It is turning out to be an invaluable scientific tool. I am now at home full-time, caring for McHenry while Christine returns to work. Productivity has definitely tumbled, but I am starting to notice it picking up again. AND I get an extra hour or more of writing out of the day thanks to the Fisher Price Jungle Gym thing. He digs it, and therefore I dig it, despite the fact that it needs batteries (usually an automatic deal-killer in most baby toys).
My main focus at the moment is writing what I will hope will be my first published paper. I've also simultaneously decided that I can no longer go another day only reading nerd books, so I've started doing a bit of night time normal person reading again. At the moment: Log of the Sea of Cortez. This is my second reading, having first picked it up about 10 years ago. Last night I read the following apropos passage:
"It has seemed sometimes that the little men in scientific work assumed the awe-fullness of a priesthood to hide their deficiencies, as the witch-doctor does with his stilts and high masks, as the priesthoods of all cults have, with secret or unfamiliar languages and symbols. It is usually found that only the little stuffy men object to what is called "popularization", by which they mean writing with a clarity understandable to one not familiar with the tricks and codes of the cult. We have not known a single great scientist who could not discourse freely and interestingly with a child."
I feel myself sometimes slipping off of the precipice into the abyss of the particular language of my disciplines, and Mr. S. delivers here a timely reminder.
As the Coastal Hazards Specialist for Washington Sea Grant I spend my time on research, education and outreach on topics like chronic erosion, climate change, tsunami and other coastal hazards. Current projects include:
1) monitoring the shoreline of the Elwha River delta to detect changes due to the Elwha Dam Removal
2) Assessing the influence of climate change on the resources of the Olympic Coast National Marine Sanctuary
3) Evaluating the impact of debris from the Tohoku tsunami on the shorelines of the Olympic Peninsula