So our assignment for this day is to find 10 blogs that tickle our respective fancies. I’m not about to dance around it, so here goes.
Swift is a blog run by the JREF (the James Randi Educational Foundation, for those not
hip to the fact). It’s pretty readable,
and you may learn a thing or two. James Randi, pictured, has been a magician for a very long time, and is
well versed in the tricks of the trade. From busting people like sleazeball Peter Popoff to logic-slamming Sylvia Browne, Randi’s kept it real the entire time. Due to his age, which is considerable, Mr. Randi has left many of the duties to his staff, including some of the writing. If what you are after is an interesting, skeptical blog detailing everything from exposed frauds to the history of skepticism, you’ll be hard-pressed to do better. Read it if such things interest you, and read it if they don’t. The “E” isn’t there on accident.
This one is really a treat. It documents all sorts of quackery, and one of the chief authors is also the main writer of Neurologica. If you want to know more about, say, herbs as medicine or maybe the anti-vaccine movement, you’ll do well to read it.
One of my personal favorites, Pharyngula is written by P.Z Meyers, biologist and associate professor at the University of Minnesota. He’s Minnesota nice, but he also has charmingly biting wit. Professor Meyers has a passion for the chambered nautilus if I remember correctly, and many of his posts are about sea life or life in general. If you are highly religious, you may not care for the site, but the good professor should be attractive to all readers with open minds.
The Neurologica blog is written primarily by Dr. Steven Novella,an academic clinical neurologist at Yale University School of Medicine. As you may imagine, neurology is a very difficult discipline, requiring ten-plus years of schooling. In addition to writing Neurologica, Dr. Novella is one of the co-founders of the New England Skeptical Society, as well as the Skeptics’ Guide to the Universe, a podcast very well known in certain circles. With intelligent articles about medicine, ethics and neurology, Neurologica is a great choice of reading material.
Star astronomer (I’m here all week, folks) Phil Plait writes the Bad Astronomy blog, or BA blog if you will. If you find space interesting, then this blog is for you. From
educated posts about supernovae to galaxies far, far away, Bad Astronomy is a fine example of time well spent. Space is fascinating, and Plait is an excellent man for bringing his passion for astronomy through in his writing.
(The perceptive reader will no doubt have been able to infer something about my likes and dislikes by this point.)
This departs from the general theme a bit, so here goes. If there’s anything I like more than video games, it’s playing them. If you would like to be exposed to industry analysis, tech talk/humour, or charity, SG is definitely worth looking into. The podcasts aren’t too shabby, either; from the Blu show to Red, Brown and Pink, SG is truly a one of a kind.
Yeah, xkcd is a webcomic, but it’s also host to a pretty funny blog. Known for its egghead wit and nerdy subject matter, xkcd brings a unique flavour to its “blag”, too. If you’re a fan of the comic, I highly recommend the blog. It’s a good way to improve your understanding of the author, too.
Yes, again with the video games. If you like Minecraft, you may also enjoy the creator’s personal blog. Don’t worry, it’s not all about his life; much of it, in fact the majority, is about Minecraft development and future plans. A great place to get the latest scoop on anything from the newest update to what’s on the mind of the Swedish java-enthusiast himself, The Word of Notch is worth your attention.
Have you ever been suckered by a late night infomercial? Buy any blenders or special cat-vacuums lately? Finally, TAG has come to restore truth in advertising. Home to a very large community, TAG is one of the most respected sites known for the latest gaming news, reviews and analysis. They also have a fantastic podcast, thanks to JVB.
Alright, I’ll admit it; I’m big into science. And skepticism. Respectful Insolence provides both, with scathing articles about pseudoscience, quacks and charlatans in all fields. If you’re anything like me, you may find this one a fascinating read. Below is an entry on the hopelessness of the NCCAM (National Center for Complimentary and Alternative Medicine). Basically, the only role the NCCAM has played so far, and seems intent on playing well into the future, is that of providing legitimization to woo-woo nonsense. The real rub? They’ve spent tons of money on study after negative study for the same modalities. Negative evidence has never dissuaded the NCCAM from dumping more of our money down the toilet. It’s a disgusting, revolting waste of time and money. National Embarrassment is more fitting a name.