In the early ’80s, Pepsi ran a marketing campaign where they touted the success of their product over Coca-Cola in blind taste tests. They called this the Pepsi Challenge. Psychologists had already determined you choose your favorite products often not by their inherent value, but because the marketing campaigns and logos and such have cast a spell over you called brand awareness. You start to identify yourself with one marketing campaign over another. That’s what happened in the all the taste tests up until the Pepsi Challenge. People liked Coca-Cola’s advertising more than Pepsi’s, so even though they tasted pretty much the same, when they saw that bright red can with a white ribbon people chose Coke. So for the Pepsi Challenge, they removed the logos. At first, the researchers thought they should put some sort of label on the glasses. So, they went with M and Q. People said they liked Pepsi, labeled M, better than Coke, labeled Q. Irritated by this, Coca-Cola did their own study and put Coke in both glasses. Again, M won the contest. It turned out it wasn’t the soda; people just liked the letter M better than the letter Q.
from Why We Can’t Tell Good Wine From Bad.
The rest of the article is pretty interesting too: it reinforces my expectation that expectations strongly shape perceptions.
I often say that white hairs are the best teaching aid I ever had: my student evaluations shot up once I got a bit of salt-and-pepper.
Maybe all Catholics know this, but I’m not Catholic and I was surprised to learn that the groups of women you see at airports in habits are not nuns, nor were the women who traditionally wielded rulers in parochial schools. It seems all nuns are sisters, but not all sisters are nuns: nuns are cloistered, sisters need not be. “[S]isters working outside their convent cannot possibly be cloistered, and therefore those working in … school are definitely not nuns.”
All this and more in Canon Law Made Easy, What’s the Difference Between Sisters and Nuns?, spotted via the definitely Protestant Slacktivist.
“A lie will go round the world while truth is pulling its boots on” pretty much sums up Day4 – How we screwed almost the whole Apple community. Either that or a lot of people have a screw loose somewhere.
– spotted via the slacktivist
Unqualified Offerings, Mamas, don’t let your babies grow up to be responsible:
It occurs to me that most of my frustration in life is a product of actually believing my mother and grandparents and teachers. They usually said something about how we need to work hard and be responsible and be on top of deadlines because when we’re older people will expect that from us. Well, what are the things that cause me the greatest aggravation, the things that get me ranting? Chiefly, I get aggravated over the fact that lazier people make more money than me and the fact that companies expect payment from me on time but generally dick around and screw up and take their good-natured time on actually doing whatever it is they’re supposed to do in exchange for that payment.
If I had ignored my mother and grandparents and teachers, I’d be a happier person.
Another vote for the pig over Socrates.
Given all the years we’ve had cars, rain, and umbrellas, why isn’t there an easy, or even effective, way to get into the driver’s seat of a car with a very very wet umbrella that doesn’t either get you wet before you get into the car, or get you wet when you bring the umbrella into the car?
(I mean of course when the car is parked outside: parking indoors makes this easy, but that’s not always an option.)
There’s a certain kind of person that will love this: Save The Words.
Unqualified Offerings has good advice for students looking for work:
1) If your professor sends an email saying “I have been asked to recommend some good students for this job opportunity, please send me a resume ASAP so I can pass it on to my contact and put in a good word when I pass it on” the correct answer is “Here it is”, not “I’m not sure.” It’s fine to not be sure, but the whole point of applying is to keep an option open until you become sure one way or the other. You can turn down an offer that you don’t like, but you can’t get a job that you don’t try for.
2) Wait, you need to work on your resume? Don’t you have an updated resume on file?
3) When you send me the resume, don’t title the file “My Resume.docx”. The person making the hiring decision will have a folder full of resumes, and if they want to find your resume you should be making it easy for them.
4) For that matter, unless explicitly asked for a .docx or whatever, send a .pdf. Yes, people can take information from a .pdf and do stuff with it, but a .doc or .docx is much easier for the “lazy but malicious” type to modify. No, I’m not knowingly passing your resume on to a “lazy but malicious” type, but once a file is sent into the wilds of the internet who knows what can happen?
Also, there are all sorts of weird compatibility and formatting issues with different versions of Word. PDFs are much less prone to that sort of thing. And if you can’t afford Acrobat, never fear, there are free converters out there.
via For those who wish to escape the crate.
Incidentally, point 3 is especially good. Use your surname as the start of the file title!