A list of all the posts and pages found on the site. For you robots out there is an XML version available for digesting as well.



Cleaning MARC train schedules


I’ve ridden the MARC train between DC and Baltimore a few times, and I got frustrated with clicking through the “Schedule” and “Timetable” interfaces to see train times. There’s a pdf, but it’s a pain to read: I only want to know which trains go between DC and Baltimore, and what times they leave/arrive.

A pamphlet for the Greek Orthodox marriage service


My wife and I were married in an Orthodox ceremony in Thessaloniki, Greece this past summer. Many of our guests were not Orthodox, so we wanted to give them some context about the 30 minutes of ceremony in an unfamiliar liturgical language that we asked them to sit for.

purrr for analysis in R


In my postdoc work, I was running a lot of models on data. I found R really useful to doing the models, but I often struggled to write nice code around running many models. Until I discovered purrr.

The origin of the “transient” skin microbe concept


There is a growing appreciation that microbes are not all pathogens. Some of them are important to our health, and many of them seem simply irrelevant to our concerns. It was only a matter of time before Purell put the following question and answer on their webpage’s FAQ:

Trump and Tribunes


I was delighted and dejected when reading this interview (titled “Trump: Tribute of Poor White People”) with J. D. Vance, who wrote Hillbilly Elegy. Vance came from a poor white family, spent time in the Marines, and is a Yale Law graduate.

A polemic on pronouns


English speakers used to distinguish between thou, a word used to address a single person, and you, a word used to address more than one person. Just as kings used a royal, plural we when referring to one person, English speakers came to use a flattering you when addressing a single person. The Quakers retained thou to avoid elevating anyone with you. To non-Quakers, this standing on principle sounded antiquated and pedantic.

Using git with Word documents


I like git, and I like to use it with most of my projects. But I mostly need to use Word to write manuscripts because it what and my co-authors and journals know how to work with.