Monday, May 14, 2007

I won!

I'm absolutely amazed that I won the Alliance for Science essay contest. Apparently, I did write a good essay. For those of you who don't know, I submitted an essay for the Alliance for Science essay contest in late March about "Why I would like my Doctor to have studied evolution." I must say, I did have some fun writing that essay. I learned a lot about zoonoses, which are diseases that are transferrable between species. If you want to know what that has to do with the topic, you'll have to read my essay, which should be online at some time. If you can't wait, contact me via e-mail or IM, I'll send you a copy (and be sure to tell me whether you can handle open-document-format, so I know if I should send you a .odt or .rtf, the .rtfs aren't so pretty, unfortunately).

I'll give you some behind-the-scenes commentary. I had a super tough time cutting that essay within the word limit. I had to get rid of an entire section about the Tripoli Six (Six foreign doctors Five foreign nurses and one foreign doctor [Thanks for olvlzl at Respectful Insolence for spotting this] in Libya sentenced for infecting kids with HIV, even though new research found that it was impossible. For more detail, search scienceblogs.com, they'll have more detail than you can ever use). Even then, I had to kinda get rid of a few adjectives in that essay. I believe the final word could was 3 under the maximum. I never thought I would have so much to say.

So yeah, the prize is $300 and a free subscription to SEED (what I REALLY wanted), plus a bunch of stuff for the school. Well, here I am, bringing glory to the Los Angeles Unified School District. However, my achivement is kinda dwarfed by El Camino Real, but some potential glory at school might not be so bad (of course, I can't show off my OWN glory). And what do you all think I should do with the prize? My current plan is to deposit it in a bank account until I can come up with something to do with it. That way, I still make interest off of it, yay!

Ok, I know this post is getting kinda long, so I'll cap up by saying, I love you all! Oh yeah, and there's also my teacher to thank, Ms. Chung (who I then spent a week with in Costa Rica, which was a very good break from this). She helped revise and polish the essay, which I think made a huge difference. And I'd also like to thank PZ Myers, 'cause, he's awesome, and I wouldn't have found out about the contest without him. Oh, and my parents, for making me revise it, like 20 times. The Panda's Thumb was also an invaluble resource for this essay, thanks for covering the Michael Egnor affair so well (I found out about PZ's Egnor superlist AFTER I submitted the essay, unfortunately). I swear, he was so well timed. Now I'm wondering if anyone else used him as an example.

Ok, I'm ending it for real this time. Thanks to all the people I cited in my essay (duh, that's what citing is kinda for). OH! and the Understanding Evolution web site was extremely helpful. Wow, I never knew I had so many resources. Ok, well, bye everyone, and make sure your science is open source (?!) Hey, that could be my new motto. Or, make sure your open source is scientific. Meh, I like the other one better. Oh, and Fundies Say the Darndest Things, of course (does anyone else get an RSS feed for them, I think mine's broken), for uplifting me during times of stress, and making me laugh my face off. I swear, that place is funnier than any comedy show ever. Ok, now bye!

20 comments:

Blake Stacey said...

Congratulations!

(Orac just announced your win, so expect quite a few well-wishers to be coming through.)

The Factician said...

Congratulations.

Can we see the essay?

M said...

Congrats! *offers champagne*

Jokermage said...

Congratulations and Thank You for standing up for science!

ERV said...

Congratulations!

hehehe! We're all itching to read your essay :)

rrc said...

congratulations from an evolutionarily minded medical student!

Abel Pharmboy said...

Heartiest congratulations on a topic that is extremely important in medicine and society at large. Looking forward to seeing the essay and to other great things from you. Keep up the fabulous work!

TheBrummell said...

As Blake Stacey pointed out, Orac announced your win and linked here, which is why I dropped by.

Congratulations!

Also, RTF documents can be converted to PDF by software (for free!) at this website:

http://www.pdfonline.com/

I don't know about .odt, though.

cactaur said...

Wow, thanks everyone. I should thank Orac too. Apparently I've had a HUGE spike in hits now. However, I'm not too sure that I can distribute it, because I'm pretty sure it's the property of the Alliance for Science now (darn, I should have put it under the GNU public licence while I had the chance)

Well, I'll have to say that I did a WHOLE lot of research on that essay. And I had to delve pretty deeply into turf I never experienced before. So, if anyone knows of anything I got wrong, please speak up. I'd like to learn from an expert.

Dick Lessard said...

Congratulations! Rest assured that your essay will get published soon!

Alliance for Science
Contest Director

Larry said...

Congrats on your essay. I always forget to ask you to send me a copy of wonderful admired accomplishment, send it over IM sometime. PDF preferably... (duhh)

Larry said...

Congrats on your essay. I always forget to ask you to send me a copy of this wonderful admired accomplishment, send it over IM sometime. PDF preferably... (duhh)



oh and



*Applauds* r00t

dogscratcher said...

Well done. Put some pressure on the alliance to post your (and all other) essay(s).

Joshua said...

Rawk! \m/

"Jim" said...

Like I said before: 'gratz.

Dick Lessard said...

All four of the winning essays are now up on the Alliance For Science website.

See "http://www.allianceforscience.org/essay_winners.html"

Alliance for Science
Contest Direcotr

The Count said...

Gratz!!!

I come by way PZ Meyers and Pharyngula, in case you'd like to know...

I'd normally reserve a Gratz for hitting 70, but this is more important! :)

Odonata said...

Congratulations! Fantastic essay.

Anonymous said...

Well done, whether combatting creationism, HIV/AIDS delianism or anti-vivisection extremism the world needs more prople like you to stand up and tell it like it is!

Paul

Gufo said...

came by through to say congrats!

so, where's the essay?