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“We can have a debate about whether talking is dangerous, but we really need to focus on what we are using phones for today. With smartphones, we are now getting into visual-manual issues. We’re not only looking at the phone; we’re manipulating it.”

Daniel V. McGehee, director of human factors and vehicle safety research at the University of Iowa’s Public Policy Center. McGehee was commenting on research that says talking on your phone while driving didn’t significantly escalate the risk for a crash, but dialing or texting does pose greater danger. (DesignNews, Jan. 16)


“When new technologies come along, we find ways of adapting it to what we have already done, whether it be overturning governments or interacting with friends. So the trend is not going to go away.”

Kembrew McLeod, associate professor of communication studies in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. McLeod was talking about the dwindling number of people who continue to resist social media, and whether Facebook and Twitter are part of society’s permanent fabric or simply trends. (The Gazette, Jan. 12)


“Parents can take a breath and relax…they do not need to schedule every free moment of their child’s time. It would be healthier if they carved out opportunities for extended time to do nothing.”

Deborah Linebarger, associate professor of teaching and learning in the College of Education. Linebarger says children can benefit from a little boredom because it provides opportunities to be creative, invent things to do, and “relax a bit and dream.” (Des Moines Register, Jan. 10)


“Celebrities are viewed differently by different groups of people. One person’s beloved celebrity is another person’s embarrassment. I have known politicians in the past who have had to tell people, ‘Please do not publicly endorse me.’”

David Perlmutter, dean of the School of Journalism and Mass Communication in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Perlmutter was discussing the negative connotations of celebrity endorsements of presidential candidates. (FoxNews.com, Jan. 10)