Utilities, software or otherwise, used for a better academic life

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36
votes
8answers
6k views

Is it acceptable to use personal equipment for research?

I'm a new graduate student in a computational lab, and the workstations provided by the lab I'm in right now are...slightly subpar. Long story short, a lot of it is nearing a decade old, and there ...
45
votes
3answers
6k views

Is it acceptable to use Mathematica to derive results in your research?

While doing research in statistics, sometimes I came across complex integration that I can't or don't want to solve analytically. Is it okay to use Mathematica to solve the integration and use the ...
4
votes
1answer
95 views

What tool or process can I use to see revisions on papers I am grading?

Like many professors, I ask for drafts of papers of more than a few pages (1500+ words). I provide comments focused on content. (I might make occasional corrections to grammar or word choice--...
1
vote
0answers
24 views

How to search private annotations in Mendeley?

I have dozens of papers in Mendeley. Most are filled with post-it notes, what Mendeley calls "private annotations". Unfortunately, these are not searchable. Mendeley users have been asking this ...
1
vote
1answer
41 views

Alternative ( and programmable) referencing tools for word on mac [closed]

I am using microsoft office word, the newest version (2016) for mac. I have previously used Endnote as a referencing tool, but now I switched to Mendeley because It is conveniently good at organizing ...
0
votes
1answer
109 views

open source programs for plotting? [closed]

Short version: Any suggestion on an Open-Source Software alternative to Grapher/Surfer/Origin/SigmaPlot? Details: This is not a shopping question. As a scientist I explore and plot data all the time. ...
22
votes
6answers
2k views

What tools do you use in academia to jointly review a thesis?

I am giving a thesis for review by several supervisors, who will comment and request changes. It's written in LaTeX, but I don't want to bother the people involved with having to compile that ...
6
votes
2answers
146 views

How can I keep up with all the important advances in fields related to mine?

Being updated with new ideas in many research fields is impossible, seen the diversity of research topics and the strong relations that exists between them. Most of the researchers in the world, are ...
2
votes
0answers
43 views

Chemical Engineering subject classification

Our department is working on revamping our curriculum and I thought it would be a good time to align ourselves with any internationally available subject classification schemes for Chemical ...
4
votes
2answers
136 views

Is there a tool for showing trend in a technical research field?

Does anyone know if there exists a tool to generate the trend of interest in a particular research field over time? I am particularly interested in wearable computing. I know this field has been hot ...
2
votes
1answer
61 views

Perennial link to a research article

For convenience, I often want to give a link to a research article in addition to the citation. I am mostly look for the following two properties: the link should be valid as long as possible the ...
4
votes
3answers
279 views

Receiving comments on one's article

After publishing an article, assuming that the publisher doesn't prevent you from sharing an article online in a public place, the authors might want to receive additional feedback. Are there good ...
12
votes
3answers
3k views

Is it ethical/legal to use the University's resources for a personal project?

I am currently pursuing a PhD at Technion (Israel). My area of study lies in computational fluid dynamics (CFD), which involves high performance computing. My research requires me to develop/use ...
2
votes
4answers
332 views

What features does Adobe Illustrator lack compared to Microsoft PowerPoint for making posters?

I have used Microsoft PowerPoint to make posters so far, and I am considering giving Adobe Illustrator a shot for my next poster. What features does Adobe Illustrator lack compared to Microsoft ...
7
votes
1answer
783 views

Is there a powerful exam template that doesn't require an engineering degree to use?

Microsoft Word is the standard product for documents in my department as far as the administration is concerned. Final exams go through a work-flow that involves department secretaries creating a ...
2
votes
2answers
200 views

How to mention an implementation tool in thesis?

In my MSc thesis implementation section, I have used two tools: Matlab and Python scripting. How should I introduce and mention them in my implementation chapter? Thank you,
3
votes
1answer
258 views

Search for a WYSIWYG, non-latex Online collaborative paper writing Tool

Is there a tool that is WYSIWYG and not latex (in fact any coding) base online (for ease of collaboration) Can write math equation Does line numbering Does equation numbering Google Doc is perfect ...
4
votes
3answers
461 views

How to receive email notifications of newly accepted papers in a specified set of journals?

Is there some way of arranging that I receive emails whenever selected academic economics journals of interest to me, perhaps published by different publishers, post online a newly accepted paper?
5
votes
1answer
203 views

Is there any system that enables online office hours?

Can anyone comment on their own implementation of online office hours, ideally with the following characteristics: Free. (I'm happy to install software on my own server if needed) Allows for live ...
3
votes
2answers
195 views

Where can I search for researchers in a specific field by location

Where can I search for some authors of publications or researchers in a specific filed (e.g. Computer science) and in a specific country (USA, China, ...) For example I would like to find all people ...
13
votes
4answers
2k views

Alternatives to Word/LaTeX [closed]

I wrote my undergrad thesis using Word. Overall I managed to get the job done, but as with all WYSIWYG editors, by the end I feel like I had created a bit of a mess. It didn't show, but I know it's ...
1
vote
3answers
85 views

Collaboration tool for students and teachers

I'm looking for a tool (web application) similar to Atlassian Confluence but for academic purposes. The main purpose of that is to allow selected teachers and students from different schools ...
13
votes
2answers
19k views

Source code plagiarism detection tool that checks against online content

I asked this question on Stackoverflow and was directed to ask it here. The question is: I wanted to ask about plagiarism detection tools for source code written in C++. When I searched Google the ...
1
vote
1answer
198 views

Tool for obtaining a BibTeX entry from a key, without creating it manually

I am looking for a tool, where I only need to write something like alessandroni2015bibtex (this very question) to obtain the BibTeX entry, without needing to rewrite it. I am aware that Google ...
1
vote
0answers
47 views

Booking websites for student consults [duplicate]

Apologies if this has been asked. I've been searching the website to find a comment on a post I read about online scheduling systems. I'm looking for a free online system that will enable students to ...
1
vote
1answer
90 views

Encouraging students to be more social with each other via course wall exchanges

I find that students do not always use the course walls to talk to each other. I want to help them be more social, but don't necessarily want to tie this to class participation grades. I want them ...
7
votes
1answer
272 views

Do automatic tools to check thesis exist?

I am currently writing my bachelor's thesis in Computer Science with LaTeX. The thesis is written in English. I use aspell for spell checking, but I think there is more that could automatically be ...
0
votes
1answer
65 views

Is there any online tool where students can register for tasks/assignments?

I'm teaching architecture and I want my students to select a building that they will work with from a list. When a building is selected by one student, it should no longer be an option for the others (...
35
votes
9answers
7k views

Are there tools to prevent students from cheating on a programming exam administered on computers?

I'm teaching an Introduction to Computer Science Course, where we mainly do C programming. I've been assigned a lab for teaching the course, but there are more students than available computers. Also, ...
4
votes
3answers
111 views

Are there tools to implement an institutional open access policy?

Many universities have adopted open access policies, giving their employees an incentive to make their scholarly articles freely available online. To enforce this policy, universities should ideally ...
8
votes
3answers
513 views

Are there any tools for organising literature with tags?

So when writing a manuscript I usually go about as follows: When reading papers on my topic I copy/paste or summarise those parts, which may be relevant for me and collect all these bits in a Word ...
12
votes
2answers
6k views

How can I export my Google Scholar Library as a BibTeX format?

In the My Library of Google Scholar, is there a way to export all of the citations, whether to BibTex or something similar?
24
votes
5answers
2k views

Academic home page with low maintenance burden [closed]

It's been mentioned before on this site how important it is to have a webpage. Most academics don't have a lot of experience with web development, and do not realistically have time to learn it and ...
8
votes
3answers
127 views

Is there a tool for visualizing the geographic locations of research?

Many e-journals search tools contain much metadata in their database. For example, they have the "location" entry required for some citation formats, which at least shows the location of the journal, ...
5
votes
1answer
145 views

Effective way to organize a course so that it can be followed from abroad

I'm reaching out because I'd like to take a Master's Degree in Spain (which starts in October), but my current job will end in December, and I'm trying to find an effective way to organize classes ...
7
votes
4answers
379 views

Are there any tools to automatically search and download literature in a given .bib file?

I'd like to download automatically tons of papers listed on .bib file so I'm trying to find a way to facilitate the process by, e.g. I import or input to a tool a certain .bib file which contains a ...
11
votes
2answers
392 views

How do you keep track of papers during a brainstorming literature review?

I am often in charge of researching new sub-topics in my discipline for short papers. I find my default technique is: Search Google Scholar for best-guess keywords Open relevant-looking resulting ...
10
votes
4answers
2k views

Use of automated assessment of programming assignments

(This is a reworking of Software for submitting and testing programming assignments.) First, a bit of background. Many courses in applied mathematics have a programming component, where students are ...
4
votes
1answer
395 views

Software for submitting and testing programming assignments

Can anyone recommend an open source system for students to submit programming assignments? Ideally it would be something that would run on the web, do some level of testing on the server side, and ...
8
votes
1answer
134 views

Are datasets really random for Bioinformatics tools

For my masters thesis, I needed a to run a tool to filter out RNA sequences and then research on the filtered data. I researched online reading papers to find an appropriate tool and I found one that ...
19
votes
2answers
635 views

Are there opportunities to support cancer research through volunteer IT or software development?

Several friends and acquaintances have recently died from cancer. The chemo treatments are crude and destroy quality of life. Furthermore, chemo treatments depend on the efficacy of antibiotics for ...
15
votes
4answers
2k views

Is there an open source tool for producing bibtex entries from paper PDFs?

In the desktop application for Mendeley, it's possible to import a PDF and have the bibliographic data automatically extracted (or perhaps looked up, I'm not sure). This feature is more or less ...
21
votes
9answers
674 views

Is it acceptable to require a student to use the supervisor's preferred software/tools?

I'm about to supervise my first bachelor student and I'm not quite sure what is acceptable and what is not. The thesis will contain math formulas, illustrations, images, graphs and tables - like any ...
10
votes
4answers
1k views

How to efficiently print the image of a whiteboard?

I often brainstorm research ideas on my whiteboard. I then run out of space and want to store and print the contents of the whiteboard. In general I have a system of taking a photo of the whiteboard ...
15
votes
2answers
590 views

How to physically handle hundreds and hundreds of papers

I have a bit of a meta-question about academics. I am a graduate student and teaching assistant. I often find myself flipping, organizing, and searching through stacks of hundreds and hundreds of ...
25
votes
6answers
826 views

Archiving papers, simulation and experimental data, etc?

Archiving of papers and projects is very important for most of the people, and everyone has a method of it. I, personally, try to have different folders for different papers. In the folder of each ...
36
votes
6answers
3k views

How to manage theorist's “labbook”?

Question: Are there any guidelines, sources, or examples of good practices for maintaining theorist's research notebook? Motivation and context: Maintaining a lab notebook is a much advised (if not ...
9
votes
5answers
354 views

“Telecommuting” in academia

In business (e.g. IT industry) remote work (aka "telecommuting") can be relatively common (see e.g. a recent StackOverflow blog post). It is exceedingly rare (or even nonexistent) in academia, even ...
25
votes
7answers
14k views

Software for extracting data from a graph without having to click on every single point?

There are many times when I am faced with the task of extracting data from a published graph (usually a bitmap image in an paper). For example, a scatter plot from which I would like to get a list of ...
10
votes
2answers
444 views

Does using a bibliography software actually save you time aside from when converting citation style?

Does using a bibliography software actually save you time aside from when converting citation style? I have used refworks and endnote for years and from 3 years ago I decided to ditch them both and ...