Carl Zimmer

December 18, 2003


Carl Zimmer has moved his popular science blog, The Loom. Update your links.

While I mention him, let me Blog him Forward.

Carl Zimmer's The Loom is a collection of relatively long discussions about popular science and science history. Zimmer's strength and interest is in evolutionary biology, and much of what he posts is about the history of evolution or about new projects with gene sequencing and genetic research. His posts are all value-added: he will explain new research or tell you about something that you would not have encountered otherwise. I like that in a blog. Zimmer is a professional writer of popular science, and I think I need to chase down some of his books because his blog has that knack of presenting new information in a casual and clearly understandable manner. Lucid prose is a rare gift, and Zimmer has it. He updates a few times a week; I click on the link a few times a week, and I am always glad that I did.

I file him with the academics because much of his writing is about professional science.

Hmm, while I wait for the baby to go to sleep let me add another couple of shout-outs.

Kevin Drum's Calpundit is one of the big dogs of the blogging world. Drum writes several times a day, comments on most major news stories, and always has something interesting to say. He is a liberal democrat, leaning towards the centrist position, with a low tolerance for bullshit from either the left or the right. Drum's professional background is in explaining things to business people (I don't know more about his particular style of consulting than that) and as a result he is very good at explaining political matters to a general readership. Like Zimmer, his prose is lucid. He gains his power by being clear, and occasionally by being outraged, not by using potty language or making outrageous figures of speech. This is not to say that he is a mild centrist, for he is not. His critique of the Texas State Republican Committee is notoriously strong. But, his overall web persona is someone who has core beliefs, will listen and try to understand other people, and who understands the difference between political bargaining and the Big Lie. When he links to something, he almost always adds value with his commentary. I check his blog several times a day.

While I am in praise of writing, let me now praise Anne. She and Sheila O'Malley are probably the two most creative people on my blogroll. (Sarah Hatter and Rob "Acidman" Smith tie for third) Anne ... Straight From the Hip started as a recovery project for an artistic hard-driver who was recovering from crippling depression. Anne is still recovering, and still writing. I am very glad to see that she is re-discovering her creativity - check out her Halloween costume. Anne posts a little more often than once a week. Every post is a beautifully crafted depiction of a moment or an emotion. Many of them are brutally honest, others are vents about the joys of being a talented person working retail while struggling with the "black dog." All of them are compelling.

Posted by Red Ted at December 18, 2003 07:56 AM | TrackBack