During my senior year of high school, I got my first laptop. By today’s standards, it was slow and it was heavy. It hardly had any memory and it couldn’t even play a movie. But it had an ethernet port, and so, it had potential.
When I got to college, Firestone library was only a few hundred yards from my dorm room. But on a cold, wind-swept winter day, its collection and online database couldn’t have seemed farther. Fortunately, with a few keystrokes, and mouse clicks, its newspaper articles and scholarly journals were within reach. From the university network, I could also stream my Russian language files and download my French politics assignment. Early into freshman year, my laptop had become the epicenter of my college education.
Ten years later, Continue reading
Choosing a recipe is a lot like playing the Kevin Bacon game.
The Kevin Bacon game, or Six-Degrees of Kevin Bacon, centers around the small-world principle, or the idea that any two people are linked by a finite number of connections. With Kevin Bacon, the goal is to link him to any other actor using no more than six intermediary actors. For instance, Elvis and Kevin Bacon are separated by only one intermediary – Edward Asner, who appeared with Elvis in Change of Habit, and with Bacon in JFK. At last count, over one million actors can be linked to Bacon in fewer than six steps.
The principle can be applied to any number of disciplines or phenomena - from linking baseball players in various decades, to demonstrating the thought process in choosing a recipe. Continue reading