(Editor’s note: I am filing this blog for Bill on his behalf – read on and you’ll see why…)

First of all, apologies. As some of you will know, I recently relocated to the United States. This new adventure has left me with less time for things like writing. Unless that is you count writing papers, grants, and other assorted delights of the academic lifestyle. Such is the life at an uber-prestigious American university.

So with that out of the way, I have to explain why it is that I’m writing now. In fact, I am not writing, I am speaking. The only typed portion of this blog entry, is the first paragraph. After that I am using voice recognition software that I recently bought having fractured my collarbone during a football match. I don’t know how many of you have experience with this sort of software, but I must ask you have to recognize that I will be in unreliable narrator. I will not edit the output until. I will be interested to find out how much of what I say you can understand. And of course this ensures plausible deniability should I say something that people take offense to.

I bought the software, using my startup funds, because of the fact that I did not want to have my productivity adversely affected. This was a foolish which. While the software is perfectly good for things like this, or indeed sending e-mails, it is almost useless for things like Grant applications or papers ends with scientific verbiage.

Under a particular words which it seems to have great trouble if for instance laboratory. He got it right that time but only because I trained it. Other words present a far larger problem. For instance anyone understand what I’m trying to write here? “the relationship between pathogen environments and transmission is not well understood” the only problem with that sentence was the word environments. that should have been appearance. That it should have been here. That it’s it should have been the relevance.

I just said the same thing four times, and each time the software understood that I had said something different. As I’m sure you can understand, this makes writing anything which includes that word on a frequent basis, virtually impossible.

Without question and finding it easier to write than I would if I were only using my left hand, but this is still quite a long way short of the maximum potential. Also, I don’t know about you but a crucial stage of writing for me is sketching things out. I like to put a few ideas down on the page, and then shift around a little bit, and then let the words sink into my head before he decided that what I want to say. This software works better the more you know what you’re going to say indeed when you first start using it you’re told that you should speak like a television newsreader. Which is fine for television newsreader, because they’re reading something out. If you’re trying to create something from scratch, it is far more difficult to know exactly what you’re going to say, and the pauses the arms the cars and things like that can help. The last time I knew exactly how I was going to finish his sentence was when I was studying German.

So in this enforced. Of, if not relaxation, then the ability to raise my eyes from the work in front of me, I deliver what’s been happening in the wider world of science since I moved. Whether I start? In this country stem cell research is under pressure once again. Not to mention the march of the tea party. In fact I was wondering whether and not the software was produced by somebody working for the party given the way that until I trained it, it persisted in rendering the word “evolution” as evil illusion. Meanwhile in the UK, the Guardian has expiated the sin it commits a few years ago and it’s asked its Thursday science supplement. It has done this by producing a home for science blogging and so far, it looks pretty damned good. More recently, a German gentleman with an Italian address, and indeed wearing a dress, has visited the UK. He has said some rather silly things about science and religion. But then I guess you expect that. I don’t think that there’s really anything useful to say about this, other than to say that if you really think that Nancy’s and secularism should be mentioned together, as an example of evil, you ought to look in the modes in your own eye.

As you have probably guessed from the above, while the software is not that bad, it is still pretty bad. Writing anything with it is going to take less time than it would without it, but still lots lots lots more time than it would had I the use of two hands. And so I guess I better get back to it. Talk again before too long I hope.