At least two meals today will consist of the dwindling store of Thanksgiving leftovers: Elle’s mascarpone-whiskey pumpkin pie to break my fast and the ubiquitous turkey sandwiches for lunch. Outstanding all around.

In doing some research over the last couple of days, I’ve been surprised at how unsophisticated the majority of nonprofit and government agencies seem to be about their data presentation. For starters, any of you who are not assiduous fans of the West Wing may be unaware that there are a shocking number of inaccuracies and political problems with the most common map projection in the world. But that’s just the beginning. Read the rest of this entry »


Not yet the shortest day

20 November 2007

Here are some fall views of Corvallis, though they are now a couple of weeks old. It is now distinctly less green than in the pictures, and most of the leaves are even off the trees. Snow is evidently rare around here, but a little farther East and higher in elevation it is on the ground around and so on.

According to the USNO, it looks like our earliest sunset of the year (about 4.33p) won’t come until around 10 December, and latest sunrise until about three weeks later, around 3 Jan 2008. In the meantime, we’ll still enjoy the crisp fall weather, and think about how it isn’t as bad as Fairbanks.

Read the rest of this entry »

Laziness? Must be.

11 November 2007

Which serves two purposes, really. It excuses (or explains) my lack of posts, and saves me from having to come up with a better explanation (or excuse). Although it is possible that the sudden access to two good libraries within the last few weeks has diminished my online presence, save in card catalogues.

Anyway, I soon hope to be posting on religion debate rhetoric, drag show-influenced politics, tree identification, epistemology of Holocaust deniers, and the philosophy of quantum theory. Right after I summit K2, of course. Meantime, here’s a list of some good books:

On Literature, Umberto Eco–the essay on Borges and influence alone is worth the price of admission

Denying the Holocaust, Deborah Lipstadt–I learned more about the process of rationality from the first two chapters than from any other single book I’ve read

Envisioning Information, Edward Tufte–beautiful and needs to be read several times

Where the Suckers Moon, Randall Rothenburg–zany, educational, and bearing few points of reference to anything familiar (it’s about advertising)