Archive for March, 2008

The hardest parts of science

Thursday, March 20th, 2008

For me, and I imagine a lot of people, the hardest parts of doing science are (1) coming up with good (or any) ideas, and (2) writing. Because these tasks are so challenging--and because I have an unhealthy obsession with how-to guides and formulaic advice--I have been gathering materials for ...


Vegetation Effects on Nitrogen Cycling Hotspots in an Alpine-Subalpine Ecosystem

Tuesday, March 18th, 2008

Funding agencies occasionally ask for short abstracts of proposed or completed research to help describe the research to policy makers and the public since, after all, our tax dollars are supporting the research. I wrote one of these descriptions this morning and thought I would post it here too. The ...


Snow survey in the Soddie Watershed 2008

Friday, March 14th, 2008

I'm gearing up to do a snow survey at my field site, the Soddie Watershed (shown above). The Soddie Watershed is a 0.89 km2 alpine-subalpine catchment on the south side of Niwot Ridge. Niwot Ridge is a large swath of alpine tundra adjacent to the continental divide in the Front ...


How big should I make my soil cores?

Monday, March 10th, 2008

While perhaps not a profound question, "How big should I make my soil cores?" is an important question that I think needs some attention. From a conceptual standpoint, we know that any study of the environment is scale-dependent, meaning that the scale you choose for your investigation can affect the results ...


I woke up and suddenly understood Bayesian statistics…

Sunday, March 2nd, 2008

It sounds crazy, but that's pretty much what happened. I woke up too early (about 6) and as I lay in bed, my mind drifted to a Bayesian statistics example that I had read on Friday afternoon. I had read all of the parts of it and understood the sentences ...