Monthly Archives: October 2006


The shows haven’t really changed that much in the last 25 years. You can still watch Monday Night football and Saturday night live.

TV Party by Black Flag

(I cannot get the video to embed. So I gave up.)


Cites matter for evaluation—at least somewhat. I am much less worried about my cites than I once was. Here’s why.

I once wrote a paper that cited a older paper. I wrote about two sentences about that paper, both of which were kind of vague, and easy to misinterpret (my bad.) People read my paper, and gave me a cite. But more interestingly, they liked the way I cited that older paper, and they basically copied my cite—although based on their work, it seems clear to me that they had not really read the original paper. So how important was the cite for their thinking?

(I got the idea for the post from this: A Gentleman’s C.)

Science saves

How hockey goalies save

via: digg


The trickiest situation when revising is having multiple referees who disagree with each other and a vague editor. My track record in such situations is terrible. But surprisingly, such disagreement has become rarer and rarer for me over time. Now it’s either reject quickly or a sensible revision.

Is it me improving, or is it simply more seniority and more ‘service’ done myself as a referee so I have some capital with the editors?

Teaching questions

A mish-mash:

* How far in advance should you prepare? I have done it all ways, with varying success. Too early, and the lecture loses some edginess, brought on by sheer panic caused by last minute prep. If I do it a the last minute, the jokes are always better when I am wound up before class, although it’s a bit tense right before class.

* How to correct students when they enthusiastically give a wrong answer to the cold call question. How to be firm but nice?

* How important are the slides, really? I have given great lectures with bad slides and terrible lectures with good slides.

* How many jokes? I have had too many, and the students think I am a joker. I have had too few, and the students thing I am too serious.

* What fraction of the students should like you? Or more importantly, what fraction should dislike you?

* What is the best way to unwind after a long class—-I always need a beer or a run. Depending on the time of day that the class ends.

* Homework assignments are for the students to learn. Too few points, and they don’t take them seriously. Too many, and they will cheat, and complain when they are too hard, even though they learn the most if there is hard stuff in the homework.

What a way to start the weekend

All refereeing in my queue completed! And a conference paper submitted. My email inbox is empty, and I will leave with a clean desk.

I deserve some nice scotch tonight.

A useful looking site

A repository of pdf forms

via Del.ic.ious Tag: gettingthingsdone

And I am really diggin’ google reader—I just started using it today. It knocked out netnewswire and rather easily.