News of the Week: Mulder, Voice Mail, and Millennials

The X-Files Is Coming Back!

David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson Featureflash /
David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson
Featureflash /

Apparently the truth is still out there,mill because Fox is bringing back Agents Mulder and Scully for a six-episode miniseries later this year. Stars David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson, along with creator Chris Carter, are all back on board. Production will start this summer and the show will probably air later this year.

Having it come back for just six episodes is probably a good idea, so they can tell a contained story and not have to have the actors commit to an entire season. If you watch it, they’ll make more. The night it debuts, be ready for Twitter to implode.

Do You Still Use Voice Mail?

I’m not a boomer and I’m not a millennial. I’m part of Generation X, so I’m not sure if I’m supposed to be in the “voice mail” camp or the “text message/social media” camp. But I’m firmly a fan of voice mail, still, even if certain family members continue to call me and not leave a message, assuming I’ll scroll through my phone (a landline) when I get home to see who called and couldn’t bother to leave a message.

In this video, MarketWatch pits a boomer and a millennial in a voice mail vs. smartphone battle. I’m not sure why the millennial in the video finds voice mail “terrifiying” (or why Kermit the Frog is on the computer screen behind the boomer), but it’s right that people of different ages communicate differently these days. What do you use? Let us know in the comments below.

By the way, “millennial” never looks like a real word to me when I type it.

Blast Off!

Russian Carrier Rocket (Shutterstock)
Russian Carrier Rocket

Later today, NASA astronaut Scott Kelly — twin brother of astronaut Mark Kelly, who is married to former Arizona Rep.Gabrielle Giffords — will take off for the International Space Station. The launch will take place via a Russian rocket in Kazakhstan, and Kelly will be accompanied by cosmonauts Mikhail Kornienko and Gennady Padalka. They’ll spend a year in space, testing the affects of weightlessness on the body. Why such a long period of time? Because one day we’ll be going to Mars, and it takes a while to get there.

CBS Sunday Morning interviewed Kelly about his trip and got a tour of a mock up of the space station. There’s no way I could spend a year up there for the bathroom situation alone.

All the News That’s Fit to “Like”


A few years ago I discovered that a lot of people actually think Facebook is the Web. That’s where they “live” online: posting pics, chatting, messaging, finding out what their friends are up to. It’s their “home,” and they see no difference between Facebook and the rest of the online world. I predict that one day Facebook will actually BE the Web, and now the social network is taking another step toward that goal.

Facebook is talking to various news outlets, including The New York Times, National Geographic, and BuzzFeed, about hosting content directly on Facebook. In the olden days (last week), a news organization would post a link to a story on Facebook that would take them to the news organization’s site. Now certain content will be housed inside of Facebook. Now you’ll never have to leave!

I’m all for newspapers and magazines making deals that will help them survive in the digital age, but this scares me. And I’m not the only one. Robinson Meyer at The Atlantic thinks it’s a bad idea, and so does Gawker. The New York Times, one of the companies in talks with Facebook, has a good breakdown on the good and bad aspects of such a deal.

I worry about giving too much centralized news power to one place like Facebook, and I’m also unsure how things like pay walls, subscriptions, copyright, and content that goes against Facebook’s terms of service would be handled.

Tomorrow Is National Something on a Stick Day

I first assumed that the “something” had to be food: a corn dog, cotton candy, a Popsicle, a candied apple. But apparently the day celebrates anything you can put on a stick. If this catches on, you can expect to see a lot of selfies that celebrate the day on Facebook and Twitter and Instagram.

Taken with a phone on a selfie stick, of course.

Upcoming Anniversaries and Events​

President Reagan Shot (March 30, 1981)
Wikipedia has a detailed account of what happened that day, and here’s video of ABC News and their live coverage with anchor Frank Reynolds.

April Fools’ Day (April 1)
Here’s one of Rockwell’s April Fools’ covers. The Huffington Post has a list of 17 pranks you can play on your friends (or former friends, depending on whether or not they appreciate the prank).

Pony Express Launches (April 3, 1860)
The website of the National Museum of the Pony Express in St. Joseph, Missouri, has a great history on the delivery service as well as a list of events, a video tour, and even a store.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Assassinated (April 4, 1968)
​Read SEP Archives Director Jeff Nilsson’s feature about the life of King.​