User:Chiswick Chap/About

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10has helped to create at least 10 Featured Articles.
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enThis user is a native speaker of the English language.
fr-3Cet utilisateur peut contribuer avec un niveau avancé de français.
sv-2Denna användare har kunskaper på mellannivå i svenska.
de-1Dieser Benutzer hat grundlegende Deutschkenntnisse.
it-1Questo utente può contribuire con un livello semplice di italiano.
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Þæs ofereode, þisses swa mæg!

Hallo, I'm Ian Alexander. If you're curious about my handle, Chiswick is a place (with a silent 'w') and chap means a man. It's चिशिविक चैप in Hindi's Devanagari script (well, ok, that's 'chishivik chaip', but what the heck), which I think works rather elegantly.

I specialise in biology articles, including evolutionary biology along with its history and philosophy, covering topics (to take a few that begin with A) as different as agriculture, anatomy, Hugh Cott's marvellous Adaptive Coloration in Animals, animal, animal navigation, antipredator adaptation, apex predator, aposematism, Aristotle's biology (and the man himself), and automimicry not to mention a whole lot of arthropods such as antlion, (and I'm delighted they all made it to 'Good Article'). To my surprise I seem to have a soft spot for Victorians, while working on camouflage led me all over the place including into the mysteries of military history.

I suppose it is natural for an encyclopedia to look into the history of everything: after all, it cannot look forward or even at the present. A liking for Sweden led to "Il signor improvisatore" Carl Michael Bellman's wonderful 18th century songs, especially Fredman's Epistles. Similarly, interest in patterns led to tessellation, a meeting-place of mathematics and art, which led in turn to the splendour of Islamic geometric patterns. Another track is English cuisine, where I found a void in coverage of even the most important historic cookery books, and a remarkable amount of recentism. I'm working on the whole area of living things in culture, another dark corner with a rich history.

I seem to enjoy creating order out of chaos, which is fortunate as there is a considerable supply of suitable articles.

Even back in 2011, I thought (and still think) there's something very wrong with how Wikipedia looks to newbies, enough to write an essay about it.

Committed identity: 7169570e4d46cd6ca10165ea669b15f8510c6836f1f181f379b0340c077900936122d65aaf9e0f4dc2989a49a6d12414bd6145f455ceba7577e9927fbb8ad882 is a SHA-256 commitment to this user's real-life identity.