The research I’m doing now seems to be funging against blogging more than my usual work, so expect it to be quiet around here for a while. Here, have an open thread.
1. Comments of the month…let’s see…no obvious winner this time, but Irenist tries to expand my color-tribe set and Gingko gives a story about Italian mercenaries I would love to have a better source for. Also, Jim (not that Jim) confirms a version of my Thatcher/Osama story but also gives me an alternate hypothesis. What if celebrating the deaths of people like Margaret Thatcher or Joan Rivers is more acceptable than that of Osama precisely because people feel the celebrations of the former aren’t serious, but the celebrations of the latter are?
2. I mentioned it before, but I’ll mention it again: Raemon’s having a Kickstarter for the Secular Solstice celebration.
3. I confess that my attempts with advertising on this blog have failed miserably. AdSense was giving me fifty cents a day for 10,000 page views. Amazon has been a little better, but its much-touted AI recommendation engine believes that visitors here want to buy like three hundred different versions of Thrff Jub’f Pbzvat Gb Qvaare (rot13d so it doesn’t take this as further evidence that it’s on the right track), and nobody clicks on the affiliate banner. This annoys me, because when I can make people click on Amazon links for some other reason (like to see a funny textbook cover), they buy a bunch of things that day which I get credit for, but those same people who are reading my blog every day and buying things from Amazon every day don’t use the affiliate link. I will try to forgive y’all.
So, offer. If any of you are experienced in blog advertising, I’ll make you a deal. Figure out how to get me more money (not through obnoxious popup ads or spamming product reviews) and I’ll give you some percent of it we can negotiate.
4. I will be starting a new Less Wrong Survey soon and want to get you guys in as well (don’t worry, I’ll make sure to keep it separate so as to not contaminate results). I’m most excited about the idea of asking digit ratio on the survey to see if I can replicate some of the weird results that have been coming out about that linking it to different kinds of intelligences, political positions, et cetera.
I think we’ve had a history of getting some interesting results on the survey (for example, we found a REALLY strong oldest-child bias last time, which flies in the face of some supposed disproofs of birth order theory I’ve read) but I’m not sure how I would get them out to where they could help anyone besides bloggers. I am under the impression I can’t get any of my data published, even if I had publishable results, unless I got an IRB somewhere to approve the survey. Is this right?