Thursday, January 12, 2006

The Rumors Are True

To the best of my knowledge, I haved never been the subject of gossip before, probably because I am the most boring person whom you could ever know. However, an e-magazine, Element broke the news today that Scientific Life and several other science blogs will be moving to a new location. This has not exactly been a secret because I have hinted here several times in the previous months that I will be moving to a new server, and some friends and colleagues have been following the development of this project behind the scenes, but the details of this move are something that you, as readers, probably want to know, and should know, in my opinion.

Scientific Life is moving soon to a spiffy new server provided by Seed Media Group, which publishes Seed Magazine, among other things. Seed Media Group, the parent organization, is a science media and entertainment company that is dedicated to developing world-class science content across digital media channels. Indicative of their interest in science, they have some really interesting people on their board of directors, including Nobel Prize winner James Watson who, along with Francis Crick, Maurice Wilkins and Rosalind Franklin, co-discovered the structure of DNA. Because I am a molecular biologist, these people have attained near-legendary status in my world, along with Mullis, and Darwin and Wallace, and Avery, MacLeod and McCarty, along with a host of others who have made important scientific advances.

Seed's ScienceBlogs is a community of science bloggers from around the world who, it is hoped, will provide one location for cutting-edge, up-to-date and sometimes, behind the scenes, scientific information to the general public. To this end, they are designing the site to meet our needs, a process that is still ongoing, so you will see a variety of changes there in the next few months as new features are implimented. (I, for example, have a great idea for my masthead, which has not been designed yet. I also am trying to get a different wallpaper from the standard one they offer, and there are a few cute little features that I will be adding soon, too).

We will be paid to write our blogs after we move. The initial pay scale is based on the traffic to our current sites, and then will be based on the traffic to our new site after the move; more traffic means a bigger paycheck, of course. The sum that each of us is paid is small, but may possibly increase in the future (for example, I will earn just enough to pay for a wireless connection from my apartment).

There will be advertising on our blogs. I am not sure if any of you know my philosophy about ads, but I know you have noticed that I have never had any ads here. There is a reason for this; I hate 'em. But the reality is that supporting this project would not be possible without advertising, even if we weren't paid for writing -- and in fact, us bloggers are the "most affordable" aspect in this entire project. The equipment and the IT experts necessary to support this project are very expensive. But I have been assured that these ads will be "tastefully done" and further, if there is a particular ad that I don't want on my site, the IT folks at Seed will write a filter that prevents it from appearing there.

In my opinion, the most important aspect for you to know about this move is that, as scientist-bloggers in the Seed community, we will never be subject to any editorial oversight. So basically, we will write essays and commentary about the same topics that we always have written about, argue with IDiots, host blog carnivals (yippee!), answer memes, online quizzes and indulge in other silliness, and basically carry on as we always have done.

Currently, new commentaries/essays that I publish will be mirrored on my new site. I am still learning how to use the publishing platform, Movable Type, and I am experimenting with the template. I will be posting essays here until the end of January (my birthday!), when I will formalize my move by leaving this site as linkable archives, close down reader comments to avoid those annoying spamweasels (do you hear me, William?), and focus my blog writing energies on my new site.

As the author of a mere "baby blog", I am thrilled and honored beyond words to be invited into this little online scientific community. I am proud to say that I am friends with several of my "sibling bloggers" in this online community and I hope to become friends with all of them over time. I am so excited about this move and its promise for providing high-quality scientific information to the public, and I hope that you, dear readers, are too.

You are welcome to make suggestions, ask questions or voice any concerns that you have and I'll do my best to answer them.

Some of my "sibling bloggers" have made a formal announcement to their readers or have already made the move;

Cognitive Daily, a team blog by Greta Munger and her husband, Dave Munger

Evolgen, who used this opportunity to change the name of his blog to Clash, Culture and Science

Dr. FreeRide, who reveals her real name and face on her new site

Deltoid, by Tim Lambert

Pharyngula, by PZ Myers

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© 2004, 2005, 2006 by GrrlScientist

12 Peer Reviews:

Blogger Tabor said...

Sniff, sniff. I kind of feel like you are leaving my house to go to college. Silly isn't it? Well, this is just the beginning. You have learned a great lesson about networks.

6:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey, congrats! I've had my eye on Seed's page since I got Chris Mooney's book a few months ago -- I may start my *own* blog now, not about my apparently former mol sys career but about teaching high school -- which hasn't started yet. Takes months and months to start, frustratingly. But I'm very committed to reaching a wider audience about "science" and instilling biophilia in subpops not normally exposed to it, plus interested in the shared effort among teachers that high school, contra undergrad college, seems to engender. Meanwhile -- not that you asked -- I didn't even go to high school in the US so may be suffering illusions . . .

BTW thanks much for sharing your job search frustrations; they have helped me enormously.

7:33 PM  
Blogger GrrlScientist said...

Tabor; be thankful that i am a click away, safely ensconsed on another domain. day one at the new server is not yet over and i already screwed up everyone's archives at ScienceBlogs (gasp!) with my "little code experiments" such that everyone's archives linked here. i could have done that to you, too!


8:35 PM  
Blogger Lucia Malla said...

Congrats!! This is the best New Year's piece of news available in the blogosphere! A super-nice group of all-favourites science blogs all together in the same site: fantastic!
I am not sure how many traffic I drive to your site (I suspect not much...) but for sure I'll be advertising this move and trying to get more Brazilians to enjoy the elite in science blogging...

9:11 PM  
Blogger Rexroth's Daughter said...

This is fantastic news, grrlscientist. I am so happy for you. Wow, a new server, a new family. Yippee! I can't wait to see the new site. Good luck.

10:02 PM  
Anonymous Chardyspal said...

Maybe it's just me but I can't read anything on the new site for you or PZ or anyone else. All I can see is the frame, masthead and the essays, even if I click on one.

1:27 AM  
Anonymous donna said...

Congrats! Keep up the great blogging!

2:19 AM  
Anonymous Mike said...

That's great news, Grrlscientist. Congrats!

10:36 AM  
Blogger Alon Levy said...

Excellent, excellent... it's not quite being paid to publish your life story, but it's getting there.

2:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi again -- The new site looks good but I'll be very sad if you won't be able to "talk back" to our comments the way you can here! Congrats again, anyway; I'm sure I'm not the only one who's anxious about your $800 Con Ed bill!!!!

7:23 PM  
Blogger P.M.Bryant said...

Congratulations! It strikes me as quite an honor to get the chance to blog professionally. Best of luck to you, and I'll be sure to check out that new site to keep reading your excellent writings.

8:30 PM  
Blogger GrrlScientist said...

Wow, i lost track of all the comments here, but wow! thanks everyone for your kind words.

Lucia; just add a link to the new site in your blogroll, and they will come.

RD; what an oddly wonderful choice of words, "a new family". yes, that is how i feel about this move, despite the fact that i am trying not to place too much emphasis on this little event. hopefully, i will have all links, etc., updated on this site and the new one by the end of the weekend.

ChardysPal; i am waiting to hear from the IT folks at Seed .. i think they went home for the weekend, so it might be a couple days before any progress is made. until then, the site looks great in firefox. or safari. or netscape.

Donna; thanks, with encouragement like this, it's difficult not to.

Mike; thanks!

Alon; that's alright. i doubt anyone would want to read my life story except people who are getting a degree in abnormal psychology.

anonymous; i can talk back to you on the other blog, i just haven't done so much yet. i have been busy exploring over there. the latest news on the conehead bill is .. they said i probably owe them all that money, that they estimated all of my bills for the last 2 millennia. but i know they are wrong about that, they actually read the meter every two months, so it seems that the lady i spoke with was just trying to give me a stroke.

PM; thanks for your kind words! i really appreciate it. i am still not making enough to pay rent, but i am working on it.


8:54 PM  

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