A Harvard researcher is using analytics and Big Data to find anachronistic language in "Downton Abbey" and other historical TV shows and movies. Benjamin Schmidt, a visiting graduate fellow at the Cultural Observatory at Harvard, writes the "Prochronisms" blog, comparing the dialogue of historical TV shows and movies—primarily "Downton Abbey" and "Mad Men"—to Internet corpuses of historical texts, mainly the 20-million-book Google Books library. By finding words and phrases in the dialogue that do not commonly appear in contemporary books and periodicals, Schmidt is able to find anachronisms that previously required a linguistics degree
It’s time to get out. Out of your cubicle. Out of your home office. Out of your company’s groupthink. Out of your industry’s bigger groupthink. Just get out. It’s time to get sideways. You’ll be amazed at what a little outside thinking can do to rattle your inside perspectives.
“Feed the e-mail beast. We all do it, from the time we log on in the morning till late in the day when a last thought needs to be shared with a colleague or friend,” wrote Paul McDougall and Elena Malykhina on InformationWeek.com in 2006. “We’re sending messaging morsels over mobile devices to try to satiate its insatiable appetite. Don’t feed the beast—take off a week, a day, even an hour—and you fall dangerously behind.” Sherry Turkle, Abby Rockefeller Mauzé Professor of the Social Studies of Science and Technology at MIT, once had 2,500 unread e-mails in her inbox and declared “e-mail bankruptcy.” She
I was heartsick to hear American Heritage magazine is folding. I remember when it was founded back in 1954, the brainchild of three TIME alumni: James Parton, Oliver Jensen and Joseph Thorndyke. It broke all the rules. It accepted no advertising, was printed on heavy, glossy paper and had a hard cover with a full-color painting printed on it. It was not just a magazine; subscribers kept every issue and displayed their collections on bookshelves, along with Time-Life books, Harvard Classics and other great continuity series of the time. American Heritage circulation promotions were created by the legendary Frank Johnson, after whom the Johnson box
I adore trains. I love rip-snorting tales of high adventure and hijinks. When I read the first two paragraphs that appear in the In The News section of this newsletter—a screaming rave review about “The Great Train Robbery,” where a band of Union volunteers traveled incognito into the deep South and hijacked a locomotive with the intention of taking it up north—I decided then and there to order the book. Alas, the reviewer committed one of the Three Deadly Sins of book reviewing, and talked me out of buying the book. The good news: I saved $29.95 plus tax. The bad news: Richard
by Bob Hacker This analysis of Easton Press is based on reviewing only four control packages and without the benefit of seeing any list segmentation or program performance figures. Targeting is inferred from product definition, copy platforms and appeals. The Basic Business The first thing we see is that the business is based on a few fundamentals that don't change: • The content always appears to be of high intrinsic value because of the author and/or the subject matter. • All titles are presented as "limited" or "special" and use exclusivity and "fear of loss" to build value. • The titles are