Monday, October 31, 2005
No chiropractors needed
The newest edition of the Circus of the Spineless
is up on Snail's Tales.
The new Grand Rounds
is up on Kidney Notes.
I was in the car earlier today (buying candy for trick-or-treaters) when Fresh Air with Terry Gross started on NPR. She was talking about Sam Cooke and the show started with a longish excerpt of his song Wonderful World.
Now I cannot get the darned tune out of my head! @#$%^&* I think that song is an unofficial anthem of the Red-State America: all emotion, no reason, no literacy. It drives my wife crazy whenever we hear the song. Why? Because I stand up and place my hand over my heart. Here are the lyrics:
Don't know much about history
Don't know much biology
Don't know much about science book
Don't know much about the French I took
But I do know that I love you
And I know that if you love me too
What a wonderful world this would be
Don't know much geography
Don't know much trigonometry
Don't know much about algebra
Don't know what a slide rule is for
But I know that one and one is two
And if this one could be with you
What a wonderful this would be
I don't claim to be an "A" student
But I'm trying to be
Maybe my being an "A" student baby
I can win your love for me
Don't know much about history
Don't know much biology
Don't know much about science book
Don't know much about the French I took
But I do know that I love you
And I know that if you love me too
What a wonderful world this would be
But I know that one and one is two
And if this one could be with you
What a wonderful world this would be
Took the kids trick-or-treating earlier tonight. This place is nuts over Halloween. So many houses are elaborately decorated, with smoke machines, spooky sounds, lots of fake spiderwebs, wonderfully carved pumpinks.... It is really fun! Coturnietta was a little Red Devil, wielding a trident (I did not tell her she looked like a Red Devil vaccum-cleaner, oh no!) and Coturnix Jr. was, I thought, a sullen teenager, but he said that he was just his own evil twin. They got TONS of candy. Myself, I don't need a costume to look scary, especially when I am two months overdue for a haircut!
Beforehand, I carved a nice scary face on a pumpkin. This year I decided not to let the seeds go to waste. So, what did I do? I searched teh blogs for a recipe, of course. I got a great one: Toasted Pumpkin Seeds Recipe
. In a few minutes, I'll let you know how they turned out. Look out for the update.Update:
They were delicious!
Political Affiliation on Campus
Over the past few hours, several people came here via a search for 'Political Affiliation on Campus' by Bora Zivkovic
or something similar. All of them come from Kentucky, mostly Bowling Green, all from wku.edu (Western Kentucky University). Such regularities in the Sitemeter are always thought-provoking. Technorati and Google do not provide any hints. Has someone told students to look up this information? I hope that the post
they are getting is answering their question. I'd like to continue the conversation. Post a comment, please.
Bush is Tired
Weary Bush has no early release
:Uninspired appointments are the symptom of a President who has simply run out of energy.
President Bush is tired. It was part of his original appeal that he is such a normal American, not an obsessive over-worker, willing enough to do his job and just as willing to go on vacation whenever possible, and notably more often than his recent predecessors. But too many things have happened to him of late, from unending war and inordinately destructive hurricanes that ravaged some of America's least civilized places, to the nasty little press leak scandal that has caused the indictment of Mr Lewis "Scooter" Libby, and the humiliating withdrawal of his candidate for the Supreme Court.
Sunday, October 30, 2005
Carnival of the Godless
Carnival of the Godless #26
is up on A Rational Being.
Tar Heel Tavern - Halloween Food Edition
The Tar Heel Tavern #36
is now up on Mel's Kitchen. This is, I think, the first time ever that any edition of any carnival was posted on a blog officially affiliated with a newspaper (or any other MSM). Of course this happened with Greensboro News & Record, the newspaper on the cutting edge. Way to go!
You may have also noticed that the link I just used has a little hover-over title (place your mouse on top without clicking to see it) and, once you click, the page opens in a new window (this way you NEVER leave my blog - you are my prisoner forever). If you want to learn how to this (assuming you don't already know), check out these two marveolous posts by Dark Wraith: Blog HTMLCoding Hacks Corner
In the meantime, we need hosts for the future editions of The Tar Heel Tavern
. Let me know by e-mailing me at Coturnix1 AT aol DOT com.
Orgasm Festival at UNC
Anticipation builds for orgasm day climax
Mike Adams' response.
Link-Love: Random Weekend Edition
As always, don't restrict yourself to just the linked posts - explore these blogs some more.
A moving tribute to Hair, Life and Optimism by Ron
Soj: Sun Myung Moon
was banned from entering Bulgaria.
Katja finds the interview with the Serbian officer who shot down the stealth bomber
Mark Kleiman: Corporate sociopaths
(has he read "The Divine Right of Capital"?)
Chelsea writes a Dissertation
Greg is thinking about the Brain, for the fourth time already, this time on the philosophy/psychology of Religion
Perpwalk analyzes conservative motivation
Jeff Jarvis: Journalism 2010
Bill Nye's Apprentice spends a day teaching the blind
The newest edition of Advocate Weekly
, a roundup of education blogs.
Scary stuff: The Norquist Pledge
is an amazing blog about using blogs in teaching. See this post
for an example (hat-tip: Laura
And Barbara Ganley also comments on her experiences using blogs in teaching, e.g., here
(these are excellent - long but worth your time).
Yup, a lot of people have not the foggiest idea
what is happening.
I agree with Julie
. Just remember how many glitches there were a year ago compared to now. Then chill out! You'll be just fine.Force-Feeding the Manufactured Controversy
and Dead Bodies and Pretty Girls
(I loved 'Stiff'. I hear Mary Roach published a new book on the 'science' of paranormal, but I don't think she is 100% skeptical, though).
The Invisible Library on A Hangover of Historic Heft and Dimension
- an elegant dissection of emptiness that is Peggy Noonan.
A knowledgable analysis of the new Guinness evolution TV commercial
Media Girl: Next on the conservative agenda: Intelligent Poverty
, The Ethical Werewolf
and In The Pink Texas
report from the John Edwards tour.
How to learn and teach math
and how it matters in the real world
(LOL).Protecting the Meaning
- Dr.Freeride on the decision of NAS and NSTA to force Kansas to write its own science curriculum.Positive attitude
and Negative attitude
, from Rush Limbaugh, via Einstein to the War in Iraq.
James Wolcott is good today
is a place to go for links about science.
to report on the Dover hearings
Putting together Miers and Libby
: why one withdrew on the day the other one got indicted?P.G.Wodehouse
, as recommended by Accidental Blogger.Dark Side
of education.How to be a Successful Scientist
Ampersand: Should we legally recognize polyamorous marriages
? (good comment thread, too)
Saturday, October 29, 2005
Liberal Academia - yes, because it has to be
Here are two
about Horrowitz and his crusade to inject mediaval worldviews into academia.
The Independent Weekly has endorsed candidates for local elections
. See, for instance, their recommendations for Chapel Hill
mayor and town council and for Chapel Hill-Carrboro school board
Apparently this years' recommendations have garnered some controversy
, but you can follow up the developments on the Indy blog Dent
Carnival of Cockroaches #2
The second Carnival of Cockroaches
is up on Blog D'Elisson.
Why is Scooter Libby on crutches?
A) Because his knees were not Intelligently Designed
B) A nasty fall persuaded him that his scooting days are over
C) Don't you know that Tonya Harding is an evil librul?
D) Other (supply in comments)
Friday, October 28, 2005
AP: Official A is Karl Rove
'Official A' stands out in indictment
Neo-Nazi Taxonomy and Systematics
Here is a taxonomy of new American Nazis by someone who's met them all: Nazi Variety Pack
(hat-tip: Blog on the Run
Lots of Shallow Throats this time around, though...
Carl Bernstein Finds Plame Parallels To Watergate
"But what the Plame leak investigation has unveiled is what the press should have been focusing on long before and without let up--how we went to war, the dishonesty involved in that process in terms of what the president and vice-president told the American people and the Congress, and the routine smearing by members of the Bush administration of people who questioned their actions and motives."
Go read the rest....
The New Domino Theory
I know this is not a GoTo blog for getting the Breaking News, but I was certainly not AWOL. I timed my activities today carefully. I checked the Very Important Blogs in the morning, as well as Fitzgerald's website
- still nothing. I went to set up the lab.
Once I got there I got on the computer and checked out the Very Important Blogs - still nothing. Fitz website - nothing. A minute later: Fitz website...a-ha! There it is - the indictment and the press release. I could have posted, but, as I stated above, this is not a GoTo blog for Breaking News - nobody would get their news from me first. Anyway, I don't like posting away from home - all that logging in and logging out and stuff.
Then I set up the lab for tomorrow and went to lunch to a place that I knew would have CNN on a TV in the corner and I made my menu choice in such a way that I could get into my car at exactly 2:15pm. I listened to the press conference on NPR in the car and, after arriving home, on CNN.
Since then, I checked the Very Important Blogs for first reactions. Law-bloggers are the best. Firedoglake
has been so much on top of all this, it is the first GoTo blog on the topic. Publius
promises more later. On the political side of the blogosphere, Billmon
and Josh Marshall
are on fire. Pick your own favourite choices where to go.
My first impressions: this is just a beginning. Fitzgerald said what he could say. He ably countered all of the Wingnut talking points, e.g., about his partisanship. His almost-angry (is this guy capable of being angry?) tirade about seriousness of perjury and lying should shut up anyone who tries to play that gambit. Anyway, if anyone tries that on you, Google
, Google News
and Google Blogsearch
are your friends. Type in "1998 Clinton perjury" and you will be served dozens if not hundreds of quotes by prominent Republicans about the seriousness of the crime.
The Indictment, which I only skimmed so far, appears really seriously damning, not just for Libby - he's guilty as can be and will have a second career as an anthropologist studying the prison culture by being deeply immersed in it for many years - but a number of others.
Libby's already facing 30 years in jail for lying - he'll be nuts to lie any more. And sooner or later he will understand that he's been made a fall guy and that his friends are not his friends any more. He does not work with them or for them any more and they have no interest in helping him at all. He either saves them or saves his own skin - guess which of the two options a Republican will choose.
A lot of dirt is going to come up during trial (some of it already in the text of the Indictement - go to other bloggers for careful parsing of every word) and more heads will roll next year, just in time for mid-term elections. There is a reason why Fitzgerald just doubled his office space....
Thursday, October 27, 2005
I Am More Atheist Than PZ Myers!!!
You fit in with:
Your ideals mostly resemble those of an Atheist. You have very little faith and you are very focused on intellectual endeavors. You value objective proof over intuition or subjective thoughts. You enjoy talking about ideas and tend to have a lot of in depth conversations with people.
Take this quiz at QuizGalaxy.com
Of course, the questions are pure dreck. But answered them as honestly as possible, i.e., I was not TRYING to get 100%.
You may have noticed a couple of subtle changes here.
I have kicked off the Hitmaps, the TTLB Ecosystem status and the Moonphase off of my template.
I have moved all the miscellaneous links off the front page - too much clutter - but you can access them from the sidebar, just click on Miscellaneous Links
I have finally provided the links to the Meta-Carnival
and groups blogs I am a member of. Instead of searching through the site to find that stuff, it is now readily available on the sidebar.
Now I have a huge space between the bottom of the last post and the bottom of the page! Can anyone help?
Also, the links to the Webring I am a member of is all the way down below the bottom, on the dark part of the skin, thus barely visible unless you try to highlight it. Help?!Next:
Updating the Categories (I am about two months behind - use monthly Archives for recent stuff and Categories for older stuff until I catch up)
Updating the BLOGROLL
Changing the template - which standard Blogger template do YOU like?
Putting up the Amazon button (many people refuse to use PayPal)
Anything else I need to do (besides moving off Blogspot)?Update:
I have now updated the Categories. I need to get in a habit to do that as soon as I post. I wish Blogger would automate this function!
You may notice a little BlogAds spot on the left. Sooner or later I am assuming I will get some ads there through Liberal Prose
blog group. Until then, if you want to advertise here for free, let me know.
You Gotta Love Some Of The New Blog Carnivals!!!
Check out the premier edition of the Carnival of the Cockroaches
I And The Bird #9
I and the Bird #9
is up on Living The Scientific Life. Fly over there.
I did not believe this at first. It seemed just too fantastic. But three other groups independently confirmed the findings: the brand new Skeptic's Circle
is up on Uncredible Hallq.
A few years back my brother went to Japan to do some fieldwork for several months. Although he had been taking Japanese for several years, the classroom language skills and real-life language skills are different kinds of skills.
Early on in his endeavour, trying to immerse himself in the local culture, he went to a restaurant. He picked up the menu and had no idea what any of the names of dishes meant. Well, he thought, if the Japanese can eat something, he can, too.
When the waiter came to his table, my brother pointed (randomly?) at a menu item. The waiter gave him a strange look for a second, then smiled, bowed and walked away. Seconds later he came back with a little net, walked over to the aquarium in the corner and netted a little fish. He slapped the fish onto a plate and brought the plate to my brother.
The fish, alive and flapping, was looking up at my brother. The waiter produced a knife and a fork and watched with amusement and apprehension.
There was no going back. My brother is a brave man. A few minutes later, the poor fish was marinating in his digestive juices. The waiter smiled. My brother ordered another glass of sake.
He wrote a story about this experience and the story got aired on the Japanese National Radio. I doubt he has ever ordered the same dish again, though. Which reminds me of a story....
Back in Belgrade, in the deep winter, when one's breath froze in the air, after riding three or four frisky horses, nothing felt better than going to a nearby warm cafe/restaurant with my friends. We would each order a half-liter bottle of Niksicko Pivo (the best beer in the world) and a pound of fried smelt (or anchovies).
Fried smelt ('girice') are really small fish - 2-3- inches in length - and they were so thoroughly deep-fried that their soul was fried, too. The ultimate fish'n'chips: tastes like fish, but is crunchy like chips.
Most people eat fried smelt by picking up the fish by its head and biting off the rest of it. I (as always) had to be different, so I picked them up by their tails and ate them whole. That way, I got more nutrition, and it was crunchier, too.
At the and of the meal, my plate would have just a little bit of grease on it. Others' plates would have piles of little heads. One day one of my firends finally asked me why I ate the heads, too. My answer: because I could not stand the guilt-trip induced by the accusing stares of the poor fish eyes...let's have another beer before going back to the stable to clean out the stalls and feed the horses before going home to crash.
What do you prefer?
A) No indictments - this means that the country remains in the hands of a mafia of unscrupulous hardened criminals hiding behind a bumbling, idiotic, ignorant, arrogant marionette, orB) Indictments - this means that the country remains in the hands of a bumbling, idiotic, ignorant, arrogant marionette.What is worse?
Belgrade Blogger Bar
Is this the beginning of a blogging community in Belgrade? Four (apparently - from what I can figure out from a distance) most popular Blegrade bloggers had their first ever MeetUp in an appropriately named bar "Anna and Four Pistols": LaLara - Blog Serbia & Beyond
, Brand New Girl
, Domacica iz Pakla (Housewife from Hell)
and Kikoman Experience
They immediately liked each other, had LOTS to drink, thus all four had to wait until the following day to blog about it. Here are the hungover reminiscences by LaLara
, Brand New Girl
, Housewife From Hell
and Filip Kikoman
. Filip syas that BNGirl is a hottie. I believe him.
I hope they meet again, and bring in more people. I need to get Carnival of the Balkans re-started soon, so everybody from there (or from here but currently there) can get to find each other and share some burek and slivovitz.
of Science And Sensibility made the next logical step in the tracing of blog lineages started by Comissar. When I first mentioned this exercise (see below), I called this "building a phylogeny". Well, David actually did build a phylogeny of (science) blogs and used this to teach us all how phylogenetics trees are really constructed by biologists. Go and learn and have fun!
Wednesday, October 26, 2005
Fitzmas Tomorrow? Be Prepared!
has some good advice (sorry for copying almost the whole thing - it's important for this to be spread wide):
High profile members of President Bush's administration will soon be charged with serious crimes--crimes committed to keep Americans from learning that there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq--crimes committed to help George W. Bush launch an unnecessary invasion of the Middle East--crimes committed to help raise the approval ratings of the administration--crimes committed to re-elect the President.
It's high noon in Washington, DC. And the President's hired guns are about to bust through the saloon doors with double-barrel propaganda a' blazin.
Here are some pointers to prepare for the news that is about to break...
Events will move fast and will be full of fireworks. These are serious crimes that have been commited: purjury, obstruction of justice, leaking national security secrets. The people who committed the crimes are the top aides to the President (Karl Rove), the top aides to the Vice President (Lewis Libby) and potentially others. So, given the power of these men, we can expect that the President has a strategy to deflect blame, to distance himself from those aides who have been named as criminals, and to undermine the authority of the Grand Jury issuing the indictments.
Be mindful when listening to tomorrow's news, and consider the following suggestions
1. The White House will be running a communications strategy, so beware of anything they say. In the past 24-hours, the President has given a series of speeches discussing every aspect of his presidency (e.g., business as usual). But they will go on the attack very soon.
2. Listen for magic words. Expect the White House to try to control debate by repeating keywords over and over again. So far, they have been quiet. But the specter of 9/11 is never far off. Beware of White House spokesmen who try to discuss 9/11, tomorrow.
3. Stay focused. The real issue tomorow is crimes committed by the White House to trick the American people into supporting a war. There is no other issue that comes close to this, tomorrow.
4. Do not talk about whether we should stay or pull out of Iraq. That is an important topic, but it will be a distraction tomorrow. The issue is crimes committed against the American people by top officials at the White House.
5. Read the White House website. This will help to understand what strategy they are launching.
6. Use only the President's name. This crisis is about the President of the United States, the people he hired, the decisions he made and the methods he used. Do not get distracted by too much talk about the names of aides.
7. Read a variety of news sources. Follow the story in a variety of media (e.g., print, TV, blogs) to get a full picture of what is going on. Don't become a CNN zombie.
8. Talk to co-workers and friends about what's happening. It is important that all Americans follow what is happening. Spread the news. Be the media.
9. Keep following the story. It is likely that the story will change several times before it is over.
Carnival of Education
Carnival of Education #38
is up on Education Wonks.
French Carnival of Education?
I don't remember any French, but this
looks like a beginning of a Carnival of Education that is all in French language. Is that correct? How cool!
Tuesday, October 25, 2005
Tar Heel Tavern - call for submissions
This is the first time, if I am correct, that an edition of a blog carnival will be hosted by a blog officially affiliated with a newspaper.Mel's Kitchen
, the food blog of the Greensboro News & Record (that paper is the first in everything!) will be hosting next week's Tar Heel Tavern
. The theme for the weekend: food horror!
Blog-post as a scientific reference
I have, so far, published five scientific papers
and each has been cited a few times by other researchers in the field.
But this is something very new and unusual. Biological Procedures Online
is an online open-source journal (something like PLoS, but more narrowly thematically focused). Recently, this journal published an excellent paper on methodology (and the underlying reasoning) of circadian clock researh: A guideline for analyzing circadian wheel-running behavior in rodents under different lighting conditions
by Corinne Jud, Isabelle Schmutz, Gabriele Hampp, Henrik Oster and Urs Albrecht.
What is interesting is that Reference #16 is not to a peer-reviewed paper, or a published review, nor even a book, but to a blog post. It is this post
I've written a few months ago on Circadiana.
How cool is that? Also, how new is that? Are you aware of another paper citing a blog-post? Have any of your blog posts ever been cited in a scientific paper? I'd like to know.
What does it all mean, i.e., how does that pertain to the way science will be done
and reported in the near future? How do you feel about it?
I am wondering how many people in my field read Circadiana
. One of the authors, at least, does, or the reference would have never appeared in the paper. How is that going to affect my chances of getting a decent job in the Academia? I have not published much lately (luckily a co-authored paper came out recently). I missed the last meeting of the Society. I have no feel for the breadth of acquantance of the field with my blog. I am dragging my feet finishing the Dissertation. Can my blog help me overcome the "time-hole" in my CV?
There will be quite a lot of activity
at the Center on Poverty, Work and Opportunity here at UNC this Fall:
October 31"Toward Common Ground - A Dialogue about Work and Opportunity in America"
Debate between Senator Edwards and Jack Kemp, former Secretary of the
Department of Housing and Urban Development. This event will be
moderated by Dan Gitterman, Asst. Professor of Public Policy.
November 3"How the Media Depicts Poverty and Constructs Social Class in America"
Panel of nationally renowned journalists to discuss the historical
depiction of poverty in the media, current and future trends, and how
Katrina has affected the media's portrayal of this issue.
The following journalists will sit on the panel, moderated by Sen.
David Wessel, Wall Street Journal
David Brooks, New York Times
Sam Fulwood, Cleveland Plain Dealer
Katherine Boo, New America Foundation
Jason DeParle, New York Times
November 9"Katrina's Lessons: Moving Forward in the Fight Against Poverty"
Panel of five experts to discuss the lessons learned from Katrina and
to propose concrete policy solutions to address those living in
poverty. The panel will be moderated by Sen. John Edwards and includes
the following experts:
Jared Bernstein, Economic Policy Institute
Ray Boshara, New America Foundation
Anna Burger, Change to Win
Bruce Katz, Brookings Institute
William Julius Wilson, Harvard University
November 22"Strategies for Improving the Conditions of Low-Wage Workers"
Panelists will include Annette Bernhardt of NYU, John Sweeney of the
AFL-CIO and Tom Clarke of UFCW. This event will be moderated by Arne
Kalleberg, Kenan Distinguished Professor of Sociology and Senior
Associate Dean for Social Science, College of Arts and Sciences, UNC.
I'll see if I can make it to some or all of these events.
We're just illusions in Dubya's head
We are all just parts of Bush's holodeck
. What happens to us once he's out of chips and he gets the "Game Over" sign?
Avian Flu spreads....
Croatia confirms first cases of bird flu
ZAGREB, Croatia (AP) -- Croatia confirmed the country's first cases of bird flu Friday with six swans testing positive for the H5 type, the Agriculture Ministry said.
Twelve swans were found dead Thursday near a pond in the village of Zdenci in eastern Croatia.
It was not immediately clear if the remaining six had been tested or whether the confirmed cases had the deadly H5N1 strain, which has devastated poultry stocks across Asia and killed 60 people in the past two years. It has recently been found in birds in Russia, Turkey and Romania.
The pond has been closed, ministry spokesman Mladen Pavic said, adding that the closest village is a few miles) away.
The swans were tested at a veterinary clinic in the capital, Zagreb, and the samples will be sent for further testing to a lab in Britain, the ministry said.
The government held a special meeting, and Prime Minister Ivo Sanader confirmed the reports in a live broadcast on the independent Nova television station. He said the country would immediately impose EU measures, including a ban on distribution of poultry in the area and the closure of free-range poultry sites.
Sanader said that "all measures to contain the virus and its possible spread have been taken."
Croatia has been on high alert since the lethal strain was confirmed in nearby Romania, Turkey and Russia in recent days.
Earlier this week, the EU urged Croatia to step up testing as the 25-member bloc tries to manage a regional response to limit the spread of the virus.
H5N1 is easily transmitted between birds, but is hard for humans to contract. Experts are closely watching the disease, however, for fear it could mutate into a form easily transmitted between humans and spark a pandemic.
Rosa Parks, R.I.P.
What she said
In one of her last interviews, Rosa Parks spoke of what she would like people to say about her after she passed away.Rosa Parks: a case of mistaken identity
"I'd like people to say I'm a person who always wanted to be free and wanted it not only for myself; freedom is for all human beings."
When Rosa Parks refused to get up from a bus seat in Montgomery, AL in 1955, an entire race of people began to stand up.
"To call Rosa Parks a poor, tired seamstress and not talk about her role as a community leader and civil rights activist as well, is to turn an organised struggle for freedom into a personal act of frustration"
Monday, October 24, 2005
This is where I live, proudly
Chapel Hill says No
to the War in Iraq.
Building the Blog Phylogeny
A meme I got from Pharyngula
(though it started on the right-wing Politburo Diktat
) is exploring the geneological relationship (phylogeny) of blogs. Here are my answers and you go ahead and do this on you own blogs.
The questions to answer are: 1. Your blogfather, or blogmother, as the case may be. Just one please - the one blog that, more than any other, inspired you to start blogging. Please don’t name Instapundit, unless you are on his blogchildren list. (Same goes for Kos-spawn)
I did some usenet in the early 1990s because of Balkan wars, but then quit that kind of activity for a while. After a year or so of campaign blogs and forums in 2003/04 I moved out to individual blogs. I first cut my teeth by commenting on Legal Fiction
, so I consider Publius
to be my blogfather. He's spawned a lot. A number of good bloggers, I think, consider him a blogfather (or at least 'one of'), too, e.g., Eric
.... (let me know if this is wrong, or if I omitted someone). 2. Include your blog-birth-month, the month that you started blogging, if you can. August 17th, 2004
. 3. If you are reasonably certain that you have spawned any blog-children, mention them, too.
I seriously doubt I have
any blog-spawn. Correct me if I 'm wrong. Have I inspired YOU to start your own blog?
I think it is interesting how one's earliest blog experiences shape one's own style. All of the bloggers I mentioned above as my blog-siblings at least initially tried to emulate Publius's format and style. This means: infrequent, long, analytical posts. Some have moved away from this, i.e., started posting shorter posts more often, while Eric
has gone the other direction - his posts are now less frequent and LONGER than even Publius'!
I actually like this. I want to dig into a real essay in hope I will learn something from a person who has background and has spent some time and thought putting that essay together. If you check this recent
list of my favourites, you'll see that almost all of them are blogs who write long, informed, interesting essays.
I keep bumping into this "rule" that says that blog posts should not be long. What is the limit? 400 words, 4000 words? Nobody specifies.
While quick link-and-snarky-one-liner posts can be funny (and the link can be useful), I resent anyone telling me how to blog. Still, I have changed, perhaps semi-consciously.
If you look at my Archives, the first few months consist almost entirely of very long posts. If you look at the last couple of months, there are tons of short posts and only an occasional long one. Now, don't assume I lost steam - I have a number of long posts brewing - but I've been running into this "rule" a lot lately and it affects me. Will people run away if they see more than three paragraphs?
Perhaps my propensity towards long discourse is cultural, i.e., a Serbian thing: This post
by an American living in Belgrade is funny, but oh-so-true...don't get me started now!
Bush Selects White House Economist Bernanke to Replace Greenspan
Who is this
Bernanke, 51, served as a member of the board of governors of the Federal Reserve System for three years before being named chairman of the President's Council of Economic Advisers in June. He previously was an economics professor at Princeton University and served as chairman of the university's economics department from 1996 to 2002.
Bernanke, a Republican who holds a doctorate in economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, has a fiscal philosophy similar to that of Greenspan, who was named Fed chairman by President Ronald Reagan in 1987 and renominated for four-year terms by three other presidents. However, Bernanke and Greenspan differ on whether the Fed should set targets for inflation. Bernanke believes the Fed should set such targets, while Greenspan does not.
Parental Kidnapping, anyone?
If there is a topic in the universe, there is a blog covering it. So, if you are interested in parental kidnapping
, you need to go here
Another Blogging Course
, one of the contributors to the excellent European academic group blog Crooked Timber
is teaching a blogging class as part of her Internet and Society
course. Check the class' main blog
and, on the right sidebar, click on the links of all the students' blogs. Some of the students have really taken off with their blogs and will be interesting to follow over the time.
I've already told you about the other blogging class
, in which exchange students scattered around the world are blogging their experiences. You can find them here
And, of course, I am closely following Colin McEnroe's blogging class
at Trinity College in Connecticut.
Do you know of any others?
I'm Gone Country, You're Gone Country, We're Gone Country
Triangle got a second country music station
. I tried 99.9 Genuine Country in the car yesterday and, yes, it is better than the nasty ClearChannel/CurtisMedia 94.7FM. They actually play Dolly and Willie and Waylon and the boys alongside the current hits....Perhaps I will soon have an inspiration for another installment of my "I'm Gone Country" series of posts.
(hat-tip: Flannel Avenger
BTW, Blogger has started, this morning, teh stuff that Pirillo suggested the other day: a kaptcha for posting every post. A small nuisance compared with splogs. I have no problem with doing it.
Sunday, October 23, 2005
Toledo Race Riots
If you want to know what really happened in Toledo during the recent racist demonstrations, counter-protests and the clash between the two, go to Orcinus
for a detailed and in-depth reporting, explanation and a series of exclusive photographs from the event.
If you are not already a regular there, I suggest you make Oricnus a frequent read. Dig through the archives, too. It will change your perspective.
Big Brother Is Watching You
Sitemeter reveals everything. A reader from Corvallis, Oregon, comes here every day and spends 10-90 minutes here with several page-views every time. Of course I am curious....
Blogs can answer all questions in the Universe
To the person who got here via this web-search: what is the definition of anal orifice
I hope the post
your search pointed you to adequatelly answers your question.
The Final Argument Against Intelligent Design Creationism
I know, I know, everyone's already linked to this a week ago. I am late (as usual), but at least you will (if you click on the link) see all the updates and a 100+ comments: The only debate on Intelligent Design that is worthy of its subject
I agree with that post wholeheartedly. I wrote a couple of posts early on about Intelligent Design Creationism (see Categories) and then quit. What I really wanted to do is write a post like the one above. Now I don't have to - just click on the link. The debate is over, as far as I am concerned. I am not going to try to refute IDC any more for the same reasons cited within. Go read Talkorigins.org instead. And, BTW, I stuffed some cork inside my baseball bat....
Thomas Kuhn on the blogs again
kicked off an interesting discussion on Thomas Kuhn. Check the comment thread on that post, then read the comments on these posts by Andrew Jaffe
, Cat Dynamics
and Cosmic Variance
Tar Heel Tavern
Tar Heel Tavern
is up on Slowly She Turned.
I forgot to write and send anything this week (I was teaching yesterday, then was too exhausted to write anything original) and I am blushing with shame. Still, you should go over there because there is a LOT of great writing there.
Also, let me know if you want to host next week.
Saturday, October 22, 2005
Link-Love: Random Weekend Edition
The best conspiracy theory ever
! Or a bad case of projection
about the Republican War on Science, in this case global warming. Read the full lyrics (pdf) and especially the footnotes.
Say Ciao to Antonella
Unlike flagella, mitochondria and ribosomes, this is a real
intelligently designed sub-cellular machine.How to Get Ahead in the Republican Party
? Fake it! Like this
I read about this last night and thought about writing a post, but was too tired. Anyway, I knew that Pam was going to cover it today
. Poor brainwashed kids! Dohiyi Mir also picked it up
. Read the comment threads on both (as well as here
). Neil Shakespeare has a different take
and Orac takes it seriously
.Scabs on shins - not sexy
, blood on pants - not sexy
, self-constraint - an angelic deed, but not sexy
, and this
?! Definitely not sexy! All that from the sexiest blogger on the block.
Everybody appears to be linking to this wild anti-Kos rant
by Res Publica. I'll jump on the bandwagon...because I like these sleek navy-blue bandwagons. And while you're there read also: Everybody's doing it
(and the links within).
I suspect this
may turn into a Carnival of Eerthworms! That's what blogging is all about, after all - getting all the used vegetable oil you ever wanted.
Matt deserves a monument! He sacrificed his sanity for good of humanity by watching and writing about the complete Kent Hovind
video series. Go read the series and say "thank you" to Matt.
What is a Dissertation all about? I needed to read this
Ruby provokes an intense discussion in the comments
. Elizabeth Edwards posts a comment in response.
Is this how it works
? Shall we tap into the teenage rebellion?
Pirate Roberts was a computer programmer in 1966
!!!!! [snark] Moving around the little balls on the abacus? [/satire] Makes me feel so young. OK, he was very young at the time - he got married later
Here comes a hypothetical
Why people believe what they do
? I'll have to work this into one of my posts on childrearing-to-femiphobia-to-conservatism posts...
How and why to give up on vegetarianism
? Dunno - I've always been a bloody carnivore. BTW, the next edition of the Carnival of Feminists will be hosted at Personal Political, so throwing red meat is a requirement.Save My Ass
Another blogging course
, this one very different, though. The students are scattered all over the world, doing a lot of photoblogging and vlogging. Really cool.
Talking of narrow-focus blogs, this one
is intriguing.About looks
, via BlahBlahBlah
a new nurse blog on my roll.
The orifice is open
and an interestingmiddle wedding
On the future of newspapers
A contradiction in terms
- something about nobility...
Uggabugga pictorially explains Schwarzennegger's gerrymandering scheme
and links to several good analyses, too.
Carl Zimmer is asking for feedback on science blogging
. Here's his latest, on what's a gene for
See what's new at the Liberal Coalition
Is AmTaliban in charge of NASA, too? Out-of-this-world sex could jeopardise missions
.Catalyst and Aussie Scientists Put The Boot into Intelligent Design
Lance Mannion Superstar: It takes a tough man to save a tender chicken
I've bashed the genocentrism before, but I agree with Keat's Telescope
that the Human Genome Project was a very useful endeavor.The Day After Fitzmass
Jane Hamsher is on top of the entire, detailed Plame/Miller/Rove/Libby/Novak/Fitzgerald saga
as well as the Harriet Miers saga
. How does she do it? Does she sleep?
Echidne on Kass
Jim Anderson on Behe in Dover
. The school superintendent from the neighboring school district came to watch and conluded that IDC is "great science" and needs to be implemented in his district, too. What was he watching!?Physical exertion impacts our perception of distance
.The Church of Reality
got the 501(C)3 tax exempt status from the IRS!Diebold caught again
!The happiest teacher alive
.Do you listen, or do you wait to talk
The Miers withdrawal watch
. Also How To Avoid Blog Burnout
I'll have to check out this new station
. Perhaps I can continue my "I'm Gone Country" series...
Fitzgerald has a new website
are the military unifroms
of the future.
T.H.Huxley has a blog
(hat-tip: PZ Myers
Interesting discussion about religious progressives
Somebody finally did this obvious photoshop
- what a choice!
Everything you always wanted to know about viruses
He looks nice, but he is dangerous
!!!!Multilingual Katrina survey
Wow - David Brin does not read
many blogs, does he? Scroll down for his series on propertarianism.
Friday, October 21, 2005
Hardcopy Hyperlinking of the Future
I've been thinking a lot lately about the way linking on blogs breaks the linearity of reading and how books may try to catch up as our mental habits change over time.
Now Hanna, in comment #2 in this thread
(the post is a very good read itself - I may even buy the book if/when it gets published) has the solution: Pop-up Books!
It was sooooo obvious! Why didn't I think of that?
Exterminator meets Philosopher in a Texas courtroom
is the only blogger liveblogging
Tom DeLay's arraignment in Austin, TX, today. Check it out every now and then for updates.
On the same topic, nobody can put it in as funny words as Anonymoses
Thursday, October 20, 2005
Return of the school newspaper
With the US schools having to do more and more with less and less money, one of the first things that has to go is usually the school newspaper due to high costs of printing.
Now, an organization is providing server space and logistical help for hosting online school newspapers in high schools
and elementary and middle schools
Great idea and, you can see, quite a lot of schools have signed up (I understand this is not the ONLY such service). Now, if they would just open up the comments and get kids introduced to blogging....
Skeptic's Circle - call for submissions
The next Skeptic's Circle will be on Uncredible Hallq
. Send your musings against psuedoscience, bad history, medical quackery and other superstitions over there.
Teen Parenthood for the X-box generation
Earlier today Mrs.Coturnix and I took Coturnix Jr. and Coturnietta to the pediatrician (and the dentist - they are in the same building). While sitting in the waiting room we saw a strange scene. A father and a son (about 14-years old, I'd say) walked out of the office, the boy vigorously rocking a little baby, the father saying "It's great we have a car. Cars are good things".
I guess I made such a face that the receptionist started laughing: "It's a doll". A girl waiting in the same room offered an explanation that in middle school you get a doll for a couple of days and have to take care of it. The doll is computerized and cries "all the time" (her words spoken over a painful grimace).
The receptionist (quite young herself) mused that "in her day" the dolls were not so sophisticated so she and her friends just locked them up in the lockers. I asked for the name of the program and she said "Let me check", got up and in a few seconds came back with the answer: Baby Think It Over.
I looked at Mrs. Coturnix and said "I have to blog about this", so here is what I found:
Baby Think It Over is an educational program
that is done in high schools (and recently in middle schools) to demonstrate to the adolescents what parenting really entails.This paper
describes research on the effectiveness of the method and provides background information on which the program is based.Here
you can see what the doll does and what the 'parent' is supposed to do.This
is a good essay by a student who's done it and here
are a few more experiences.See more
Beats "abstinence-only" Xtian programs hands down, I'd say.Update:
If you did not bother clicking on the links, the program is designed not to teach kids to parent, but to show tham how HARD it is ....and it seems to be working! They want to party and sleep, not change diapers. Harsh reality kicks in.
Tar Heel Tavern - call for submissions
The 35th edition of the Tar Heel Tavern will be posted at Slowly She Turned on Sunday, Oct. 23 around 12 noon. The deadline for submissions is 9 a.m. Sunday morning, to accommodate you night-owl writers.The theme this time will be "An Oldie But a Goodie." You can approach this one in many ways - for example you can write about a treasured possession, memory, relationship, past administration, book, song, movie...use your imagination.OR you can submit a post older than one week. The only restriction is that it must not have been included in a past Tar Heel Tavern.OR you can do both in one post...OR you can do neither and just send me whatcha got.Send your permalink to lponeill AT att DOT net.Encourage new N.C. bloggers to participate, and beg old bloggers to host!
Wednesday, October 19, 2005
Meta-meta-meta-meta-blogging: tying the knots in the blogosphere
A long, long time ago, when I first started thinking about blogging itself (as opposed to just doing it) and first discovered blog carnivals, I wrote this post called meta-blogging
, in which, among else, I wrote this:
While old Big Blogs are themselves centers of the Universe from which all opinion radiates, small blogs have a different strategy. Large blogrolls, lots of blogwhoring, commenting on each others blogs, linking to each others posts - those are all strategies to gain one's visibility, with a consequence of new knots forming. These new knots are much larger than knots of Big blogs. Several dozens of blogs in each knot keep linking to each other all the time, and the knots get bigger and bigger, connecting to each other, forming a really extensive web which only tangentially includes the Big Old Ones.
I remembered this not only because I am in the meta-blogging mode after ConvergeSouth, but mostly due to some stuff I have read recently on the blogs of students who are taking the blogging class with Colin McEnroe
(check his sidebar for the students' blogs and give them some comment-love).
For instance, one of their recent assignments is to read and comment about Lance Mannion
. There are already several interesting commentaries on NileBlog
, Don't do the crime if you can't.....
(and here again
), Semper gumby
, Jean Dublog
, Bill's Blither
and I can't help it if i'm lucky
My blog is certainly not big, but it is huge compared to some who get 7 hits per day, yet DESERVE much more. I want to help new good blogs get some recognition. I have, from relatively early on, tried to link to such unknown little gems of the blogosphere as much as I could, pretty much as I just did above. But just posting a link is not that much help because my blog is not that big.
So, I have recently started other strategies. For instance, I occasionaly do 'linkfests', i.e., posts that contain a number of links to interesting recent posts on a number of blogs, for instance, recent examples are linkfests of female bloggers
, science bloggers
, political bloggers
, North Carolina bloggers
, medical bloggers
, education and academic bloggers
, journalists and expert-bloggers
, some miscellaneous blogs
and some more
The strategy is to have, in the same post, links both to some of the big blogs (e.g., Leiter Report, PressThink, Pharyngula, Legal Fiction, Pandagon, Majikthise, Shakespeare's Sister, etc.) and some of those newer smaller blogs that deserve wider audience. I am counting on the big bloggers tracking down the link to my linkfest via their sitemeters or search-engines, to look around and check out the unfamiliar names. Hopefully, they will like them, bookmark them and, one day soon, will link to them and bring them huge traffic and lots of new readers.
Even more direct method (which, sadly, bypasses me and my sitemeter) I have done occasionaly is to post links to cool little blogs directly into the comment threads on big blogs.
For instance, just very recently, I thought that Amanda
would really like this post
, a blog with nice satire (also a blog I discovered via this post
on this blog
from Colin's class), but only 17 visits per day. I posted a link in this post
on Pandagon and Pearlswine's sitemeter exploded with Pandalanche - and it did not even neccessitate Amanda linking to it in the body of a post. I am hoping that people who like Pandagon will also like Pearlswine's satire and will keep coming back for more.
I did the same thing with this post
, another one of Colin's students. That blog gets only 12 visits per day. Not any more, as I have posted a link in a comment
on this post
. I hope his sitemeter is happy with JayRosenlanche and will result in a couple of more regular readers!
Thus, I am trying to help new people join the existing 'knots' of the blogosphere, as well as perhaps build new knots. What do YOU do when you discover a pearl of a blog that nobody appears to know about?
Watch One, Do One, Teach One...
Carnival of Education #37
and Teaching Carnival #2
are up. The former focuses mostly on elementary-middle-high school, while the latter is about college teaching. Enjoy.Update:
Education Roundup: The Advocate Weekly
is another carnival of teachers and educators.
is up on The Questionable Authority. Get your bi-weekly dose of science/nature/medicine/environment blogging there.
Tuesday, October 18, 2005
Carnival of Feminists #1
The very first Carnival of Feminists
is up on Philobiblion, with a great collection of excellent posts (and if you did not have enough, scroll down to my post from this morning that links to some more female bloggers).
Nielsen-Ratings Rated by Blogs
Hmmm, there is a storm in the blogosphere. Jacob Nielsen
, who is, so they say, some kind of web-designing guru (sorry, I have not heard of him before) wrote these 10 reasons why many blogs suck.
While some of the advice - mostly the technical ones - are OK, others, the social ones, reveal complete misunderstanding what blogging is all about.Sharon
and Chris Clarke
have their own opinions. PZMyers
has his, plus a bunch of commenters pitch in.
What do you think?
Are my titles uninformative and non-eye-catching? Is this blog too 'miscellanous' in theme (as opposed to straightjacketed-narrow Circadiana
Do I suffer from irregular posting or dry spells? Is my future boss going to fire me?
Are you unable, even when hovering your cursor over the links, to figure out where I'm linking? Are my old/best posts burried in the archives and never refered to in more recent posts?
Is my 'About Me' section too empty and photograph-less? Anything I should change?
Best spam comment ever
thinks that Google should kill Blogger.com because of the harm done (to search engines) by spammer-blog ("splogs") hosted mainly on blogspot. (via Dan Gillmore
, hat-tip Ed Cone
Just one day later, I saw the most brilliant piece of comment spam
on a Blogger blog:
Should Google kill Blogspot?
Chris Pirillo is hopping mad about a recent swarm of search spam coming from one rather conspicious domain: blogspot.com. The accusation is that, for whatever reason, it's far too easy for spammers to send ...
Information on daycare referral
Link-Love: Femmes Fatales
Who asked where are all the women bloggers? Here they are, just a little sample. What a diversity of voices!Lindsay Beyerstein
explains what a Sunday Sermonette is
and points out an important detail about
the new methods of extracting stem cells.Newswriter
has an appropriate job for Harriet Miers
receieves anticlimactic packages
.Amanda's chat with her sister
makes her less confident about the DeLay affair. Jesse
is leaving Pandagon
and he will be sorely missed by the blogosphere, but I have to admit that I ahave been going there primarily for Amanda's
rants, like this one
on he-said-she-said media.Kim
will make you think about nurses
differently for the rest of your life.Trish Wilson
has the best take on Real Dolls
, lies in history textbooks
and the language you have not heard of: Hebonics
on KillWhitey parties, Vanessa
on the sex workers conference, Anne
on the inmates' right to abortion and Jessica
on Vagina101 are some of the reasons to check out Feministing
on the history of Candyland
, on inspirational speaking
and the second-oldest profession
on the Supreme Court
and Harriett Miers
(another one of Publius' blogchildren) has an excellent take on the Mooney/Yglesias debate on the Republican War on Science
, then Scotty McLellan
wakes her up again.Echidne
also loves Bruce Lee
and uses verbal Jeet-Koon-Do to beat up on David Brooks
and James Dobson
on the death of a newspaper
and some animals
, Crimes Against Humanity
and White House Iraq Group
is back in London
defines Bennett's racism
and the Miers strategy
Oh, no! Pen-Elayne
has another meme
!Pinko Feminist Hellcat
gives credit where it is due
.The Girl With A One-Track Mind
connects with her mother
and suffers culture-clash
in NY City
on how the war was sold, BlondeSense Liz
on Cindy Sheehan, Anntichrist S. Coulter
on Halliburton Watch and Jaye Ramsey Sutter
on factual relativism in the classroom - all good reasons to subscribe to Blondesense
is back (does that mean that the Carnival of Sin will resume?) and is being whisked to Prague
. I expect the next post will not be work-safe.Shakespeare's Sister
is my first-in-the-morning read for a reason. Here she is on sizeism
, Tom DeLay
, Al Gore
and the Idiotisation of America
recieved a Miller-less copy
of New York Times.Pam
is having an interesting discussion about the issue of being gay in political campaigns
. She also reports on the recent God-Blog conference
.Hedwig The Owl
on birds in the news
and academic hiring
has been on fire lately, following fervently the whole Plame/Miller/Rove epic. Try this
for a taste.Laura
is back in school
and back in the gym
on what progressivism is
, anonymous blogging
and losing weight
connects to nature
, turns websites into vegetables
and has an eventful day on campus
on cognitive dissonance
on the differences between know and believe
.The Little Professor
is having hard time reading
meets a spider
is already looking ahead
towards 2008 elections
reports that having a baby can be an aphrodisiac
, and on a man experiencing his wife's orgasm under hypnosis
It's Chewie's birthday
. Go say Hello.Sarah Dessen
is going to New York
looks at homecoming
from a different perspective.
A cop complimented Jasna
on her hair. See her hair here
has this to say
about crime statistics.Feministe
: Lauren has a strange moment student teaching
and another one
and Jill detects eurocentrism
has all the links on Plame/Rove affair
and is waiting for the Flipper
Grand Rounds - medical blogging
is up on Diabetes Mine.