Monday, October 20, 2014

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An example of eloquent science (V. E. Suomi 1979)

The following text was written in 1979 by Verner E. Suomi from the Foreword of the report Carbon Dioxide and Climate: A Scientific Assessment. Truly eloquent science! Carbon Dioxide and Climate: A Scientific Assessment. Report of an Ad Hoc Study Group on Carbon Dioxide and Climate to the Climate Research Board, Assembly of Mathematical and […]

Why the acknowledgements are important

June 7, 2013 by  
Filed under Blog, Featured, Writing

This recent slate.com article discusses the increasing prevalance of the acknowledgements section in books. It got me thinking about acknowledgements in scientific papers. Some authors use them, others don’t. Some authors thank the reviewers; others don’t. Some authors even thank the Editor; others don’t. Every once in a while you’ll find authors using weather graphics […]

The importance of picking good terminology the first time

May 22, 2013 by  
Filed under Blog, Featured, Writing

In an early paper that I lead authored, I used the term cold surge to describe the cold front associated with the Superstorm of March 1993. Schultz, D. M., W. E. Bracken, L. F. Bosart, G. J. Hakim, M. A. Bedrick, M. J. Dickinson, and K. R. Tyle, 1997: The 1993 Superstorm cold surge: Frontal […]

A subjective discussion of the meanings of “subjective” and “objective”

April 8, 2013 by  
Filed under Blog, Featured, Writing

Scientists are objective. Personal bias is not acceptable and interpretation that is subject to the observer is frowned upon. The above statement is the ideal to which we presumably strive to attain as scientists. The reality that we construct in our research is independent of the person doing the research. So, when someone performs some […]

An example of why hyphens are necessary

March 14, 2013 by  
Filed under Blog, Featured, Writing

The following is an excerpt from an email sent to staff at the University of Manchester. As part of the University’s commitment to creating change in gender equality across the University we are running a half day unconscious bias training session focussed on recruitment and promotion. The following is how it should have been punctuated […]

Can you explain your science using the 1000 most-used words in the English language?

February 17, 2013 by  
Filed under Blog, Featured, Humor, Resources, Writing

Give it a shot here: http://splasho.com/upgoer5/ (The title Up Goer 5 refers to xkcd’s comic of trying to explain the Saturn 5 rocket blueprint using only those 1000 words.) (From Jim Steenburgh and his student John; Image from xkcd.com.)

Time management skills: Walking

January 26, 2013 by  
Filed under Blog, Featured

As time gets ever more precious to me and I have an increasing number of scientific articles that I want to write, I have found that I have had to develop more efficiency in my writing. Naturally, as I’ve becoming more experienced, I spent less time making the same mistakes that I did before. But, […]

How to Prepare a Really Lousy Submission: Water Resources Research Editorial Team

Sent to me from colleagues at the University of Utah. [PDF]

“Utilize” versus “Use”

December 18, 2012 by  
Filed under Blog, Featured, Uncategorized, Writing

From The Telegraph (sent to me by Jamie Gilmour): When the American writer David Foster Wallace died four years ago, he left behind the following fragments: notes towards a dictionary all of his own. Utilize A noxious puff-word. Since it does nothing that good old use doesn’t do, its extra letters and syllables don’t make […]

Automation of literature reviews

August 2, 2012 by  
Filed under Blog, Featured, Writing

A recently published paper in Scientometrics raises the specter of an automated tool that would search through existing citations and “facilitate novices to perform tasks that are usually carried out by trained professionals.” The tool was then used for students to create literature reviews and these were submitted to conferences. The tool was so successful, […]

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