Sunday, March 23, 2008

Inaugural Post

It seemed appropriate to describe my likely to be unrealized intentions for this blog. Firstly, it became apparent recently that my life required more order and focus than it has had in recent years. So, I began an experiment with gCalendar and a PDA (actually it's a hacked Ipod touch which is not a toy :). This was sufficiently successful that I am now seeking ways to better organize my thoughts. My current strategy has been to utilize a hierarchical file structure which groups projects according to the tree structure:


  • collaborators

    • background papers
    • code

      • data

    • data analysis and figures
    • papers

      • drafts
      • supplements
      • mathematical proofs

This works well enough for the projects which have gotten sufficiently off the ground, but has been a miserable failure for storing, sorting and otherwise tracking less well developed ideas or little bits of potentially useful and interesting information. Of course, privately blogging might be sufficient to deal with this issue, so why make this public? That pertains to my second issue: I truly despise the writing phase of scientific research. It is my hope that the practice and feedback that a blog can provide will sharpen both my ideas and my communication and presentation skills.

Finally, I should say that I quite enjoy a good debate/discussion concerning the fine details of mathematical proofs and empirical inference and hope that this blog will provide a forum for such discourse. I intend to share links with friends and collaborators and hope to write both very technical entries regarding research (including useful analytic and statistical methods and reviews of recent publications), and more general interest entries regarding philosophy of science should be expected as well.

That said, we live in an unpredictable world, and people are often the worst predictors of their own, we shall see what we shall see.

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