Monday, February 18, 2008

Lab 44: Our Last Meal!

Alas, the final meal would be quite difficult for me, as I am so very fond of food :( But it would indeed be a meal to remember, until my dying day...hehe. ok so its not funny at all, but anyway:

A Starbucks Java Chip Frappuccino
A Mellow Mushroom, magical mystery tour pizza
The BIGGEST COOKIE ON EARTH!! plus frosting of course


Thursday, February 14, 2008

Lab 24: Mock Election

We conducted a mock election of fifty students from NCSA to try to get a better picture of the opinions of the younger generation. We mostly polled high school students, and a large majority of the participants were female. After tallying our results, the winner was clear, Barack Obama! The female to male ratio was 36:14, so it is difficult to get an accurate image of how popular each candidate was for each gender, but here are the statistics:

Obama: 69% of females, 71% of males
Clinton: 11% of females, 7% of males
McCain: 2% of females, 0% of males
Huckabee: 2% of females, 7% of males
Undecided: 13% of females, 14% of males

Draw from this poll what you may, but there are only two real discrepancies between the genders. Clinton was more popular in general with females, and Huckabee was more popular with males. As this is just a small example from NCSA, and a very small example of the US, who knows what the elections will bring!


Lab 37: Response to TED talk Mr. Rosling

I don't know if this is the correct way to do this lab, but as I have no recording equipment words will be my medium.

My first reaction to this video was one of overwhelming hope. The fact that there are people who share my philosophy of life is quite an encouraging thing to remember. My second reaction was amazement that this little Swedish man swallowed a bayonet!

More specifically I loved how he could look at the facts, but still be optimistic. He made me realize that we have to not only look at the present world today but also look at the past. what he said about how Africa isn't a damned place. It's no worse than Europe was long ago. He also, after 20 years of research, has found out that the solution is fairly direct and easy.

I really enjoyed the special computer program that shows information based on all of the statistics of the past. On one level, it gives me a greater respect for math. on another level it greatly increases my respect for history as well. The visual aid (which was a really cool program)really showed us the honest truth about our country and other countries as well. It shows our country gravitating towards economic issues as opposed to social issues like health. I wonder what we would do if the general public had this information? Would they applaud? Would they be shocked? it is certainly something to think about.

That is what great minds do. create more things to think about. It's only the apathetic and the shallow who stop thinking. the great minds will keep on thinking up new things to think about. Now it is time for the great leaders to do something with those thoughts.

Wells Albritton

Lab 3: How much would you sell your right to vote?

One of the things we, as Americans, take great pride in is our liberty, and extensive list of rights. Among the most basic rights is the right to vote. Although the right to vote is one that many people in the world are not fortunate enough to enjoy, it is something that many Americans take for granted. Many people who are old enough to vote in this country simply don't make the time to get down to the polls, or aren't even registered to vote. Many people function with the idea that one vote simply doesn't make enough of a difference to put forth the effort. However, since so many people think that way, a huge portion of the population doesn't vote, and therefore, their ideas and opinions are not represented. We need to remember just how precious the right to vote is. In this lab, people were asked what they would sell their right to vote for. In the ideal, politically active world, nobody would ever sell their right to vote, but in the world of NCSA people were willing to sell their rights for some pretty interesting compensation.

Lab #14 Letter to Hero

Dear The Who,
I am writing to tell you that you are one of my many heroes. There are many reasons why, and I’d like to take this time to write some of them down.

Reason number one is that you are musicians. That immediately adds a layer of respect to anyone I meet because I am one myself and I also like to learn from other musicians about their kind of music. It helps me in my music compositions. And you are not only musicians, you are a rock band. Some people may claim that rock is a lesser form of music, but I disagree because you make people feel empowered.

That leads me to reason number two which is that you inspire people. People still play your music today because the message of power, of independence is something we long for, especially now. This is why you played at Woodstock, because you were able to send a message. People just can’t send messages anymore. Occasionally you get a good powerful and empowering song but it gets lost in the trash that we get barraged with day after day. “My Generation” “We won’t get fooled again” these are the songs that ring out the independence of youth. People think that youth is the only time to be rebellious, but I disagree. I feel that if adults were more rebellious the world would be in a better state than it is today.

One more thing: Your song “Baba O’ Riley” is one of the best songs in the world. Every time I hear it I get chills and I feel alright with the world. I know that’s not a logical reason or an intelligent reason, but it’s a good reason for me. It doesn’t work on an intellectual level, it’s a soul level. That’s why I like it.

Forever a fan,

Wells Albritton

Lab 29: Is the US a democracy or plutocracy?

The US calls itself a democracy and by the definition I believe we are for the most part. Majority rule, people calling the shots for the most part, more factors of a democracy fit the US than not, however, I believe that we are slowly becoming more and more plutocratic in that the majority of the people calling the shots are those that are more wealthy, and that a lot of what happens in this country is made possible by large corporations. In some ways we are dependent on wealthy and large businesses and in others they control us and in that sense we move closer and closer to plutocracy as a country. As of now though I would still argue that the US is still a democratic country and it is in our hands to keep it that way.

- Josh

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Lab 21: Chalk Politics

The young voting population has become more and more skeptical of the electoral system as the years go on. We decided to write this uplifting message on the sidewalk near the pickle to convince our generation to get out there and vote! Every vote does count. It is important that our revolutionary generation spread its ideas and vote for change.