Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

To my new followers

November 12, 2016 Leave a comment

This site comes up when you click my name in WordPress (as of November 12, 2016), but this isn’t the site to follow.  Go to my new blog for my newest posts and news and thoughts about writing and reading.  I’m glad to get to know you and read your comments and your blogs.  You can also find me on Facebook and Twitter.  Thanks!

Categories: Uncategorized

The End of Sex, Math and Programming

April 30, 2016 Leave a comment

This blog is done for.  This was my opinion blog while I was in graduate school.  If you want to read about why I’m not in graduate school anymore, I’ve written about it at my new blog, where I will keep people updated from now on.  To make a long story short I’ve quit science and now I’m writing fiction, raisin’ the kids, playing music, and participating in my local community, especially at the library.  I’ve also moved to Vermont.  The last time I posted here I was still living in Durham, NC.

Categories: Uncategorized

What are the values that lead people to careers in science? Do those values have anything to do with the leaking pipeline?

zinemin's random thoughts

There are many programs going on trying to lure more girls into studying engineering and physics (some good, some bad), which seems, at first sight, great; but sometimes I wonder. Shouldn’t we first make sure that the women who are already in the system get some support so that they actually want to continue their career? Shouldn’t we first fix the infamous ‘leaky pipeline‘ before just putting more women into it and exposing them to the problems that makes women leave science at a far greater rate than men?

Annoyingly, often the character and preferences of women are blamed for the leak in the pipeline: the infamous imposter syndrome, that women are more prone to be insecure about their qualifications, longing for stability in life, and simply more aware that there are other more important things in life than the career, like having children, and…

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A parallel story to that in my household.

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The New Research Blog

Hello there.  I’ve started a new blog that will focus on scientific outreach.  I’m taking the suggestion of Jai Ranganathan and Scifund: scientists should make their work clear and available to people who are interested.  Scientists should have fans, so in true scientific spirit, I am doing the experiment. Even if I don’t get fans of my own research, I might help create fans of evolutionary biology.  I was a fan when I was a kid and now look where I am.

The audience for the new blog will be what the NSF calls “technically literate” people, i.e. people who are smart enough to understand science, but who perhaps haven’t spend their entire lives on it like I have.  I want to point out that my audience will not strictly be scientists, although I will be directly commenting on primary research.  Scientists should feel welcome to comment, but you may have to wade through some jargon-free, and some purely didactic, passages.  My two main goals with respect to content are to inform people (interested readers, my friends and family) of what I’m doing in my dissertation research, and to comment on current research that’s directly relevant to mine.  I hope this will give non-scientists an idea of how science happens.

I will save my opinions and technical discussions for this blog.  My most-read topics are purely informational, so I will be toning down the opinions anyway.  If you want to read something about Emacs, expect to find it here.  If you want to read about science, go there.

Categories: Uncategorized

Am I the only one who sees politics as a series of stunts by people who want to divide us and blunt our compassion?


Look up! There’s a video of me reading my letter. Below, you’ll see the transcript if you’d prefer to read instead. What are your hopes and expectations for this next generation? What’s next for you?

A letter to my daughter after the passage of Amendment One

My darling daughter,

You gave me a sweet memory the other night. You were all snuggled in your bed. We’d just wrapped up our ritual of ‘a lotta kisses and a lotta hugs’.

“Wait, Mom,” you said, “Say, no matter.”

“Oh, I love you no matter what.”

“No, Mom. Say it with your eyebrows up.”

“Like this?” I said, with my eyebrows raised. “I love you no matter what.”

“Yes!” You said.

And I thought you are so funny and I love you so much. And then I went downstairs and watched as Amendment One was passed. And I was shocked and distressed…

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Categories: Uncategorized

March 26, 2012 Leave a comment

This is an important experiment in generating funding for science. Generating funding from the general public is a huge step toward eliminating competition in science. Please read about this:

Categories: Uncategorized
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