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A Piece of My Mind
December 22 2010

The Day the Computer Tried to Eat My Alligator

Author Affiliations

A Piece of My Mind Section Editor: Roxanne K. Young, Associate Senior Editor.

JAMA. 2010;304(24):2679. doi:10.1001/jama.2010.1805

My office desk is crawling with animals. The alligator nabbed in a Cairo thrift shop sprawls regally as he keeps watch over the miniature lion and cub born in a bustling market in Tanzania, while the Bangkok elephant stands nearby, poised to stampede. Small, carved figures of wood purchased in far-flung places: none are elaborate or expensive, but all are cleverly made and all evoke memories of past trips and adventures. To the children I work with, they represent potential and a world bigger than their own.