What we really should be teaching: statistics, science, math, media, code

Continued">

The pandemic and our elections have revealed America’s weak spot: ignorance. Too many in the populace can’t reason, can’t think straight, can’t differentiate opinion from reality, can’t identify bias, and have no context for what they consume. “This is a consequence of the poor education system in our country.” That is the applause line. But … Continued

Every exam should be open book

Continued">

Now there is software to keep students who are taking exams remotely from checking online resources. This is stupid. In the 2020s, students’ ability to recall facts without access to resources is irrelevant. It in no way reflects what they will need to know or do in any future situation. Computer science students should take … Continued

Fear and integrity

Continued">

I knew I had to write about the George Floyd/Derek Chauvin verdict today, but I was afraid. It was the right verdict. That was obvious from the video. Derek Chauvin killed George Floyd. It should never have happened. But I was afraid of the trolls who will inevitably flood my comments with hate. And I … Continued

What does “strategic” mean?

Continued">

The word “strategic” appears in all sorts of analytical writing, but people seem to be confused about what it actually means. I share a simple definition, along with a test you can use for whether what you’re describing is truly strategic or not. There’s plenty of room for confusion here. When I started my 20-year … Continued

The future of book publishing, censorship, and “cancel culture”

Continued">

Simon & Schuster will not distribute a book by Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly, one of the policemen who shot Breonna Taylor. But crucially, this is not a publisher cancelling a book — Simon & Schuster is the book’s distributor. Let’s take a look at all the choke points in publishing and how their reaction to offensive … Continued

Count words, not pages

Continued">

I often ask writers I’m coaching how many words will be in the piece they are planning to write. They frequently don’t know. They say things like “It will be about three pages long.” You should get used to thinking in word counts rather than page counts. Why? Because word counts are the best measurement … Continued

Customer experience and trust: an AT&T case study

Continued">

When I worked closely with Harley Manning and Kerry Bodine, the authors of the customer experience book Outside In, I learned how most customer experience problems are rooted deep within corporate systems. That’s what happened to me this week in an interaction with AT&T. The odyssey of dropping a line from AT&T My son, a … Continued

The term “officer-involved shooting” sets a dangerous precedent

Continued">

A state trooper in Maryland shot a 16-year old man. ABC News described it as an “trooper-involved fatal shooting” — as if it somehow happened by itself with no agency on the part of the trooper. You can argue about whether the shooting was justified — since the person who was shot was wielding a … Continued