the well

Mar. 1st, 2009 09:15 pm
ironymaiden: (blow your mind)
Nature commissioned a pair of opposing op-ed pieces in honor of Darwin's 200th birthday.

should scientists study race and IQ?
no.
yes.

forum comments include rebuttals from the respective pieces' authors, and the other commenters are...at a higher level than what i'm used to in an internet forum. these people cite their sources. i've fallen into reading the comments and i can't get out.

the well

Mar. 1st, 2009 09:15 pm
ironymaiden: (blow your mind)
Nature commissioned a pair of opposing op-ed pieces in honor of Darwin's 200th birthday.

should scientists study race and IQ?
no.
yes.

forum comments include rebuttals from the respective pieces' authors, and the other commenters are...at a higher level than what i'm used to in an internet forum. these people cite their sources. i've fallen into reading the comments and i can't get out.
ironymaiden: (neutron star)
i use NASA video clips and stills as examples for work on a regular basis. (no copyright, culture-neutral images.)

yet every so often i forget about [livejournal.com profile] spiritrover and [livejournal.com profile] opportunitygrrl since they stopped updating their journals. but that's because they're busy. as of this month, they are on the fifth year of their 90 day mission.

five years video on youtube
the mars rovers home page

i am so proud. fingers crossed that continuing space exploration counts as stimulating the economy.



why did i not notice the launch patches before? <3 <3 <3
ironymaiden: (neutron star)
i use NASA video clips and stills as examples for work on a regular basis. (no copyright, culture-neutral images.)

yet every so often i forget about [livejournal.com profile] spiritrover and [livejournal.com profile] opportunitygrrl since they stopped updating their journals. but that's because they're busy. as of this month, they are on the fifth year of their 90 day mission.

five years video on youtube
the mars rovers home page

i am so proud. fingers crossed that continuing space exploration counts as stimulating the economy.



why did i not notice the launch patches before? <3 <3 <3
ironymaiden: (left hand)
i read an article about linguistics on the bus today. part of it is a discussion of the intersection of brain structure and culture in the formation of language. Noam Chomsky thinks there is a generative grammar, an underlying structure to every language that comes out of the way the human brain works. but this language in the article, Pirahã, doesn't fit the theory.

because Chomsky's work is so widely accepted, one of the knee-jerk reactions to the anomalous findings is that the researcher must think that the Pirahã people are too stupid to form a proper human grammar. the other reaction is that the Pirahã people really are stupid.

the researcher in question appears to respect them and believe in their intelligence. they're not inbred or handicapped in any way, yet they definitely do not communicate the way we do. they live in a permanent and concrete present, they have no colors, they have no numbers.

the article is illuminating.* when i meet someone online, my entire opinion of them is formed by their facility with language. someone who doesn't communicate clearly in writing will make a poor impression. absent face to face interaction, a poor writer can't fit into my "theory" and therefore must be deficient.

unless my theory is wrong.

i suppose i'm a social network snob. i like livejournal because it makes people write. it sorts in favor of people who have a modicum of communication skill (and their fans). the structure allows for a rich, layered interaction. i've grown to appreciate the hybrid of openness and little (sometimes big) confidences. i'm used to the mob enforcement of clarity and bite in [livejournal.com profile] seattle.

so: posited proof of Pirahã intelligence comes from their abilities as hunters and gatherers and their societal structure. how do we get an accurate impression of someone if we can't see them active in their native environment and we have already established a failure to communicate?**






*tangentially, i think it's important reading for anyone who wants to write fiction about aliens.

**mostly rhetorical. but part of me wants an answer.
ironymaiden: (left hand)
i read an article about linguistics on the bus today. part of it is a discussion of the intersection of brain structure and culture in the formation of language. Noam Chomsky thinks there is a generative grammar, an underlying structure to every language that comes out of the way the human brain works. but this language in the article, Pirahã, doesn't fit the theory.

because Chomsky's work is so widely accepted, one of the knee-jerk reactions to the anomalous findings is that the researcher must think that the Pirahã people are too stupid to form a proper human grammar. the other reaction is that the Pirahã people really are stupid.

the researcher in question appears to respect them and believe in their intelligence. they're not inbred or handicapped in any way, yet they definitely do not communicate the way we do. they live in a permanent and concrete present, they have no colors, they have no numbers.

the article is illuminating.* when i meet someone online, my entire opinion of them is formed by their facility with language. someone who doesn't communicate clearly in writing will make a poor impression. absent face to face interaction, a poor writer can't fit into my "theory" and therefore must be deficient.

unless my theory is wrong.

i suppose i'm a social network snob. i like livejournal because it makes people write. it sorts in favor of people who have a modicum of communication skill (and their fans). the structure allows for a rich, layered interaction. i've grown to appreciate the hybrid of openness and little (sometimes big) confidences. i'm used to the mob enforcement of clarity and bite in [livejournal.com profile] seattle.

so: posited proof of Pirahã intelligence comes from their abilities as hunters and gatherers and their societal structure. how do we get an accurate impression of someone if we can't see them active in their native environment and we have already established a failure to communicate?**






*tangentially, i think it's important reading for anyone who wants to write fiction about aliens.

**mostly rhetorical. but part of me wants an answer.
ironymaiden: (whee!)
[livejournal.com profile] kijjohnson totally called me from on the road when the news came on the radio.

ICE. ON. MARS.
ironymaiden: (whee!)
[livejournal.com profile] kijjohnson totally called me from on the road when the news came on the radio.

ICE. ON. MARS.
ironymaiden: (neutron star)
i caught part of a radio show this morning talking about the "enteric brain". new concept for me, although apparently the study that spurred interest in it is a good dozen years old.

the guy on the radio was a bit into woo, suggesting that "gut feelings" and "intuition" come from this brain in your digestive system and that it's making choices for you and circumventing the brain in your head. still looking into how plausible that is, but it's begging for someone to write a story about it.
ironymaiden: (neutron star)
i caught part of a radio show this morning talking about the "enteric brain". new concept for me, although apparently the study that spurred interest in it is a good dozen years old.

the guy on the radio was a bit into woo, suggesting that "gut feelings" and "intuition" come from this brain in your digestive system and that it's making choices for you and circumventing the brain in your head. still looking into how plausible that is, but it's begging for someone to write a story about it.
ironymaiden: (photo)

my best side
Originally uploaded by green eyed so and so.
la la la, i'm on vacation, i will take my book to the tea shop that makes crepes and have a lovely late breakfast. i reach for my coat and look out the window by the coat tree to see that someone else is having breakfast out today.

my guess is Peale's falcon, but i'd love it if someone with more bird knowledge could tell me more. EDITED TO ADD: info from the comments says juvenile Cooper's hawk. i was guessing a falcon because it wasn't as big as other hawks i've seen. cool. our yard has always been popular with wildlife; tons of birds and squirrels, an oft-used raccoon trail, and a hangout for neighborhood cats. this is the first bird-on-bird action i've seen.
ironymaiden: (photo)

my best side
Originally uploaded by green eyed so and so.
la la la, i'm on vacation, i will take my book to the tea shop that makes crepes and have a lovely late breakfast. i reach for my coat and look out the window by the coat tree to see that someone else is having breakfast out today.

my guess is Peale's falcon, but i'd love it if someone with more bird knowledge could tell me more. EDITED TO ADD: info from the comments says juvenile Cooper's hawk. i was guessing a falcon because it wasn't as big as other hawks i've seen. cool. our yard has always been popular with wildlife; tons of birds and squirrels, an oft-used raccoon trail, and a hangout for neighborhood cats. this is the first bird-on-bird action i've seen.

YourMorals

Sep. 23rd, 2007 01:48 pm
ironymaiden: (bored now)
lethargy leads to reading the NY Times and napping. there's an article about the origins of morality and a researcher who is doing work on morality based on five forms: (prevention of)harm, fairness, in-group, authority, and purity. he has a website where you can quiz yourself and become a statistic, called YourMorals.Org.

it's as fun as doing any webquiz, but you can also feel all self-satisfied that you're timewasting for science. (no blog code, alas.) it's certainly interesting to compare myself to others who have identified themselves as "liberal" or "conservative". i don't feel particularly confident about the theses or the structure of all the tests.

the one that strikes me as the most strained is one where you are asked to rate what you would like or dislike in your pet of choice. i scored high on "purity" because i would not like to have a dog that humps my leg, and i think a tendency towards cleanliness in my pet's habits is favorable. hopefully they actually run the various quiz data together since it becomes apparent that the high purity score is an anomaly. pets aren't people. the traits that are favorable or tolerable in humans are undesirable in animal companions. i don't want a pet to have the same sexual freedom or even intelligence that i desire in a human. smart pets are a holy terror unless you are willing to give them a tremendous amount of time and attention.

OTOH, there's a fun one where you read a paragraph describing an ethical dilemma and then answer four questions. the dilemmas vary, but the questions remain the same. do you respond to the ethical question the same way each time, or are your responses colored by your moral/political stances?

oh, and i am more psychopathic than the average bear. or i admit to it, which i think is something again.

YourMorals

Sep. 23rd, 2007 01:48 pm
ironymaiden: (bored now)
lethargy leads to reading the NY Times and napping. there's an article about the origins of morality and a researcher who is doing work on morality based on five forms: (prevention of)harm, fairness, in-group, authority, and purity. he has a website where you can quiz yourself and become a statistic, called YourMorals.Org.

it's as fun as doing any webquiz, but you can also feel all self-satisfied that you're timewasting for science. (no blog code, alas.) it's certainly interesting to compare myself to others who have identified themselves as "liberal" or "conservative". i don't feel particularly confident about the theses or the structure of all the tests.

the one that strikes me as the most strained is one where you are asked to rate what you would like or dislike in your pet of choice. i scored high on "purity" because i would not like to have a dog that humps my leg, and i think a tendency towards cleanliness in my pet's habits is favorable. hopefully they actually run the various quiz data together since it becomes apparent that the high purity score is an anomaly. pets aren't people. the traits that are favorable or tolerable in humans are undesirable in animal companions. i don't want a pet to have the same sexual freedom or even intelligence that i desire in a human. smart pets are a holy terror unless you are willing to give them a tremendous amount of time and attention.

OTOH, there's a fun one where you read a paragraph describing an ethical dilemma and then answer four questions. the dilemmas vary, but the questions remain the same. do you respond to the ethical question the same way each time, or are your responses colored by your moral/political stances?

oh, and i am more psychopathic than the average bear. or i admit to it, which i think is something again.
ironymaiden: (gah Haley)
i didn't know about this until today.*

three died in testing for SpaceShipTwo on Thursday.

i don't read /. often because it's like drinking from a firehose, but the comment thread has some gems hidden among the obligatory "foo people die in Iraq every day, stop being upset over these guys!" (including great insight on what may have happened based on chemical and engineering knowledge.)

this is my favorite: The meek (and that's you, Farley) can have the earth. The rest of us only want the right to sign a waiver that we may take our chances with the stars.

*anyone have a favorite source of space info? i want to be more aware.
ironymaiden: (gah Haley)
i didn't know about this until today.*

three died in testing for SpaceShipTwo on Thursday.

i don't read /. often because it's like drinking from a firehose, but the comment thread has some gems hidden among the obligatory "foo people die in Iraq every day, stop being upset over these guys!" (including great insight on what may have happened based on chemical and engineering knowledge.)

this is my favorite: The meek (and that's you, Farley) can have the earth. The rest of us only want the right to sign a waiver that we may take our chances with the stars.

*anyone have a favorite source of space info? i want to be more aware.
ironymaiden: (neutron star)
VolcanoCam, now in HD! (old and busted on the left, new hotness on the right.)
i don't visit it all the time, but today i went on a whim and discovered that they got the new camera online last night.
ironymaiden: (neutron star)
VolcanoCam, now in HD! (old and busted on the left, new hotness on the right.)
i don't visit it all the time, but today i went on a whim and discovered that they got the new camera online last night.

Profile

ironymaiden: (Default)
ironymaiden

September 2017

S M T W T F S
     1 2
3 456 789
10111213 1415 16
1718192021 2223
24252627282930

Syndicate

RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated Sep. 23rd, 2017 04:26 pm
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios