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September 30, 2012

[2b2] A moon from Mars

Someday I’ll figure out the threads that bind the mere sentences that make me fill with tears. Sometimes it’s sadness, but surprisingly often it’s joy.

Here’s today’s joy:

Look in the upper right for a crescent-shaped smudge. That’s Phobos, one of Mars’ two moons.

Emily Lakdawalla writes in her blog:

Think about this for a moment — we’re seeing a different moon from the surface of a different world. And this moon is weird not just for its lumpiness, but also because it orbits so close to Mars that it outpaces Mars’ rotation. That means it rises in the west and sets in the east, more than twice every Martian day. Completely alien. And awesome, in the literal sense of the world.

It turns me into a soppy ol’ Boehner.

Here’s a close-up of Phobos:

Emily adds:

I would not have noticed this image were it not for the ever-watchful members of unmannedspaceflight.com (user “fredk” this time). I’m so grateful for that community. We’re running a fundraiser right now to support our hosting costs — if you, too, value the beautiful images and constant attentiveness of this community of volunteers and amateurs, please consider making a donation to support it.

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March 7, 2010

[moi] [2b2k] Interview on universities and open access

I was honored a few weeks ago to be the special guest and keynoter of Oklahoma State University’s Research Week. Here’s an interview with OSU Prof. Bill Handy. [LATER that morning: Here's a page where OSU students are commenting on it.]

[NEXT DAY:] Several open access advocates are annoyed with me because I seem to imply, against my better knowledge, that open access journals are not peer reviewed. I do know better and almost always make that point when talking about open access. More important is the point itself: Many open access journals (e.g., PLOS.org) are indeed peer-reviewed.

I do have to point out for the record, however, that (despite the title of screen of this interview) I am not a professor at Harvard or anywhere. (I’m open to offers though.) I am a senior researcher at Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet & Society. That is not a faculty position, and does not carry either the obligations or the prestige of one.

(Also, the overly-attentive reader will have noticed that I have switched from the [ahole] preface to [moi]. I introduced the former this year as part of my resolution to be a bigger ahole about blogging interviews I’ve done. But, I found myself blogging interviews I’ve done with other people under titles such as “[ahole] Interview of Mary Jones,” implying that Mary Jones is the ahole. So, from now on, it’s [moi].”

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