Thanks for this burst of suggestions. I agree with a lot of them! I especially like the idea of hiring some full-time employees, just one or two at first, who do these two things David mentioned:
* Data administration: updating the blog index, performing polishing edits to keep the wiki more consistent, set up and monitor global data replication for disaster recovery
* Research assistant. In-depth investigation of related activities at climate-concerned research institutes. What’s NASA up to today, in terms of climate change research? Granted that Azimuth only has a small number of climate scientists (Nathan, anyone else?), is there any way that we as a group can be helpful to the overall enterprise of climate science? If so, that could help us to get “our foot in the door” of the research effort. There may not be a quick answer to this question, but it’s worth pondering.
I think these are things we could get people to do a decent job of, fairly easily, which would vastly speed up our progress. This is a bit harder to delegate:
* Publicity and outreach efforts. Put together talks on Azimuth. Go to college campus to give the talk. Talk to administrators in university departments of environmental science. Go to conferences on scientific programming, and try to drum up some interest in scientific programming for the planetary cause.
I'm doing a lot of this myself, fairly energetically - for example, I gave 8 talks in England last month! The main thing I can't do well is stuff related to scientific programming. We'd need someone who is a bit more of expert on that, and had the free time to do this. Instead of hiring someone, it might be good to attract a young academic research who would benefit professionally from doing this.
More generally, I think we need _more academics who are willing to put energy into Azimuth_, if we want it to succeed. This is more likely to happen when I become enough of a bigshot that I can get grants and also attract people by virtue of having good ideas related to "saving the planet". (I may already have good ideas in this area, but academia is not yet convinced.
) Young academics are usually attracted to projects that _already_ seem academically successful.
Since I'm scheduled to talk to them in less than two hours, I won't write a bunch more feedback now. I'll let you know how the talk went.