December 2011

What Operating Systems Do AstroBetter Readers Use?

by Jane December 28, 2011

Following our post on how Hubble users’ operating system choices have evolved with time… Here’s a summary of the operating systems used to access AstroBetter since May 2011: Grabbed from Google Analytics. Our readers are considerably Mackier and less Linuxy than I would have thought. Comments? And Kelle points out the small-but-growing fraction of y’all that […]

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Support Family Leave Policies for Grad Students and Postdocs

by Kelle December 21, 2011

In the interest of fully supporting the intellectual efforts of astronomy graduate students and postdoctoral researchers, Emily Freeland, Aaron Geller, Nick Murphy, Laura Trouille and the AAS Committee on the Status of Women in Astronomy have created a petition to encourage the establishment of family leave policies by Astronomy Departments and Fellowship Committees. Widespread adoption […]


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What operating systems do astronomers use?

by Jane December 20, 2011

Previously on AstroBetter, we’ve discussed what operating systems are used in our profession, in particular relative numbers of OS X (Mac) versus Linux users. While it’s good for us at AstroBetter to know our readership, we can use Google Analytics for that. It’s more important for the astronomical community to know the broader landscape, so […]


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Follow the Rumors

by Jessica Lu December 19, 2011

The time of year is approaching when job-seeking grad students and postdocs eagerly wait for any communication from prospective employers. While one could easily sit and refresh the Rumor Mill pages all day long, and I offer an alternative that might preserve both your productivity and your sanity this job-hunting season while also preventing the […]


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Citation Etiquette

by Kelle December 15, 2011

In a forum hosted by another site, there was an extremely lively and interesting discussion about the etiquette of citation in the astronomical literature. The discussion is valuable enough for me to re-hash the highlights here where it can be archived, permalinked, and continued amongst a wider group. Below, I’ve included slightly edited bits of […]


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To Post or Not to Post: Publishing to the ArXiv Before Acceptance

by Kelle December 12, 2011

Inspired by a discussion elsewhere, I’d like start an open thread about the pros and cons of posting a paper to the arXiv before it’s accepted by a refereed journal. To get the convo going, here’s my summary of what came out of the previous discussion: Pros to posting before acceptance: Problems and omissions get […]


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Minimize Unconscious Bias in Recommendation Letters

by Kelle December 7, 2011

‘Tis the season for recommendation letter writing and a friendly reminder of an important issue that letter writers, readers, and requestors should all be aware of. (Also see last year’s Recommendation Letter Writing Round Up.) While writing letters is a task that is generally taken with great care for all mentees, there are some things […]


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