Commenter appreciation day (May open thread)

I accordance with the decision I made last month, here is your monthly open thread. Talk about whatever you want, though as always questions and post suggestsions are especially welcome.

I decided to name this open thread “commenter appreciation day,” because let’s face it, you guys are awesome. I think I would have quit blogging long ago if not for all of you. You’re an incredibly value source of information and, often, information I wouldn’t otherwise have, from helping me get up to speed on the Old Testament to recommending podcasts. So thanks to you all.

(Speaking of Podcasts, I’m rapidly burning through the archives of the Freakonomics Podcast. Once I’m done with it, what should I start on next?)

One other note: as you’re all probably aware by now, we’ve switched the commenting system over to Disqus. Libby Anne has a far better guide to the new system than I’ve been able to write. Notably, I’d like to second her request for regular commenters to actually register with Disqus–it will make commenting here a lot easier.

  • Alexander Johannesen

    Hi Chris; I’m trawling through the backlog of the podcast “The partially examined life”, and I’m loving it (google the name, their website will come up), it’s “a podcast by some guys who thought about doing philosophy for a living, but then thought better of it.” Highly recommended. It’s all about the ideas, without all the bullshit.

    • Chris Hallquist


  • Patrick Hickey

    Well, if this is an open thread…

    A while back I heard a podcast where, I believe, Phil Plait was being interviewed. He discussed conspiracy theories, and why he refuses to debate them. One issue he discussed was the way people misunderstand what evidence is- they start with a theory (the example he used was that dogs are undercover aliens from Mars planning an invasion), and when the theory is challenged and the challenge is overcome through special pleading (if so, where do they keep all their spy stuff? obviously they’ve hidden it through means we can’t detect, because they’re superintelligent aliens), they become more certain of the theory.

    Does anyone remember what podcast that was? I want to find that episode. Alternately, I’d like to find Phil Plait or anyone else discussing that issue in more detail.

    • Chris Hallquist

      I don’t know the podcast you’re referring to, but I’d be very curious to know where that was too.

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  • Anonymous Coward

    Atheist Appreciation Day: October 5.

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