Frolicsome Engines: The Long Prehistory of Artificial Intelligence

Coloured engraving from Joseph Racknitz’s 1789 pamphlet which attempted to reveal the secret workings of William Kempelen’s alleged chess-playing automaton “The Turk” / Wikimedia Commons Defecating ducks, talking busts, and mechanised Christs — Jessica Riskin on the wonderful history of automata, machines built to mimic the processes of intelligent life. By Dr. Jessica Riskin Professor[…]

The Curious Story of John Godfrey: A Man Who Used ‘Witch Hysteria’ to His Advantage in New England Before it Was Deadly

Salem Witchcraft Trial / Wikimedia Commons By Matthew A. McIntosh Brewminate Editor-in-Chief “Religion,” wrote Dan Brown in Angels and Demons, “is like language or dress.  We gravitate towards the practices with which we were raised.”  It is that simplicity which so often sets the parameters within which groups of people operate.  A collective mentalité can[…]

Viking Artistic Development and Stylistic Influences on Later Scandinavian, Anglo-Saxon, and Western European Romanesque Art and Architecture

Viking Longship / Creative Commons By Matthew A. McIntosh Brewminate Editor-in-Chief The artistic and architectural stylistic, methodological and technological aspects of world cultures have, with rare exception, displayed bilaterally direct and indirect influence while leaving their unique historical fingerprint.  Pyramids and ziggurats still stand as testaments of Egyptian and Sumerian technology in addition to the[…]

President Trump? Not Likely

Thumbs half up? Trump’s winning streak is unlikely to continue through the general election. Reuters/Kamil Krzaczynski The GOP nomination is within Donald Trump’s grasp. On Tuesday he won the Indiana primary in decisive fashion, a victory that puts him about 185 delegates short of the 1,237 he needs to secure the nomination. Ted Cruz, Trump’s[…]

How Universal Design Can Help Every Voter Cast a Ballot

One balloting machine for all voters: universal design is accessible for everyone, with or without disabilities. University of Florida By Dr. Juan E. Gilbert Andrew Banks Family Preeminence Endowed Chair, Associate Chair of Research Computer & Information Science & Engineering Department University of Florida In the 2012 presidential election, 15.6 million people with disabilities reported[…]