Thurman Speaks About Some Old Spam On Spam And SPAM

This GDT::Speaks was written in response the following comment I received in an email message.

	"I like the arithmetic example -- I am afraid I must be denser than wood
	 -- I don't "get" the point behind the SPAM photos example."

I have a "Hormel Foods, Inc." short-story that I've been working on since I've started teaching. In 1979, when I was a senior in college, I flew to Rochester, MN, rented a car, and drove to Austin to interview for a COBOL programming job at Hormel Foods. I got a job offer, but I didn't like Austin so I said "No." Sadly, I don't have any "stuff" from that time, but I am establishing a collection of SPAM stuff and getting pictures of SPAM in Ft. Laramie and the Hubbell Trading Post (where shelf space is precious) are now part of my SPAM collection.

Most of my students know what spam is (i.e. junk email, et al), but they don't know about SPAM the food product. SPAM the food product is fun and it helps make learning about computing fun.

[Note: I don't eat SPAM.]

I actually tell students that "SPAM is good, but spam is bad."

Hormel Foods has requested that when we write the word SPAM in reference to the food product, then SPAM is spelled in uppercase. If writing about Internet enabled spam, then spam is written in lowercase.

Internet enabled spam comes in many forms and it is starting to take on other names--"spit" is text messaging spam; "spim" is instant messaging spam. I like students to learn that spam is an invention of the Internet. Spam takes on many forms and we are subjected to it on a daily basis. Examples: I consider political signs to be visual spam. The "Do Not Call" list was establish to reduce phone spam. At least once a week there is spam (litter) on the door knob of my house left by real estate agents, landscaping companies, restaurants, etc.

Creator: Gerald D. Thurman [gthurman@gmail.com]
Created: 21 November 2005