[Currents headergraphic]

January 20, 1997


Psychologist Anthony Pratkanis began the new year with an interview by Investor's Business Daily.

Daniel Press of environmental studies had a long talk recently with Daniel Jordan on KUSP Radio, covering Press's EPA-funded project on open space in California and other pressing environmental topics.

Science magazine recently published a letter by linguist Geoffrey K. Pullum. In his letter, Pullum discusses some inaccuracies in an article in Science about tracing language family trees, noting that it is not necessary to have ancient manuscripts in languages in order to study their history; conclusions about ancient language families can be reached through comparison of the spoken forms of modern languages.

The San Jose Mercury News lauded Carter Wilson of community studies, whose book about AIDS in the Yucatan, Hidden in the Blood, earned an award from the Society of Gay and Lesbian Anthropologists.

Composer David Cope's computer program EMI, which can compose music, was the focus of yet another story. This one, which first appeared in the Kansas City Star and was recently picked up by the Santa Cruz County Sentinel, notes that January 13, 1997, is the birth date of HAL, Arthur Clarke's computer-with-an-attitude from the book and movie 2001: A Space Odyssey. The author's premise is that computer programs have a long way to go before obtaining the sophistication of Clarke's "big lug of a circuit board"--and yet there are some that are coming close, Cope's among them.

Anthro lab manager Josh Snodgrass was profiled in the Santa Cruz County Sentinel about his forensic work with a human-rights group in Croatia.

--Compiled by Mary Ann Dewey

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