Archive for the ‘babble’ Category

Endnote vs. Refworks

Monday, September 19th, 2005

I spent all day in a library introduction for new grads – it was free and they fed us three times and most importantly there were drinks afterwards. Two of the sessions I went to were about a biblio software Endnote. NU is really pushing it as a way for social scientists to archive and catagorize information. From what I saw it could be quite useful, but as there is no open source version (just OSX and Windows) I’m left with the option of always researching in Windows, or nothing. Another sticking point with the software is there is no easy way to share your library or database that you construct. Seeing as most of acadamia is strengthend by the sharing of information (and really these libraries you create are another form of data set) I think this is quite unforgiveable. I was also suprised to find it only really works installed on one computer – and there is no way to remotely access it. Given these limitations I’m looking into another product, RefWorks. Its more limited as an archival system, but being web based, its cross platform – and the information is easily shared.

Back on line

Monday, September 19th, 2005

After many days I finally fixed the issue with my computer.
It meant unnecessarily removing Windows, and about 11 burned CD’s, but its done.
Many thanks goes out to Paul Greico, who helped with the burns.
….And now I can actually post some gradschool thoughts.

One more reason I hate Windows

Saturday, August 27th, 2005

I was fooling around on the win side of my laptop this morning with fireworks, trying to make some headway one a homepage as my last one was pretty pitiful and dearly out-of-date, when low and behold I find my C:\My Shared Folder stuffed with programs/warez/video/DAT files. Somehow and somewhere there was a nice little piece of software installed and now I have the glory of wiping my partition and starting over. I’d really just get rid of it, but I need the VPN to get onto Northwesterns’ wireless – and I’m too lazy to work out the bugs in OpenVPN.

The Worst Museum in Chicago

Friday, August 12th, 2005

Really, the Museum of Science and Industry has got to be the all time bigest waste of time/money/effort/space I’ve ever come across. A friend who was in town suggested we check out the Body Worlds exhibit. Sounded great! I still haven’t seen it although I did catch the slightly less artistic Chinese knockoff a few months back when I still resided in the Bay Area. We had almost 4 hours to kill before the run to the airport, and of that time we spent all but 1.5 hours in a line. lines to get in, lines for exhibits, lines for exhibits when you get tired of waiting in the other lines and you bail out for something else, lines for the bathroom etc.(really it goes on and on) This was my favorite part of what I did see, from the science of yester-year.

Hail the Local Libraries

Thursday, July 28th, 2005

I must admit, the local public library is one of the greatest assets our community has (thanks Ben F). In the last week that I’ve been hanging out in mine (they have air conditioning) I’ve rented DVD’s, used free wireless, garnered maps of Illinois and Cook County, looked up the best trout fishing and salmon runs locally, read the Wall Street Journal and New York Times, studied for fall classes, found multiple roomates. I’ve also just found out they have passes for all the museums which you can check out for a week at a time. Nothing in Evanston has come even close to as useful as this, and they even have free parking.

comments are out of the question

Wednesday, January 19th, 2005

With a heavy heart, the comments have been turned off indefinately. There was no way possible to deal with the amt. of spam we were getting, and so the simplest and most restrictive solution was put into effect. Perhaps Google should not be indexing blogs, but for all I’ve seen they plan to continue so like the BBS, this is a losing battle.

Be Wary Those Bearing PHd’s

Sunday, August 29th, 2004

There was some talk of two economists before the Olympics and their model of predicting medals. Below is the follow up:
Economists’ Forecast
Misses Olympic Gold

August 30, 2004

Finishing out of contention in the 2004 Olympics: Economists.

Before the Olympics, Andrew Bernard, a professor at Dartmouth College’s Tuck School of Business in New Hampshire, and Meghan Busse, a visiting professor at the University of California at Berkeley, used economic models to predict the medal standings of what were expected to be the top 34 countries in the Games.

The model had its shining moments, but it also produced a few notable misses. The computer projected that the U.S. would win 93 medals; the U.S. took home 103. “We think the U.S. exceeded expectations,” Mr. Bernard says.

The economists say their model can predict country performances by weighing a nation’s population size, gross domestic product per person and past performance. Despite the model’s misfires, Mr. Bernard says he was happy with how he did. He came within three medals of a perfect prediction for 23 of the 34 countries tracked and the computer model did a pretty good job predicting gold medals. It called for the U.S. to win 37 gold, and American athletes won 35. It called for Russia to win 29 gold medals, and Russia ended up with 27. Germany was seen winning 13 gold, and it won 14. “The model performed well,” the economist says.

Tounge and cheek, the model did perform well, however it was better on analyzing past data rather than prediction. Illustrating how difficult the Fed’s job can be, and the trickiness of projecting out of sample.

We have problems, not all bad.

Saturday, August 7th, 2004

On a recent trip into SF to visit a friend, I found myself inching down Market to the Metreon. An inexplicable and original scene: A homeless youth, complete with dog and shoping cart full of his only posesions was camped outside a BART station, with a laptop plugged into the municipal grid – checking his email.

*sigh*, another reason for a camera phone.

Berkeley Farmers Market

Saturday, July 17th, 2004

The morning was the first time this summer for me – I just finished a dinner or sweet corn and peaches, admittedly not the most well rounded of course, but absolutely delicious!
(The economics of this is I paid $22 for a bag of vegtables that even at Whole Foods would’ve cost 1/2 that – i place the blame on an exceptionally sunny Saturday which baked my brain into Consumerous Maximous mode)

a return

Wednesday, June 9th, 2004

after 4 months off, here we go again…