All posts by Jason B. Jones

by

Weekend Reading: Freedom From Edition

bridge

Here’s hoping that, this Presidents’ Day weekend, folks are able to get a holiday from the current administration, in order to get a little freer headspace, or maybe even just some work done or some sleep.

by

Focusing on Time Management Probably Isn’t Great

Stress management book with broken cup
So, the post I wanted to write for today relied on a link I’ve saved in Instapaper, which at last count has been down for a full day or so. Not great. But sometimes, the gods of Twitter are friendly, and someone will randomly post a link to the month-old article you’d wanted to write about, and all is well with the world.

The article in question is Oliver Burkeman’s excellent “Why Time Management Is Ruining Our Lives.” Burkeman’s article is exactly what it says on the tin: a strong assertion th…

by

Taking Notes on Primary Sources with Drupal

notebook page

As George noted in September, we’ve had a long-standing fascination with note-taking here at ProfHacker. (Heck, back before ProfHacker was a thing, I’d had a popular note-taking assignment, called Wikified Class Notes.) We’ve had posts on note-taking with AppleScript, paraphrasing as note-taking, note-taking in Zotero, note-taking with iOS, note-taking on a Nook Color … there’ve been a lot of posts about note-taking.

And with good reason! The ability to take good notes is an essential skill for…

by

Weekend Reading: Weathering the Storm of Progress

Knocked over traffic cone

I guess there’s not going to be any settling down, is there? Here, as is often the case, are some interesting articles to kick off your weekend:

  • Looks like Audrey Watters gave a barn-burner at the University of Richmond this week, on “Ed-Tech in a Time of Trump”: “A Time of Trump” could be “A Time of Neoliberalism” or “A Time of Libertarianism” or “A Time of Algorithmic Discrimination” or “A Time of Economic Precarity.” All of this is – from President Trump to the so-called “new economy” – h…
by

Productivity-Talk Here at the End of All Things

panic button
People always say that one of the great things about academe is its familiar rhythm–the academic calendar, which has its moments of stress, can also be weirdly comforting. It’s also makes it sensible for blogging–it’s easy to know when it’s recommendation season, or when people are likely to be grading, or when a note about starting the semester by committing to self-care might be helpful.

And then sometimes there are weeks like this last one.

Today I wanted to link to two posts that have hel…

by

New Keywords on Digital Pedagogy in the Humanities

Manifesto for Teaching Online

I’ve made note before (in December 2015 and last June) about the open review process for the Modern Language Association’s project, Digital Pedagogy in the Humanities: Concepts, Models, and Experiments, “a curated collection of reusable and remixable pedagogical artifacts for humanities scholars.”

There’s a new batch of keywords open for review, and they’re pretty great:

by

Weekend Reading: All the Data, So Many Problems

Starwars video game cassette

I was struck over the holiday week by two posts that both seem to illustrate the unfortunate triumph of (a version of) data over judgment. The first is the story of “Chuck Finley,” in which staff at the East Lake County Library invented a fake patron who seemed to check out thousands of books in order to fake out automated book weeding software. That story directly pits the judgment of librarians against a budget-enforced short-termism of administrators, and pointed to real risks that accrue fr…

by

Build a Habit Streak With Productive

graffiti of habit

Jerry Seinfeld has a well-known piece of productivity advice known as “don’t break the chain.” The idea is simple: you visibly mark on a calendar every day you perform some task–write a good joke, work on squats, write toward an article, learn TEI, whatever–and make sure you do it for several consecutive days. Then, you rely on the power of momentum: just don’t break the chain of days. Keep the streak going, and you will build a habit of prioritizing what’s really important–such as your academi…

by

Weekend Reading: Almost Home Edition

a dog playing in water

If you’re teaching on the semester system, there’s a pretty good chance you’re in its dying embers, so I will get out of your way and usher you directly on to this weekend’s links!

  • Preventing cheating in multiplayer video games turns out to be around as challenging as preventing plagiarism: Given that cheating is surprisingly widespread, and to many, perfectly acceptable, an entire culture of self-entitled habitual video game cheaters has sprung up. In these social circles, cheating at video g…
by

Securing Your Data

locked door

William Gibson has a lovely meditation on privacy, encryption, and history in the New York Times, as he considers the necessary difficulty of linking these terms:

In the short term, the span of a lifetime, many of us would argue for privacy, and therefore against transparency. But history, the long term, is transparency; it is the absence of secrets. So we are quite merciless, as historians, when it comes to the secrets of the past, the secrets of the dead. We come to know them with an intimac…