Clifford Stoll: 18 Minutes with an Agile Mind

Clifford Stoll, astronomer, scientist and author of Silicon Snake Oil, is undoubtedly a smart man (he once caught KGB hacker back in the infancy of the Internet). But did you know that he has a very ... unique form of public speaking? Great Scott!

Here's Clifford giving a talk at TED 2006 ... wait till he pulls out a slide rule! Hit play or go to Link [YouTube] - via Fazed


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I can understand being annoyed by or impatient with Clifford Stoll. Having followed him since The Cuckoo's Egg came out, he's pretty much always been this way. I recall an interview on The Today Show perhaps, where he sat cross-legged in the chair (still hopping up and down) and played with a yo-yo the whole time.

While he may take a while to get to a point, it's like reading a fractured narrative to me. There are lots of little points that seemingly do not add up or go anywhere, but if you can make the connections you can draw quite a bit from it, much as in this "lecture" where the shards are connected by the inscription on the bell.
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That was amazing! Just as powerful as "The Last Lecture" by Randy Pausch. I wish I had teachers like that when I went through school. His mind is definately racing with thoughts and deciding what to say next.
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Regardless of his style he's cool and if anyone is interested Klein mugs, jars, etc can be purchased online kleinbottle . com without the spaces. I found these a couple years ago and it's cool to see the person behind some of them.
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Great fun to watch, and if it's a style of learning that suits you, great. Trouble is, not everone learns well from that style - that's not to say there's anything wrong with it, just that for every tutor like that you'd need a calm steady slow one.

There's no point in being highly memorable if what you're /teaching/ isn't remembered as well.
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