Posted tagged ‘Carl Zimmer’

Curse You Carl Zimmer: Vicious Distraction Edition

August 27, 2010

So, a day or so ago Carl Zimmer tweets the existence of the Netflix iPhone app, boasting of the loss of his productivity.

A Trojan horse if there ever was one.

What a way to clear out potential writing competition.

Downloaded the app today.

Found myself watching episode one of the first season of Miami Vice.

I am fail.

Curse you, Carl Zimmer!

May the mosquito of vengeance hum in your ear from now to the time of the first better than break even human made fusion reactor. (Twenty years off since 1960 and counting.)

Image:  Robert Duncanson, “Blue Hole, Little Miami River” 1851 — and yeah, I know about which Miami it is.  Sometimes you gotta stretch.

A couple of quick Friday links.

October 2, 2009

I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention this NYT front of the web story on MIT student bloggers as leaders of the pack.

Then there’s this nice bit of self-analysis by Carl Zimmer, debunking a false equivalence  between evolutionary polemic* (by Dawkins) and evolutionary persuasion/instruction (by Zimmer), as posited in a Nature review of new books by both men.

And last, at least in this quick start-of-the morning list, a fine bit of historical writing on the roots of the term and concept “algorithm” prompted,  I am pleased to say, by my own polemic on The Atlantic’s abuse of the term.

*Please note that the word “polemic” is used here as a descriptive term, not one of abuse.  It has the sense described in this etymological definition:  1638, “controversial argument or discussion,” from Gk. polemikos “warlike, belligerent,” from polemos “war.” Meaning “one who writes in opposition to another” is attested from 1680.

Image:  Press with chained book in the Library of Cesena, Italy