Thursday, February 22, 2007

EO Wilson recipient of the TED award 2007


Donat Agosti has interesting commentary on E. O. Wilson's forthcoming receipt of a TED 2007 prize. In typically forthright fashion, Donat asks:
Let’s speculate that Ed Wilson is going to fulfill his boyhood dream of an encyclopedia of life for ants. So, what would be needed to make this dream reality?

Read his post for Donat's own wish list.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Word for the day - "clusterfuck"


Wired's article How Yahoo Blew It contains this wonderful extract:
Decisions big and small, from trying out new features to agreeing on budgets, had to be cleared by committee after committee in Sunnyvale. "It was a clusterfuck," one of the participants says.

For some reason, the word really appeals. Not that I've got anything against Yahoo -- far from it. The provide some very cool tools, such as Pipes, which is an interactive feed aggregator and manipulator. David Shorthouse brought this to my attention. As he points out, its highly relevant to our conversation on iSpecies.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Friday, February 09, 2007

TreeBASE name mapping

In the spirit of "release early, release often", a preliminary version of the TreeBASE name mapping project is now online at TBMap. It's a bit crude, the graphs look awful because they're generated on the fly on a Linux box using GraphViz, but you'll get the idea. I'll try and tidy it up and add a few more visuals to it next week after the EOL Informatics meeting at Woods Hole. There are also some missing mappings to add to the database. I hope to finish a manuscript explaining the gory details in a week or so. This manuscript will also explain what one can do with these mappings (i.e., find all the studies for birds or other higher taxa in TreeBASE).