Thursday, August 25, 2005

I *Heart* Controversy

` In case you've never read Science, Wackmobiles and You before, I just love writing about 'controversial' topics, whether they're actually worthy of controversy or not!

` Otherwise, I tend to write about me - well, this is my blog, after all. You may wonder if it would be better to call it Science, Wackmobiles and Me, but that name makes it sound less like a cheesy World War II Era safety film and more like I'm some kind of egotist.

` I'm actually not, though I just use the word 'I' a lot - you know, gotta rant. I am learning more about what might be going on in the heads of other people, as well as what's going on in mine!
` For example, I've been talking to The Swill Man lately, and in so doing, have been doing a pretty good job of simply holding a conversation with someone who a) I don't know that well yet, and b) is someone besides me.

` It's surprisingly challenging, since Scary Psychotic Fathers who severely punish you for even thinking yourself halfway capable of being considerate to another person will leave you bleakly unprepared for the world.
` I still have about seven years of social skills to try to catch up on - plus lots of emotional problems to neutralize - before I can get another job.

` In other words, being me involves constant deprogramming from having attended Dad's Brainwashing School for Being Broken and Learning DadAutism.

` But enough about my retardation de la sociale. (Whatever that means.)

` In the meantime, I like to revel in insights I'm familiar with, things I can be proud of for knowing. Gotta feel good about something.
` I've been thinking about this lately: What is controversial to [choose a random person] is not necessarily controversial in real life. That is why there are two basic perceptual types of information:

` The first type looks neutral, and so most people will be happy to accept at face value.
` Popular scientific reading materials, books, and web sites are especially rife with this type. A lot of it may be true, but mixed in with it are things that may not be: I've noticed that publications such as National Geographic and Discover are overly optimistic about things that scientists are still trying to determine whether or not they work in the real world.

` The second type of perceptual knowledge is something that sounds iffy to you. A lot of things are, but you have to know what's really going on to even be sure.
` Of course, I'm mainly talking about factual controversies - there are also, say, ethical controversies. They are generally more involved, but I like those too.

` At least on some things, I can usually distinguish the difference between something that is and something that is not controversial. In science, while I know very little in many fields, some areas I am actually quite good at determining what is and what isn't.
` Those are the ones I generally write about.

` And what does this make me? Someone who has a passion for setting myths straight. I try my best not to make any grievous mistakes.

` If I do, I will personally take the time to publicly humiliate myself. As if I don't do that enough.

` Anyway, that's partly what my blog was started for - however, I don't know how many hits I get a day, nor do I know how many people read what I write. That's why I encourage people to comment. Seriously, I get this feeling that I'm writing into a vaccuum most of the time.

` So, what can I do to encourage people to read my blog and subsequently give me feedback?

` 1) Make everything shorter!

` 2) Bring up controversial things more often.

` 3) If that doesn't work, beg shamelessly.

` That is my plan. Who's with me?


ChrisWoznitza said...

Hi I´m Chris. Great page !!! Greatings from Germany Bottrop !!

S E E Quine said...

Hey, thanks! ;)