Tag Archives: jref

#TAM2013 Crowdsourcing Workshop & other videos posted

Additional videos from The Amaz!ng Meeting 2013 have been posted in recent weeks by the James Randi Educational Foundation. Just in the last few days the two workshops I was involved in at #TAM2013, on the topics of skeptic history and crowdsourcing, have been added!

Crowdsourcing

The crowdsourcing workshop featured Shane Greenup of RBUTR, Susan Gerbic of the Guerrilla Skepticism project and myself, discussing how the new technique of crowdsourcing can be applied to skeptical projects. If you follow this blog you know some of the tools and topics we discussed.

The new video from this workshop has a few issues, and thus only includes the parts of the workshop presented by Shane and myself. But Susan had previously posted audience-shot video of her portions of the workshop and the Q&A, so I have compiled all four of these videos into a playlist you can watch right here.  The audio isn’t fantastic but it covers most of the workshop.

I previously captured the live reaction to the workshop on Storify here. There is more information about this workshop including coverage (including an interview with Susan) at the Lanyrd page for the session here.

Skeptic History

I participated in two other pieces of programming at TAM2013, both concerning the history of skepticism. The first was a workshop called Preserving Skeptic History organized by Daniel Loxton. Along with the video he posted some of his thoughts on the workshop and a great excerpt of the comments made by Ray Hyman.

The other programming was the 2013 In Memoriam presentation, which was previously posted on this website.

As of this writing JREF has posted over 50 videos from TAM 2013, they can be accessed via a YouTube playlist here or via the conference directory Lanyrd here.  I recommend the latter link because it can be filtered by topic using the blue buttons on the right hand side. It also includes videos (such as interviews, podcasts and so on) posted by others, for a total of 106 videos!

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Online resources for The Amazing Meeting #TAM2014

JREF14_tam_logoFour weeks from right now, the annual Amazing Meeting will be in full swing. This year is the 16th such event put on by the James Randi Educational Foundation, and it is being held in Las Vegas from July 10th to 13th.

Long time readers of this blog are probably expecting one or more posts from me about now with various tips and advice about attending the show, using the wireless at the hotel and so on.

However this year is a bit different. My position as a JREF Fellow ended this past February. I’ve decided (for various reasons) not to attend TAM this year – the first time since I first attended in 2007.  As a result, I don’t have a ton of new information to share with you about attending, as I haven’t been preparing a trip myself.

That’s the bad news. The good news is TAM is being held in the same hotel and in virtually identical format that it has has for several years. This means that almost all of the great tips from past years from myself and others still apply.

With that in mind, here’s a set of links that will get you to the posts that will help you out the most.

  • Last year I collected TAM Tips from Twitter on Storify – they include travel and entertainment advice about the show itself, Vegas in general and more. Most contain links to other useful content, and come from several long-time attendees including myself.
  • A critical tip from that list is to visit the Amazing Meeting section of the JREF Forum, where you can meet other attendees, arrange room sharing or ride sharing, side trips and so on.
  • If you plan to post on the Internet while at the show be sure to read my post from last year about my conference gadget kit and familiarize yourself with the wireless situation at TAM via my 2012 post.  One update since then – WiFi in your room at SouthPoint Hotel, Casino & Spa is now bundled into the room fees, there’s no longer an optional daily charge.
  • Smartphone users should install the Lanyrd app then find the TAM2014 page and mark yourself as attending. Once the schedule is up, you should be able to track events, find your favorite speakers in the schedule and so on.
  • The late Eric Broze (who lived in Las Vegas) wrote this great guide to TAM last year containing lots of great local information.
  • I also recommend you visit the TAM category of Kitty Mervine’s blog Yankee Skeptic, where you will find many interesting posts.

That’s all I have for you. I hope everyone has fun at this year’s TAM, and maybe I’ll see some of you at Dragon*Con Skeptrack later this summer!

#TAM2013 In Memoriam presentation

For the last four years, I’ve researched obituaries of people relevant to skepticism, and compiled them into a memorial presentation at The Amazing Meeting in July. I think it is important that we take note of the passages in our community, just as other communities do. I was inspired by the annual memorial presentation at the Academy Awards, which serves the same purpose for the motion picture industry.

The presentation for TAM 2013 consisted of 60 people who died between July 2012 and July 2013. It is just about exactly 5 minutes long, and at TAM it ran during the morning coffee breaks in the main room. If you missed it at TAM (or want a second look) you can watch the presentation here. Scroll down below the video for a list of the people included and links to further information about each.

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Content Roundup for September 2012

September finally gave us some time to breathe after the twin excitement of TAM in July and Dragon*Con Skeptrack in August.

It also saw the issuance of my third patent: U.S. Patent #8,266,700 titled “Secure web application development environment“. It belongs to Hewlett Packard, so I don’t get anything from it other than an interesting footnote for my resume.

An unfortunate milestone this month was the return of David Mabus to bothering people using email and Twitter. (He had been posting on YouTube, forums and blogs for a couple of months). That was the reason I posted a how-to on reporting threatening emails this month.

So if you missed any of that, here’s a way to catch up. Below are links to the content I’ve been involved with in the last month. It includes this blog as well as the material I post on other blogs, my podcasting activities, my best posts on Twitter as well as key shout-outs or mentions elsewhere.

In an effort to practice what I preach, I’m also trying to document on a monthly basis what my contributions are to several skeptic-relevant crowdsourcing projects.

Read on to see what you might have missed…

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Content Roundup for August 2012 – Dragon*Con

August didn’t offer much time to recover from The Amazing Meeting before we had to jump right into Dragon*Con. Phew, who has time to read blogs?

Here’s a way to catch up. Below are links to the content I’ve been involved with in the last month. It includes this blog as well as the material I post on other blogs, my podcasting activities, my best posts on Twitter as well as key shout-outs or mentions elsewhere.

In an effort to practice what I preach, I’m also trying to document on a monthly basis what my contributions are to several skeptic-relevant crowdsourcing projects.

Read on to see what you might have missed… Continue reading

Content Roundup for July 2012: TAM was AWESOME

July was all about The Amazing Meeting, both prep work and posts which related to the convention.

There were a couple of non-TAM highlights for me this month too. One was I discovered that back in March, IBM received a second patent in my name (US #8,141,157) on work I did for a subsidiary of theirs over a decade ago.

But the biggest one was the creation of a Wikipedia biography page for me by Susan Gerbic. Thank you so much, Susan, it looks great!

If you missed TAM, or if you were there and wanted more info from one of my presentations, here’s a way to catch up. Below are links to the content I’ve been involved with in the last month. It includes this blog as well as the material I post on other blogs, my podcasting activities, my best posts on Twitter as well as key shout-outs or mentions elsewhere.

I’m also trying to document on a monthly basis what my contributions are to several skeptic-relevant crowdsourcing projects. This ties in with both the workshop and plenary presentation I gave at TAM.

Read on to see what you might have missed…

Continue reading

#TAM2012 In Memoriam slides

The Amaz!ng Meeting 2012 sponsored by the James Randi Educational Foundation is ongoing in Las Vegas as I type this. As I did for TAM8 and TAM9, I prepared a list of skeptics, scientists and other personalities relating to skepticism who died in the year since the last TAM.

This presentation remembering them ran each morning in the main room on Friday July 13 and Saturday July 14. Here it is:

Thanks in particular to Tim BingaSharon Hill, Natalie JaranJim Lippard, Daniel Loxton, Steven Novella, Lei Pinter, Martin Robbins and Rick Ross for their help in collecting this information and the photos you see.