January 2011

Summer Internships and Workshops for Undergrads and Graduate Students [Wiki]

by Kelle January 31, 2011

I’d like to compile a list of internships and summer workshops for undergrads and graduate students on the wiki. The goal is to have a list that goes beyond the well known REUs to include other research programs for undergrads like the Caltech and JPL SURF program. Also, I’d like the list to include visiting […]


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Should the Rumor Mill be more than… a rumor mill?

by Kelle January 28, 2011

KC poses a provocative question over on the Rumor Mill: It’s obvious the Rumor Mill is much more popular than just a few years ago. That’s to be expected now that most young astronomers (the primary drivers of the job market) are well-acquainted with wiki’s, Facebook, etc. Should selection committee’s start taking advantage of this […]


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Telescope and Grant Proposal Calendar [Wiki]

by Kelle January 25, 2011

Upon the excellent suggestion of Angelle Tanner, we’ve created a shared Google Calendar for common telescope and grant proposal deadlines. The calendar is embedded below and also has its own wiki page: Telescope and Grant Proposal Calendar. We’ve already added a lot of deadlines and programs, but I’m sure we’re missing some. Please comment on […]


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Word Whiskers of Self Doubt and Phantom Questions: Like, you know?

by Kelle January 24, 2011

Sorry for the stream of posts on presentations, but AAS was clearly inspiring. Like, you know? | Mahalo.ne.Trash JohnJohn brings up several excellent points about the speech patterns pervasive in the language of our youth (mostly). Not just sentences sung like questions, but also word whiskers and everyday language indicative of self-doubt. Commenter Megan commented […]


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Learning to Give Better Talks: One Message per Slide. One Slide per Message.

by Kelle January 21, 2011

How to give effective oral presentations | Physicist/Feminist There are some fundamental principles of giving effective talks that everyone should learn and try to implement to the best of their ability. Not everybody is going to give great talks, but all of us can give better ones! Towards that end, one of the professional development […]


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The Mac App Store and You

by Planck January 20, 2011

The new Mac App Store debuted a few weeks ago as Apple’s new centralized location for finding, purchasing, and installing Macintosh applications. (Don’t forget, we have a centralized list of useful Mac apps on the AstroBetter wiki.) It is modeled on the very successful iOS App Store, and works as its own, new, application that is […]


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Presenter Notes: Get your cheatsheets off your slides!

by Jane January 19, 2011

Why are our slides so wordy? Are we afraid we’ll forget what to say?  That would be bad, because memory-jogging notes for you aren’t words tuned for your audience.  Worse, your audience’s attention will be divided between your voice and your wordy slides. Previously, I recommended strategies for lean, effective slides when giving scientific talks.  Now, […]


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How to Turn an ASCII Table into an SDSS spectrum? [Ask AstroBetter]

by Kelle January 18, 2011

[title revised Jan 19] Since Jane’s questions have proved to be very popular and useful posts, we’ve decided to make “Ask AstroBetter” a regular feature. Continuing on the theme of spectral analysis, Eilat asks, Is there a straightforward way to take a table of wavelength, flux, error spanning the same range as SDSS spectra and […]


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Mac OS X Hints for 10.6 Snow Leopard

by saurav January 13, 2011

As we look forward to the days of Mac OS 10.7 Lion (Summer 2011) and a flood of hints on how to take advantage of new features in Lion at Mac OS X Hints, I thought it would be a good idea to share the list (from my bookmarks) of my favorite hints  since 10.6 […]

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Scripting big jobs for multi-core processors

by Jane January 12, 2011

What is the best way to solve the following problem?  Say you have a long list of individual tasks, each computationally intensive.  For example, you need to run one hundred photoionization models covering a grid of parameter space.  Or you want to perform psf-fitting photometry on a thousand separate images.   Your computer has multiple CPUs […]


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