User talk:WillowW/Archive08

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Peer review[edit]

WillowW, you are such a helpful reviewer, I can't help but ask for your assistance again. I have posted Sarah Trimmer over at peer review (another in my series of articles related to eighteenth-century British education). If you time in the next few weeks, would you mind taking a look at it? I would really appreciate it. Thanks. Awadewit 05:46, 1 May 2007 (UTC)

That was so fast! Thank you so much for your excellent copyediting and comments. Awadewit 21:41, 1 May 2007 (UTC)
Dear Awadewit,
It was my pleasure, and thank you for your kindness! :) I hope that you'll send me more such fine articles that open my eyes. I always start off daunted or scared of a new subject, thinking I have nothing to say; but when friends coax me out of my shell, I dive in and become enmeshed. But if I keep getting distracted by beautiful articles (and random whims within), I'll never bring knitting or nature to FA! A sorry Willow the wisp indeed, ;) Willow 10:21, 2 May 2007 (UTC)

37 hours in a day[edit]

Since it seems like you have 37 hours in a day (from your numerous contributions) can you take the time to help out on a scientific peer review? Wikipedia:Scientific peer review/Geology of Minnesota. I know you aren't a geologist but your expertise on scientific subjects would help. Thanks and good luck on Equipartition theorem, they layout is much better. -Ravedave 05:57, 1 May 2007 (UTC)

Willow: Thanks for your comments. I had a little fun myself: [1] Kablammo 21:12, 1 May 2007 (UTC)

S.S. Van Dine[edit]

Thanks for cleaning up the citations in this article. I'm new here, still learning how things work, and I'm grateful, because you gave me a new understanding of how the citation template works, and I will attempt to use it in the future. Much obliged. Accounting4Taste 18:10, 3 May 2007 (UTC)

Hi Accounting!
It was my pleasure, and welcome to Wikipedia! :) Thank you for improving that article, which has been percolating in the back of my mind for some time now; it's nice to know that it's in good hands. Looking forward to seeing more of you and your work around Wikipedia, Willow 18:15, 3 May 2007 (UTC)

MCB collaborations[edit]

Hi Willow, with your recent experience of writing the taxonomy bot, I thought immediately of you when I got this e-mail today. TimVickers 16:48, 4 May 2007 (UTC)

I'm on it, chief! Let's see what happens with Bicoid 3'-UTR regulatory element. Once we get the look and feel of one page correct — which we should do in collaboration with Jennifer Daub — we can duplicate it for the others. I'm leaving to see my sister graduate from college tomorrow, and then another sister from grad school in a few weeks, so my mail and contributions may be spotty over the next few weeks. I'll do my best to keep up, though.
Oh, by the by, X-ray crystallography is the Science Collaboration of the Month; care to join in? Willow 17:01, 4 May 2007 (UTC)
PPS. I'll need their permission to release their image under the GFDL. Otherwise, I'll have to re-make it myself; not impossible, but I still have to get packed for my trip. ;) Willow 17:22, 4 May 2007 (UTC)

WikiProject History of Science newsletter : Issue II - May 2007[edit]

The May 2007 issue of the WikiProject History of Science newsletter has been published. You're receiving this because you are a participant in the History of Science WikiProject. You may read the newsletter or unsubscribe from this notification by following the link. Yours in discourse--ragesoss 06:19, 5 May 2007 (UTC)

When you return[edit]

Willow, I know you will be very busy when you return, but I was wondering if you could peer review The Unsex'd Females when you get a chance. It was written by one of my wiki-friends; she was reticent about using the peer review process because she has been burned over at CfD/AfD (apparently there are some editors over there who don't yet realize that there is women's rights movement). Anyway, I would really like her first time out to be fruitful. If you have the time, I would really appreciate it. Thanks. Awadewit Talk 19:05, 7 May 2007 (UTC)

Hi Awadewit!
I'll be happy to look over your friend's article! :) A brief glance tells me that its language is elegant and fluid, but I'll need more time to look the article over and think about its architecture. I'll try hard to be helpful.
Congratulations on your latest FA, Original Stories from Real Life! You can be really proud of how it turned out. As an aside, I forgot to mention that one of our local fashion experts had some new insights into Ms. Mason's hat, although I suppose that they couldn't be put into the article, being OR.
My sister's graduation was really fun. We were all so proud of her, although I had to laugh when she waltzed across the stage in rebelliously fluorescent chartreuse wedges. ;)
I was a little depressed this morning when I discovered that someone with whom I thought I had made peace is still angry with me and thinks poorly of me. :( I went out into my garden to find harmony and it was beautiful: the strawberries and blueberries are in full bloom, the columbines and lilacs have just blossomed, and even my recalcitrant peonies are coyly hinting at future blooms. While I was there, a jolly old man with a big white beard stopped by; I had never seen him before, but he seemed wonderfully amused. As it turned out, he was a stroke victim from the nearby old-folks home and couldn't speak; but we conversed nonetheless and, by gestures, he gave me to understand that my garden was beautiful and that I had a green thumb. :) In parting, he gave me the "thumbs up" sign of approval and I went back inside wonderfully cheered up. Even now, I'm still smiling and beginning to muse on the old medieval legends of angels who walk the earth.
Another happy fruit of my trip home was that I found my old friend's story; it's from sections 439e-440a of Book IV of Plato's Republic. Thank you for inspiring me to look for it; it was beautiful, sweet way to reconnect with his memory. The tale is nearly as my friend told me, except that the Socrates tells the story of Leontios, son of Aglaion. He's returning from the local port, the Piraeus, when he senses the bodies in the execution place. He wants to look at them, but is also repulsed. After a vain struggle within himself, Leontios runs over, yanking his eyes wide open, and throws his gaze on the executed corpses, saying to his eyes, "There, take a good look, you evil demons, drink in your pretty sight!"
An added bonus came when I read further and found the passage (Book V) where Socrates affirms that women should be educated as leaders of society, having equal rights and responsibilities with their male counterparts. More generally, I enjoyed reliving Plato's poetic metaphors, and Socrates' reluctance to say anything that might mislead his friends as "worse than manslaughter" — a good quote for Wikipedia! ;)
Glad to be back and to talk with you, Willow 16:12, 8 May 2007 (UTC)

X-Ray Crystallography[edit]

I would rather have a crystallography article written by a random knitter than have a sweater knitted by a random crystallographer :) Physchim62 (talk) 11:45, 9 May 2007 (UTC)

Dear Physchim62, I wish you could hear my laughter over the Internet! :D Your letter will keep me smiling all day long. :) Thanks as always, Willow 11:51, 9 May 2007 (UTC)


Hi Willow, thanks for the welcome to the world of wikipedia. btw I am really impressed by the range of topics you have contributed to. Jennifer_Rfm 13:20, 9 May 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for your really kind message, Jennifer! I look forward to working with you very much, and I hope that you'll forgive my "blind spots", which will doubtless crop up. The Rfam project does seem like a good "starter" project for me, having only 574 families; I'm kind of awed by the people who want to add 30,000 human, mouse or plant genes to Wikipedia. Also, I've always wanted to learn more about RNA; I know a little about proteins, but I'd like to learn more about the other folding macromolecule. ;) Willow 14:14, 10 May 2007 (UTC)

Gell-Mann article[edit]

Hi Willow,

can you by any chance find the text from our latest go-round where I cited the Gell-Mann et al article that appeared in SciAm? At the moment I can't seem to locate either the physical (in the "dead-tree" sense of the word "physical") article or the discussion where I cited it -- I've looked back in the history of talk:photon and both my and your talk page for the time I thought it was discussed (mid-August 2006) but no luck. --Trovatore 22:17, 9 May 2007 (UTC)

Constraint Algorithm[edit]

Hi Willow,

Great work on the Constraint algorithm article! I stumbled over it googling a reference, so there are probably quite a few people linking it already :)

I myself have done some work in this area (constraint algorithms) and would like to extend the section "Implicit constraint force methods" and would prefer to re-label it "Lagrange-multiplier methods", since all algorithms in this category are just different ways of solving

for the , where


are the constrained particle positions. The are the constraint equations and are the unconstrained particle positions. In the case of SHAKE and its cousins, the equations are formulated in terms of a correction on the particle positions. Other algorithms such as RATTLE or MSHAKE (not to be confused with M-SHAKE) use velocities and forces respectively, but use the same algorithm to solve these equations as SHAKE does.

The methods differ only in how they solve this system of equations for the , usually using a variant of Newton's method computing

iteratively where

is the Jacobian of the constraint equations.

SHAKE solves these equations using a Jacobi-Iteration (i.e. solving the th equation for the th variable, which means only using the diagonal of ) which converges linearly at a cost in .

An early paper by Ciccotti et al. even inverts the Jacobian once and re-uses it for the following iterations. This costs in the first iteration and in the following iterations and converges linearly, yet at a much faster rate than SHAKE.

M-SHAKE (Kraeutler et al.) solves this system of equations directly using an LU decomposition, converging quadratically at a cost in .

My own work (P-SHAKE) applies a pre-conditioner to the system of equations and converges quadratically in .

LINCS, although not a "traditional" SHAKE-like method, approximates the inverse of the Jacobian using a series expansion, much in the same way a is used for sparse diagonally-dominant matrices.

Anyway, what I would add would be along the lines of what I just wrote. Since this is mainly your article, I would like to know what you think before proceeding :)

Cheers and thanks for the great work! Pedro.Gonnet 08:26, 10 May 2007 (UTC)

Hi Pedro! :)
I'm so happy that you like the article — yay, yay, yay! It was a surprise present for my wiki-friend and partner-in-crime, Opabinia regalis, who had asked for an article on such methods. I want(ed) it to be as nice as possible for her, so nothing would please me more than to have a real expert contribute to it. :)
Please feel free to add whatever you'd like to the article, including starting/renaming a section on Lagrange-multiplier methods. I'd named it "implicit methods" originally because Mazur's projection method didn't seem to be a Lagrange-multiplier method, although it's formally equivalent. But I'm really out of my depth here; I'm sure that you know better.
I can't wait to see what you'll add; thanks very much in advance for your help, Willow 14:43, 10 May 2007 (UTC)
Ok, as promised yet a little late, here's my draft of the "Lagrage-multiplier Based Methods" section: User:Pedro.Gonnet/Constraint algorithm. I still need to fill in the blanks for the specific algorithms and I'm sure there's an error or bad explanation in there (or two). Can you have a look at it and tell me what you think?
Cheers and many thanks, Pedro.Gonnet 14:21, 23 May 2007 (UTC)
Hi Pedro!
It looks good already; may I tweak a few things on your draft page? But please don't be alarmed if I can't get to it right away, though, since I'm rather swamped today! Have to run, Willow 14:36, 23 May 2007 (UTC)
Sure, that's what its there for! :) No rush, I've also got my own priorities, like getting a PhD ;) Cheers, Pedro.Gonnet 15:02, 23 May 2007 (UTC)
Hi Willow! I finished writing the constraint stuff and added it to the article. Much of the math on the LINCS algorithm got cut, since it's pretty specific to LINCS itself. I hope I didn't cut too much! If you don't like anything, feel free to edit at will :)
Cheers, Pedro.Gonnet 08:30, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

Sweater curse[edit]

I think the best way to avoid another deletion discussion is to approach this from more than one angle. A section discussing this idea from the viewpoint of the psychology of delusional behavior and cognitive bias would remove any possibility that people might regard the article as unencyclopedic. I suggest splitting off the last point of the "Mechanisms" section and making it into a new first section on whether the curse exists at all. A challenge for anybody's NPOV ability! TimVickers 22:30, 10 May 2007 (UTC)

It's on my watchlist. TimVickers 16:48, 14 May 2007 (UTC)
I don't see any real reason why this article should be deleted, and I said as much in my edit summary. Maybe that will keep the vampires at bay for a little while, I don't know.... Best wishes, Physchim62 (talk) 17:36, 18 May 2007 (UTC)
Thank you, Physchim62! It made me very happy to see that bright orange tag come down. It seemed like an apt time for that, don't you agree? Tim's prose and Awadewit's insights seem to have improved the article, by all accounts, and hopefully allayed Lisapollison's concerns. Please be gentle-worded with her, though; I hold out hope for an eventual friendship, despite our different viewpoints, and would be sorry if she were offended by something on my Talk page. Warmly and gratefully, Willow 19:15, 18 May 2007 (UTC)


Your diplomacy was well-timed. I was about to lose it completely! TimVickers 21:55, 17 May 2007 (UTC)

Dear, dear Tim,
You should have more faith in yourself, in the springs of grace and good cheer within. If you're going to shed your serenity, let it be for something worthy: the death of a friend, the rejection of a love, the waste and petty tyrannies that outrage the Earth herself, or the denial of your tenure prospects. But for such a person, in such a squabble? Bah. ;) You rescued me from wiki-grief — there's a fine word, no? ;) — please let me reflect some of that light, albeit leavened with humor and humility. Chin up, Willow, who has no sanity left to lose ;) 23:00, 17 May 2007 (UTC)


Let me be clear right off the bat--in general, I really appreciate your edits to the article, and I make no judgement with regards to you and/or Tim Vickers. Tim is a Ph.D. student in some field of biology, and he has worked hard to clean up and improve the article. He's done a great job, but given the fact that he's human, he's not perfect by any means. I think that adding a laymen approach here and there is critical to readability, because we can overuse certain terms here and there. What concerned me about your edit was that it took a step below laymen readability. Phrases like "lack of understanding", except in a certain context, sounds unencyclopedic and somewhat POV. I thought that the paragraph was actually less clear with the edits. As I recall, I thought that most of your other edits of that time were not only acceptable but were improvements. I guess if I had more time, I would have been clearer in the summary, and I would have reverted just that phrasing. So please don't take what I did personally. If I thought you were a POV-pusher, it would have been a different conversation!!! Orangemarlin 21:24, 18 May 2007 (UTC)

Hi Orangemarlin, thanks for your really nice note! :) But now I'm confused — wasn't the "lack of understanding" phrase put back in with your revert? Maybe just now you meant "shortcoming", which I wrote instead? But anyway, if you thought that the paragraph was worse with my edits, that's cool. If it's alright with you, may I change the "demonstrated" wording, though? I think it might improve that paragraph. Willow 21:36, 18 May 2007 (UTC)
Willow, that's what I meant. Please stick around and help. There are a lot of scientists involved with the article, and I think they (maybe sometimes me too, but I'm about 20 years out from taking a class on Evolution) may get overly technical at times. A clear unbiased eye is always necessary. Orangemarlin 23:37, 21 May 2007 (UTC)


Yes, I was adopted by a stray cat last Christmas. We called her Odin as she only has one eye. She started getting fat a few weeks ago and nested in my neighbor's garden in an old crate. So far I have counted two kittens in the nest, but there might be more hiding at the back. I'm planning on adopting one - Loki might be a good kitten name. TimVickers 22:12, 21 May 2007 (UTC)

One eye and a litter of kittens; the price of wisdom. ;) Loki is a fine name, although Freyja might be better for some kittens; Freyja's chariot was drawn by two cats, no? I'd recommend living with the new kitten for a while before naming him/her, to get to know their personality better; as T. S. Eliot reminds us,
The naming of cats is a difficult matter,
It isn’t just one of your holiday games;
You may think at first I’m mad as a hatter
When I tell you a cat must have three different names.
Good luck with everything, Willow 11:56, 22 May 2007 (UTC)


Robert Martineau's Last Chapter

Willow, I hate to ask you this, but I have become embroiled in a debate over at Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style (lists of works). It is over how to format lists of works for authors and artists. I think that we are just repeating our arguments and not really getting anywhere. If you have the stomach for it, would you mind perusing the debate here and here. Those are the two main places that the debate occurred recently (the one on the MOS style page goes on for quite a while). If you have any insights or any hints on how to resolve the conflict, please let me know. I haven't really ever tried to change a policy and gotten into such an extended debate. If you don't want to get embroiled, I totally understand. Thanks. Awadewit Talk 04:15, 23 May 2007 (UTC)

Also, if you have any free time at all, Plymouth Colony could use a good peer review. The main editor and I have been around the bend a few times now and I've read the article several times now and copyedited it twice, I think, so someone else should step in. Awadewit Talk 05:41, 23 May 2007 (UTC)

Squeee! I love the picture. When I was little, I once burned my sheets doing likewise; I fell asleep while reading a book under the covers by the light of an incandescent lamp. Luckily, that wasn't the last chapter for me. ;)
I read under the covers, too. With a flashlight, though. Awadewit Talk 11:25, 23 May 2007 (UTC)
Me too! Against all odds, both my eyesight and bedclothes survived my childhood love of lit-lit. ;) Willow 15:38, 23 May 2007 (UTC)
I made a pass at the peer review for Plymouth Colony, but it's just cursory. I've also read both bibliography debates and I'm firmly on your side, but I dread conflict. It chews me up inside, and I'm not very good at it; I'm awkward enough as it is. ;) But I'll try to do some good there as well; you have to forgive me in advance if I say something stupid. :( Let me think for a few more hours about how I should approach it. Willow 10:43, 23 May 2007 (UTC)
Thanks so much. Don't worry about the bibliography thing - I don't want to drag people in. Some people live for conflict and others not. I love to debate, but frankly, I do not love to debate nit-picky guidelines. I like to debate larger issues like religion, the energy crisis, nature vs. nurture - these sorts of things. By the way, I wanted to thank you for typing out the long Jewish prayer on my page - it was fascinating. We in the literary profession would say it is full of "tensions." As a literary scholar who practices new historicism, I particularly appreciated the historical evolution of the prayer. Awadewit Talk 11:25, 23 May 2007 (UTC)
I'm so glad you liked it! :) I was a little nervous that you might find it a boring or long-winded answer to a short question; but my intuition told me that you might enjoy it, so I dared it. :) I'm likewise enjoying learning about the literary world. I'd never heard of the new historicism before — or even the old historicism (vaguely tautological, no?) — so it's wonderful to have this portal opened to a new world, and with such a nice guide. Dante never had it so good. ;) Willow 15:38, 23 May 2007 (UTC)

Small nuclear RNA articles[edit]

Hello. I see you have created a very large number of these very short articles with long names. I ask you to forgive my ignorance on this subject, but maybe you can explain why it isn't better to merge the articles into a few larger ones that provide more needed context? Looking at Category:Small nuclear RNA, I get the sense that I am looking at a database a la WP:NOT, not an encyclopedia. Thanks, nadav (talk) 22:29, 25 May 2007 (UTC)

Hi nadav,
This is the beginning of a long-term project of the Molecular and Cellular Biology WikiProject, carried out with the help of the scientists at the Rfam database. Each of these articles (although stubby at present) represents an independent family of RNA molecules that serves a distinct biological function. For example, a family may play a particular role in RNA interference, RNA splicing or critical chemical modifications of nucleotides. It may seem difficult to discern the functions of the 500-some families right now, but I think you will see these stubs blossom into full-fledged articles on the biological function each family of RNA carries out. Please be patient with us! :) Hoping that this explains our reasoning and purpose, Willow 22:39, 25 May 2007 (UTC)
It explains it perfectly, and I wish the project good luck. Thanks for excusing my ignorance! nadav (talk) 22:50, 25 May 2007 (UTC)
Thank you for your kind understanding and genteel letter — it's very much appreciated and reflects very well on you. :) Willow 23:53, 25 May 2007 (UTC)
Willow, do you have a page reference for this WP:MCB project? At WP:CHEM we are in the process of setting something similar up, and I would love to see how you deal with some of the institutional problems! (once again wanti_ng to take advantage of your hard work, but hey, it's for a good cause :P) Physchim62 (talk) 14:45, 26 May 2007 (UTC)
Hi Physchim62! Here's the MCB page; there's also Jennifer's talk page, where she and I worked out a few details. I'll be glad to help you as I can with your project. Forgive me, right now I've got to run, though; too much to do today! :( Willow 10:25, 27 May 2007 (UTC)
Hi Willow, Thanks for signing up and making the fixes to the RNA project page. I couldn't work out how to get the categories to link correctly so special thanks for that :) Alexbateman 16:43, 14 June 2007 (UTC)


I don't know if you have the same obsession with buying books that I do, but I saw one that might interest you at the sale annex at - Sian Reynolds' Britannica's Typesetters: Women Compositors in Edinburgh. It is only $8. I love book sales! Awadewit Talk 09:48, 27 May 2007 (UTC)

It's so great that we're on Wikipedia at the same time so often! :D I'll check out the sale (I love book sales, too, although I've never bought anything online before), although I'm rather harried at the moment with preparations for traveling. I did get The Eyre Affair just yesterday, which was an archetypical example of virtue being its own reward. I was looking for some fun reading for the trip, and I've sometimes found modern literature too taxing for me; so I found myself at the bookstore torn between Fforde's book and a really cute Gothic vampire romance novel. After wavering for about 20 minutes, I finally bought Fforde's book, with a twinge of regret and apprehension. Imagine my surprise and delight when I got the best of both worlds! :D As soon as I read the opening epigram from "Millon de Floss", I knew I was home. :) Keep you posted as I can and thanks again for the tip, con affetto, Willow 10:19, 27 May 2007 (UTC)
Fforde is perfect for traveling, unlike Thomas Pynchon (at least, in my opinion). I was pretty sure you would like The Eyre Affair. You might also like Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke, if you haven't already read it. It is often described as Harry Potter for adults, but it is much better than that comparison implies. Clarke spent two decades writing the novel and it shows. It is a brilliantly crafted magical world. There are even little footnotes that reference the necessary "texts" for understanding the magic in the novel, and while the texts themselves are fictional, often the publishers are not - the names are drawn from 19th century publishing. It is a brilliant weaving together of our world and a magical world; one might think of it as a post-modern, fantasy Dickens. Weird, huh? I was entranced with it. Awadewit Talk 10:49, 27 May 2007 (UTC)

fair use not allowed in non article space[edit]

Hi... this lovely image: Image:Wickedmain.png appears to be copyrighted and used here under fair use. That means that per the guidelines it can't be used on user pages as you did to decorate yours. That's really a shame because it's nifty. You'll want to correct that before someone else notices it and removes it on you. Hope that helps. (if it's gone when you return that might be why) ++Lar: t/c 13:02, 27 May 2007 (UTC)

Thank you for the kind alert, Lar! I think, however, that the image may not be only "fair use", but GFDL or even public domain. We're trying to clarify this; I hope that everyone will be patient with us! :) Willow 22:33, 29 May 2007 (UTC)
Please do, W girl! That wonderful image still sits at the archive of your Day, and it'd be sad to see it go... let me know if I can help you in any way with your queries there, k? Love, Phaedriel - 18:49, 30 May 2007 (UTC)


Willow, do you have any book recommendations for me? Yesterday I fell and sprained my ankle and hit my head on the sidewalk rather hard (this kind of thing is very common with me, not to worry). Unfortunately, I do not have any fiction lying around to pass the time until I feel better. I wondered if you had any recommendations which might be appropriate. Rousseau is rather slow going right now. Thanks. Awadewit | talk 17:26, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

Wow, Awadewit, I'm sorry to hear about your fall! I hope you're feeling better; get well soon! :) I've read Fforde about twice now on the bus, which was a ton of fun; your book recommendations for me are great! :)
I'm a little at a loss to recommend a book for you, though. I'm a little embarrassed to admit that, before Fforde, my own favorite book of the last year was The Reluctant Cinderella, which is a charming, sunny and insightful book for readers who can suspend their disbelief at key passages. :) But for you I should perhaps dig deeper and find something finer. What do you really like to read, when the hurly-burly of your thesis work is done?
I like all sorts of things - hard science fiction, imaginative children's literature (a la Philip Pullman) and good non-fiction (history of all kinds, political exposes). Awadewit | talk 13:39, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
After lingering so long in the Age of Reason, perhaps an excursion Elsewhere and Elsewhen would be refreshing for you? The tap on the noggin might be a Sign. ;) But not into the Romantics, methinks; instead, how about wandering further afield? There's Poetry (Dylan Thomas?) or Music (Fado!) or Tragedy (The Bacchae?). I sometimes meditate on melancholy fragments of Sappho, and there are many wonderfully intense/funny medieval stories (Wife of Bath story? The Decameron?) and folk tales (The Girl with No Hands). I'll think some more, and send along other suggestions when I can get to a computer again. Please get well, I'm very worried, Willow 04:17, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
Excellent suggestions. I haven't read The Decameron in a while. It sounds perfect for right now. Awadewit | talk 13:39, 4 June 2007 (UTC)
Hey Awadewit! :)
I was in the middle of writing to you when my family whisked me away to dinner; my sister's commencement was today, although her hooding ceremony was yesterday. It was a lot of fun being all together and celebrating. My Latin got a good workout, too, since one of the student speeches was all in Latin, plus every second building is festooned with a Latin inscription. At the various receptions, I was furtively taking measurements of the more ritzy regalia so that I can reproduce it (or even improve upon it!) for my sis once I get home.
How are you feeling? I hope The Decameron is helping you recover and bringing you lots of laughter; "while you were out slouching around, I found a buyer for our old barrel..." ;D tua picola Fiammetta, Willow 03:29, 6 June 2007 (UTC)
PS. There's also The Book of One Thousand and One Nights, if one hundred tales aren't enough. They're more complicated and fun, because stories get told within stories within stories within stories...I remember one tale that began with a dwarf choking on a fishbone that went seven story-levels deep and was a wonderful delight. And then there was the impish fun of the porter and the three ladies... ;)
I didn't know that any speeches were given in Latin anymore. My undergraduate diploma is in Latin (it came with a translation), but no speeches were in Latin. I don't think my high school Latin would have sufficed. Which version of The Book of One Thousand and One Nights have you read? Do you recommend a particular edition? Awadewit | talk 20:54, 6 June 2007 (UTC)

Molecular Dynamics Algorithms[edit]

Hi Willow! After editing Constraint algorithm I still had some extra energy and started work on Cell lists (somewhat complete) and Verlet list (barely a stub). If you're interested, have a look and tell me what you think! Cheers and thanks, Pedro.Gonnet 08:20, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

Hi Pedro!
Cell lists is looking good, which I'm especially happy about, since I did some work on Ewald summation, which it really complements. In return, you might enjoy Flying ice cube, which Opabinia regalis (mainly) and I (a little) wrote with great merriment. :) Any suggestions/improvements there would be most welcome as well, Willow 03:34, 6 June 2007 (UTC)
Hi Willow!
I read theFlying ice cube article and was just about to start a stub on the Berendsen thermostat when I realized that the Berendsen thermostat scales only the non-COM (center of mass) velocities. The thermostat usually runs over the particles twice: once computing the total COM velocity and the temperature of the system, the second time applying the correction to the velocities minus the COM-velocity. In any case, I would assume that this artefact should only appear when a sloppy Berendsen thermostat is used...
The cases I know of where the separation of temperatures/energies wrecks havoc is in systems such as non-rigid water where you can heat either the individual atoms or the molecules as a whole. If you don't heat both you end up with either very agitated but otherwise "slow" water molecules or really fast molecules with no internal motion...
In any case, I'll start the stub and try to get my hands on Berendsen's original paper to see if what we've always done is actually what Berendsen himself calls a Berendsen thermostat ;)
Cheers, Pedro.Gonnet 13:00, 6 June 2007 (UTC)

Here is an interesting editorial I think you would like and E.B. update[edit]

Just listen to this: [2]. You might want to look at the links to Geoff Nunberg as well. I am still working on a sandbox version of the Encyclopedia Britannica for you. I know the article is already a featured article but I want to give it a good crack. Then you can have my efforts to use however you like for the main article. --Filll 22:31, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

First crack at editing the Encyclopaedia Britannica article is found in the sandbox at [3].I know it is a bit late, but it contains a few comments and additional information, and some suggestions on grammar and punctuation. Some of my suggestions might even be good ideas; I am not sure. You can see some of my comments as well in the history of that sandbox article. I hope it is of some use to you. If you want me to, I can go through it a few more times but I think I have worked on it long enough and kept it from your editorial eyes too long already.--Filll 01:18, 6 June 2007 (UTC)
Hi Filll,
It's so nice to hear from you again! :) Thanks for the NPR tip and your help on the EB. Unfortunately, I'm traveling for the next week, and probably won't be able to do any serious thinking/editing until I return. Please be patient, and hoping all's going well with you, Willow 03:38, 6 June 2007 (UTC)

William Shakespeare[edit]

William Shakespeare is up for peer review here. I was wondering if you had time to give it a look. I did what I could, but I feel that my review was not what it could have been, due to the recent knock on the head. The editors seem a tad resistant to my suggestions as well. I am tired and I don't want to respond to them anymore, but I feel that Shakespeare is such an important page that I have to do something. Thanks. Awadewit | talk 17:15, 7 June 2007 (UTC)

P.S. Would you mind looking at Mary Martha Sherwood when you get back as well? It's no rush. I am really struggling with the article since there is so little material available; it is hard to make the article or the prose flow nicely. Awadewit | talk 04:55, 11 June 2007 (UTC)

Hi Awadewit! :)
Thanks for your two notes! Your letters were among the things that I looked most forward to as I traveled home. How are you feeling? I hope that the knock on the head has healed OK? I've experienced several bad head injuries myself, which — as my family is fond of pointing out — accounts for a lot. ;)
I'll definitely look at William Shakespeare and Mary Martha Sherwood, although I'll admit to being nervous about the former; high-traffic, high-profile articles can be difficult to maintain. However, Bill's a dear old friend to whom I've often resorted in hours dark and hours light, so I'll try to make a contribution, as best I can.
Yes, I felt the same way about Shakespeare. I can only imagine that you don't want to get involved after finishing up evolution. Apparently there have been some edit wars over at Shakespeare - too bad. I feel, though, that reviewers should try not to become part of those - they should stay on the outside, as it were. I don't think I totally succeeded with Shakespeare, but it is a Platonic ideal. I can never really reach it. Awadewit | talk 17:59, 11 June 2007 (UTC)
So much time, so little to do — no, wait, reverse that, Willow 17:03, 11 June 2007 (UTC)


Choco chip cookie.png

And all I left you were requests for tedious work! Oh no! Here is a wikicookie for the kind, thoughtful and interesting comments you always leave on my talk page. Here are some fun little web links - let me know if these are sorts of things you find amusing. Awadewit | talk 17:59, 11 June 2007 (UTC)

munch, munch...dahlicious — thanks, Awadewit! :D
I read about the CatCam and Mr. Lee when I was traveling, but it never occurred to me to look for a link (umm, duh, silly!). Isn't that a great idea? The octopus video was amazing, too; I'd heard of that sort of mimicry, but I've never seen it live. My old teacher taught me that the octopus is not actually mimicking its surroundings in photographic detail; rather, it is exploiting the foibles of its predators' eyes, of their image processing, to camoflage itself. It's somehow satisfying to think that the predators are participants in their own deception, don't you think? ;) My old teacher studied octopi and told me some amazing stories of how clever they are.
Evolution wasn't bad at all, thanks to Tim, Madeleine and the other excellent writers; I was thinking more of Albert Einstein and Wikipedia. It does concern me, though, that some Wikipedia articles read more like scientific review articles, and less like encyclopedia articles. It seems a pity to eschew vivid, layperson-centric writing, even if it's less compact and less exact, don't you think? Of course, I'm worse than most editors that way, despite my being haunted by the ghost of George Orwell and his Politics and the English Language. ;) Are you a fan? Idle musings and thanks again, Willow 19:03, 11 June 2007 (UTC)

I feel that I am guilty of this as well. I find it incredibly difficult to suppress my academic writing style for wikipedia. Also, I know that I quote sources too often. I'm trying to work on that, but I just can't get over the feeling that without quoting them or acknowledging them in the article, I am doing those scholars a disservice since the ideas I am laying out are theirs. In literary criticism, all one has are one's theories about literature and certain theories belong to certain people. I just can't seem to violate the professional courtesy of deleting all of the attributions. Maybe that just proves I'm a fearful graduate student rather than confident tenured professor who has nothing to lose? Awadewit | talk 17:14, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

I guess that I would have to see examples of the compact, exact writing that you are describing before I could decide for sure. Ideally, I believe that wikipedia should be accessible to the public, but then when I carefully read reports about high school test scores and I read my students' papers day after day, I realize that many of them could never understand the articles I have labeled "accessible." (For example, the latest national history test in the United States described their rubrics for "basic," "proficient" and "advanced." Only "advanced" 12th graders were expected to know that there are multiple interpretations of history. Less than 1% of the students taking the test scored that well.) I have given up on general accessibility and focused on "educated accessibility," meaning a college-educated person without special knowledge of the field (which, of course, in the United States is only one-third of the population and that is stretching the statistics). Even that is depressingly hard to achieve and I am pretty sure that my articles tip over at times into the incomprehensible even for this standard.

On the other hand, I do appreciate wikipedia's detail. The fact that it is not paper and there is not restricted makes a great deal more explanation possible. While I might not always understand all of it (equipartition theorem comes to mind), I am glad that it is there for others who do and I am always most happy when a page suggests books to read on the topic. Awadewit | talk 17:14, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

I do wish that the writing could be more "vivid," as you say. Any "vividness" that has crept into my writing has immediately been removed at FA, so now I just don't do it anymore. Sad. Awadewit | talk 17:14, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

Who wouldn't love Orwell? Have you noticed, though, how few people seem to understand what the term "Orwellian" really means? Awadewit | talk 17:14, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

Wow, I log on and ten seconds later, I get an embarrassment of riches — thank you! :)
I agree, it's very hard to find the best writing style and level of exposition — in part, I think, because Wikipedia itself has not yet made up its mind. You know how articles are graded on quality (Stub to FA) and on importance to the field (Low to Top)? I wish that there was a parallel grading scheme for "level within the field", or some kind of recommendations for prior reading so that readers could appreciate an article at its best. In general, "junior-level undergraduate" seems like a good level to strive for, although undergraduates vary among colleges.
Although in theory I think that is an excellent idea, I feel that it would be hard to implement. It seems to me that such a system would be even more subjective than the "Stub to FA system. Awadewit | talk 21:29, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
For my part, I find your articles beautifully lucid and tales well-told. It might just be me — since I love a good yarn (in every sense!) — but I do think you needn't worry overmuch about their accessibility. There's the occasional technical term, of course, but their meaning is intelligible and even Shakespeare coined the odd word now and then. ;) Keep up the good work! :)
That's kind of you, but I know my flaws. Awadewit | talk 21:29, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
One of my biggest flaws is that I can't form a reasonable picture of myself. ;) You know how your own voice sounds different to yourself than when you hear yourself recorded? Luckily, I can rely on my friends to be a faithful mirror, showing both my better and worse sides.  :) Willow 01:41, 14 June 2007 (UTC)
I generally write for a younger version of myself. Growing up, I was often enchanted by beauty, especially beautiful ideas wrapped in beautiful words and images and feelings. But I'd often become uneasy — even frustrated and daunted and scared — because I wouldn't understand them, really. The books and whatnot I had available sometimes left me more confused and unhappy than I was before, although, as I understood later, that was sometimes more the author's fault than my own. So now I write for another curious and unhappy girl, who may become more cheered and confident than she was before. My only fear is that, having crossed the river that separates understanding from not, I've lost my power of explaining, living as I do now on the other side of the sky. That's why I rely upon friends like you to make sure that she receives my message ungarbled. :) Affectionately yours, Willow 17:48, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
That's an excellent idea. I try to write for a less than ideal student, one who is somewhat informed and somewhat intellectually curious. Awadewit | talk 21:29, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
It is always fascinating to teach someone something you know. Inevitably you are forced to go back to your assumptions and lay them out clearly for yourself. I like that. I consider wikipedia-writing like teaching, in many ways. Awadewit | talk 21:29, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
Me, too! I like being stretched and stretching. I sometimes feel like I'm unfolding my wings, although sometimes if things are going badly, I fold them back up again.
On a side note, I am no wiki-guru when it comes to the technical side of things of here and I don't know if you are either, but something odd has happened to Sarah Trimmer. The image disappeared (no edit history on that). I noticed it was still on file, so I fixed the infobox and it has now reappeared, only there is a line of text behind the image: "Image:SarahTrimmer.jpg." Do you know what is going on there? Awadewit | talk 21:29, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
I see that the Fvasconcellos has already woven his magic! :) Hi, F, you're always welcome here! Willow 21:43, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
(knocks on door, comes in) Hi there, Awadewit :) Probably due to some recent edits to {{Infobox Writer}}—I've fixed the syntax. On a side note, Priestley has changed significantly, hasn't it? I'm glad Ragesoss seems to be helping you far more than I was able to. BTW Willow, thank you again for your flattering comments. I promise I'll quit checking your Talk page... Best, Fvasconcellos (t·c) 21:36, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
Thanks... I can't believe I created an edit conflict! Fvasconcellos (t·c) 21:46, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
Thank you Fvasconcellos (see message on your talk page). Yes, Priestley is making its way to being a decent article, but I need to cut about 4,000 words to hit the outside limit of 10,000 words (about a third of the article). Eek. Any suggestions would be appreciated. (Unfortunately, I am always adding at the same time as I am cutting, so the whole thing is a disaster.) Awadewit | talk 22:30, 13 June 2007 (UTC)


Thank you. Thanks especially for the picture, I dissolved into uncontrollable giggling when I read the caption! :) TimVickers 16:55, 12 June 2007 (UTC)

Of course, you're very welcome! :) I thought you would like it, being a cat person and all. ;) I still need to update Theodor; hold on...ok! Sorry that our wings haven't been striking athwart as often as they used to. :( Somehow, I've diffused in other directions, which I'm enjoying, although I miss the comradery of the MCB WikiProject. But I've made a new friend, Awadewit, who's wonderful and from whom I'm learning all kinds of things worth knowing. Your and her spheres may not overlap much here in Wikipedia, but I can't recommend her highly enough, both for writing and insightful comments. I've also made friends with two sterling fellows from the Math WikiProject, Geometry guy and Cronholm, who may not venture much beyond mathematics but are well worth attending to. Hoping all's well with you and your kitty (Loki?), Willow 17:26, 12 June 2007 (UTC)

Loki and his three sisters are doing well. They are just starting to explore around the nest and practice their walking. They are rather ungraceful, but astoundingly endearing. TimVickers 17:49, 12 June 2007 (UTC)


Why, thank you! :) I hope you enjoyed your time away from WP. If I can do anything for you, with my shiny new tools or otherwise, feel free to let me know! Best, Fvasconcellos (t·c) 19:09, 12 June 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for the tip[edit]

Sorry about the quotes on Encyclopædia Britannica; I was trying to avoid them as thoroughly as possible. Although I am aware of the choice of the primary author, that is not the first variable in choosing the proper spelling style. Since the article deals with a British topic, it seems pointless to discuss the matter, although I agree with you %100 about the quotes and if I changed any, it was merely accidental. Thanks for restoring them. Reginmund 21:08, 12 June 2007 (UTC)

EB on mainpage[edit]

Is there anything you want to finish up on the EB article before I put it on Wikipedia:Today's featured article/requests? -Ravedave 02:48, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

Hi Dave!
I'll probably look the article over again sometime in the next month, but I think it's OK for now. I'll be around for most of the summer, too, so I should be able to help out if it should reach the Main Page. Thank you very much for taking the article under your wing! :)
Hoping that Greta is doing well, and with kind wishes for everyone in your family, Willow 13:31, 13 June 2007 (UTC)


I've been adding {{cleanup-jargon}} to a lot of the articles you're working on because, to a layman, they make no sense. They have no wiki links to any other articles, and the terms used are meaningless except to people in the field. Any chance you can reword them so that a layman can understand them, or at least go to places where the terms used are understandable? Corvus cornix 22:15, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

Hi Corvus!
You're quite right, those articles are very jargon-heavy at the moment. But please be patient with us; those articles are being actively developed by the Molecular and Cellular Biology WikiProject in collaboration with scientists from Rfam. We're aware of their shortcomings and I think you'll soon see those articles blossom into something fine and intelligible to a broader audience. Thanks! :) Willow 01:33, 14 June 2007 (UTC)
Cool, thanks, I got tired of adding the template and gave up. :) Corvus cornix 01:48, 14 June 2007 (UTC)


Hi Willow! It is great to see you back in such fine editing form! I hadn't stopped by for a while, and thought a quick visit was overdue (or perhaps there is a more childish motive for my visit: whereas you write for a younger version of yourself on Wikipedia, it seems I become a younger version of myself ;). I hope everything is well with you, and look forward to our edits meeting up on a page near here soon. Geometry guy 19:43, 14 June 2007 (UTC)

Hi G-guy! :D
Once again, I log on and, ten seconds later, I get a wonderful surprise on my Talk! How are you? It's a delight to hear from you. Have you finished assessing all those math articles? I added a few mechanics articles when I returned (I'd been thinking about them and reading up on them while I was away)
Anyway, I was a little uneasy about them, because I included them only under the Physics WikiProject, but my intuition was nagging me that maybe they should also be included under the Math WikiProject. What do you think? Oh yeah, this morning, I also added Bonnet's theorem.
I've got my own devoirs at the moment, trying to finish off the redirect pages for the RNA WikiProject — truly, no good deed goes unpunished. ;D But there's only a hundred or so left to go! :)
As an aside, have you ever looked at the Britannica blog? It's sometimes interesting, although they aren't scholarly articles; instead of reasoning and evidence and calmly seeking a realistic, measured understanding, there's unfortunately more posturing and quoting from the Western ClassicsTM, with a tad too much testosterone for my taste. :( Nevertheless, a series has just begun about Web 2.0 and Wikipedia in particular; Michael Gorman is about to unleash his polemic against Wikipedia, which the world has long awaited with bated breath. ;) Perhaps there's something to be learned there for us?
Hoping that life is being good to you, generous with both hands, Willow 20:11, 14 June 2007 (UTC)
I guess that answers my question — thanks muchly, Cronholm! It's great to hear from you, too, and I hope that everything's going swimmingly for thee, gentle knight, Willow 21:03, 14 June 2007 (UTC)

Hey Willow, sorry to be slow to reply to your lovely reply, but that cookie took some eating, and contrary to appearances, the penguin was a lightweight, and gave up after a few nibbles. All is well with me. Cronholm and I have been through 3-4 thousand articles between us (not rating all of them) and we have 8-9 thousand more to go. Others are (chocolate?) chipping in as well, which is great. Good luck with your RNA endeavors. I did check out the Britannica blog a while ago, but was also not so impressed. Wikipedia has plenty to learn, but I'm not convinced that this is the best school to go to.

I'm up for the Kepler problem in general relativity when you are, and I see from your user page* that we might also meet at Georg Cantor for a threesome with Ling ;) Although he is in temporary wiki-retirement, I doubt he will be able to stay away! Actually, I expect Cronholm and Trovatore would join in too, so it could be one big party...

Your start at Bonnet's theorem suggests another interesting idea, though. There is another theorem called the Bonnet theorem, which is actually due to Oscar Bonnet this time. It states that if you know the first and second fundamental form of a parameterized surface in R3 everywhere, then you know the surface up to rigid motion. It is a great result and the proof is a nice application of the theory of connections, yet a lot of it is potentially quite accessible. Geometry guy 22:37, 14 June 2007 (UTC)

PS. *Talking about user pages, I discovered recently this tool: you need never fear to lose your beloved subpages again ;)

What a coincidence — I found the very same tool today as well! I've already added it to my user page, just above the more memorable Sandboxes. It's a little dangerous, though, since I'm still nervous about exposing the princess' essay. ;)
I didn't understand your cookie references until I visited your Talk page — wow! Nice to be appreciated, no? :) I also noticed your award for the split-quaternion, which is fascinating but a little depressing, since it led me to split-octonion and the realization that there are oceans of algebra topics of which I'm completely ignorant. Here I was feeling so pleased for beginning to understand Riemannian geometry and general relativity, and then I realize how much more there is to learn...Oh well, Socrates died happy knowing nothing and I can't ask for better than that. ;) Willow 03:21, 15 June 2007 (UTC)

I admire your thirst for knowledge! I wondered if you would spot my "playground" invitation (in the edit summary) to compare your cookie with mine :) It was quite a feast (at least for sore eyes). Geometry guy 13:45, 15 June 2007 (UTC)

Thanks as always, G-guy! I have the inkling that this is the start of another beautiful FA although, as with equipartition theorem, it's starting rather muddled. I love how the whole GR thing is unfolding in my brain; I'm kind of watching it blossom like a flower from a third-person perspective. I'm really grateful to you for prompting me to overcome my fears and to really learn it; it is so beautiful. I may have to slow down, though, to make time for other pleasures such as knitting, Joseph Johnson and X-ray crystallography. We'll see; perhaps I won't be able to resist the temptation. ;) BTW, I finished my devoirs today; yay! :) And speaking of blossoming, my garden is doing wonderfully; the irises and strawberries are winding down, but the red currants and blueberries are just coming into their own. Yummy! :D Willow 22:56, 15 June 2007 (UTC)

Wow, you are making fantastic progress on your latest passion. At this rate, I think it will be FAC by the end of the month! It is a real pleasure to watch you work, and I'm delighted and honoured to provide some company, and share a few edit summaries. I'm working without any textbooks, though, so I try to confine myself to things I (think I) know, or just copyediting. This means I'm bound to make mistakes, so don't hesitate to revert! Enjoy the (summer) fruits of your labours; no need to rest on your laurels just yet ;) :) Geometry guy 22:25, 20 June 2007 (UTC)

Hello Willow: would you like to participate?[edit]

Hello Willow, we've never met but I've seen your work and beautiful user page :-)

I'm an Australian research student who is writing her thesis about Wikipedia. The thesis is about virtual places and citizenship online.

As part of this I am interviewing Wikipedians about their thoughts and experiences while editing and user Wikipedia.

I'd love to interview you for my research, if you are amenable. The interview would take place via email at a time convenient for you, and you can be anonymous in the research if you choose.

If you are interested please say Hi on my talk page or send me an email and I can explain the project and what it involves in more details.

I hope to hear from you! Best Wishes, tamsin 05:09, 18 June 2007 (UTC)

Hi Willow! Thanks for your interest. I've sent you an email with further details. Best, tamsin 01:17, 19 June 2007 (UTC)
WillowW is certainly one of our more prominent editors and someone who is deeply steeped in the online culture. She is also incredibly smart too!--Filll 22:24, 28 June 2007 (UTC)

Sarah Trimmer[edit]

Now that I have more information regarding Sarah Trimmer's children (I ordered a book from a local library in Britain - my mom says it must be the most expensive book per page I've ever bought), I have made a table on the page, as you suggested. I have never made a table before, so I wanted to ask your advice/help on it. How does it look? I just used the default settings on the wikiEd toolbar. I was wondering if there was an easy way to make the "date" fields larger so that the month/day aren't split up on different lines. Let me know what you think of it overall. Thanks. Awadewit | talk 22:36, 21 June 2007 (UTC)

Hi Awadewit! :)
It's so nice to hear your voice again. I'm really sorry that I've been so lame about helping with William Shakespeare, and I see now that you've been having trouble there again. I let myself get distracted with a topic that I started reading up on while I was traveling (after finishing Fforde for the second time); it's kind of complicated, so I wanted to get the main outline written before all the details leaked out of my brain. ;) I reached that point, but now my poor brain is recovering, so I'm taking a "don't think for a few days" wiki-break.
I think I've fixed the column widths in your table. I admire your devotion to details and to making your work as good as possible; I'm sure that you'll make a wonderful academic. As an aside, I'm already plotting to make some nice academic regalia for you, if it's not too grand a gift; I was spying on academics for fun while I was traveling. But I have to make some for my sister first. :) Willow 11:27, 22 June 2007 (UTC)
Thank you so much for fixing up the table. Don't worry about Shakespeare, qp10qp has been helping out as well. I just wish that the editors had worked on the page a bit more before submitting it. I hate having to pick on prose and note styles - if only people would just do what they are supposed to do! :) Awadewit | talk 21:46, 22 June 2007 (UTC)
I'm glad that you are immersed in something interesting - that is always fun. My roommate and I are currently reading a history of the ancient world (we like to read aloud together), although I am disappointed in parts of it because it seems to come at Biblical history from a less skeptical perspective than the rest of ancient history. We are also reading Daniel Dennett's Darwin's Dangerous Idea. It is quite stimulating. (By the way, there are many more Fforde books. I think that The Eyre Affair and The Big Over Easy (Fforde reinvents nursery rhymes as "nursery crimes") are the best.) More recommendations: If you are an academic or sympathetic to that lifestyle, you might enjoy Alexander McCall Smith's Portuguese Irregular Verbs. If you like sophisticated children's fiction or fantasy, you might like Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials trilogy. It is some of the best new fiction I have read in years. Awadewit | talk 21:46, 22 June 2007 (UTC)
That is so kind of you to offer to make me a hood! I would love it. I much prefer personal items to institutional items. Besides, it means that you think I can make it to the end! (Having been a student consistently since the age of four is taking its toll. I want to do my own thing now.) You have plenty of time, by the way, I probably won't be done for another year or so. :( (And then I have to find a job - eek.) Awadewit | talk 21:46, 22 June 2007 (UTC)
If you have any time in the next few weeks or months, I would appreciate some advice on what to cut from Joseph Priestley. It is outrageously long (13,000 words again). I really want to fit everything into one article because I am not interested in writing four or five forked pages on the topic and I fail to believe that I cannot write a single article on Priestley. I did for other people who have far more written on them. I feel that my inadequate knowledge is the problem - if I knew more about Priestley, it would be easier to cut. Unfortunately, there has been some uncomfortable debate over the length on the talk page (I need to establish some sort of policy for myself - always take 24 hours to respond to a debate; I'm afraid that I wasn't always at my best in that debate). I really need to cut the article down before someone comes along and slashes it to bits. Awadewit | talk 21:46, 22 June 2007 (UTC)

Mary Martha Sherwood[edit]

If you have time in the next week or so, would you mind re-reviewing Mary Martha Sherwood for FAC? I have incorporated some of your suggestions regarding chronology in the analysis section, so hopefully that section makes more sense. So far, the article hasn't drawn a lot of attention (what a shock). Awadewit | talk 23:59, 24 June 2007 (UTC)

Thank you so much! Awadewit | talk 10:19, 27 June 2007 (UTC)
Thank you, Awadewit, for lavishing so much care on your biographies! :) I really enjoy reading them; I've known next to nothing about your subjects, yet you bring them wonderfully to life. I'm sorry that I've been so dilatory with Joseph Johnson; he's still dear to me, and my notes are right by my computer, but I haven't found an extended block of time to do him justice. I'd promise to do it soon, but with the final Harry Potter book coming out soon, I may be rather preoccupied with culling the earlier ones for clues. Do you have any predictions? I'm sure that there will be a lot of fun surprises, but I'm rather hoping that Voldemort becomes a ghost — being afraid of death as he is — and has to live with Moaning Myrtle in the girls' bathroom for all eternity. But I'm also afraid that Harry will have to die, perhaps sacrificing himself by stepping through the Veil to destroy the last remnant of Voldemort. I suppose I should just be patient and wait to read the answers, but where's the fun in that? ;) Hoping all's well with you and that you don't think too poorly of me for liking Harry Potter, Willow 09:10, 28 June 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for the kind words. They were nice to read after the attack on my writing that just surfaced on the FAC. I should read the Joseph Johnson biography so we can work on the article together. I am getting rather fed up with my other Joseph. I think I need a break from him. With regards to HP, I think Hermione or Ron will die; it is rare to have the hero of a children's book die and I'm not sure that Rowling is that adventurous. I wish that Harry would die - it would make the most sense (he sacrifices himself for his friends like his mother sacrificed herself for him). Besides, the (melo)drama of the book necessitates a tragic ending. Why would I think poorly of you for liking Harry Potter? I think the books are fun and the fact that they have gotten so many people, particularly children, into reading is worth their pastiche-ness. Have you read Ursula K. LeGuin's Earthsea series? I think that you might like The Tombs of Atuan in particular. Those books are one version of HP that is much better than HP itself. Awadewit | talk 12:25, 28 June 2007 (UTC)

The adventures of young Ged should be read in order (I think). Be warned that LeGuin's style and world are darker fare than HP. Isn't it strange how the HP books seem to absorb time? I plan on burning the midnight oil to get through it in one night (perhaps not the best way to enjoy a book but I can't help myself). BTW I replaced all but three of the LRL vector pics. Cheers. --Cronholm144 13:33, 28 June 2007 (UTC)
Yeay, I'm glad that you both like Harry Potter as well! :) I have a few very young knitting students and it's a topic that we can gab on endlessly about. :) I get a little nervous, though, talking with adults about it. For some, there's a fine line between light and silly literature, and not everyone appreciates the virtues of both; you have to be with the right crowd. I also get nervous talking about how much I like romance novels and ragtime music. ;) For the other crowd, though, I can always resort to Erasmus' Praise of Folly... ;) I'll definitely check out young Ged's adventures, too; I've heard much of him and the Earthsea world. Willow 22:15, 28 June 2007 (UTC)

I think that often there is a resistance to appreciating every kind of art within its own reference frame. For example, I thought Spider-Man was a great action movie. I don't think that generating lists of "best movies" or "best novels" is particularly productive, since some movies, novels, songs, etc. excel in one area and others in another (the lists are only interesting for what they reveal about their creators, in my opinion). I prefer questions such as, What is interesting about Harry Potter? What makes it different from other books in its genre? In what way have these differences contributed to its phenomenal success? rather than, Is Harry Potter good? (But, then again, I'm a literary critic.) Awadewit | talk 00:13, 29 June 2007 (UTC)

Harry Potter has arrived in the legitimate world of academia, just in case you were interested. Several years ago I went to a panel at MLA (the Modern Language Association's big get together for literature professors) that was just on HP. There are numerous articles on the books and the marketing of them. I was even an AI in an "American Bestsellers" class where we taught the first book (it attracts students to the class unlike, say, Peyton Place). Awadewit | talk 00:13, 29 June 2007 (UTC)

Umm, sorry, what's an "AI"? Maybe "Assistant Instructor"? Or "Acolyte Inquisitor"? ;) I also didn't know that they offered courses on American Bestsellers; are there other Bestseller courses as well? Willow 10:58, 29 June 2007 (UTC)

There is a famous literary scholar named Janice Radway who made her career researching the reading patterns of romance novel readers. Her fascinating book, Reading the Romance: Women, Patriarchy, and Popular Literature, made the study of romance legitimate in academia, which of course it should always have been. Awadewit | talk 00:13, 29 June 2007 (UTC)

I believe there can be grace and beauty in every medium, if one knows how to find the treasures. "It's an ill wind..." and all that. But, alas, what's respected and studied in the academy does not always graduate to the Wider World, so I'll probably still have to be careful about my own gushings... ;)
I aspire someday to write a computer program that could produce romance novels tuned to the readers' preferences; no more scouring the bookshelves for just the right avatar of intrepid heroine, gruff hero, dangerous interloper, and gossiping Greek chorus. ;) Such novels could never compete with a human-written narrative, I'm sure, but it might be fun to try. I also hope that someone will produce a series of romance novels, all telling the same story but in the style of different famous authors; for example, Dickens' version might begin
"When Dr. Richard Swiveller arrived in Macomb, everyone said he was a haunted man. Of course, "everyone" is just as likely to be wrong as right, but Dr. Swiveller's dark hair and craggy features..."
Can you imagine what Edgar Allen Poe's version would read like? ;)
I'm pretty sure that basic versions of such computer programs exist. I know that a computer wrote a romance novel that became a bestseller. It wrote in the style of a particular author. I don't think the computers are personalized yet, though. That's the future, isn't it? Personalization. (And jet packs.) Awadewit | talk 11:03, 4 July 2007 (UTC)
I always enjoy our letters; thank you! I'm also sorry for the discourtesy over at FAC. I will return to our good Joseph soon, methinks, and I'm sure we'll have fun! :) Willow 10:58, 29 June 2007 (UTC)
Oh, the Sherwood FAC isn't that bad, although opposes based on dash styles and date styles always bug me. The FAC process is not consistent about that, so I feel that such oppositions are irrelevant. I look forward to working on Joseph Johnson; I need a break from Joseph Priestley. Too much drama over there. Who knew he would attract drama? Awadewit | talk 11:03, 4 July 2007 (UTC)
PS. Yesterday was a very good day; I got my first blueberries and raspberries from my garden! I also gave blood, which means a lot to me; I gave double for good measure. Willow 10:58, 29 June 2007 (UTC)
You gave double for me. :) I can't. Awadewit | talk 11:03, 4 July 2007 (UTC)

By the way, I just noticed that you play the piano. What kind of music do you like to play, if you don't mind my asking? (Am I being intrusive, if so, just tell me so.) Awadewit | talk 11:03, 4 July 2007 (UTC)

Laplace-Runge-Lenz vector[edit]

Hi Willow! Do you mind if I clean(svg) up some of the images in the Laplace-Runge-Lenz vector article? Also, I replaced the precessing picture with the one that Ksmrq made,so you might want to change the caption to mention the non-relativistic orbit in red. Cheers--Cronholm144 15:30, 25 June 2007 (UTC)

Thank you so much, Cronholm! :) Feel free to svg any of the images in the LRL vector article. I used Xfig for many of the images, but I couldn't convert them into good SVG, at least judging from Wikipedia's response to them. BTW, I already amended the caption on your image at the Kepler problem in general relativity; please let me know what you think! :) Now if I could only avoid making sign and factor-of-two errors... ;) Willow 15:38, 25 June 2007 (UTC)

Wow, that was fast (and the caption is great), my watchlist didn't even catch it. :) Hmm... I am going to use a combo of inkscape and gnuplot (both are fun to work with) to make the svgs. Don't worry about your little sign errors, we all make them (even JRSpriggs) :)--Cronholm144 15:46, 25 June 2007 (UTC)

Kepler image request[edit]

I haven't forgotten your requests:

May I ask for two other Figures that would really help the article?
  • It's be wonderful to have a graph with a family of plots of V(r) as a varies from zero to large. It'd be nice if the r-axis were measured in units of rs, and if you could mark the extrema rinner and router with two different symbols. I'd like our readers to get a qualitative feeling for the behavior of the orbits, and how rinner is unstable and router is stable, and how below a certain value of a, the particle falls straight into r=0.
  • It'd also be nice to have a plot for a few archetypical functions G(ζ) that show the three roots, and illustrate how orbits can oscillate between e1 to e2 or diverge starting from over e3. At least I think this graph would be useful; what do you all think?

I am hoping Cronholm will tackle them (though he may lack the theoretical background), and meanwhile I've been preoccupied. But I agree they would be nice to include, and if nothing happens in a week please remind me and I'll see what I can whip up.

The precession SVG image was inserted by another editor without remark; I trust it is a satisfying replacement for your PNG. --KSmrqT 05:01, 29 June 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for your nice note, KSmrq! :) But let me leap to Squire Cronholm's defence; the sea will boil and the sky turn green before I believe that he lacks the theoretical background. You should consider how busy he's been with everything else! As it turns out, I wrote a little program yesterday to produce the curves I wanted, so I'll upload those when I get a chance. I have a good reason now for sprucing up Kepler problem in general relativity prontissime, since I expect some august visitors — or would that be July visitors? ;) Unfortunately, I'm also rather busy/preoccupied at work, at home and in the garden right now, and I'm also trying to figure out this gravitational radiation thing for the article... Anyway, thanks again and I look forward to when our strands of fate next cross over in the Big Braid Group in the Sky, Willow 10:13, 29 June 2007 (UTC)
I tried to work on them 5 days ago but then got distracted by other things... now I have guests coming in today and I will have to take my first wikibreak. I haven't forgotten, but it will take a few days. [4] and [5] speak to my background :).--Cronholm144 11:55, 29 June 2007 (UTC)
Hi Cronholm! :) I see that you have a background in Making Things Happen; perhaps it's the gift of True Speech? ;) At least you have a great gift for Making Willow Laugh. Wishing you lots of happy times with your guests and Talk to you when the sky turns blue again, Willow 09:05, 30 June 2007 (UTC)

This is going to take a little longer than I had originally thought, I will probably be done in an hour and a half.--Cronholm144 23:55, 30 June 2007 (UTC)

Thank you so much, Cronholm! There's really no rush, and I hate to think that I'm pulling you away from your friends; I have to dart away myself. But I do feel like everything I've written there today is terribly awkward, so if you had any good ideas on how to finesse it, I would be much obliged. :) Nice to hear a friendly voice and receive a friendly letter, Willow 00:14, 1 July 2007 (UTC)

No worries, we had to reschedule for Monday, so I am free till then. If you want me to tweak any of the svgs don't hesitate to ask. I'll take a look at the article, but I am sure your additions are top-notch.--Cronholm144 01:37, 1 July 2007 (UTC)