Weekend Links

Weekend Links – March 23, 2019 – Star Trek, Shakespeare & Orbital Rocket Boosters

Daffodils, forsythia, lilacs and tulips are blooming in my area. I love this time of year.

Lady Daffadowndilly

Growing in the vale
By the uplands hilly,
Growing straight and frail,
Lady Daffadowndilly.

In a golden crown,
And a scant green gown
While the spring blows chilly,
Lady Daffadown,
Sweet Daffadowndilly.

~Christina Rosetti (1830-1894)
Here are some of my favorite links from the week:


Star Trek: Inspiring Culture and Technology

We recently watched a Star Trek movie with our kids followed by episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation. The show has had many incarnations since its original debut but it continues to inspire.  EdX and Smithsonian have partnered to create a course to explore why the show has had such a lasting impact.  Watch video.

When you enroll in this course, you will examine how Star Trek’s live action television shows and motion pictures affected audiences around the world. With your hosts, Margaret Weitekamp and Scott Mantz, you will discover the connections between Star Trek and history, culture, technology and society. You will hear from experts, watch clips from the shows and films, debate with fellow fans. and explore your own perspectives on and understanding of Star Trek‘s lasting impact.

Through critical analysis and object exploration, you will examine how Star Trek tackled controversial topics, such as race, gender, sexuality, and ethics. Then, the mission is yours. Join the community to engage in civil discourse. Use evidence to understand how Star Trek shaped and still influences our technology and society.

The course is FREE and lasts 7 weeks online. Learn more.


Shakespeare and the Robben Island Bible

Discover the fascinating story of how a copy of Shakespeare made an impact in South Africa’s notorious Robben Island prison. As Shakespeare scholar David Schalkwyk, also a South African, explains to interviewer Rebecca Sheir, there is something special about “a book that had passed through the hands of the people who had saved my country.”

And then I went to Stratford-upon-Avon to a conference in 2006. I was walking past Nash House, and it promised Shakespeare—The Complete Works. And I thought, “How could you possibly not go and see the complete works?” And so, I paid a lot of money and I went up rickety stairs to this exhibition. And I must say, I didn’t find the exhibition particularly interesting, but one work did catch my eye as I was leaving, and it was a scruffy volume of Shakespeare, The Complete Works. And I thought: What’s this doing here? And I looked more closely, and there was a passage from Julius Caesar: “Cowards die many times before their deaths; / The valiant only taste of death but once.” And it had a date, the 16th of December 1977, written in it, and it had the name N. R. Mandela.

This was a book that had, in fact, circulated among the single-cell prisoners. Mandela was kept apart from the general cells, together with about 34 others, mostly leaders of the ANC and the PAC, the political organizations that were opposed to apartheid. And one of the people in that group had this Complete Works of Shakespeare and passed it around, and asked each of the prisoners to sign their names against their favorite passages from Shakespeare. And well, here was Shakespeare and Robben Island [LAUGH] together in one book.

Listen to the podcast or read the transcript here. 



How NOT To Land an Orbital Rocket Booster

SpaceX reminds us that failure is part of the process with its hilarious roundup of failed booster launches and landings. Recently they successfully launched what will be the next human space flight vehicle. From the videos, you can see how many failures went into the success. A good reminder for us all!  Laugh now! 


In Case You Missed It . . .



Looking for more Weekend Links?

Weekend Links – February 22

Weekend Links  – February 16

Weekend Links – March 2

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