Tailoring the literature review
Writers of all stripes mostly talk about writers’ block, but what has been challenging lately is reading block - occasionally I find it hard to focus on reading from a laptop screen after work (I don’t print anything and work at night). What I need sometimes is a change of screen. Inspired by Kathryn I’ve set up my iPad mini for reading and annotating. Alas, I don’t have a fancy Pencil, but I do have a cheap stylus that does the job for quick PDF markup using Notability.
What's so amazing about really deep thoughts?
As she so often manages to do, Meredith Farkas has written a must-read post, this time about social media, identity, and ownership.
I thought of her post today, when a colleague said they were so glad that RSS was no longer a thing. I, on the other hand, still think the death of Reader was one of Google’s worst decisions. But we knew then and we knew why they killed it: because there was no money, no (well, less) tracking, in RSS.
Workflow, routines, and reference managers
It’s funny how fast routines can be established. In the month following my move to Sydney and starting formal PhD work I quickly settled into a daily working pattern at one of the city’s major university libraries before starting my new job. I arrived in the morning and stayed all day, sitting in the same seat most days. Many of the student faces around me were the same everyday. Tweets about #PhDlife #WritethatPhD emphasize writing everyday, setting small goals.
Beginning the PhD Journey
This week I commenced a PhD in Political Science and International Relations at the University of Western Australia. Like Stuart Lawson, I hope to document my journey over the next 5+ years through this blog.
Starting a PhD has always been a question of when, not if, for me. Many programs are naturally oriented towards those seeking an academic career, are offered full-time only, and assign students to a pre-determined topic to obtain studentships (especially in the UK).
Can libraries thrive in a young democracy? Considering Myanmar
Late last year, my research on libraries in Myanmar, democratic reforms, and the role of information in development was published, Myanmar Libraries after the Opening Up. The working title was “Portrait in time”, which seems ever more appropriate given what happened immediately before, and after, the article was published.
I worked on a development project with Myanmar Library Association between 2013 and 2016, and had been hoping to return this year to participate in the CONSAL conference but the timing of my relocation to Australia meant that wasn’t possible.
The eternal return of blogging
Blogging requires exercise. This much I have learned after years of diminishing posts, culminating in a hosting provider move and a malware attack that went spectacularly wrong. I’ve written before about how blogging is taking off in research, and yet found it difficult to keep on writing, preferring instead to post to social media. But for me, this must change.
I agree with Dan Cohen that the ease of sites that we as consumers do not own or manage has played a big part in the decline of blogs.
Hello. You might remember me from such blogs as Semantic Library or a decade or more back, blisspix.net. On Twitter I’m @fiona_bradley. In celebration of #OAWeek, I have updated my online presences. As part of this process, I’ve also resurrected my former blogs.
Some of the posts are laughably dated now, such as this 2009 post: > How can we steer away from designing apps and authentication just for PCs, Android, or Symbian, or Palm and design universally?
Libraries, Information and Development
If you’re interested in the role of data, ICT and libraries, take a look at my blog post for Post2015.org, which is running a fantastic series of posts from different perspectives on how to realise the data revolution called for in the High Level Panel’s report to the UN on the post-2015 development agenda. As librarians, our perspective is that access is not enough: making available open budgets, development data, and information about public services is needed and important, but without skills and access, and places like libraries, people won’t be able to make use of it.
She's lost ctrl again (and the post-CMS future)
The post-CMS landscape This week, I installed Drupal, then module after module after module to get it content-ready for a new project. Drupal is excellent, but it is big. Over the years, CMSs have made it easy to create content, but they have increasingly hidden the technology behind them. CMSs were certainly not giving me much motivation to get up to date with HTML5, CSS3, or jQuery.
Development Seed is an organisation whose work I’ve admired for years – their open data and government projects are exceptional.
Blogs are still where its at
After the pins, tweets, status updates, vlogs and life journals, it seems that blogs are still the place to be. Harvard Business Review Blog argues that many blogs have as much credibility as their print counterparts, citing a blog authored by a New York Times journalist, and The World Bank, where researchers can use some staff time to blog.
On the face of it, these examples argue in favour of a resurgence in blogging, but they need a bit of unpacking.