May 07

Writing About Science (Part 1)

I figure I’ll start out this blog with my take on science writing.

the-pen-is-mightier

Scientists construct papers and journals all the time that make validated statments about the nature of the universe. These publications serve as permanent records of scientific research.

Journalists, on the other hand, have to answer to different standards.  The role of the journalist, on the other hand, is essentially to inform. This puts the science writer into a strange position, because in some respects he is informing, but in others he is actually educating.  To top it all off, the science writer needs to add a level of relevancy to the piece so that readers will see how it applies to their own place in the world.

When I first began blogging, I was exclusively a technology blogger, writing about the news and general minutia that makes up the bulk of the tech side of the internet.  Low level tech blogging essentially consists of taking other stories, digesting them, and regurgitating them as a new, slightly updated story.  It didn’t teach me all that much about journalism of any kind, but it cemented my skills in blog editing and getting a lot written in a short amount of time (many of the stories were time sensitive).

After several iterations of freelance blogging, I got the opporunity to write about more general topics.  Instead of geeky technology news, I branched out into other geeky areas as well.  I wrote an article about how magicians use the internet.  Since that didn’t receive much acclaim, I tried out a few science articles.  I was surprised by two things immediately:

  1. How easy they had been to write
  2. How many people seemed to really have benefitted from them

Now I don’t want to oversell myself here, I only have an undergraduate education, but it was at that point that I realized how important it intelligible science could be to everyone, not just genuine scientists.  People are naturally seekers of truth.  Most are hindered by the immensely complex nature of the universe.  It is up to specialists to parse out that complexity and allow people to do what comes naturally to them: seek out the truth.

Later on I will continue this article in Part 2…

[“I tend to scribble a lot” from Unhindered by Talent on Flickr, CC]

May 01

Welcome to Science Is Magic.com

Like most bloggers, I’ve been hoping for years to have a domain to call my own.  So many questions then arise: how much will it cost, what will I do with it, what blog platform should I use, what domain should I get?  Well this site, for me, is the answer to all those questions.

I will continue the work I did on Mason Tech Beat, but shift a little more toward science.  For the moment this site may function primarily as a hub for all my other writings on the internt, but exect to see at least SOME unique content.

Please note, the site is still in a very early stage and I do need to resolve some issues.  For some reason I can’t get the permissions working to allow WordPress to actually upload files on its own (outside of blog posts).  That means I can’t use any uploaded images or even add my plug-ins automatically.

If you think you can help at all or have some ideas (though don’t get after me about the theme, it’s still filling out), you can contact me through the contact page (see the links at the top).

Thanks All!

Jimmy