Clean air at the University of Oregon

In 2005 I applied to the linguistics program at the University of Oregon for the 2006 year. I was not accepted at that time. This year I was accepted to the nonprofit management masters at the University of Oregon. I have had many interesting encounters and experiences at the university this term. One of these experiences relates to air quality.

As we now know from COVID, air quality is significantly important to public health. At first the thought was that COVID was spread via liquid droplets — hence the mask mandates and their presumed effectiveness. However, now the consensus seems to be to acknowledge that COVID-19 is airborne. This drives some of the perceived need for quality air or “clean” air. One of the more popular standards for air filters is HEPA. Socially there seems to have been a resurgence in the interest in HEPA filters since general awareness of COVID came to be. However, the virus which causes COVID-19 is smaller than HEPA filters out. That means HEPA is not a good filtration system for corona viruses, including the one which causes COVID-19.

The University of Oregon has renewed their use of HEPA filters in their classrooms.

Email newsletter sent out to students from the University of Oregon

I am extremely excited that the university has added room based air filters to classrooms. As someone who appreciates clean air this is a huge step forward. It does beg the question: if HEPA is not useful for COVID abatement, and the university is now acknowledging the need for clean air, why didn’t they acknowledge the need for clean air previously?

HEPA filter placed in classroom at the University of Oregon.

Downstairs stadium

I wonder if I could turn my downstairs den into a dual couch stadium seating area with a wall fan, remove the ceiling fan and add a retractable projector and retractable screen.

This is the idea with the fan, but this one specifically is not sold in the USA.

craft a wall bracket.

I like white on birch.

Stadium seating. Is next.Some examples.

Retractable screens are a dime a dozen. It seems the big question is if I want it to be manual or powered.

Capitalization in indigenous writing systems

I was recently visiting a small remote village. There were large sorghum fields all around. This village was notable for some of the environmental literacy which on could find in the area. Particularly the use of capitalization in names. In fact the name of the village had two capital letters.

Village name sign

This sort capitalization pattern of the use of capitalization word medially has seen its objections among onomastists. The suggestion has been that English does not allow for names to contain two capital letters and therefore references materials written in English containing non-English names should normalize capitalization so that only the first letter of names is capitalized. Obviously this is an uninformed but principled position to take. It is a serious matter to regularize a reference resource because it gives a filtered (and biased) view to users.

Following Journler — with Obsidian

Many years ago there was a brilliant piece of software called Journler for mac. In someways this software was like WordPress for local use, it connected with many of the Operating APIs (like for pictures). I thought it was amazing. It officially died in 2015. However, for note taking I recently found a tool called Obsidian. But the content of Obsidian is maintained in markdown. I wonder if it could take the same place as Journler. One interesting idea the use of graphing (network graphs) from notes and tables in those notes.