Specializations
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20-08-2010, 11:10 PM
Specializations
I recently watched a video by Thunderf00t detailing the strength of our species through the recording of knowledge. One important point he made that we can see practically being put to use in life is that 10 specialists contribute a greater overall knowledge to the community than 10 jacks-of-all-trades.

It made me wonder a little about our community here. What are the areas of expertise that we have here? How about everyone posts their top-ranked field of study here?

As for me, it would be linguistics, especially morphology. I'm only in my third year of university studying it, but I plan on pursuing a doctorate in the field. Language study has always been one of my favourite hobbies, and I get a nerdy thrill when researching etymology. =P

"It does feel like something to be wrong; it feels like being right." -Kathryn Schulz
I am 100% certain that I am wrong about something I am certain about right now. Because even if everything I stand for turns out to be completely true, I was still wrong about being wrong.
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20-08-2010, 11:25 PM
RE: Specializations
Well, I'm a computer science major, so I guess that would be one area of expertise.

As to the rest, I spend a lot of free time researching conspiracy theories, extraterrestrial visitation claims, and "psychics". Anything in that area - astrology, Tarot, and the like - I know a lot about, and can explain/debunk very easily.

Beyond that, I simply study logic a lot. Tongue

"Owl," said Rabbit shortly, "you and I have brains. The others have fluff. If there is any thinking to be done in this Forest - and when I say thinking I mean thinking - you and I must do it."
- A. A. Milne, The House at Pooh Corner
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21-08-2010, 12:20 AM
RE: Specializations
I'm an English Lit. Major at my university, no specialization yet really just broad strokes in each little field from medieval to present day. I'm taking a liking to post-colonial literature though, taking Canadian and African lit classes this year, can't wait to contrast them. Smile

I might minor in Cultural Studies too, which is less about culture as in England and USA have different cultures, but how culture is created, the philosophies involved ect, a lot of Derrida, Marx, Adorno, and Horkheimer to be studied...

I use my elective courses to take philosophy and politics courses. I like a broad spectrum of courses Smile

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21-08-2010, 01:40 AM
RE: Specializations
I am what some would call a homesteader or contrary farmer. I use my home to provide for my family and I. I guess that makes my area of expertise the study of utilising nature for survival. The principal we live by is that everything we do can be improved by following a natural example. I'm struggling to get the concept out in words, so I'll use an example of how studying nature has helped:
This year, my greatest discovery was weeds, and how they can help me produce a better yeild of potatoes. I am sure many of you have heard of "hilling" potatoes. It's the practice of periodically piling soil around the potato plant, which helps grow more and larger potatoes. It also helps by keeping the topmost potatoes covered, which is important since potatoes that are exposed to sunlight turn green. Any green part of a potato is toxic. On my farm, we do our best to allow nature to do as much of the work for us as possible. So this year, Instead of doing the final hilling (the one that protects the taters from sunlight) I let nature do the job for me. I left the patch alone, and let the weeds grow in. They had no effect on my well established plants (everyone else in my area was hit very hard by potato beetles this year. They have become resistant to the beetle dust used on them, so it proved mostly ineffective. I do not use chemical treatments. Instead, my chickens roam into the potato patch every evening, and feast on the beetles. This left me with a bumper crop while others in the same area were left with virtually nothing.), but the weeds came in tall and thick in my healthy soil. They effectively shaded everything at ground level, thus protecting my crop from the sun, saving me time that I was able to devote to other projects, and making harvest easier by leaving the crop closer to the surface and keeping moisture from evaporating away. (Anyone who's dug potatoes knows that digging them out of dry cracked soil is quite the ordeal) The process proved once again that working with nature is better than trying to work against it. This year a few less of the old timers around here laughed at my crazy ideas, and a few even patted me on the back as they bought potatoes from me to replace the ones they had lost.
I graduated high school in 1994, and I haven't been in a classroom since, but I study in my "field" every day! Does my "area of expertise" apply to our little community here? I think so.

So many cats, so few good recipes.
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21-08-2010, 03:14 AM
 
RE: Specializations
hi like this,,,,,
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21-08-2010, 06:35 AM
RE: Specializations
Stark Raving - I had no idea there were still people doing that here (I assume you're in the US). Whereabouts is your farm?

Anyway, I'm really more a jack-of-all-trades. I'm an avid reader, on a variety of topics and can converse reasonably well on a lot of subjects where I know a great deal but am not an "expert" in any and can and will hit a wall on most of them.

Education-wise, I have a BS degree in finance, a JD (law degree) and an MSc in technology and business. I work in telecommunications and IT and have for the past 16 years. I know my business very well and am also fairly well versed in economics, history, politics (although anyone with an opinion is well versed in politics) and am also a rabid baseball fan.

The things that I really know and am an actually an expert, or a specialist, on are probably of no use to anyone but my employer or people in my industry. No farming or linguists skills from me, sorry.

Green - I'm on an American Classics kick lately in my personal reading. I usually read a lot of non-fiction but I was getting sick from reading all about the financial crash. I just finished Steinbeck's "Winter Of Our Discontent" and am now about 100 pages into Hemingway's "For Whom The Bell Tolls". Never read any Hemingway previously but am rather enjoying it. If you are getting into post-Colonialism stuff, I guess you've discovered The Leatherstocking Tales? "Last of the Mohicans" is fantastic book.

Shackle their minds when they're bent on the cross
When ignorance reigns, life is lost
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21-08-2010, 07:28 AM
RE: Specializations
BnW I'm in Canada, so you were close. There's not alot of us out there doing this, mainly because you have to be VERY unconventional to make it work. You have to be able to make money to some degree, and that means you're restricted to doing something on the farm that you can sell year round. Not an easy task. I found a niche and filled it. I raise rats. Yep, rats. Make a good chunk of money from it too.

So many cats, so few good recipes.
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21-08-2010, 08:41 AM
RE: Specializations
Quote:I raise rats. Yep, rats. Make a good chunk of money from it too.
Rats? Who buys rats and for what? Lab-rats, pet-rats?

I specializes in absolutely nothingSmile but 6 years from now, Ill probably be an instrument builder.

Correct me when I'm wrong.
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21-08-2010, 09:46 AM
RE: Specializations
I hope this doesn't turn into the Stark Raving thread! LOL. I used to keep snakes as a hobby. That hobby grew, and I became a python breeder. (Small scale, so I still consider it a hobby) Feeding anywhere from 15 to 25 snakes at a time (rats obviously) can become quite expensive. So I decided to breed my own feeder rats to save on costs. I soon realized that by improving their feed and conditions I could get them to grow faster, and healthier, which in turn meant better food for my snakes. Word got around how good my rats were, and soon all the local keepers and pet supply stores were asking for my rats. I decided to build a dedicated barn for raising them, and the rest is history. Present day I sell about 1600 rats a month. They are raised on high end, custom made food. Humanely euthanized, vacuum sealed, and frozen. Hence the birth of Stark Raving Rodents!
I remember you mentioning in another thread that you aspire to be an instrument builder. Thats about the coolest, and most origional profession I can think of. Good on ya.

So many cats, so few good recipes.
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21-08-2010, 10:35 AM
RE: Specializations
Quote:Word got around how good my rats were,

This has to be about the greatest line ever posted on the internet.

Shackle their minds when they're bent on the cross
When ignorance reigns, life is lost
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