Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Hawaii governor: I was slow to correct the bogus missile scare because I forgot my Twitter password; Vox, January 23, 2018

Emily Stewart, Vox; 

Hawaii governor: I was slow to correct the bogus missile scare because I forgot my Twitter password

"Hawaii’s ballistic missile scare earlier this month took the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency 38 minutes to correct. It took the state’s governor 17 minutes to tell everyone it was fake on Twitter — which, while faster, still isn’t ideal.

Now we know the explanation: Gov. David Ige didn’t know his Twitter password.

Ige, after delivering his State of the State address on Monday, told reporters the reason it took him nearly 20 minutes to tweet, “There is NO missile threat,” is that he didn’t have his ducks in a row, password-wise. “I have to confess that I don’t know my Twitter account log-ons and the passwords, so certainly that’s one of the changes I made,” the Hawaii Democrat told the Honolulu Star Advertiser. “I’ve been putting that on my phone so that we can access the social media directly.”"

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Every College Student's Dream: An 8 AM Class On Patents; Wired, January 20, 2018

David Kline, Wired; Every College Student's Dream: An 8 AM Class On Patents

[Kip Currier: Money quote from this Wired article making a very persuasive quantitative and qualitative argument for more Intellectual Property (IP) undergraduate courses--

 "...IP literacy is not just for lawyers anymore."

As a related aside: Reflecting an increasing student desire and need for IP education, two out of every three terms per academic year since 2009, I've been teaching an IP elective course to graduate students at Pitt's School of Information Sciences (now the School of Computing and Information). 

Additionally, in IP guest talks I've given for undergraduate students participating in Pitt's groundbreaking iSchool Inclusion Institute, it's been exciting to see first-hand many students' interest in augmenting their IP awareness...as well as more and more students creating and leveraging their own IP works!]

"Nor is there any doubt that IP plays a pivotal role in powering today’s knowledge economy, where intangible assets such as IP represent more than 80 percent of the market value of all publicly traded companies. Indeed, intellectual-property-intensive industries now account for a surprising 38.2 percent of total US GDP, according to a recent US Department of Commerce report. That’s more than $6 trillion a year, more than the GDP of any other nation except China. IP-based industries are also responsible for 30 percent, of national employment, or roughly 40 million jobs.

Yet despite IP's enormous role in the US economy, few universities offer any sort of course on IP to undergraduates. Among the first is the University of Southern California, which last fall launched a course on the basic workings of patents, copyrights, trademarks and trade secrets. The new course, through the Greif Center for Entrepreneurial Studies within USC’s Marshall School of Business, aims to train tomorrow’s leaders in the skills they need to navigate our increasingly IP-driven economy...

Put another way, just as tech literacy was once a requirement only for IT specialists but is now considered almost as essential as verbal literacy, IP literacy is not just for lawyers anymore.
All of which calls to mind that scene from the 1967 movie The Graduate, when Mr. McGuire (Walter Brooke) offers career advice to a young Benjamin Braddock (Dustin Hoffman)?
“Plastics!” he says. “There’s a great future in plastics.”

Half a century later, USC is demonstrating that intellectual property has become the new watchword for almost any career of the future."

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Comey to teach ethical leadership course at College of William & Mary; Politico, January 19, 2018

Aubree Eliza Weaver, Politico; 

Comey to teach ethical leadership course at College of William & Mary

"Former FBI Director James Comey is joining the faculty at his alma mater, the College of William & Mary, and will teach a course on ethical leadership starting this fall, the school announced Friday morning.

“I am thrilled to have the chance to engage with William & Mary students about a vital topic — ethical leadership,” Comey said in a statement. “Ethical leaders lead by seeing above the short term, above the urgent or the partisan, and with a higher loyalty to lasting values, most importantly to the truth.”

“Building and maintaining that kind of leadership, in both the private sector and government, is the challenge of our time,” Comey said."

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Mike O’Neill Wants You to Put Away Your Phone; New York Times, April 28, 2017

Adam Bryant, Corner Office, New York Times; 

Mike O’Neill Wants You to Put Away Your Phone

This interview with Mike O’Neill, chief executive of BMI, a music-rights management company, was conducted and condensed by Adam Bryant...

"What are some key leadership lessons you’ve learned?

You can’t treat everybody the same. People are different. You can have a tendency to think everyone’s going to receive information or react to it like you would, and they’re not. That was a key insight for me."

Monday, January 15, 2018

The future belongs to those with ‘soft skills’; Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, January 14, 2018

Gregg Behr, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette; The future belongs to those with ‘soft skills’

"As the world changes in rapid, unpredictable ways, tomorrow’s most successful learners will “need more than the ability to read, write and do arithmetic,” according to researchers writing in the journal The Future of Children. To thrive, they’ll also need to understand and manage their emotions, set and achieve goals, feel and show concern for others, establish positive relationships and make responsible decisions.
Now, many educators and parents are leading the charge to restore these skills — often called social-emotional or 21st-century skills — to their deserved role in a learner’s development...
A review of 82 social-emotional learning programs, conducted last year by a team of international researchers, found that students with soft-skills training scored 13 points higher academically than their peers — a boost that persisted well into adulthood. So, perhaps it’s no surprise that 90 percent of educators on the front lines think soft skills are both beneficial and teachable, according to The Aspen Institute’s National Commission on Social, Emotional, and Academic Development.
These benefits aren’t limited to academics, either. Writing in The Washington Post, author and educator Cathy N. Davidson recalled how Project Oxygen, a 2013 analysis of Google’s human-resources data, “shocked everyone” by concluding that, among the eight most important qualities of Google’s top employees, expertise in STEM fields — science, technology, engineering and math — “comes in dead last. The seven top characteristics of success at Google are all soft skills.” In fact, 80 percent of employers said they value such skills above all."

Duquesne University is embracing the future: We will help reinvent the region while instilling core values in the next generation of leaders; Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, January 14, 2018

Ken Gormley, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette; Duquesne University is embracing the future: We will help reinvent the region while instilling core values in the next generation of leaders

"Ken Gormley is a former dean of the Duquesne University School of Law and has served as the university’s president since July 2016...

As the only Catholic, Spiritan university in the United States, we have a duty to address troublesome trends. Fewer students than ever enter college today with foundations in religious faith or possessing core values. Fewer students than ever have grown up in close-knit communities where respectful treatment of others is practiced and moral compasses are shaped.
Technology is amazing. Yet young people raised on smartphones, text messaging and Instagram often have stunted social skills and difficulty interacting with others. Shout-fests on cable TV and insensitive postings on social media have become the norm, in lieu of productive social discourse. If society is going to get a grip on today’s crisis of moral ambiguity, universities like Duquesne must play a larger and more creative role in shaping responsible, ethical leaders.

We also have a duty to help reinvent Western Pennsylvania...

Duquesne faces more daunting responsibilities than ever, and we’re prepared to shoulder them. We recently completed a five-year strategic plan that doubles down on Duquesne’s historic role in this region. Duquesne has a rich tradition of serving people of all faiths and backgrounds. We welcomed African-American students, Jewish students and women to our campus more than 100 years ago — long before most universities opened their doors to such diverse groups."

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Bad behavior and rise in ethical dilemmas are an advantage to Denver’s Convercent, which just raised $25M; Denver Post, December 19, 2017

Tamara Chuang, Denver Post; 

Bad behavior and rise in ethical dilemmas are an advantage

 to Denver’s Convercent, which just raised $25M

"Ethics software developer Convercent said Tuesday it raised $25 million in new funding. The investment was led by Rho Ventures.

The Denver firm has seen interest in its software surge as tech companies and others battle ethical issues that went public, such as Uber’s problems with workplace harassment. Uber is reportedly a new client. Convercent’s software can pop up a reminder to employees when they’re facing a potential issue, such as rules that kick in when traveling overseas. But closer to home, companies are reaching out to Convercent in the wake of celebrity sexual harassment scandals."

5 Signs Your Organization Might Be Headed for an Ethics Scandal; Harvard Business Review, December 18, 2017

Alison Taylor, Harvard Business Review; 

5 Signs Your Organization Might Be Headed for an Ethics Scandal

"Corporations often approach ethics as an individual problem, designing oversight systems to identify the “bad apples” before they can turn the organization into a “rotten barrel.” But at places like Wells FargoFIFA, and Volkswagen, we can’t fully describe what happened by reading profiles of John Stumpf, Sepp Blatter, or Martin Winterkorn. Bad apple explanations also fail to explain the string of ethical crises at Uber, the long-term impunity of powerful men who sexually harass colleagues, or any of the other ethics scandals we’ve seen this year. Rather, we see a “tone at the top” underpinned by widespread willful blindness, toxic incentives, and mechanisms that deflect scrutiny. These conditions seem to persist and metastasize. They replicate despite changes in leadership and in management systems."

Friday, August 25, 2017

With Trump White House, Are Ethics Issues Becoming Just Part Of The Scenery?; NPR, August 25, 2017

Peter Overby, NPR; With Trump White House, Are Ethics Issues Becoming Just Part Of The Scenery?

"Kathleen Clark, the ethics-law professor, said all administrations come to grips with ethics, but normally they see a pro-ethics stance as politically smart. She said the Trump White House appears to have a different perspective.

"The question isn't, 'How can we use this to strengthen our hand politically?' " she said. "It's instead, 'How can we avoid application of any restriction, anything that would get in the way of our financially benefiting and exploiting government office?' And that is unprecedented.""

Saturday, August 19, 2017

One more lesson from Charlottesville: Our comedians are more ethical than our president; Salon, August 19, 2017

Sophia A. McClennen, Salon; One more lesson from Charlottesville: Our comedians are more ethical than our president

"This week we have now seen another key feature of satire: It offers ethical responses to unethical actions.
The ethics of satire is often hard to see, especially because comedy can so often be crass and crude...
This is all to say that comedians are unlikely moral leaders. And yet in the Trump era, when literally every value in our nation seems to have been turned upside down, we are now seeing comedians play an increasingly larger role as champions of good versus evil.
This is why as Meyers ended his monologue he directly went after Trump for failing to uphold his moral obligations as president of our nation:
The leader of our country is called the president because he’s supposed to preside over society. His job is to lead, to cajole, to scold, to correct our path, to lift up what is good about us and to absolutely and unequivocally and immediately condemn what is evil in us. And if he does not do that, if he does not preside over our society, then he is not a president. You can stand for a nation or you can stand for a hateful movement. You can’t do both. And if you don’t make the right choice, I am confident that the American voter will.
Meyers wasn’t just scolding Trump for failing at his job; he was also showing his audience what real leadership looks like." 

Friday, August 18, 2017

Trump is Sarah Palin but better at it; Washington Post, August 17, 2017

Jane Coaston, Washington Post; Trump is Sarah Palin but better at it

"His fans weren’t dissuaded by his past support for Democrats (including his 2016 opponent), or his lies, or his personal liberalism, or his crudeness, or his long history of mistreating small-business owners of the kind he claimed to champion, because his fans weren’t voting for Trump. They were voting for what Trump meant to them personally.

In turn, his base will not leave him, because to abandon Trump would not be to abandon the current president but to leave behind deeply held beliefs of their own. His popularity is cultural, not political, resilient to the notions of truth and fiction and to Trump’s own failures. Even after his presidency, regardless of whether it ends in impeachment or in two consecutive terms in office, the image will remain undaunted.

At the 2015 Freedom Summit in Iowa, Palin gave a 35-minute speech described as confusing at best and career-ending at worst by conservative writers and commentators in attendance. The Washington Examiner’s Byron York even wrote that Palin “made a guy like Trump look like a serious presidential candidate.” How appropriate then that the student became the master."

There is a shriveled emptiness where Trump’s soul once resided; Washington Post, August 17, 2017

Michael Gerson, Washington Post; There is a shriveled emptiness where Trump’s soul once resided

"Every additional day of standing next to Trump — physically and metaphorically — destroys reputation and diminishes moral standing. The rationalizations are no longer credible. But resignation, in contrast, would be a contribution to the common good — showing that principled leadership in service to the Constitution is still possible, even in the age of Trump. When loyalty requires corruption, it is time to leave."

Trump is a cancer on the presidency; Washington Post, August 18, 2017

Jonathan Capehart, Washington Post; Trump is a cancer on the presidency

"Trump must be held accountable for his false moral equivalency and his willingness to exalt the treasonous Confederacy at the expense of our union. The “harsh penalty” that escaped him in 2011 must be visited upon him now. People of good conscience must speak up and stay vocal. More Republicans must stand up to him now and do so boldly. They have to put the country before party or some longed-for policy that pales in comparison to the preservation of our ideals. And if Trump succeeds in surviving this unbelievable affront to all we say we are, he will not be to blame. We will."

Donald Trump has no grasp of what it means to be president; Economist, August 19, 2017

Economist; Donald Trump has no grasp of what it means to be president

"Mr Trump is not a white supremacist. He repeated his criticism of neo-Nazis and spoke out against the murder of Heather Heyer (see our Obituary). Even so, his unsteady response contains a terrible message for Americans. Far from being the saviour of the Republic, their president is politically inept, morally barren and temperamentally unfit for office."

Trump Makes Caligula Look Pretty Good; New York Times, August 18, 2017

Paul Krugman, New York Times; Trump Makes Caligula Look Pretty Good

"Anyone with eyes — eyes not glued to Fox News, anyway — has long realized that Trump is utterly incapable, morally and intellectually, of filling the office he holds. But in the past few days things seem to have reached a critical mass...

For here’s the situation: Everyone in Washington now knows that we have a president who never meant it when he swore to defend the Constitution. He violates that oath just about every day and is never going to get any better.

The good news is that the founding fathers contemplated that possibility and offered a constitutional remedy: Unlike the senators of ancient Rome, who had to conspire with the Praetorian Guard to get Caligula assassinated, the U.S. Congress has the ability to remove a rogue president."

The Week When President Trump Resigned; New York Times, August 18, 2017

Frank Bruni, New York Times; The Week When President Trump Resigned

"Trump resigned the presidency already — if we regard the job as one of moral stewardship, if we assume that an iota of civic concern must joust with self-regard, if we expect a president’s interest in legislation to rise above vacuous theatrics, if we consider a certain baseline of diplomatic etiquette to be part of the equation.

By those measures, it’s arguable that Trump’s presidency never really began...

On Tuesday he “relinquished what presidents from Roosevelt to Reagan have regarded as a cardinal duty of their job: set a moral course to unify the nation,” wrote The Times’s Mark Landler, in what was correctly labeled a news analysis and not an opinion column. Landler’s assessment, echoed by countless others, was as unassailable as it was haunting, and it was prompted in part by Trump’s perverse response to a question that it’s hard to imagine another president being asked: Did he place the neo-Nazis in Charlottesville, Va., on the same “moral plane” as those who showed up to push back at them?

“I’m not putting anybody on a moral plane,” Trump answered.

Indeed he wasn’t. And if you can’t put anybody on a moral plane, you can’t put yourself on Air Force One."

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Trump again blamed ‘both sides’ in Charlottesville. Here’s how politicians are reacting.; Washington Post, August 16, 2017

Tim Scott R
Aug. 15, 9:43 p.m. 
The moral authority of this nation rests upon clarity of convictions & actions that reinforce our commitment to the greater good for all! My party&our nation must stand united against hate, racism& groups/individuals who want to reject the truth that we are all from one blood.
Kamala Harris D
Aug. 15, 4:26 p.m. 
“Many sides” suggests that there is no right side or wrong side, that all are morally equal. But I reject that. It's not hard to spot the wrong side here. They're the ones with the torches and the swastikas.
Marco Rubio R
Aug. 15, 5:27 p.m. 
The organizers of events which inspired & led to #charlottesvilleterroristattack are 100% to blame for a number of reasons [Later tweet:] Mr. President,you can't allow #WhiteSupremacists to share only part of blame. They support idea which cost nation & world so much pain
Patty Murray D
Aug. 15, 5:38 p.m. 
There is only one side. White supremacists, KKK, neo-Nazis, & hate groups have no place in our country. The President needs to say that.
Paul Ryan R
Aug. 15, 6:01 p.m. 

We must be clear. White supremacy is repulsive. This bigotry is counter to all this country stands for. There can be no moral ambiguity."

Hundreds mourn for Heather Heyer, killed during Nazi protest in Charlottesville; Washington Post, August 16, 2017

Ellie SilvermanArelis R. Hern├índez and Steve Hendrix, Washington Post; Hundreds mourn for Heather Heyer, killed during Nazi protest in Charlottesville

"“Thank you for making the word ‘hate’ more real,” said her law office coworker Feda Khateeb-Wilson. “But...thank you for making the word ‘love’ even stronger.”

In a packed old theater in the center of the quiet college town that has become a racial battleground, those who knew Heyer turned her memorial into a call for both understanding and action.

“They tried to kill my child to shut her up, but guess what, you just magnified her,” said her mother Susan Bro, sparking a cheering ovation from the packed auditorium, where Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D) and Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va) were among the crowd.

“No father should ever have to do this,” said Mark Heyer, his voice breaking on a stage filled with flowers and images of the 32-year-old paralegal who was killed Saturday when a car plowed into a crowd of protestors gathered to oppose a white supremacist rally."

August Wilson’s Pittsburgh; New York Times, August 15, 2017

John L. Dorman, New York Times; August Wilson’s Pittsburgh

"The stacks of the main Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh soon became Wilson’s new classroom, nurturing his intellectual curiosity. I walked throughout the building, imagining Wilson using the large reading rooms and admiring the architecture. With the words “Free to the People” etched in stone across the entrance, the ornate library, which opened in 1895, complements the nearby 42-story Gothic Revival Cathedral of Learning at the University of Pittsburgh.

Back in the Hill District, the local Carnegie Library branch has a community room dedicated to Wilson. During my visit it was packed, filled with patrons playing chess. There is that stool salvaged from Eddie’s restaurant, a large map of the Hill District and notably, a high school diploma issued to Wilson by the library.

August Wilson was 60 years old when he died of liver cancer. His memorial service, held at the grand Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Hall and Museum in Oakland, was followed by a jazz-infused procession through the Hill District.

“When Wynton Marsalis played ‘Danny Boy’ at the service, there wasn’t a dry eye in the house,” Mr. Udin said. “August dealt with death in a manner of dignity, the same way he would have done with any of his characters.”

I always wondered how August Wilson could write about joy and tragedy with such vigor. But then I realized that his use of raw vernacular among African-Americans was rather unprecedented. Not only are Wilson’s poems and plays necessary, but they will continue to be vital in understanding the complexities of the common man."

What I Saw in Charlottesville Could Be Just the Beginning; Politico, August 14, 2017

Brennan Gilmore, Politico; 

What I Saw in Charlottesville Could Be Just the Beginning

"This violence will continue unless we commit universally to condemning and standing against it. I am confident that most of my neighbors in Virginia and the majority of my fellow Americans know that the side marching through my town carrying lit torches and assault weapons, mowing down peaceful anti-racist protesters, and espousing an ideology of hatred and bigotry, is wrong. But it takes more than just knowing. If Americans want the violence to end, we need to actively oppose those who seek to divide us along racial lines and demand that our leaders do the same.

In his book on the neurological bases of the good and bad of human behavior, the biologist Robert Sapolsky emphasizes that it is fundamental human psychology to create an “us” and a “them.” But, he writes, “If we accept that there will always be sides, it’s a non-trivial to-do list item to always be on the side of angels.”

That’s our charge. Whether it is in Bujumbura or Charlottesville, we all must be on the side of the angels."

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

What did you expect from Trump?; Washington Post, August 15, 2017

Jennifer Rubin, Washington Post; What did you expect from Trump?

"We should be clear on several points. First, it is morally reprehensible to serve in this White House, supporting a president so utterly unfit to lead a great country. Second, John F. Kelly has utterly failed as chief of staff; the past two weeks have been the worst of Trump’s presidency, many would agree. He can at this point only serve his country by resigning and warning the country that Trump is a cancer on the presidency, to borrow a phrase. Third, Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner have no excuses and get no free passes. They are as responsible as anyone by continuing to enable the president. Finally, Trump apologists have run out of excuses and credibility. He was at the time plainly the more objectionable of the two main party candidates; in refusing to recognize that they did the country great harm. They can make amends by denouncing him and withdrawing all support. In short, Trump’s embrace and verbal defense of neo-Nazis and white nationalists should be disqualifying from public service. All true patriots must do their utmost to get him out of the Oval Office as fast as possible."

"Let's Hear Some Ideas"; Bizarro, August 15, 2017

Dan Piraro, Bizarro; "Let's Hear Some Ideas!"

Under Armour and Intel C.E.O.s Follow Merck Chief, Quitting Panel in Rebuke to Trump; New York Times, August 14, 2017

David Gelles and Katie Thomas, New York Times; Under Armour and Intel C.E.O.s Follow Merck Chief, Quitting Panel in Rebuke to Trump

"Though three C.E.O.s had spoken out by the end of the day, for much of it, Mr. Frazier of Merck was the lonely voice of opposition.

On Sunday, Mr. Frazier, the son of a janitor and grandson of a man born into slavery, watched news coverage of white nationalists clashing with counterprotesters in Charlottesville, and of Mr. Trump’s ambiguous response to the violence.

That evening, he informed his board members that he was preparing to resign from Mr. Trump’s American Manufacturing Council, one of several advisory groups the president formed in an effort to forge alliances with big business...

“America’s leaders must honor our fundamental values by clearly rejecting expressions of hatred, bigotry and group supremacy, which run counter to the American ideal that all people are created equal,” Mr. Frazier wrote. “As C.E.O. of Merck and as a matter of personal conscience, I feel a responsibility to take a stand against extremism.”

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Obama Responds To Charlottesville Violence With A Quote From Nelson Mandela; Huff Post, August 12, 2017

Paige Lavender, Huff Post; Obama Responds To Charlottesville Violence With A Quote From Nelson Mandela

"Former President Barack Obama tweeted a quote from former South African President Nelson Mandela Saturday in an apparent response to the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia...

“No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin or his background or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love. For love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite,” Obama tweeted.

The quote is from Mandela’s autobiography, Long Walk to Freedom. Obama’s series of tweets also featured a photo of him greeting children at a day care facility in Bethesda, Maryland, in 2011."