Mary Chernyshenko


Catching the Spark

(And then fungi evolved to cope with endothermy.)

Open & Welcome Thread - January 2021

Does the feeling of having one's nails too long have a name and a place in the classification of sensations? I mean, some people find it uncomfortable to just have theirs "longer than the nail bed" (me too). It's not like our nails even start to get in the way of doing things, we just have a sensation (kind of an itch), I'd say like "holding" something with the edge of the nail and the nailbed. Is this from touch receptors detecting a different creasing of skin? It goes away when I pay deliberate attention to it.

Leaky Delegation: You are not a Commodity

I just think that people go to restaurants specifically to eat something "strange", to put themselves into a situation where one kind of has to order what's offered. It's not like one can't buy ready-made food in a shop, so restaurants aren't "the" alternative to homemade cooking. (I mean sauces, preserves, cakes all can be found in many places.) Restaurants are just an "uncommon" alternative, a plunge to be taken.

Exercise: Taboo "Should"

I kind of get behind the "self-grown produce is less fattening" - you put in work, it takes out fat. Work, in many people's minds, is "good". Also, try chewing through a free-range hen, not a chicken. Builds muscles, hen.

Everything Okay

(It seems to me that the OP was about people interacting, not just personal preferences.)

You Have About Five Words

Seems like today the size of the phone screen defines how much of the text one is willing to read (an unselected someone). It's still unclear what people do with it later and how much they retain. But reading in itself seems not so tightly limited; five-words-at-most is what I expect from billboards. But I also expect them to be more like roadsigns/reminders, not original messages (and really I would be surprised if someone treated the words as something beyond advertisement.)

Also, repeated exposure is a thing, which is often the case when one coordinates many people. And the ability of factions to work together although their "core texts" are very different.

Hammertime Day 9: Time Calibration

My worst case of planning fallacy was when I thought I'd just come back to work after the maternity leave. I did get a job, then another, and then another, but I've never actually come back.

Thoughts on Mustachianism

You know, about that garbageman thing... you most probably won't be happy, but if you are the garbage truck driver, you're going to bring happiness and be The Hero for some very sincere people below age four.

How do you assess the quality / reliability of a scientific study?

A thing I pay attention to is how seamlessly the introduction leads to the question the authors picked. If there is a jarring break I try to imagine what kind of intro the paper needs, and then it's usually clear if I do understand enough to think about it. For example, if the actual intro is written from the ecological angle but the imagined one is zoological, and I really need to understand it, I should just ask a zoologist.

Science in a High-Dimensional World

There's a parallel need to review the actual purpose for which you are doing all of that. It can be mutable.

For example, suppose you culture some unicellular algae, and you notice the cells can be more or less rounded in the same dish. You shrug and discard the dishes with too elongated cells to keep the line pure and strong. You learn what parameters to keep constant to make it easier.

And then someone shows that in point of fact, cell shape for this group of species can vary somewhat even in culture so we have been wrong about the diversity in the wild this whole time. And you read it and hope in your heart that some very motivated people might one day deviate from the beaten path and finally find out what's going on there, despite this looking entirely unfundable.

Load More