Category Archives: Uncategorized
Hey folks, I just wanted to let you know that ResearchBuzz is going to be on a hiatus for a while. I’ll post as I can on Twitter and Facebook but e-mail updates are going to be scanty, and if you’re waiting on a reply to an e-mail — well, let’s just say I got over 3000 messages in my in-box and I’m not really sure when I’m going to get back to them.
I’m undergoing some extremely stressful things in my life right now and I just need to focus all my energies on them. My health is fine (aside from the stress) so please don’t be concerned. This is just reality.
Can I get sappy on you for a minute?
As some of you know I live in North Carolina. I have ancestors here going back over 200 years (who were mostly piss-poor tobacco farmers, so don’t think I’m claiming any kind of merit badge.) I have lived here most of my life and I can’t imagine moving away, because of how much and how helplessly I love this state.
It would take me ages to explain to you why. A streaky dawn sky over a stand of pine trees. A warm evening, sitting on the porch, smelling the wisteria and watching the bats zoom around. Sometimes I’ll get up early and go for a walk, and I’ll hear the hawks going kyahh kyahh kyahh as they look for their breakfast, and I’ll see the crepe myrtles scattering their petals over the grass. And my heart will just clutch, because I am in the middle — this is my landscape and the context of my history — and I have given my soul to it in some vast, inexpressible way. And though it, in its totality, may love me back (who knows?), it is in a way that I do not have the capacity to truly understand and appreciate.
ResearchBuzz is the context of my intellectual existance. Not just the Web site, but every thing that makes it possible. The people who care enough to create the resources and share them. The people who teach and grow and make more from what has come before. There is so much to despair of in this world, but there is so much hope in those everywhere who choose to move forward and build and share and learn.
ResearchBuzz is only a drop in that vast ocean. But the ocean has been so welcoming and accepting to a life which in some ways has not had much of that kindness. I feel for that context and that landscape the same witless gratitude and overflowing emotion that I feel toward the state where I live. And the feelings for both are tinged with regret and self-recrimination, because I know in neither case will I ever be able to repay everything that has been given to me.
I’m not sure when I’ll be able to come back and devote as much time as I would like to ResearchBuzz — to be honest, I have no idea how this will end. But it seemed very important that I say something, and most important that I tell you: I love. I love the world that makes ResearchBuzz possible, though I have to leave it for a while. And I will not stop.
See you soon.
Hey guys, work has totally kicked my tail this week. I’ll have some new stuff up this weekend. I’m going through writing-ResearchBuzz withdrawal….
Nerd out! Hulu has made almost 700 episodes of various Star Trek franchises free to watch until the end of March.
Good grief, just about everything gets in an infographic these days — including the NCAA tourney.
Posterous refugees, you have a new option: Posthaven has launched in public beta.
Amazon has launched a new “Send to Kindle” feature that publishers can install on their own Web sites. Looks interesting but I’m really happy with Pocket.
10th Mountain Division newspapers from WWII are now available online. “Dennis Hagen, 10th Mountain Division Archivist at the Denver Public Library added, ‘The 10th Mountain Division’s incredible accomplishments during World War II have been well documented in countless books and articles. The extensive and intensive mountain and winter warfare training that prepared the Division for battle is much less well-known. The Camp Hale Ski-Zette and The Blizzard provide a valuable window into what life was like for young military men preparing to go to war and a unique perspective on brief moment in Colorado’s history that is probably not available anywhere else.’”
Genealogy search engine Mocavo has announced a learning center for genealogists who want more guidance in researching their family history.
Oh look, you can finally do full-text search on Quora! About time!
OHAI! Google Image Search now lets you find animated GIFs.
Nice: safety data for vehicles, now available as an API.
Mashable takes a look at Mention as a replacement for Google Alerts. It’s okay for non-Web stuff, but it’s missing Web things.
Snark and data, they go together like peanut butter and jelly. When should we expect Google to shut down Google Keep? Good morning, Internet…
Google Reader: Om Malik pitches in two cents about Google Keep — mainly that he’s not going to use it. The comments are interesting to read, too, but the ones along the lines of “Google starting new products encourages competition!” just make me roar in frustration. No. Google is too big for that. Google does not encourage competition, at its very best it doesn’t discourage it. And it when it does things like enter a market, wipe out the competitors, and then yank or stop supporting its own products, it pees on the ecosystem. And I’m not talking about just Google Reader – there have been many posts and stories over the last few weeks about issues with Google Alerts. Has anyone seen any kind of substantive response from Google? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?
Google things: So Google is apparently getting rid of the print version of Frommer’s Travel Guides? Because the Internet is instantly, cheaply, and easily accessible from anywhere in the world, and electronic gadgets never run out of power. Google has also opened its Universal Analytics into public beta.
More Google Things: If you’re doing Google+ searches, you can now filter for photos only.
With this cold cold weather I need to feel a little summer-y, so I’m happy to pass on the news that the National Weather Service has launched a Beach Hazards and Safety Web site.
Wow, the NASA Technical Reports Database has gone dark. (I think I found out about this via Shirl, thanks Shirl.)
Looking for MOOCs? Check out http://www.class-central.com/.
Google, LACMA, Pew Pew Pew Pew, Medical Searching, More: Tuesday Morning Laser Noises Buzz, March 19, 2013
GOOGLE READER RANTING: You know you love it. Anyway, Feedly has gained half a million new users thanks to Google’s stupid decision. It’s an ill wind… Have a favorite new RSS reader that you’re enjoying after Google’s early entrant in the “Knuckleheaded Moves of 2013″ contest? Why, vote for it at http://www.replacereader.com/.
Slate has started a graveyard of dead Google products. You can even drop flowers. Not every last Google product is mentioned here (I wanted to huck a flower at the old version of Google Catalogs It’s keeping a flower count. Man, Knol got no love…
More Google: it has added a bunch of mountain footage to Google Maps.
From the always-fabulous Jessamyn: the LACMA (Los Angeles County Museum) has has launched a new site with images of 20,000 paintings it believes are in the public domain.
Raleigh, the capital of North Carolina, is getting an open data hub.
Wow, interesting: a new search engine crafted and designed to find information on rare diseases: FindZebra.
More medical: a new database of hospital inspection reports is now available.
PC World offers some tips for safer browsing with Chrome.
Pew — um, excuse me a minute: PEW PEW PEW PEW PEW PEW PEW PEW PEW! There, much better — Pew Internet has a nice article and roundup of book recommendation engines. Good morning, Internet…
Zillow is getting on the Pinterest train via a new site called Digs.
Is Pinterest worth between $2 and $2.5 billion? I don’t see it. But then, I still don’t really get Pinterest.
Softberry has released 80 free bioinformatics programs (well, sort of free– available for academic users on a limited basis.) “The programs … are available for Linux and Mac OS platforms and focus primarily on genomic and proteomic research. They include tools for analysis of next generation sequencing data: Accurate spliced alignment of RNA-Seq data to a reference genome (ReadsMap), de novo assembly of transcriptome reads into RNA transcripts (TransSeq), genome assembly (OligoZip) and a software package for SNP analysis (SNP-Toolbox).”
A nice one from Robin Good: a resource to crowdsource YouTube subtitles.
Instagram is (finally) letting you browse your Instagram feed on the Web. Which means I’ll be using it a lot more.
A site hack has triggered mass malware warnings in Google Chrome.
Productivity alert: 15+ tools for getting things done.
A new database developed by UC Irvine provides a comparison of the economic performance of US states over 20 years. “Supported by the nonprofit Next 10 foundation, Neumark and economics graduate student Jennifer Muz compiled data on fundamental economic measures – including economic growth, job growth, layoffs and unemployment, earnings, income distribution and poverty – from 1990 to 2011 for all 50 states. Sources included the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Quarterly Census of Employment & Wages and Current Population Survey.”
Yikes! A quick article that establishes why you shouldn’t save your password to the browser. Eeek. Good morning, Internet…
The weekend was made very sad for me when I read of Aaron Swartz’ suicide. The reverberations of both what Aaron accomplished in his far-too-brief life, and the Internet reaction to his death, are going to last a long time. MIT was hacked yesterday by Anonymous, which left a call for reforms in computer crime laws and intellectual property laws.
Aaron: a new Twitter campaign, #PDFTribute, has researchers contributing links to academic papers (PDFs) on Twitter. There is a big scraped/aggregated list here. Also, 10 simple ways to share PDFs of your papers.
Aaron: there is a Tumblr for remembering Aaron and a “We the People” petition to posthumously pardon Aaron (though I’m not sure how that would work since he was not convicted.)
Would you pay $100 to message Mark Zuckerberg?. Personally I would not, knowing that $100 out of my wallet is not going to be exchanged for $100 worth of his attention.
Okay, Java has gotten to the point that the Department of Homeland Security is urging computer users to disable Java in their browsers following news of yet another zero-day exploit. The article I’m linking to includes a good guide to turning off Java in the browser. UPDATE: Oracle has issued an emergency fix, but I do not care, as I have officially put “secure Java” in the same mythological realm as the Easter Bunny.
Google Trends says this year’s flu season is going to be a whopper.
Lifehacker has a roundup of the best online classes for spring semester. I enrolled in the basic physics course.
The Library of Congress has received a large collection of sports recordings. “The Library of Congress announced today the acquisition of 15 years of recorded sports interviews originally broadcast on the radio network program ‘Sports Byline USA,’ hosted by Emmy Award-winning broadcaster Ron Barr, between 1988 and 2003. This marks the beginning of a three-year collaboration with the program’s producers to preserve these historic interviews and to make them available for listening on a streaming basis free to the public on the Library’s website (www.loc.gov). Programs produced from 2004-2014 will be added to the collection over the next two years.” The collection will ultimately have over 10,000 interviews.
Smashing Magazine pipped me to Throwww, which looks like the most basic blogging platform ever. Interesting. I can see where this would be useful for liveblogging, etc.
Mashable has a wish list for GMail. I can think of several things I’d like to add to this, though to be fair if it were a “Wish List for Thunderbird,” I’d probably come up with 9000 items. I really miss Eudora. (And yes, I know there’s a Eudora OSE, but it hasn’t been updated in over two years, last I checked.)