Saturday, January 29, 2011

What Would You Choose: Brains or Beauty?

Recently, this little infographic has caused quite the bustle on the internet. Having been called "The Saddest Pink Infographic About Women In Tech You’ll Ever See," controversy is brewing as to whether or not this is the kind of publicity that women in computer science need.

Personally, I think this is fantastic.  Don't get me wrong, I'm not the type to limit girls to dolls and boys to trucks, but I don't see any problem with leveraging a form of entertainment which tweens actively seek out in fashion magazines and online apps.

Let's start, first, with the idea that intelligent women "deserve more than this".  Yes.  That's true. They do.  But they deserve more than this without excluding this.  The big ol' pink infographic to the left is an extremely flattering representation of both mind and overall persona.  Why should a woman be limited to choosing brains or beauty?  The two are not mutually exclusive.  That's a point I've been trying to get across for a very long time!  Why is it an insult to a woman's intelligence to call her beautiful?  Isn't it okay to recognize all of the areas where she's putting in hard work?

Secondly, this infographic is cartoonish and sassy.  There is no point where it tries to pass itself off as indisputable fact.  The steps along the way may be cheeky, but if you don't like one of the options, you won't select it and it won't represent you.  That said, I'm a little offended that if you prefer the Adult Video Network over New York Fashion Week, you're given the hand.  At first glance, it feels like you can't be a computer scientist if you enjoy sex.  After further scrutiny, it becomes obvious that you just can't be one of these 5 highly successful tech women.  I guess we'll have to wait a while to know where I land, but even until then, I'm completely willing to give this card the thumbs-up.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Then Again, Maybe It's Not The Dawning of The Age of Aquarius...

Picture look familiar?  If you're a constant reader, it probably does.  That's because I was about to add this whole section as a comment to my blog from earlier, but it was just a little too full.

So, apparently, we've all been categorized incorrectly!  It seems that the original astrologers intended there to be 13 birth constellations, with an extra one between Scorpio and Sagittarius.  The repercussion of that is that none of us are what we say we are.

According to the article above, the true classifications are as follows:  "Capricorn is now Jan. 20 to Feb. 16; Aquarius, Feb. 16-March 11; Pisces, March 11-April 18; Aries, April 18-May 13; Taurus, May 13-June 21; Gemini, June 21-July 20; Cancer, July 20-Aug. 10; Leo, Aug. 10-Sept. 16; Virgo, Sept. 16-Oct. 30; Libra, Oct. 30-Nov. 23; Scorpio, Nov. 23-29; Ophuchicus, Nov. 29-Dec. 17; and Sagittarius, Dec. 17-Jan. 20."

That officially makes me a Capricorn.  So now, I'm supposed to believe that I'm inhibited, patient and unimaginative?  Not likely.  Aquarius is so perfectly suited for me that it's almost as if it were...well...written in the stars.  Was I destined to become this way because I'm an Aquarius or did I become this way because I grew up aware of what an Aquarius is?  Regardless of the cause and effect, I *am* an Aquarius through and through.

When I heard about this, I went and read the description of a Capricorn, thrilled that I may see a piece of myself that had been hidden since ancient times.  Instead, what happened is I had to call bullshit on the whole idea of a new structure.  A Capricorn only describes me in the highest-level "fill it in with your own thoughts" kind of way.  The Aquarius description continues to hold true even to my cellular level.  As an example, here's the definition of an Aquarius woman:

"The Aquarius woman is the ultimate independent woman. She is funny, smart, adventurous, never clingy or jealous, never demanding and not overly emotional. She is unpredictable and craves excitement. Anything goes with this woman and any man that she chooses will have an amazing relationship. Court her and woo her, she expects this ladylike treatment, she is old fashioned in that sense but be known that her mind is already made up and if she is not interested, she will never be interested. The relationship will progress slowly because she does not get emotionally involved very easily and she is not one for showy displays of romantic affection. The man who is trying to win her heart has to treat her with respect and treat her as an equal. Communication is key, this is how a relationship with an Aquarius woman evolves. Once she trusts you and you two grow closer, she is an amazing loyal and kindhearted person."

If you don't know me, you don't know how completely true this is.  If you do, you can probably see how intimately it relates to me.  I know there are skeptics who will say that this could apply to anyone, but really, this is a very specific description of a very specific type of relationship personality.

In any case, I'll stick to my original dawning and let the rest of y'all make up your own minds!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Turns Out That Tears Are a Tool, Not a Weakness

I knew it!  I knew that there was a reason that I have trouble controlling my tears when I get emotional.  I used to refer to those moments as "being a girl," but it turns out that I can now call it self-defense.  That's right, a recent study has shown that a woman's tears actually send chemical signals that cause a decrease in male testosterone.  This is great news for me.  That means that all this time, when I thought I was showing signs of defeat, I was really only beginning to fight. 

Apparently, a woman's tears emit a previously unknown pheromone which triggers a cut in a man's testosterone levels.  Low testosterone levels have been linked to a decrease in aggression as well as sex-drive.  Suddenly, my unwanted tears have been transformed into a magic potion, capable of rendering men powerless.  That is, they would be...if I were willing to cry with a guy in the room.