Friday, October 27, 2006

Strangely silent

I've been strangely silent for a while, mostly because I've been quite busy on other things, one of which I'll share below. In the interim, I thought I'd share a few of the links I've been watching that might interest some of you.

We all use computers (those who don't won't be reading this). I've written about comp.risks as a place to find out what risks others have seen in the use of computers and about Gnu Privacy Guard as a way to secure confidential email. Recently I've been following Avi Rubin's Blog as he observes the electronic voting scene. It was especially interesting to read about his day serving as an election judge in this year's primary election.

Climate change is increasingly in the news, for valid reasons, I think; it's an issue that touches all our lives. RealClimate seems to have a considered, scientific approach to the subject with a healthy discussion in comments to each posting. Today they reminded readers of the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) as a good source for more in-depth information. They're now on my list to check out.

Communicating a message is important to all of us; at various times, we're probably on both the sending and receiving sides of such communications. Presentation Zen often has good reminders about how one communicates effectively in group settings.

Increasingly people are working in distributed environments without sitting in the same room or building with their colleagues. My friend and colleague Nancy White is a voracious reader, thinker, and publisher of ideas on the world of online interactions in her Full Circle Online Interaction Blog.

Data and making appropriate sense of data is important for good decision making. While I'm not a professional statistical modeler, I've found Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science by Andrew Gelman, Aleks Jakulin, and Samantha Cook to be worth checking out.

While I'm on the subject of data, colleague Gene Shackman has assembled links to a broad variety of free data sources. Check those out from time to time to help your (and my) thinking stay grounded.

I think it's important to see ourselves as others see us. No matter what country you live in, I think you and I can benefit by learning more about other countries, cultures, and people. I've written about sources for doing that before, and I encourage you (and me) to check out some of those sources on a regular basis. (Since I originally wrote that posting, links to the Clyde Prestowitz interview and his list of news sources have moved; I've only found the updated interview link.

(System Dynamics for Cheapskates title slide)

Finally (for this post), if you're interested in system dynamics and especially if you also are interested in Linux, you might be interested in a presentation I'm making next week. I'm rather excited at the prospect of sharing an approach to system dynamics that I've been using for almost eight months and which I find helps me think more clearly about problems I'm addressing. I hope those who attend will come away prepared to try it themselves!

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