Monthly Archives: February 2010

a2b3 non-summary for Thursday, Feb. 11, 2010

Attendance: 19. I had the udon noodles, which are new on the menu at Eastern Accents and quite good.

My list of things to note from the day includes, but is not limited to:

  • Google’s proposed fiber to the home project, and how to get it to Ann Arbor
  • Susan Crawford is back in Ann Arbor from a stint in DC and teaching cyber law
  • I’m not sure that I wouldn’t rather have a Droid phone than a Blackberry
  • There is a super-nifty Droid app which is an exercise tracker w/maps
  • Searching for low RPM motors that run on 2 AA batteries
  • Next Dow Aud. at UMHS a meeting on FDA regs for social media and medicine
  • Census is hiring and training workers, $14-18/hr
  • a2geeks
  • Ignite 3 is coming up
  • Earth Day is Garlic Mustard Day; I need your recipes
  • next Tuesday is Paczki Day, I need your jelly donuts
  • Ann Arbor Government Documents Repository continues to collect local govdocs
  • Gelman Sciences has released some new docs on their pollution plume & cleanup
  • Google Buzz is out
  • the DDA is doing a survey on parking
  • the hot pepper flakes are called “Ichimi Togarashi”

This list deserves hyperlinks; when I get them I’ll go back and edit them in.

Thanks to everyone who came, see you next time.

modulating the buzz feed

I’m still trying to modulate which parts of which other feeds and streams land in Buzz, the new service from Google which is similar to but different from Twitter.

I took out the automated post from Twitter to Buzz, for now, since I looked at my habits on Twitter and how it looked on Buzz and it looked ugly. I like my Twitter, which is mostly centered around Ann Arbor related newsy things, and that looks silly on Buzz. So off it goes, at least for now. Let Twitter be Twitter.

I suspect that blog-related stuff should land here, since there’s at least some pretense that it should be longer. I almost wish there was a one-pass “post this to my blog too”; indeed, the first draft of this was written in Buzz, until I figured that it really should be posted to Vacuum and then pulled into Buzz through the feed. I guess. I hope that works.

It’s always nice to try out some new communications system, especially one that makes you rethink your use of all of the old systems you had gotten out of the habit of using. I’ve also liked which random people from my address book that Google decided should be my first set of friends; they did a pretty good job.

Edna St. Vincent Millay: This Gifted Age

Edna St. Vincent Millay: This Gifted Age

Upon this age, that never speaks its mind,
This furtive age, this age endowed with power
To wake the moon with footsteps, fit an oar
Into the rowlocks of the wind, and find
What swims before his prow, what swirls behind —
Upon this gifted age, in its dark hour,
Rains from the sky a meteoric shower
Of facts . . . they lie unquestioned, uncombined.
Wisdom enough to leech us of our ill
Is daily spun; but there exists no loom
To weave it into fabric; undefiled
Proceeds pure Science, and has her say; but still
Upon this world from the collective womb
Is spewed all day the red triumphant child.


Back to the old name for this blog, “Vacuum”

I’ve changed the title of this blog back to Vacuum, since all of the extra gobbledygook was making it hard to bookmark things.

The “quick compose” part of Typepad makes it easier to post things that are short that don’t have titles, so I don’t get stuck figuring out what the title should be and I can just type. Later, when my editor hat goes on, I go back and fix things up and decide what a title might look like.

I’m trying to be more regular about dumping something into this input box when things warrant, generally late at night.

Related articles

Addicted to feedback
3000th post to Typepad
The WordPress experiment may be coming to an end

Checklists, eptitude, how to get things right – Atul Gawande

The Checklist Manifesto; review in the New York Times.


How to Get Things Right

Atul Gawande

Excerpt from Freakonomics review

Even more interesting are the stories about Walmart’s response to Hurricane Katrina, and the real reason why David Lee Roth used to demand that there be a bowl of M&M’s with all the brown ones removed in his dressing room backstage.

Times Online review

The surgeon-author was on the track of what might be described as a classic magic bullet — a low-tech way in a high-tech, expensive world in which lives might be saved and costs reduced. Gawande, using his own word, was searching for “eptitude” — the business of making sure that those with knowledge applied it effectively.

Google books preview

First chapter is free; and it includes the word "eptitude".

Checklist for checklists

The following checklist is designed to aid the checklist creation process and ensure that your checklist helps instead of hurts.  It was created by Dr. Atul Gawande, the Brigham and Women's Hospital Center for Surgery and Public Health Dissemination Team, and Dan Boorman of Boeing."

The nicest wiki implementation of checklists I've seen is at Sunshine Review, using the MediaWiki dpl extension.