Christopher X J. Jensen
Associate Professor, Pratt Institute

Scientific American down on memorization

Posted 28 Aug 2014 / 0

If you have read my posts on Open Information Environments, you know that I think that we should no longer be teaching (or expecting) our students to memorize things. With all of us carrying around smartphones or tablets that allow us to look up anything anytime pretty much anywhere, our brains are free to be Read More

A Minor Post, Cultural Evolution, Education, Higher Education, Information Literacy, Teaching

Today I am Associate Professor

Posted 25 Aug 2014 / 0

Although my tenure and promotion was secured back in May, today is the day that I am officially a tenured Associate Professor. As today is also the first day of classes (although I do not teach until Wednesday), it is a little bit hard to stop, breathe, and appreciate this milestone. When one of my Read More

A Major Post, Higher Education, Pratt Institute

A modest presentation on Open Information Environments

Posted 13 Aug 2014 / 0

Today I gave a brief presentation entitled “Information: Legalize It?” to some colleagues at Pratt Institute. As part of the day’s educational technology “gathering” taking place in the Faculty Technology Studios, I spoke about how I have instituted what I call the “Open Information Environment” in all of my courses. Check out my longer post Read More

A Major Post, Educational Technology, Higher Education, Information Literacy, Pratt Institute

Back to the old theme

Posted 13 Aug 2014 / 0

Unfortunately Olivia and I have had to pause on the implementation of the new theme for this site. Some technical problems were making live development really difficult, so I am back — for now — to the old theme.

A Minor Post, Web Design

Review of What We Made by Tom Finkelpearl

Posted 13 Aug 2014 / 0

I study cooperation. I can say this honestly only with some caveats. I am very interested in what allows cooperation to evolve in biological systems, as cooperation seems to defy the Darwinian imperative to serve the needs of self-replication and yet is unexpectedly prevalent in nature. In particular I am interested in human cooperation, which Read More

A Major Post, Activism, Art & Design, Books, Collaborative Art, Communication, Cooperation, Emotion, Empathy, Environmental Justice, Play, Public Art, Social Diversity, Social Networks

Water, Alfalfa, China, and a modern Tragedy of the Commons

Posted 12 Aug 2014 / 0

NPR Morning Edition “In Time Of Drought, Arizona’s Alfalfa Exports Are Criticized” There are so many interesting aspects to this story. First and foremost, it illustrates that “tragedies of the common” are entirely, well — common — in modern economies. The rules of resource use dictate whether that resource will be over-exploited: if there are Read More

A Minor Post, Climate Change, Cooperation, Deserts, Ecosystem Services, Environmental Justice, Ethics, Radio & Podcasts, Resource Consumption, Sustainability, Sustainable Agriculture, Water Supply

New theme in development for this site

Posted 11 Aug 2014 / 0

If this site seems a bit different today than it was yesterday, that is because I am working with a former student (Olivia Hu) to develop a theme that better serves the needs of this site. Put more accurately: Olivia is providing all the design understanding, know-how, and work, and I am making minor suggestions. Read More

A Minor Post, Web Design

When Facebook performs a manipulative experiment on its users, the results are interesting, the methods disturbing

Posted 03 Aug 2014 / 0

Did you know that Facebook performs scientific research? If I told you that Facebook is constantly analyzing the activity of its users, that would probably not surprise you. But does Facebook go the next step by performing manipulative experiments on its users? A recent publication in the prestigiousĀ Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA Read More

A Major Post, Articles, Behavior, Behavioral Ecology, Communication, Consciousness, Emotion, Empathy, Ethics, Experiments (General), Happiness, Law, Methods, Psychological Adaptation, Sociology, Web

Ben Knight’s “Phyletic gradualism / Punctuated equilibrium”

Posted 03 Aug 2014 / 0

My good friend, artist Ben Knight, has created a nice chart that captures the difference between two different theories of macroevolution: phyletic gradualism and punctuated equilibrium.

A Minor Post, Art & Design, Divergence, Evolution, Information Design, Macroevolution, Science in Art & Design, Speciation, Web

A nice synopsis of some reasons for laughter

Posted 03 Aug 2014 / 0

The Chronicle of Higher Education “What’s So Funny?” I appreciate the different theories of laughter presented here and the way that they are connected to adaptive behavior and ultimately to evolution. Like a lot of other behaviors that I am interested in — most prominently music production and play — laughter is one of those Read More

A Minor Post, Articles, Behavior, Communication, Emotion, Human Uniqueness, Play, Web