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which exit?

- bill 4-20-2014 1:02 pm [link] [add a comment]

David Foster Wallace's 2002 Pomona College handout on five common word usage mistakes for his advanced fiction writing class.

- jim 4-18-2014 12:31 pm [link] [add a comment]

in case you thought gabriel garcia marquez was still alive im here to tell you he is not.

- dave 4-18-2014 1:41 am [link] [add a comment]

growing up in bergen county, bergen community college was a handy punchline. once again it has lived down to its reputation.

- dave 4-17-2014 10:34 pm [link] [add a comment]

action park

via adman
- bill 4-17-2014 3:07 pm [link] [4 comments]

huge shake up in the transgender community

- bill 4-17-2014 1:11 pm [link] [add a comment]

My friend shot this video of the lunar eclipse on Monday.

- steve 4-16-2014 1:07 pm [link] [1 comment]

- mark 4-15-2014 4:14 am [link] [1 comment]

Paging L.M.: GIF fodder here.

- mark 4-13-2014 7:45 am [link] [add a comment]

Two most excellent science shows available on the web, Cosmos and Your Inner Fish.

Cosmos takes on both science and the history of science, and covers a very broad scope. It's a reboot of Carl Sagan's Cosmos. An amazing amount of new science has been developed since that time. (And some cool stuff has already come out since the program was produced. Such is the march of science these days.) Cosmos is unafraid to directly confront established religion where it undermines the rational thought necessary for scientific progress. Sometimes the "woah, dude!" tone, which is also in the original Cosmos, bugs me. But, that's just a style issue. Dealing with the "billions and billions" it's hard not to get a little gushy at times.

It's on a commercial network, so there are commercials in the internet version. Protip: start it, let it run muted for a long time while you do something else, then pause. Now go back to the beginning and watch without the commercial breaks that were previously passed during your "preview." Don't let the preview go too long, or it will fall off the end of the program and start another video clip. Be warned the the episodes will start to expire soon, and won't be available on the web. It's available on a TV channel and a cable channel in addition to the internet.

Your Inner Fish is a shorter series (three episodes), and has a much more narrow focus. It's about the evolution of tretrapods (including the bipedal naked ape) from uppity fish. It has a much more matter of fact tone than Cosmos. It does dip into the 19th century with some frequency to illustrate the origin of some of the concepts of current biology. But the focus seems to be more on current biology rather than the history of biology. The host is a working paleontologist and anatomist who was a key member of the team that unearthed the Tiktaalik fossil in the Canadian Arctic. 

It's a PBS show. Episode one has aired already. It's on the web and your local member station. 

Warning for the squeamish: There is some footage of cadaver disection (that's what the host teaches as a day job), but it's respectfully done. It's done in pursuit of comparative anatomy to highlight the homologies between humans and other tetrapods. There's also illustration of some experimentation on the embryos of chickens, etc. to demonstrate the function of the sonic hedgehog gene on their forelimb buds. Yes, there's a gene called sonic hedgehog. (In elementary school, we tracked the development of chicken embryos with two dozen fertile eggs. I didn't eat eggs for a while after that. I eat chicken eggs all the time now, just not the fertile ones.)

Both shows are some of the best science television I've seen. Both are clearly designed with younger audiences in mind, but are certainly not dumbed down. The concepts are simplified to an introductory level, and much effort is taken to explain concepts visually in both productions. 


Your Inner Fish

- mark 4-12-2014 10:50 pm [link] [add a comment]

Don't like 'em as a child, try 'em as an adult

- steve 4-09-2014 1:29 pm [link] [1 comment]


- bill 4-06-2014 11:30 pm [link] [8 comments]

somehow i missed out on spy magazine in its heyday. (its not like i was reading the new yorker all that much either.) looks like google books has them all available to see what all the fuss was about.

- dave 4-04-2014 6:43 pm [link] [add a comment]

via kottke

- jim 4-01-2014 1:08 am [link] [5 comments]

- dave 3-28-2014 4:07 pm [link] [add a comment]

Plywood rocking chair ...
- mark 3-25-2014 3:29 am [link] [add a comment]

being fab

- bill 3-24-2014 4:10 am [link] [add a comment]

transit maps of the world

- bill 3-19-2014 3:52 pm [link] [add a comment]

the simplest explanation for the missing plane

- linda 3-18-2014 7:40 pm [link] [2 comments]

driftwood forts of the Oregon coast

- bill 3-18-2014 1:14 pm [link] [1 comment]

balanced rocks

- bill 3-18-2014 9:18 am [link] [add a comment]

- mark 3-17-2014 7:46 pm [link] [add a comment]

Buddhist economics

- linda 3-14-2014 3:23 pm [link] [1 ref] [add a comment]

free movies for apple users on United.

- linda 3-13-2014 8:56 pm [link] [add a comment]

NJ to TESLA: Drop Dead

- bill 3-12-2014 1:11 pm [link] [1 ref] [3 comments]