A whiteboard is pretty versatile. It can be used many times for many purposes. I use it during meetings and while working alone. In this post, I’ll explain how I use a whiteboard for creating visual aids.
1. Visual Brainstorming
I am very committed to the digital workspace. My library, papers, notes, handouts, etc. are in the cloud (more about that in this post). I do all of my reading and writing on a computer or a smartphone. But very occasionally a physical workspace trumps my digital workspace.
Visual brainstorming is one task for which a physical workspace outshines the digital counterpart. By ‘visual brainstorming’ I just mean Continue reading Visual Brainstorming on Whiteboards for Posters, Slides, and More
In a recent APA blog post historian of philosophy and pun-loving podcaster, Peter Adamson, floated the idea of using podcasts for teaching. Sounds like a good idea, sure. In this post, I’d like to focus on the idea of using podcasts for research. As I see it, podcasts could be AMAZING for research! Yeah, like, all-caps amazing! Continue reading Podcasts …for research?
My job requires lots of reading. But sometimes I read very slowly. Other times my body is occupied doing something that precludes the ability to read from a book or an electronic display. So I have been looking for ways to fit in more reading and to read faster. Text-to-speech technology provides the means to do this. So I use text-to-speech for speed reading, for multi-task reading, for and a few other things. In this post, I will (a) talk you about the best PDF-to-speech app that I have found and (b) talk about how I use text-to-speech more generally.
Most computers, tablets, and smartphones can read text aloud in one way or another. However, until recently, I have not found text-to-speech software that can do both of the following:
- Speak the whole document start-to-finish. Every new page seems to trip up the software, so I have to restart the speech playback at the beginning of every new page.
- Ignore header and footer text. If the software can do 1, then it gets sidetracked by the text in the headers and footers every time it advances to the next page (e.g., copyright notices and page numbers; see figure 1 below).
Continue reading Text-To-Speech for Speed Reading & More
Lots of people pay close attention to the US News National University Rankings. But those rankings assume all users have the same priorities. Moreover, some people want field-specific rankings that compare universities at the department level (e.g., the Philosophy department at Harvard vs. the Philosophy department at MIT). Ranking-obsessed philosophers have had the Philosophical Gourmet Report to rank philosophy Ph.D. programs since at least 1996—1989 if you count the pre-internet version. For many reasons, academic philosophers are becoming more vocal about their criticism of these philosophy rankings (e.g., Bruya 2015, De Cruz
2016 2018). In this post, I will propose a (new?) custom ranking system. This system will address common complaints about philosophy’s existing ranking system: a custom ranking system will be more versatile, up-to-date, and generalizable.
1. THE COMPLAINTS
The complaints about the rankings are voluminous — what else would you expect from philosophers? In lieu of an outline of every blog post and every public statement, I provide a list of major themes that fall into three different categories: the practice of ranking, the current process of ranking, and the current leadership of the ranking.
Complaints About Ranking
- Rankings might misrepresent the magnitude of the differences between departments.
- Rankings might indicate a false sense of hierarchy and/or prestige.
- Ordinal lists just aren’t that informative.
Complaints About Process
Continue reading University and Department Rankings: A Custom Solution