Archive for July 2nd, 2012

July 2, 2012

Everything is Terrible!

Alex Pardee

Everything is Terrible! is a Chicago-based video blogging website launched in 2007 that features clips of VHS tapes from the late 20th century. The project was founded in 2000 by a group of friends while at Ohio University. They search at thrift stores, garage sales, and ‘bargain bins’ for the worst and most outrageous VHS tapes in which to share with each other. The website has also been attempting to amass the largest collection of tapes that feature the film ‘Jerry Maguire’; according to member Ghoul Skool: ‘We always have noticed since the beginning that there seems to be nothing but just ‘Jerry Maguire’ tapes filling our nation’s thrift stores. I don’t know why.’

The people behind ‘Everything is Terrible’ also perform live shows wearing cloaks and gold VHS tapes around their necks to showcase their new VHS discoveries. In 2009, the website released a video titled ‘Everything is Terrible! The Movie,’ which featured the same type of VHS clips that would be featured on their website. The ‘A.V. Club’ called the video ‘a portal into a world halfway between showbiz and real life—a look at how the people who make entertainment for a living think the rest of us saps actually live,’ adding that it’s ‘simultaneously enlightening, hilarious, and deeply sad.

July 2, 2012



Connectionism [kuh-nek-shuh-niz-uhm] is the theory that the connections (such as between brain cells) mediate thought and govern behavior. It is a set of approaches in the fields of artificial intelligence and cognitive science that model mental or behavioral phenomena as the emergent processes of interconnected networks of simple units. There are many forms of connectionism, but the most common forms use neural network models (artificial brains).

The central connectionist principle is that mental phenomena can be described by interconnected networks of simple and often uniform units. The form of the connections and the units can vary from model to model. For example, units in the network could represent neurons and the connections could represent synapses. Neural networks are able to learn by themselves, unlike normal computers, which cannot do anything for which they are not programmed.

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July 2, 2012

Perceptual Control Theory

William T Powers

Perceptual control theory (PCT) is a model of behavior based on the principles of negative feedback (when the output of a system acts to oppose changes to the input of a system, acting to stabilize it). It differs in a number of respects from standard engineering control theory, which deals with the behavior of dynamical systems like feedback loops. From the PCT perspective, an organism controls neither its own behavior, nor external environmental variables, but rather its own perceptions.

According to the standard catch-phrase of the field, ‘behavior is the control of perception.’ While the adoption of PCT in the scientific community has not been widespread, it has been applied to a number of areas, and has led to a method of psychotherapy called the Method of Levels.

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