Wednesday, 18 October 2006

SLU email sucks

At the moment, the email system at SLU is pretty much choked, with no sign of a solution coming any time soon (and, no, ITS throwing more money at the problem is not a solution, it's a stopgap). I think it’s time for a replacement.

Monday, 4 December 2006

Power outages are good for my productivity

The power outage at least had one silver lining for me: it forced me to spend some time in my office with minimal distractions, which allowed me to wrap up most of the textual revisions of the strategic voting paper.

I also am continuing to fiddle with the data analysis; I’m still not happy about the 2000 results, and I’m not sure there’s anything to be done about that (beyond getting a time machine, increasing the NES sample size, and figuring out some way to get more people to fess up to voting for Nader), but the 1996 results turn out to be stronger with the IRT measure of sophistication than they were with the interviewer evaluation. Plus I got the multiple imputation stuff to work.

So hopefully during the black hole between now and student paper grading time I can get this thing polished and ready for submission to a decent journal… and have time to spare to hack together about 8 bits of my dissertation and my job talk into a SPSA paper.

In other “I actually get work done, believe it or not” business in recent days, I took care of a paper review for a journal… I wish I could say it was punctual, but in fairness the first time they sent me the paper for review it got bounced from my SLU account because I was either over my mail quota or the mail system was mid-meltdown. I also wrote two recommendation letters.

Wednesday, 20 December 2006

The perfect is the enemy of the good

I think it’s time for a new New Year’s Resolution. Instead of my annual resolution to lose weight—which feels like tilting at windmills these days—I hereby resolve to stop being as much of a perfectionist, particularly when it comes to my research. I will now make things good enough, send them out, and hope for the best, rather than trying to anticipate and address every last objection some anal reviewer might have to the piece.

The moral of this resolution, of course, is that I should have sent out the strategic voting paper months ago, rather than continuing to fiddle with every last detail. So I shall end my fiddling, stick the latest results in the current draft, and send the damn thing out before Christmas.

(This is easier said than done, I suspect, although I’m told committing to these things is an important step in ensuring they get done.)