Koufax Award voting is open

Ummm, well…seven eight Koufax nominations is rather flattering. These are the semi-finals, though, so it may well be that none of them make it to the finals, and to then actually win one is an even more unlikely eventuality, but hey, here I am.

If you want to vote, all you have to do is follow the link and mention the entry or blog you like in a comment. This is a sensible left-wing blog, so unlike those weird wingers, you only vote once in each category, and all votes will be tallied manually and accurately by the hard-working team at Wampum. (and don’t be tempted to cheat—they know what they are doing.)

Now the point of this award isn’t for everyone who reads a high-traffic blog to stampede over there and vote automatically for said high-traffic blog—it’s to expose the range of talent out there in the liberal blogosphere. So even if you are certain you want to vote for Pharyngula, like because you’re married to the guy (hint, hint, Mary) or gave birth to him (Hi, Mom!), you should feel obligated to also check out the competition. Click around at least some of those links at Wampum before casting your vote. I promise I won’t get mad if you decide to vote for someone else.

Dr Free-Ride has a list of the science-relevant worthy competition. I could mention all the other great blogs and articles listed over there, but the quality of the competition depresses me. I’ll just list the Pharyngula nominations (but don’t forget to look over all the others!):

Best Blog (non-professional): Hah, yeah, right. I think Pharyngula may have been nominated for Best Picture at the Oscars, too.

Best Expert Blog: Oh, I’ve been here before. Expect Juan Cole and Informed Comment to kick my butt again, unless some of the other great nominees decide to turn it into a tag-team butt-kicking.

Best Single Issue Blog: and the issue is ME.

Best Post: I’ve got three nominations for this category. Name the one post you like best of these (I’m pushing for “The proper reverence…”, myself).

Best Series: My infatuation with the bizarre sexual practices of invertebrates pays off. Vote for “Pharyngula invertebrate sex series” if you like this one, which includes this set of posts:

Most Humorous Post: An awful lot of people did not think this post was funny at all. If it makes it to the finals, expect mass rioting in middle America.

It’s nice to get all those nominations, but we must also have balance. So here, as a counterweight, is some email I got today. It was titled “Probably the Worst Site of All Time”, which is rather impressive, actually.

Your Blog, or whatever it is, is not scientific. It is pure delusion, masking itself as reasoning, and scientific.

The fact that you portray yourself as a “Liberal” simply adds to the unscientific thinking that masks your ideological psuedoscientific nonsense.

Perhaps a good shot of bourbon is all you need, to bring you into reality.

The wonders of the modern “university” are amazing. And since when was ignorance a point of view?

Uh-oh. I bet he’s going to vote for Juan Cole, isn’t he?

Aww, heck. I’m getting a lot of hate mail this morning (weird correlation: any time I criticize Powerline, I get a spike in the angry mail for a week or two afterwards.) Here’s a classic; this one is titled, “Read this azz”.

if you people think that eveything you see in the world was from evaluation then you are the dumbist mother fucker out there. live to complex to just have evolved from a single cell.and if the dna code is wrighten to that animal then you can not get highter life forms from that code wrighen for that animal .i got lots more if you wanna get in to a debat

No, not the debat! I fear the great skills of this typically knowledgeable and literate creationist—I hope he doesn’t hit me with another one from his vast store of deep arguments.

Short takes

Never mind me, I’m running around with classes and meetings today…here are a few quick links.

Another new URL to fix

Update those blogrolls for Creek Running North, which is now located at http://faultline.org/. While you’re fixing that one, remember to also set Pharyngula’s new address to http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/—it’s been over a month and I see via Technorati that the old address has about ten times as many links as the new one!


Some of the scienceblogs have been experiencing difficulties (unresponsiveness, sluggish commenting, and some of us can’t even post), and part of the problem can be traced to spammers turning their attention to us and pounding at the door. We’ve been asked to increase the level of security in commenting to suppress some of that activity, so now comments here require a valid email address.

Switching the level of security has an unfortunate side-effect with some browsers—it confused my copy of Safari so much it wouldn’t allow me to comment on my own blog. One solution, though, is to get rid of the old cookies for the scienceblogs.com domain in your browser. If you’re getting a “Comment Submission Error”, try that solution.

If anyone wants to leave other bug reports here, I bet the developer will see them. I know of a few glitches:

  • Text encoding incompatibilities—this ISO vs UTF-8 stuff that I barely understand.
  • The search page (and others?) don’t seem to be php-enabled, so funny stuff appears.
  • Syndication includes only the entry body, and if there is an extended entry, there’s no indication that something is incomplete.
  • I want a captcha system for comments. Some spam still gets through that I need to manually delete.
  • No Pirate Mode and I need more logos! OK, this is still a very low priority…more serious bugs need to be fixed first.

I know there are lots of these little things floating about, but overall I’m so happy with the improved performance that I’m not too concerned, yet. And of course, the number one priority has to be correcting major bugs like Orac has had.

Hey! If you check your syndication feeds, you’ll see that now not only is there an indicator that there’s more to the post, but there’s a link to and count of the comments. See? Complain here, the developer will notice, and things will get fixed.

An entirely optional request

A little reminder: a look at Technorati shows me that a lot of people still haven’t updated those blogrolls. I’ve stuck an automatic redirect on the old page, and I’ve also tweaked the .htaccess file to remap all the requests for rss and xml files to the new syndication file here, so it’s easy to forget—going to the old site will still get you right here. Still, it would be nice if you adjusted the links, and changed “http://pharyngula.org/” to “http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/“.

It’s not a major problem since either address will eventually get you to the same place, but I’m sure the Seed people would like to see more links going straight to the ScienceBlogs empire.

Me, humorous? I was deadly serious!

Whee! Another Koufax nomination for Most Humorous Post. I’ve moved the copy over here to the new site, in the post below this one.

This was an interesting post, though—it prompted something close to the record volume of hate mail for a single article, ever (I don’t keep count, though, so I can’t be sure—but man, were some people ever furious about it.) Joke about peeing on a bible, and people react like you’d expect them to if you threatened to imprison and torture and kill foreign civilians.

It’ll be an experience if it makes it into the final nominations. More hate mail, oh boy!