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Disclaimer: this website is composed of symbols and images that do not in themselves carry meaning outside of a total social situation which none of us choose.


Hi, I'm Drew Pendergrass. My organic, artisanally-crafted, GMO-free website is lovingly built from whatever I decide to post online. It hosts a variety of projects, resources, and ephemera made over the years, including a book, video games, open-source software for assimilating satellite observations of pollution, environmental datasets, my writing, experimental music, a fake startup that sells logs on wheels, as well as my research papers and conference presentations in atmospheric science and related fields.

Currently, I am a doctoral student in Environmental Engineering at Harvard University, studying under Daniel Jacob, and I freelance on the side for publications including Harper's and The Guardian. More importantly, I am not a substitute for a medical doctor, I keep the old gods, and I have no trouble distinguishing my right from my left.

I can be reached at drew [at] drewpendergrass [dot] com, or at the academic address in my CV.

The latest science!

Pendergrass, D. C., S. Zhai, J. Kim, J-H. Koo, S. Lee, M. Bae, S. Kim, H. Liao, and D. J. Jacob. (2022). Continuous mapping of fine particulate matter (PM2.5) air quality in East Asia at daily 6x6 km2 resolution by application of a random forest algorithm to 2011-2019 GOCI geostationary satellite data. Atmospheric Measurement Techniques, 15, 1075–1091. PDF. Publisher's version (open access). Associated dataset available from Dataverse. Video of 15-minute oral presentation at AGU.

Beijing pollution event zoomed

Figure: Daily PM2.5 concentrations during a pollution event in the North China Plain, around Beijing (December 16-21, 2016). Predictions from the random forest algorithm (background, on 6x6 km2 grid scale) are compared to observations made on the ground (circles). We see that the model is able to reproduce even this extreme level of pollution.


You can learn more about my research on the projects page, or you can read through all of our scientific papers and presentations on their respective pages.

Order our book here!

We can move beyond the crisis Half-Earth Socialism book graphic.
Computer!

Writing spotlight

My feature on dirt, and the scientists who study it, for the June 2020 issue of Harper's Magazine: "Ground Control."

A Brief Q&A

Q. How can I contact you?

A. You can follow/DM me on Twitter, but I'm trying to stop using it so much, so it's best to email me at drew [at] drewpendergrass [dot] com (or the academic address in my CV). However, if your email is unpleasant, you should direct it to grievances@drewpendergrass.com, an inbox I definitely read.

Q. Why does this page keep changing?

A. This page is randomly generated by the server on each load. Most of the page's contents are not displayed on one particular load, so for the full experience reload a bunch of times.

Q. Why don't you just host this crap on Github like a normal person?

A. Github only allows static websites. I wanted my website to be different for every visitor. DrewPendergrass.com, like life itself, must always be in flux. You could say I'm an artist.

Q. Who are you?

A. Well, to start off, I have absolutely no intention of running for Senate in the great state of Minnesota, I am not reptilian, I have never advocated on behalf of, or against, the Free Silver movement, I am reluctant to resort to black magic, and I proudly possess object permanence. If you for some strange reason would like to know something substantial about me, you can check out my projects page or my CV.

This website proudly supports Otto Neurath and the ISOTYPE picture language

Neurath

Please represent all social facts pictorially in your correspondence with the owner and proprietor of this website. Do your part to help build a pluralistic and anti-metaphysical theory of knowledge.

Some true statements

my mind's eye exists only in a figurative sense ... I have never traveled to an exoplanet ... I hold no world records ... I am not to my knowledge a victim of a mummy's curse ... to my knowledge, there is no portrait of me that ages in my place ... I have nothing to do with explosions ... I accept the axiom of choice ... you cannot prove I have sympathies for the former state of Burgundy ... I appreciate knowledge of the outcome of a given situation ... I did not orchestrate the Camp David Accords ... I have never commanded an army composed of more than 100,000 soldiers ... I am not a closed, non-orientable, boundary-free manifold ...

A Moving, and Random, Quotation

The business man who assumes that this life is everything, and the mystic who asserts it is nothing, fail, on this side and that, to hit the truth. "Yes, I see, dear: it's about halfway between," Aunt Juley had hazarded in the earlier years. No; truth, being alive, was not halfway between anything. It was only to be found by continuous excursions into either realm, and though proportion is the final secret, to espouse it at the outset is to ensure sterility.

-Forster, from Howard's End


Read more here.

Play Alchemy!

"So fun you won't even need friends!"


Box Cover

Bonus Content Zone!

Three Cryptic Messages Regarding Matters of Supreme Importance

  1. It is necessary for you to fear your dreams before they vandalize your ideas.
  2. Your idols have been reviewed. Please corrupt the liberties.
  3. The gods will be seized.

One randomly-generated sorting algorithm, please!

Do you have an unsorted list of N natural numbers? Do you just hate it when programs are guaranteed to terminate? Do you get angry when algorithms do better than factorial time? Then you're in luck! The following algorithm has been generated just for you:

  1. Begin with a gaslighting strategy. Insist to everyone that the list is already in order, even if it is not. If they give up arguing with you, terminate the program. If they insist that you actually sort the list, proceed to the next step.
  2. Uh oh! You've triggered a penalty step. Before you proceed, you must perform a task. Obtain one (1) chess grandmaster. You are generous, so you let them go first. After they move their piece, move a random one of yours to a random cell on the board. If this move violates the rules of chess, flip the board in anger and start again. If it is a legal move, continue playing until either the board is flipped or checkmate. If the grandmaster has won, repeat the game. If you won, proceed to the next step. You've paid the penalty.
  3. You turn to mathematical ecology for inspiration. For each number in your list, generate a population of rabbits proportional to the number and a population of wolves inversely proportional to the number. Wait for each system to equilibrate. Read off the equilibrium population of rabbits in order of population size, printing the number corresponding to each. (My lab partner Jackson Wagner points out that this is not a true sorting algorithm, since you still have to sort the population sizes. To Jackson, I reply that this is the least of our worries.)

Congratulations! Your list is now sorted. You can find a permalink to this particular algorithm here.

Computer!

Facts about LaTeX or facts about latex?

Click the line you think is about LaTeX!

Example 1

Example 2

Example 3

Score: 0 • Streak: 0

All facts lovingly taken from Wikipedia.

You should google Graham Starr