Sunday, March 06, 2011

Welcome Fallows' Readers

I hadn't realized how much traffic would be generated by guest blogging for James Fallows. If you are new to this site, then this background may be useful.
  • My basic bio is here.
  • My spouse used to blog at Bad Dad, but no longer does due to lack of time.
  • The Eric that sporadically posts here is a friend from grad school and not my spouse. He and his spouse and kids wrote a very interesting blog about their Bangalore Sabbatical.
  • My job is not blog fodder; I can only write about it in a general way if it helps me make a point about STEM (Science/Technology/Engineering/Mathematics). There is a national shortage of STEM workers and volunteers; my employer encourages us to do things that promote STEM education in general and has a policy of giving us flex-time so that we can perform STEM volunteer work with students.
  • Certain aspects of my home life are also not blog fodder. There is a reason why mommy bloggers do not discuss their older children. What she wants to share, she posts.
  • I am keenly interested in the culture of making. Because I can't discuss the stuff I make at work, I discuss the stuff I make at home. Some readers skim over it; but there are many tidbits about engineering, design and science in the making posts.
  • There are many commercial messages about how to consume with your kids in a way that benefits advertisers. To counter those messages, I write about fun and educational things to do with your kids in Los Angeles that cost little or no money in LA Kids. They also include science tidbits and I am happy to explain/clarify the posts or answer science questions.
  • Sometimes I get cranky and want to vent about Bullshit, which often coincides with the misinterpretation of Statistics.


  1. I really, really enjoyed your math rant!

  2. I am a long-time fan of both your blog and James Fallows' posts. I would not have guessed these could overlap, but I am happy they have.
    Lisa in Toronto

  3. Anonymous00:23

    Hello, read your post on software an LEGOs. Have you tried Arduino?.
    first time reading your blog (thanks to Fallows). Great content.

  4. An anonymous commentator asked if I had tried open-source Arduino instead of Lego NXT.


    The school team participates in the First Lego League, FLL, which means they need to use Lego NXT systems. Northrup Grumman sponsors the team, paying for many of the Lego NXT kits and tournament entry fees. The school district comes up with the rest of the funds. Several parents bought additional sets.

    It's a Title 1 school; 40% of the kids are at risk educationally because of family income or low parental educational attainment. It would be wrong to deny any interested child opportunities due to lack of family $ resources.

    Thus, we raise $ through corporate donations, taxes (school district) and parent groups to give all of our kids equal access.


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