Living the Scientific Life (Scientist, Interrupted)

Cosmic Scream

The Cry (or The Scream)
By Edvard Munch (1893)
(click on image for a larger version in its own window)

Many people think this painting depicts a man experiencing an existential crisis, but I disagree. I think it depicts a man whose computer just crashed and ate all his $#@%&@!! work!

Why am I posting this here? Let me sum it up in one word:


Need I say more?

This evening, I was putting the finishing touches on the text file that was supposed to be this week’s installment of Birds in the News when Blogger crashed and ATE IT! It destroyed the document, all those beautiful links that I had been hoarding all week, all those stories, all those words I wrote about all those stories .. GONE! POOF!

This was going to be the last Birds in the News that I was going to mirror on my Blogger site, so this was a sort of “goodbye, thanks for the memories” sort of entry, but no. Blogger chewed up my precious document and spit its electrons out into the ether!

I can hear you laughing out there, your fingers itching to write long mocking missives telling me that I am a slow learner (everyone knows that Blogger crashes when you least expect it), why was I writing this on Blogger instead of here, why didn’t I save the document in a Word or SubEthaEdit file, why oh, why, why, why?


The truth will shock you. Well, some of you, anyway. Okay, the truth will shock those three schizophrenics out there who read this site regularly.

Because ..

I am an optimist.

And now I feel like screaming as a result.

I feel a head-banging event is in my near future.

I cannot even enjoy being upset because I am going to recover as much of this document as possible, even if I have to stay awake all night to do it, grrr!



  1. #1 Caio de Gaia
    January 26, 2006

    Yes, my fingers were itching but you took most of the fun out of it, so no long missive. In a sense it is poetic justice, you are betraying blogger and it had its revenge. But I share your scream, reading Birds in the News is probably the best part in my friday nights.

  2. #2 John
    January 26, 2006

    Blogger is a jealous weblog software and you shall have no other weblog softwares before it….

    It is good you are getting away from Blogger’s limitations. It’s a shame you had to get one more crash before finishing up there.

  3. #3 Torris
    January 26, 2006

    Yikes! What a horrible thing to have happen! That painting was certainly an appropriate post.

  4. #4 Will McKenna
    January 27, 2006

    That sucks. I have had that happen to me once or twice too.

    The Google guys really need to go back through that code and check things out. I know it wasn’t there product initially, but it is time they did a nice update to it to get rid of these kinds of issues.

  5. #5 Dr. Marco
    January 27, 2006

    It looks like one of the Roswell aliens, absolutely stunned about the human condition. Since he or she might be one of our Intelliget Designers, he or she must feel some sort of remorse

  6. #6 GrrlScientist
    January 27, 2006

    well, i deserved it, i suppose, because i have been the victim of blogger’s capriciousness before. but knowing this doesn’t make it any less frustrating. especially since i told myself that this was the last mirrored BitN issue, that blogger had been behaving remarkably well recently and saving everything into a desktop file is such a hassle and .. well, you know how the so-called “logic” goes ..

    i was mostly complaining here because BitN represents a tremendous time investment on my part (spread out over a week, of course). and i was already feeling rather cranky and underappreciated when this happened. but it could have been worse, though. i ended up losing only two sections in this crash, including my favorite, “Birds in Science”. but i could have lost the entire document, as i originally thought had occurred.

    really, i have few complaints about Blogger. if i had not been there for as long as i was, i certainly would never have ended up here so .. no worries.

  7. #7 Mogens Michaelsen
    January 27, 2006

    Did you know that this painting has been stolen several times from different locations in Norway? Actually Munch painted more than one original – sometimes a good idea, much like saving your documents on your computer!

  8. #8 Bill
    January 28, 2006

    Blogger’s fault? Hardly!

    No matter what you are using, write posts off-line, save and backup frequently.

  9. #9 Orac
    January 28, 2006

    I’m still on Blogger (although, thankfully, not for much longer), and I make it a point to make frequent backups of important posts to a text file. I’ve never lost an entire post, but I have lost big chunks of posts before.

  10. #10 GrrlScientist
    January 28, 2006

    Mogens; thanks for the interesting link,, and the skillful way you point out the obvious to me.

    Bill; like, duh!

    Orac; ooohh, so i assume you are joining us here in the deep end, then? and like you, i lost a big chunk of Birds in the News, sigh!

  11. #11 Frank Borger
    January 29, 2006

    There’s an old joke about Jesus and the Devil in a contest to complete a large programming project. God Fires off a thunderbolt as the starting signal. Jesus and the Devil start keying madly.

    When time’s up, God fires another bolt, but it hits both computers and crashes them.

    God asks the Devil to show his project and there’s nothing.

    God asks Jesus to show his project and it’s all there, entry screens, report generators, yada yada.

    The Devil asks God, “How’d he do that.”

    God replies, “Jesus saves.”

    Which camp are you in????

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