much better that I'm a little verklempt.
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Books and Comics ON SALE!!! [Dec. 6th, 2013|10:12 pm]
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The Harvard Book Store's Winter Warehouse Event is tomorrow and Sunday, 10am-6pm.

The Million Year Picnic will be there with plenty of graphic novels, all 15% off. There will be other vendors as well.

Please stop by and visit with me & Tony Davis!!!

http://www.harvard.com/event/our_winter_warehouse_sale_2013/
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Editing LaTeX Files [Nov. 10th, 2013|12:27 am]
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My nerds, does anyone here edit .tex files? If so, what editor do you use? Will it allow you to mark certain words in different colors?

I ask because I need to edit .tex files for professorial types writing journal papers and I'd like a way to make and mark changes.

I installed TeXmacs and it's nice enough, but when I formatted the color of a given word to red, that formatting vanished after saving, closing, and reopening the file (although the words I changed remained changed; only the red went away).

(For them what do not know of which I speak, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LaTeX is a good primer.)
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A Long Damn Day, With Comics [Oct. 20th, 2013|01:09 am]
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NINE hours of loading the truck, driving, unloading the truck, selling, loading the truck, driving, taking pictures, taking care of the talent, unloading the truck (well, that was mostly Adam, thank goodness), and more driving. Woof.

Context might be helpful, I guess. Jeff Smith, creator of the BONE series and the RASL series of graphic novels, along with a couple of one-off projects, participated in a Q&A at the Maynard Public Library (first he answered questions from the library's director, and then from the audience, which was 50% kids). We sold books out front.

I got good at using Square (the credit card processing doodad that hooks into smarty phones and talks to a nice little app). Last night I loaded my library at Square with the nearly 20 books of Jeff's we were selling and also typed up a cheat sheet in Excel of all the books, prices, prices with taxes, and room to tick off the number of copies sold. Tony handled cash, I did CC's, and we each had our own sheet.

Then we drove Jeff back to Cambridge, got him some coffee, and set him up signing books for folks from 5-7pm at the MYP. Then I drove Jeff and Tony and friends to a restaurant & headed home to take Tylenol before my head exploded.

Terrifying but successful day, I think.
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Playing With Data [Oct. 2nd, 2013|01:38 am]
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This is probably a dumb question, but I'm wondering if someone sees something I'm missing. SNIPCollapse )

UGH. Busy brain is busy.
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