Dr. Ackerman has been enamored of the skin and its diseases since his earliest days as a resident at Columbia. Studying dermatology, to him, was like taking courses in art history. ''If you know a certain artist you can recognize him again,'' he said. ''So it is with lesions in the skin. A lesion is like a painting or a piece of sculpture.''
METAMIA is a free database of analogy and metaphor. Anyone can contribute or search. The subject matter can be anything. Science is popular, but poetry is encouraged. The goal is to integrate our fluid muses with the stark literalism of a relational database. Metamia is like a girdle for your muses, a cognitive girdle.