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Geek in Disguise Below are 10 entries, after skipping 10 most recent ones in the "Jim Kling" journal:

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September 17th, 2008
12:05 pm

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Ninja cat
Ninja Cat Comes Closer Without Moving

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August 19th, 2008
11:23 am

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Science Now has an interesting story about the genetic evidence that the FBI used to implicate Bruce Ivens in the anthrax attacks.

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August 14th, 2008
11:44 am

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what's wrong with this picture?
A site called Magazine Art has pictures of covers from a magazine called Electrical Experimenter here (the more interesting pictures start on page 2). Fascinating views of what the future looked like in the 1920s. Also fodder for the intermittent Call of Cthulhu game that I run.

But I take issue with this picture...

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July 28th, 2008
08:27 pm

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wolves in the North Cascades
After 80 years, they're back. A remote camera in the Methow valley area of the North Cascades captured images of wolves and a group of pups.

There are also links to the pictures and to some audio.

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March 20th, 2008
02:14 pm

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Indeed it has, Dave (redux)
The illustrious jackwilliambell has pointed out that Hulu allows you to create clips to post.

So without further delay, the clip of News Radio wherein Dave confronts Stargate Defender:

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12:09 pm

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Indeed it has, Dave
So jackwilliambell informed me of the new site Hulu, which lets you watch various television shows and movies. Among the treasures are The Tick, The Land of the Lost, and News Radio (the list is here).

As I was looking, I recalled an episode of News Radio in which the station gets a Stargate Defender video game, which includes some of the funniest scenes I've ever seen, of Dave interacting with the video game. Now, these scenes are funny anyway, but if you are a child of the 80s coin-op video game generation (I'm looking at you terminusest), you absolutely must watch this episode.

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March 17th, 2008
04:14 pm

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article up
An article that I wrote for NASA's astrobiology portal is now up, about a researcher working with ice taken from just above Antarctica's Lake Vostok. Lake Vostok is buried beneath two miles of ice, but remains liquid probably due to hydrothermal vents. The ice accreted to the surface of the lake, where it was retrieved by an expedition in the late 90s. The ice contains trapped bacteria, which scientists would like to study as a window into Lake Vostok's sunless ecosystem.

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March 14th, 2008
02:35 pm

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FDA articles up
I have a couple of articles up on MSN Health, about FDA reform and recent drug withdrawals.

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February 27th, 2008
09:56 am

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My pithy freelance post
A lot of folks on my friends list have been talking about freelancing, so here's my $.02, adopted from a post that I made in resposnse to ellameena in her journal.

She wonders if saying 'no' to assignments from editors will cause them to stop calling her for future assignments. My experience is that editors don't stop calling if you say no occasionally -- though that probably depends to some extent on how long you've been working for them. Editors understand that they're not your only client, and that sometimes you're just booked.

Think of it this way -- they're opinion of you might just go up if you say no because it means you must be busy. And if you're busy, then other people know how good you are -- so they had better appreciate you!

For me, optimism and leaps of faith are keys to freelancing. If you don't say no once in awhile, or if you don't quit working for clients that you're not happy with, you get stuck in a rut of doing work just to pay the bills and never expanding into new areas that might be more lucrative and satisfying. More than once over the past 12 years, I've quit doing work for a client with no sure thing lined up to replace it, but inevitably something does come up, usually surprisingly quickly. Of course, I only do it when I've got a steady diet of work from other clients to soften the blow.

For every assignment accepted, there's what economists call an 'opportunity cost' -- the time you spend on it and the energy taken up by it cannot be applied to other potential projects, like pitching stories to new clients. And another cost: if you're overbooked, you can't give each project the attention it deserves and the quality of your work could slip. In that case, clients truly might stop calling you.

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February 1st, 2008
10:18 am

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for SCIENCE!
Yesterday, mareklamo and I brought lilaboux and ahltis to the vet for a checkup. The vet commented on how healthy lilaboux is for an 18-year old cat, and then asked if we would be willing to enroll her in a clinical trial for a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (Robenacoxib), sponsored by Novartis Animal Health. They took some blood samples and X-rays to determine if she has physical signs of osteoarthritis, which the drug is designed to treat, and to be sure that she is sufficiently healthy to participate. If she meets the criteria, we'll be given either the drug or placebo to administer once a day for 30 days. mareklamo will keep a journal recording any changes in her gait or other signs of improvement. mareklamo and I initially marveled at the idea of including a placebo for a study on cats, but then we realized it's for us -- since we'll be the ones monitoring her and recording changes. If we expect the drug to cause improvements, then we might exaggerate improvements or see improvements that aren't really there.

Unsurprisingly, lilaboux disapproves.

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