- Yooper September 16, 2019Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day for September 16, 2019 is: Yooper \YOO-per\ noun : a native or resident of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan — used as a nickname Examples: "The district has always elected Yoopers to represent them in Congress, rather than someone from the lower peninsula like Morgan." — Melissa Nann […]Merriam-Webster
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On This Day
1959 – Nikita Khrushchev becomes the first Soviet leader to visit the United States.
Nikita Sergeyevich Khrushchev[a] (15 April 1894 – 11 September 1971) was a Soviet statesman who led the Soviet Union during part of the Cold War as the First Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1953 to 1964, and as Chairman of the Council of Ministers, or Premier, from 1958 to 1964. Khrushchev was responsible for the de-Stalinization of the Soviet Union, for backing the progress of the early Soviet space program, and for several relatively liberal reforms in areas of domestic policy. Khrushchev’s party colleagues removed him from power in 1964, replacing him with Leonid Brezhnev as First Secretary and Alexei Kosygin as Premier.
Khrushchev was born in 1894 in the village of Kalinovka, which is close to the present-day border between Russia and Ukraine. He was employed as a metal worker during his youth, and he was a political commissar during the Russian Civil War. With the help of Lazar Kaganovich, he worked his way up the Soviet hierarchy. He supported Joseph Stalin’s purges, and approved thousands of arrests. In 1938, Stalin sent him to govern the Ukrainian SSR, and he continued the purges there. During what was known in the Soviet Union as the Great Patriotic War (Eastern Front of World War II), Khrushchev was again a commissar, serving as an intermediary between Stalin and his generals. Khrushchev was present at the bloody defense of Stalingrad, a fact he took great pride in throughout his life. After the war, he returned to Ukraine before being recalled to Moscow as one of Stalin’s close advisers.
On 5 March 1953, the death of Stalin triggered a power struggle in which Khrushchev emerged victorious after consolidating his First Secretary with that of the Council of Ministers. On 25 February 1956, at the 20th Party Congress, he delivered the “Secret Speech”, which denounced Stalin’s purges and ushered in a less repressive era in the Soviet Union. His domestic policies, aimed at bettering the lives of ordinary citizens, were often ineffective, especially in agriculture. Hoping eventually to rely on missiles for national defense, Khrushchev ordered major cuts in conventional forces. Despite the cuts, Khrushchev’s rule saw the most tense years of the Cold War, culminating in the Cuban Missile Crisis.
Khrushchev’s popularity was eroded by flaws in his policies. This emboldened his potential opponents, who quietly rose in strength and deposed the Premier in October 1964. However, he did not suffer the deadly fate of previous Soviet power struggles, and was pensioned off with an apartment in Moscow and a dacha in the countryside. His lengthy memoirs were smuggled to the West and published in part in 1970. Khrushchev died in 1971 of a heart attack.
Born On This Day
1857 – Anna Winlock, American astronomer and academic (d. 1904)
Anna Winlock (1857–1904) was an American astronomer and human computer, one of the first members of female computer group known as “the Harvard Computers.” She made the most complete catalog of stars near the north and south poles of her era. She is also remembered for her calculations and studies of asteroids. In particular, she did calculations on 433 Eros and 475 Ocllo.
Winlock was born September 15, 1857, in Cambridge, Massachusetts, to astronomer Joseph Winlock and Isabella Lane. Winlock attended the Cambridge Schools as a child and began to develop an interest in both mathematics and the Greek language. Upon her graduation she received a letter from her principal expressing his appreciation for her Greek and of her character. Her father influenced her interest in astronomy. When she was twelve, she attended a solar eclipse expedition with her father in his home state of Kentucky. In June 1875, Joseph died shortly after Winlock had graduated from primary school. Winlock quickly followed in her father’s footsteps becoming one of the first female paid staff members of the Harvard College Observatory.
Harvard College Observatory
After the death of her father, it fell upon her to find financial support for her mother and four siblings, and soon she approached the Harvard College Observatory seeking a job in calculations. Specifically, she was capable of reducing volumes of unreduced observations, a decades worth of numbers in a useless state, that previously her father had left unfinished. The interim director of the observatory complained that he could not process the data, as “the condition of the funds is an objection to hiring anyone.”  Winlock presented herself to the observatory and offered to reduce the observations. Having been previously introduced to the principles of mathematical astronomy by her father she seemed like a capable asset to the observatory and could be paid less than half the prevailing rate for calculating at the time. Harvard was able to offer her twenty-five cents an hour to do the computations. Winlock found the conditions acceptable and took the position.
In less than a year, she was joined at the observatory by three other women who also served as computers; they became known as Pickering’s Harem, gaining notoriety for leaving an uncomfortable example on the government computing agencies because of the women’s low wages and arduous work, even though it was of high quality. Winlock found it important the work to be done in astronomy, especially for women. By her own development as a scientist and her lasting contributions to the stellar program of the observatory, she served as an example that women were equally capable as men of doing astronomical work.
Through her thirty-year career at the Harvard College Observatory, Winlock contributed to the many projects the observatory faced. Her most significant work involved the continuous and arduous work of reducing and computing meridian circle observations. Five years earlier under the direction of her father, the observatory collaborated with multiple foreign observatories in a project for preparing a comprehensive star catalog. The project was divided into sections or zones by circles parallel to the celestial equator. Winlock began to work on the section called the “Cambridge Zone” shortly after being hired on by the observatory. Working over twenty years on the project, the work done by her team on the Cambridge Zone contributed significantly to the Astronomische Gesellschaft Katalog, which contains information on more than one-hundred thousand stars and is used worldwide by many observatories and their researchers. Besides her work on the Cambridge Zone, she also contributed to many independent projects. She supervised in the creation of the Observatory Annals (a collection of tables that provide the positions of variable stars in clusters) into 38 volumes.
Winlock’s death was unexpected. On December 17, 1904 she visited the Harvard College Observatory for what would be the last time, and she continued working through the holiday season. The last entry in her notebook of reductions was on New Years Day 1904. Three days later she died suddenly at the age of 47 in Boston, Massachusetts. A funeral service was held at St. John’s Chapel in Cambridge.
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David Sherry: CC – Meet Jason Zook (This week’s podcast)
Continuing my series of introductions to interesting people I’m meeting from around the web…
This week, I recorded a conversation with Jason Zook.
Jason has one of the most unique career paths I’ve ever seen. He literally sold his last name (twice!) and has constantly done something unexpected in the creator space while still managing to make a solid income from it.
What I love and appreciate about Jason is how open is he is about sharing his ups and downs. His new book just hit the Amazon shelves and it’s called Own Your Weird.
If you want to work with Jason, you can get in touch or learn more through his co-owned site, Wandering Aimfully.
I had a blast talking with Jason about pairing weirdness and business in this week’s conversation…
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“There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self.”
“Life is a balance between what we can control and what we cannot. I am learning to live between effort and surrender.”
“Smile, breathe, and go slowly.”
Thich Nhat Hanh
“Keep your attention focused entirely on what is truly your own concern, and be clear that what belongs to others is their business and none of yours.”
On This Day
1682 – Bishop Gore School, one of the oldest schools in Wales, is founded.
The Bishop Gore School (Welsh: Ysgol Esgob Gore) is a secondary school in Swansea in Wales, founded on 14 September 1682 by Hugh Gore (1613–1691), Bishop of Waterford and Lismore. It is situated in Sketty, close to Singleton Park and Swansea University. In December 2013 the school was ranked in the second highest of five bands by the Welsh Government, based on performance in exams, value added performance, disadvantaged pupils’ performance, and attendance.
Born On This Day
1816 – Mary Hall Barrett Adams, American book editor and letter writer (d. 1860)
Mary Hall Barrett Adams (September 14, 1816 – December 8, 1860) was a 19th-century American book editor and letter writer.
Mary Hall Barrett was born in Malden, Massachusetts, on September 14, 1816, the daughter of William and Mary Barrett. Her mother worked among the poor of Malden. Her father, owner of the Malden Dye-House, believed in the principles of Christian Universalism. Her parents exemplified those principles at home and abroad. Rev. Dr. Sylvanus Cobb said: “When we commenced our pastoral charge at Malden, Mary Barrett was a girl of 12. Though her father was wealthy, and her associates were of the first class socially, she was ever modest and affable in her manners towards all. There was a combination of intellectuality and benevolence in her expression, and her highest concern was to enrich and adorn the mind. She entered heartily and efficiently into the work of the Sunday-school. Young as she was, she became a teacher and member of the Bible class. She joined the church at 16, and was ever one of the most earnest and faithful workers, and her enlightened and ever-glowing spirit of devotion added to the spiritual interest of the communion.”
When quite young, her sister, father, brother and mother all died of consumption, and needed great care before their deaths, which Adams took upon herself to provide. Friends saw that Adams was overdoing herself and becoming frail, but her comforting was so well received by the invalids that they did not notice Adams’ wasting frame.
She was never a rollicking school-girl. In addition to the instruction obtained in her home town, she attended schools in Medford and Charlestown.
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The oldest, shortest words — “yes” and “no” — are those which require the most thought.
ancient Greek philosopher, mathematician
The strangest, most generous, and proudest of all virtues is true courage.
Michel de Montaigne,
The darker the subject, the more light you must try to shed on the matter.
Sir Alan Ayckbourn,
Ditch the dream and be a doer, not a dreamer.
television producer, writer
Isn’t art about breaking rules, about challenging existing systems; isn’t it about discovering meaning in things or situations before others see anything in them?
The secret to life is meaningless unless you discover it yourself.
W. Somerset Maugham,
Music is the space between the notes.
We cannot become what we need to be by remaining what we are.
Max de Pree
You are what you do, not what you say you’ll do.
Carl Gustav Jung
Surround yourself with those who see greatness in you, even when you don’t see it in yourself.
Sometimes the wrong choices bring us to the right places.
You always have a place to run to, always. The place is GOD.