linklog 060330

Google Maps + 2000 Census
Within a 1, 3 or 5 mile radius of our home, there are 11,014, 78,029 or 184,607 housing units, respectively; the great majority are owner occupied, most are worth less than we paid for our place and most are at least 20 years older than ours. The inhabitants, all 24,859, 174,440 or 401,704 of them, are on average a few years younger than us and earn about the same income; they are roughly 80% white, 3% black, 7% asian, 5% hispanic and 7% other.
Can I find someone using their IP Address? | Ask MetaFilter
Might come in handy if ever I get a troll infestation.
I would like to hike the length of the LA River one day. – 101 Fabulous Freebies
Free stuff! Web stuff, that is.
Informed Comment
Well done Prof Cole. Well deserved. I hope Cole is right, that this is indicative of increasing influence of independent, online journalism.
Body and Soul: Two generations
Jeanne on why insisting that immigrants speak fluent English is wrong and stupid.
Utopia, dystopia, frytopia.
The great indoor/outdoor cat debate.
Iraqi Kurds who fled Saddam are getting the BOHICA treatment from the Fed Bureau of Incompetence.
Kamal Sayid Qadir Jailed for Criticism of Barzani.
“The proto-fascist mini-state of the Kurdistan Democratic Party in Arbil [Irbil], northern Iraq, has sentenced an Austrian-Kurdish journalist to 18 months in prison for criticizing Massoud Barzani. Barzani last allied with Saddam Hussein against fellow Kurds as late as 1996, only a decade ago.”
Adventures in Ethics and Science: Fuller on Mooney on science.
More good discussion at Janet’s place.
FURIOUS nads! – You’re Profane, I Bet You Think This Post Is About You
People are stupid. Really fucking stupid.
Some are Boojums » Blog Archive » And it is, it is a glorious thing to be a Christian president!
I am the very model of a modern Christian president…
P2P Foundation
P2P could become a big part of open, cooperative science. Via Peter Suber , of course.
Science and Politics
Coturnix wanted some linky-love, so here it is. Also, sleep is fascinating, and I’ve had a side interest in the body clock for a long time. Think about it: your body keeps time. How??? I even have a crazy idea that my new bete noir , MYC, is somehow involved. Aggregator vacation
Rafe is dealing with my perennial problem: how much time will I allow my rss feeds/surfing to eat?
Uncertain Principles: Admissions Is a Hard Problem
The bottom line for me is that AA for men is not justifiable.
15 Best Skylines in the World
Shanghai and Dubai are my favourites.
Uncertain Principles: Revenge of the Pre-Meds
“Doctors are not scientists, they’re tech support “. I love it.
Finger length predicts physically aggressive personalities, study shows – ExpressNews – University of Alberta
The article is available from Bailey’s website as a pdf. Mean R:I ratios were 0.947 (M) and 0.965 (F) — by eye, mine appears to be very close to 1.0 (higher = less prone to physical aggression/more feminine) Update: I measured, because of course it looks “close to 1.0” (idiot!) — but it’s not clear where to measure from . Taking the crease nearest the palm as a starting point, I get between 0.958 and 0.972, but I used a photocopy not a scan.
Adventures in Ethics and Science: Plagiarism is bad.
The AP — the fucking AP, people! — swiped a story entire from a blog, and when confronted with their theft simply said “we don’t credit blogs”. Taking their cue from the Commander-in-Thief, Newstainment Inc. is now simply ignoring the bits of law it doesn’t like. We are so fucked.

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linklog 060329

Unclean! Unclean!
Who’da thunkit? I’m a persecuted minority: ” Americans rate atheists below Muslims, recent immigrants, gays and lesbians and other minority groups in “sharing their vision of American society.” Atheists are also the minority group most Americans are least willing to allow their children to marry.”
OBACHAN’S SCRIBBLES: Cherry Blossoms 2006
Note to self: take and post hanami photos, trackback.
Groovy Green » Thin Is In: New Thin Film Solar Production Facility To Be Built
Thin film solar: looks like a window, provides almost complete heat insulation and generates more electricity per unit area than traditional panels. Very very cool.
Wired 14.04: The Late Late Show, Live From Inside Halo
Brilliant: a talk show inside a MMORPG! I’d love to see it taken to Second Life or somewhere else less violent than Halo. via rebecca blood.
YoungFemaleScientist: help writing papers.
Should YFS cut a corner in the usual fashion or not? I say no; I wouldn’t blame her if she did, I know the pressure she’s under, but I hope she’ll draw a line in the sand over this.
Firedoglake weblog » Citizen Action Steps: Phase One
[this is good] Note to self: do this. Also, how much does an eFax account cost?
The Valve – A Literary Organ | Electra Press – Will Work For Whuffie, part II
Holbo: “Let’s start by asking the most basic question. Why is an electronic press an appropriate response to academic publishing in disarray? Well, because the academic reputation economy lags behind the technology curve. In some screwy inversion of the history of money, it’s hard to get people to believe in something not backed by solid paper. But what exactly is the form of the shift we are working for? Just: get over the paper fetish? Not that I wouldn’t be pleased enough with just that. But really it seems to me that the main point should be: get over the paper fetish in the right way. And the right way is: by embracing the potential of academic publishing to be a ‘gift culture’. “
The Love Bug
Woman and fiancee share computer; he installs second copy of FF, thinking it would generate a second profile, and uses it to browse dating sites. She finds list of “never saved” passwords in password manager, breaks off engagement and submits bug report. Some of the comments on the report are… disheartening. Via Schneier
3quarksdaily: Shiban Ganju on the H. pylori story
An excellent short essay on a fascinating chunk of the history of science.
Visible Proofs: Forensic Views of the Body
History and practice of forensic science. Via the spousal unit.
“Did you know, for example, that while you need to sweat out your credit report, the credit bureaus keep a special “V.I.P.” list of prominent citizens whose reports are specially tidied up so they look cleaner than they really are? If the big boys never experience the harassment or increased costs of a credit ding, then they are a lot less likely to insist on more legal oversight. There are many ways to lobby, and this one requires no reporting at all.” via ObWi

Powered by Simpy and Feed Digest; the archive, aka my Simpy account, is here.

Friday Poetry Blogging (yup, late again)

Wrong Number

Thalia kissed me where I stood,
Passing thousands by to gird me—
I’d undo it, if I could:
I’d rather she had never heard me!
It wasn’t she I quested after—
I’d hoped Erato might enlist me—
All my verse occasions laughter,
Since Thalia kissed me!

Someone once asked me if this was a dig at Leigh Hunt. It does look like one, but I honestly meant it only as a dig at myself.

linklog 030626

Through the Looking Glass
Charles has it about right — W has declared himself a dictator, above the law. I’m going to focus less on politics on this site than I have in the past, preferring to leave that to those who are much better at it (see my blogroll), but I did want to at least link to this story.

American Prospect Online – The New New Gore
Like digby, I have a soft spot for Al Gore.

Adventures in Ethics and Science: Marketing philosophy to admitted students.
The most obvious benefit of studying philosophy is in learning critical thinking/reasoning skills and tools.

Floridian: The dissident at dusk
Profile of Stetson Kennedy, genuine American hero. (I’ve forgotten where I found this link; thanks, whoever.)

Trials | Abstract | 1745-6215-7-6 | Lead editorial: Trials – using the opportunities of electronic publishing to improve the reporting of randomised trials
“This editorial introduces the new online, open access, peer-reviewed journal Trials. The journal considers manuscripts on any aspect of the design, performance, and findings of randomised controlled trials in any discipline related to health care, and also encourages the publication of protocols. Trialists will be able to provide the necessary detail for a true and complete scientific record. They will be able to communicate not only all outcome measures, as well as varying analyses and interpretations, but also in-depth descriptions of what they did and honest reflections about what they learnt. Trials also encourages articles covering generic issues related to trials, for example focussing on the design, conduct, analysis, interpretation, or reporting.” This level of disclosure should be mandatory. (via Peter Suber, of course)

HubLog: Peer Review with Marginalia
This is in its early stages, but it’s way cool — a way to annotate online documents. Think peer review as wiki; wonder if Biology Direct would be interested?

Wow. Just — wow. This guy is the Editor-in-Chief of the Antarctica Journal of Mathematics (he doesn’t like it if you write “Antarctic”).

The Loom: You’re a Dim Bulb (And I mean that in the best possible way).
Another “everybody knows” — we only use 10% of our brains. Turns out, the brain only uses enough energy to power about 1% of its neurons at any one time (about 15W). That doesn’t mean “we only use 1% of our brains” though — do we “only use 20% of the transmission” because the car can only be in one gear at a time? (hat tip for the analogy: Janne.)

Social Bookmarks – Social Bookmarking Services Reviewed
Cool, an attempt to list and review every social bookmarking site on the intarweb. Only 36 so far, and at first glance no Scuttle — note to self, email the admin with my list.

Innovations report – how to lobby the legislature
Packed with useful information.

Criticker – Home of the TCI
Rank films to build a profile, from which the db will generate recommendations of films and critics.

linklog archive, aka my Simpy account

linklog 030623

Bookcrossing, n.: the practice of leaving a book in a public place to be picked up and read by others, who then do likewise.

“I am beautiful now.” Yes, Ms Cho, you are.

WORDCOUNT / Tracking the Way We Use Language /
Idea: Ogden’s Basic English amended according to word frequency (make sure the top 1000 are in the set), followed by LEO translation. Alternatively, WordCount in other languages — compare top 1000s, use to amend Basic Otherlanguage.

Socialism, Market Socialism
If I’m any kind of -ist I’m some kind of socialist, so it would pay me to think more about what that means and what I might do about it.

Sociology of Science
Cosma again. Damn. If I had six brains I couldn’t keep up with this guy.

FURIOUS nads! – You First, Then We’ll Talk
bix is making sense again: “There shouldn’t even be any discussion of 24/7 audiovisual access to the public for the police until and unless there is 24/7 audiovisual access to the police for the public.”

Indianz.Com > News > Giago: Oglala Sioux president on state abortion law
Sweet. Oglala Sioux President Cecilia Fire Thunder: “I will personally establish a Planned Parenthood clinic on my own land which is within the boundaries of the Pine Ridge Reservation where the State of South Dakota has absolutely no jurisdiction.” Via kathrynt by way of bix.

What’s the funniest joke that doesn’t involve making fun of anyone? | Ask MetaFilter
Why did Proudhon drink herbal tea? Because proper tea is theft.

A mixture of utter nonsense and sensible ideas. “Embrace the subjective” my paradigm-shifting ass.

Goya’s Last Works at The Frick Collection – New York Magazine Art Review
“I have no eyesight, pulse, pen or ink,” wrote the elderly Francisco de Goya y Lucientes… “The only thing I have in excess is willpower.”

The New Zealand Weta – Home
Mouse-sized crickets, what could be better? According to this page, the name derives from the Maori name for the Giant Weta, “wetapunga” — which means roughly “the god of ugly things”.

Don’t Make Me Shut This Shop Out of Raging Spite for You
Actually, after roughly a decade at university with either no income or a student stipend, I’ll never catch up, financially, with a mechanic who started her apprenticeship right out of high school. As a postdoc I earn considerably less than an auto mechanic with equivalent experience, and I’ll only get ahead in immediate income in the unlikely case that I make faculty. I’ll never catch up in lifetime earnings. ^But hey, that’s Doctor Asshole to you, greasemonkey!^

The Design of Software – REST API
WTF is an API and what can I do with it?

This is all the news the Seldovia City Government is going to let you have about what they’re really doing
Black page, no text. Things are not looking good in Seldovia.

Press Conference of the President
Jesus suffering Christ on a roadside IED, he’s already decided it’s someone else’s job to clean up his mess. The evil soulless little bastard is bored with Iraq. There is no bottom to worse. (via BlueOregon)

“Q: Will there come a day — and I’m not asking you when, not asking for a timetable — will there come a day when there will be no more American forces in Iraq?
THE RESIDENT: That, of course, is an objective, and that will be decided by future Presidents and future governments of Iraq.”

Adventures in Ethics and Science: The more you know …
Discussion of the “tension” between theory and experiment. John Dewey would not like some of the viewpoints expressed!

the Creatures in my Head – illustration and artwork by Andrew Bell
The creatures in Andrew Bell’s head. Dude, I’d get that looked at.

linklog archive, aka my Simpy account

Jane Doe (OC) is a hero. Tell her so.

Prof B, Rob, Amp and Hugo all point to Pinko Feminist Hellcat’s coverage of the OC rape case. For those of you living under a rock or outside the US, here’s Rob’s brief summary:

Three young men in Orange County videotaped themselves raping an unconscious 16 year old, and then left the video in a rented beach house. Because they were extremely wealthy, they were able to hire a lawyer who after three years of slandering and harassing the victim, got them off with only a conviction on sexual assault. Now the victim is suing the lawyer for harassment, slander, and libel. The lawyer responded by calling her “trash” and said “What I did to Jane Doe in the criminal case was child’s play compared to what I can do to her in a civil case.”

One of Hugo’s readers, Catty, has a connection to Jane Doe’s legal team and is collecting emails of support. Catty’s address is ihiroeATyahooDOTcom, and letters should be addressed to “Jane Doe”; they will be printed and sent to her attorney’s office. Here’s mine:

Dear Ms Doe,
I write to thank you for your courage and determination. In standing firm against your assailants (in which category I include their counsel) you are forging a path for all the other survivors of violence who will, as a matter of unhappy certainty, come after you. By refusing to be intimidated into giving up your demand for justice, you are bringing a spotlight to bear on the flaws in our legal system behind which the perpetrators of sexual violence so often shelter. I wish you success in your fight, and in all things. I hope it helps to hear from one of your supporters; you should know that we are many, and you are a hero to us.

Jane Doe is nineteen years old, people. She’s already endured three years of horror (to say nothing of the initial assault), and she’s just put herself in for another long stay in the emotional meatgrinder. I can’t know her mind, but whatever her reasons she is doing the right, the incredibly brave, thing.
If you’re at all like me, you try to do your part as a reasonable human being, but it’s easy to feel that your donations are drops in an ocean and your letters go straight to /dev/null — well, not this time. This time there’s a human being on the other end; she’s been through hell and she’s looking down the barrel of worse, she must be tired and frightened, and I bet she’d like to hear from you — just to be reminded that she’s not entirely alone. This is one case in which the much-hyped blogosphere can do some real good; please write, and if you have a blog please spread this story.
Finally, if anyone knows anything about a legal defense fund, please send me details.

On second thoughts, maybe not.

Quite apart from the ungrammatical message, the “contact us” link goes to — you guessed it — the same error page. Oy. There’s no blog or forum where I can find out what’s happening, either. I mean, I don’t demand 100% uptime, but I do at least want to know what up.
This only gets to happen one more time (and that’s only because I am very lazy), then I’m switching to Simpy.
Update: changed my mind, as per the strikeouts. I just like Simpy better; I trust it, and Otis, more. I’m a tool, I should have done this from the start. Until I work out how to do the linklog posts, if you really need to watch me surf the Simpy feed is

quick update regarding Simpy

I mentioned a while back that I chose Ma.gnolia over Simpy in part because the latter’s RSS feeds didn’t work with Bloglines, so it seems only fair to note that this is no longer the case: Simpy’s feeds now work perfectly with Bloglines (at least the full links feed I tested does). Moreover, since Ma.gnolia feeds initially didn’t work with Bloglines either, and the Ma.gnolia team replied to my email to say “it works now, we dunno why”, I figure it was likely something Bloglines did. I meant to email Otis — see for yourself how responsive he is — but forgot; if I hadn’t, I’d be using Simpy now. This would mean finding a way to convert XML to HTML to replace the Ma.gnolia linklog widget, but there’s an API and an active dev community so even if FeedDigest doesn’t open up signups again I’m sure I could cobble something together.
For now I’m satisfied with Ma.gnolia, but I’m keeping my backup with Simpy and keeping an eye on developments. Honestly, Simpy is less flashy and commercial and has that hacker feel to it (these are good things, imo); I feel I can trust Otis, whereas I just don’t know what the Ma.gnolia folks have in mind. I should probably switch, but I’m too lazy to do it right away — so this entry is my way of trying to be fair to Simpy.

Bringing new meaning to the phrase “travesty of justice”.

lindaLoaiza03.jpgNo one who has heard her story can forget Linda Loaiza. The latest in a literally unbelievable series of denials of justice is this: the subhuman dirtbag who raped and tortured her for four months has been sentenced to six years’ jail for “severe assault and deprivation of liberty”. Remember, Loaiza had to mount a public hunger strike just to get this case heard. In the first trial, the morlock was acquitted; this is the result of an appeal. Fuuuuuuuuck.
Breathing new life also into the word “indomitable”, Loaiza plans to appeal further. You cannot dream such courage. The International Planned Parenthood Federation Western Hemisphere Region is running a campaign in support; go here to send her a message of solidarity. Words are not up to the task at hand, but one cannot remain silent so I sent this:

Dear Ms Loaiza,
I am astonished and outraged at the latest verdict in your fight for justice. I am pleased to hear that you will appeal, and I find myself unable fully to express my admiration for your unflinching courage.
You are shining a light into the lives of the oppressed, in all places and for all time.

Please also consider including the IPP/WHR in your philanthropic budget this year. In addition, Loaiza is setting up the Fundación Amigos de Linda Loaiza, which will focus on violence against women and judicial obstacles to redress of same. When I find out how to join, I’ll post details. (Picture of LL from Mujeres En Acción.)