dylan tweney

if you're bored, you're not paying attention

Month: February 2008

Why people turn evil, from Stanford to Abu Ghraib.

This is one of the most difficult stories I’ve edited in a long time: How Good People Turn Evil, From Stanford to Abu Ghraib.

Kim Zetter did the interview with Philip Zimbardo, a psychologist who is famous/notorious for his 1971 “Stanford prison experiment,” a psychology study in which some students were assigned to play “prison guards” and others “prisoners.” The experiment quickly spiraled out of control, with the prison guards — and Zimbardo himself — becoming increasingly detached from any moral compass, forcing the prisoners to strip, perform humiliating sexual acts, and the like.… Read the rest

Apostrophes and semicolons.

small version of semicolon stickerFor people who love punctuation, there’s always something to grieve about: Humans have trouble understanding semicolons, and computers can’t handle apostrophes. Fortunately, there is the Semicolon Appreciation Society for those of us who know and love this mark.

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Book Review: What Would MacGyver Do?

Brendan Vaughan’s collection of real-life tales of ingenuity, What Would MacGyver Do?, recently republished by Penguin, has a great premise: It’s a collection of true stories featuring the kind of situational hacking (bombs defused with paperclips, sheds converted into aircraft) that the TV show MacGyver made famous in the 1980s.… Read the rest

Where I’ve been (on the radio and TV).

Thanks to the hard-working PR team at Wired, I’ve been in the media several times in the past few days:

Business News Network – a short video segment Friday about the Microsoft bid for Yahoo (video is near the bottom of that page, requires a Windows machine, and will only be available for a week)
NPR’s Weekend Edition Saturday – a few minutes explaining where all the missing iPhones have gone (to China, probably)
KQED’s Forum with Michael Krasny – an hourlong call-in radio show about the Microsoft-Yahoo bid, with Business Week’s Sarah Lacy and Cnet’s Michael Kanellos
WBUR’s On Point – another hourlong talk show, which I was on for about 10 minutes, together with Kevin Delaney of the WSJ and Nicholas Carr of the Harvard Business Review.… Read the rest

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