April 2012

Speaking with Confidence – or Why We Ramble [Link]

by Jessica Lu April 27, 2012

Good verbal communication is a valuable skill for a scientist. The article below discusses a common trait for many young scientists — rambling. Is That Your Final Answer? Or, Why Graduate Students Ramble – The Professor Is In Do you hear yourself in those examples? How have you improved your question answering style? What advice do […]


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QR Codes to Enrich Posters

by Guest April 25, 2012

Gregory Mace is a Graduate Student at UCLA. He is part of the team developing MOSFIRE (the Multi-Object Spectrometer for Infra-Red Exploration) and maintains the NIRSPEC Brown Dwarf Spectroscopic Survey online archive. The next time you prepare for a conference and think of printing copies of the poster or taking individual frames from videos of […]


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Peer Review Discussion

by Kelle April 23, 2012

Taking on yet another angle of related to our past discussions about posting to the arXiv before acceptance, citation etiquette, let’s talk about the peer review process. Here are some articles describing the current peer review process: A quick guide to writing a solid peer review, PDF. Nature’s Peer Review Policy Refereeing Wiki Page What’s […]


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Peer Mentoring

by Guest April 20, 2012

Hannah Jang-Condell is an assistant professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Wyoming. She is also a member of the AAS Committee of the Status of Women in Astronomy, and is the blogger-in-chief of the Women in Astronomy Blog. There are a lot of things you can do to boost […]


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ArXivSorter: A Sorting Algorithm for Astro-ph

by saurav April 18, 2012

Overwhelmed by the large number of papers on astro-ph? Only have time to look at the relevant papers?  Or back from an internet-free vacation (what is that?) and want to find out what you missed?  Try ArXivSorter, which uses a friends-of-friends algorithm to sort the papers on astro-ph for you. Using an initial list of […]


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Sharing Astro Course Notes and Classroom Activities [Wiki]

by Jessica Lu April 16, 2012

There is a large pool of resources for Astro 101 level courses organized on the AstroBetter wiki. Advancements in education research are frequently incorporated in Astro 101 classes, thanks to the availability of these resources. However, there is much less available for higher level courses, including those for undergraduate astronomy majors and graduate physics and astronomy […]


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Python Installation and Ecosystem Tutorial

by Guest April 11, 2012

This is a guest post from Tom Aldcroft. Tom is an astrophysicist working at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge MA. In addition to science research he has responsibilities supporting mission operations for the Chandra X-ray Observatory. In both areas he uses Python on a daily basis and will gladly tell you about his […]


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Why write collaboratively?

by Jane April 9, 2012

Let’s talk about how we write. The primary output of astronomers are papers and proposals — we have to obtain data & money, publish results, and repeat.  Here, I’m going to argue that we should write some of those words more collaboratively. Our default method of writing was invented when colleagues communicated by postal mail with […]


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