> Fastfission wrote:
>> On 1/18/07, Ray Saintonge <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>> If America
>>> is indeed the great melting pot, what indeed is the point of classifying
>>> African-American literature as something separate from plain old
>>> American literature.
>> Well, nobody has really called America the great melting pot earnestly
>> for some time now (see [[melting pot]]).
> What does it say now that Bush used the term in his State of the Union
> speech? ;-)
> Ray Saintonge wrote:
> > The Renaissance Wikipedian who is not associated with a university has
> > to make do with what he can find. If all he can find is internet
> > material it will shape and limit his perceptions. Fact checking should
> > be one of our jobs, but doing that effectively depends on having access
> > to information.
> I have been meaning to ask this. Has it ever been explored that the
> Foundation look at getting some subscriptions to archives and the like
> and allowing a reference team access to those subscriptions to do some
> fact checking?
This was talked about a few months ago, as well. Any reasonable collection
would probably cost more money than we have; and then there's the question
of what (and what subjects) to buy -- there's no one "right answer" for
databases and archives for most subjects, especially given the relative
obscurity of much of what is getting fact-checked around here. I don't think
the general databases would be much help. If anyone has any particular ideas
about specific products that would be very helpful, I'd be happy to do some
price-checking for various models and report back. The usual institutional
academic license (based on # of users) obviously wouldn't work for us so
there would have to be some pretty heavy negotiation with pubishers.
(The latter needs to be revived and brought up to date). How to make these
services more useful, so as to distribute research work?
There's three parts to it:
- knowing where to look and having access to the appropriate resource
- doing the actual searching for a topic
- just picking up a known citation out of a digital archive or journal and
sending it to someone.
None of these things take exactly the same skill set; the first is
traditionally the work of librarians, while anyone with access can do the
last. Searching falls somewhere in the middle. I would love to see some kind
of a 'fact-check' network set up to take advantage of what all we might have
p.s.: in re: your SciAm issues, Ray, it looks like it's been fully digitized
from 1845-1908, and then from 1993-present, but not the stuff in the middle
yet. Access to digitization (and subsequent drop in use for the printed
copies) is probably why the print issues got dumped; that and lack of space
for something that has a lot of duplicates around the country and can thus
be ILL'ed if anyone desperately needs the paper.
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On 25 Jan 2007 at 02:25, "Alphax (Wikipedia email)"
> Ray Saintonge wrote:
> > Fastfission wrote:
> >> Well, nobody has really called America the great melting pot earnestly
> >> for some time now (see [[melting pot]]).
> > What does it say now that Bush used the term in his State of the Union
> > speech? ;-)
> Eh, so long as nobody calls America a wok...
Multiple choice quiz:
America is most like a...
a) Melting pot
b) Crock pot
c) Frying pan
d) Flame broiler
> On 25 Jan 2007 at 02:25, "Alphax (Wikipedia email)"
> <[hidden email]>
>> Ray Saintonge wrote:
>>> Fastfission wrote:
>>>> Well, nobody has really called America the great melting pot earnestly
>>>> for some time now (see [[melting pot]]).
>>> What does it say now that Bush used the term in his State of the Union
>>> speech? ;-)
>> Eh, so long as nobody calls America a wok...
> Multiple choice quiz:
> America is most like a...
> a) Melting pot
> b) Crock pot
> c) Frying pan
> d) Flame broiler
> e) Wok
On 1/26/07, Thomas Dalton <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > Which set of chemistry teachings did you have in mind?
> For example, I discovered a few days ago, talking to some friends of
> mine studying Chemistry at uni, that diatomic oxygen is, in fact, not
> double bonded, as my Chemistry teachers said it was.
> I can understand the reason for the simplification, but they should at
> least say they are simplifying things.
Anything that isn't the full quantum-mechanical electron orbitals
analysis of the chemical structure is oversimplification, but "works"
for 99.9% of the chemistry that anyone ever does.
We still teach people Newtonian physics first, then Relativity if you
reach college and take science major / engineering major level physics
courses. Almost nobody remembers the fully relativistic versions of
the equations of motion, because you essentially have to be a particle
physicist or high energy physicist or cosmologist for it to matter.
The simplifications aren't wrong. And it's not wrong to teach them to
people. It's wrong to not tell people that there is a more precise
underlying theory, but I don't generally run into physics or chemistry
teachers at any level who don't make that distinction.