California magazine

Say What? Scientists Devise an Algorithm That Detects Sarcasm Better Than Humans Can

Think people know when you’re being sarcastic? Yeah, right.

Studies show that most of us believe we are much better at communicating than we actually are, especially when interacting online. For instance, a 2005 study found that recipients correctly identified the sarcasm behind email statements only 56 percent of the time. Furthermore, the participants remained confident they were being understood even when their actual ability to convey sarcasm varied significantly between email and verbal communication. Read more about Say What? Scientists Devise an Algorithm That Detects Sarcasm Better Than Humans Can »

From the Winter 2015 Breaking News issue of California.

He Who Tells the Best Story Wins: Radio and Podcast Host of “Snap Judgment” Talks Shop

In 2007, Glynn Washington was director of a program at Berkeley’s Haas School of Business called YEAH (Young Entrepreneurs at Haas), working to give underprivileged Bay Area youth more opportunities in life, when he seized upon an opportunity of his own. Read more about He Who Tells the Best Story Wins: Radio and Podcast Host of "Snap Judgment" Talks Shop »

From the Winter 2015 Breaking News issue of California.

Farewell to Twisted Titles: A Final Send-off for California Magazine’s Punning Game

In 1991 two editors of this magazine, Russell Schoch and William Rodarmar, became intrigued by a wordplay game. So an announcement appeared in the September issue alerting readers to a new feature: Twisted Titles. “It goes like this: Take the title of a well-known book, movie, play, etc.; change just one letter; and then write a blurb for the resulting work.”

It was a hit from the start.

“Enough people sent in responses that we had enough for a whole page in the next issue,” Schoch recalls. “I was astonished by how clever and amusing they were.” Read more about Farewell to Twisted Titles: A Final Send-off for California Magazine's Punning Game »

From the Winter 2014 Gender Assumptions issue of California.

Nuclear Nirvana: Could thorium someday power a safe, clean, cheap reactor?

Imagine nuclear power, only without the prospect of meltdowns, dirty bombs, and millennia after millennia of nuclear waste. That’s the carbon-free energy of harnessed fission, but free from the specters of Fukushima, Chernobyl, and Three Mile Island. Oh, and the nuclear reactors are special too—they run on a material nearly as abundant as lead.

For the many environmental, political and economic complications that result from our dependence on fossil fuels and the high cost of producing reliable energy, this sure sounds like a silver bullet. Read more about Nuclear Nirvana: Could thorium someday power a safe, clean, cheap reactor? »

Past Presidents

The photograph shows University of California President Benjamin Ide Wheeler and 28th President of the United States, Woodrow Wilson, at the Greek Theatre in September 1919. Wheeler, then emeritus, had invited Wilson to visit during a tour he was making on behalf of the newly formed League of Nations. Read more about Past Presidents »

Charter Gala, 1946

The photograph above was taken at the 1946 Charter Banquet, also held at the Palace. That night the poet Robert Frost was awarded an honorary degree by the University and then-Governor and future Chief Justice of the Supreme Court Earl Warren ’12 was honored as Alumnus of the Year. Read more about Charter Gala, 1946 »

Baseball Team, 1879

Here in the offices of California magazine, we have file cabinets filled with all manner of old photos from campus, even pre-dating the move to Berkeley. Many of the images are somewhat random and lacking anything much in the way of identifying information. Still, it’s fascinating stuff to look through (a bit like rummaging around in your grandparents’ attic), and we thought it only right to share some of it with readers. So here’s the first installment: The baseball team in 1879. Read more about Baseball Team, 1879 »

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