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Commentary First World Problems Tech

Microsoft tries to @Helps me

These last few days I’ve had a few unpleasant run-ins with support for different companies. These were not the result of mean people, but of uncaring and somewhat incompetent companies. Today I’ll be mocking the software titan, Microsoft. I use Microsoft Lync a lot at work. It’s a good IM solution, and used to work […]

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Commentary Research

You, too, can be a published scientist!

Straight from my gmail spam folder, the other side of the coin: solicitations for publications. Now that’s an enthusiastic Greetings!!! usually reserved for people promising me miracle drugs. Nigerian barristers tend to be more somber, which is reasonable given that they are usually informing me of the passing of previously unheard of (but very dear, […]

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Commentary Research Writing

You, too, can be an editor!

Part of being a scientist is curating the work of other scientists. This is called peer review. Peer review is critical to the well-being of science, because it helps ensure that the scientific record is important, correct, and has passed some level of validation before being put in front of other people. Peer review is […]

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Commentary Research

False-Positive Psychology

Fantastic post over at Slate Star Codex on how people use statistics to cheat at science. I already gave my take on the pressures scientists face, and the culture that leads to it. I wish I had written that post, or its linked articles. Go read.

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Research

Complexity in MEDLINE – part 1

This is my first not-a-paper publication. I wrote it in a much more conversational style, which I greatly prefer. After Randy Sheckman’s statements on journals such as Nature, Science, etc. I started wondering if there was a way to quantify what kinds of articles these journals publish. After all, the general perception (notwithstanding the allegations of […]

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Research Writing

Research and negative results

There’s a big debate in science about research and what to do with negative results. It boils down to more or less this: We scientists publish only positive results. There’s a lot of reasons for this, some more valid than others. The first one is that it’s hard to prove things beyond a shadow of […]

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First World Problems Tech

Purging plenty of piles of paperwork

Like any modern household, we deal with piles and piles of paperwork. From the legally vital (house deed), through the hope-I-don’t-need-to-use-it (various insurance things, contracts), to the obnoxious (no-interest* balance transfer checks for credit cards). For the latter, I have a good shredder and I’m not afraid to use it. But the former poses a […]

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Tech Writing

James Mickens is a great writer

A computer scientist, a systems programmer, a gentleman, and a scholar. And a Microsoft Employee, but he works for the Research division, so that makes it sort of ok. But all of that pales in comparison to the most hilarious thing you’ll read on the Internet today, if you’re of a hackerish persuasion. The Night […]

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First World Problems Tech

FedEx Home delivery Part 2: success

In the end, FedEx managed to get the printer to a store on Saturday, and the automated tracking system emailed me. When I drove to the store… the printer was there, and I got it. Very uneventful. They did a good job of uniting me and my parcel. There was a bit more anxiety than necessary, […]

Categories
First World Problems

FedEx Home Delivery: What?

I have a new printer being delivered from Amazon via “FedEx Home Delivery.” I didn’t pay much attention to the shipper, but after I missed the first delivery (attempted at 4:55 PM on a Thursday) I looked it up. “When shipping your package to a customer’s home, you want it at their door at the […]