I received this email today: Dear Professor Hyndman, I was wondering if you could maybe give me some advice on how to organize your research process. I am able to search the literature on a certain topic and identify where there is a question to work with. My main difficult is to organize my paper annotations in order to help me to guide my research process, i.e, how to manage the information gathered in those papers to compose and structure a document which can represent the research developed so far. I have been looking at different tools such scrivener, Qiqqa, papers2, etc but I am not sure if one of these tools would be the right way to go. To be honest I am not even sure a tool would do what I am looking for, not just organize references and annotate pdfs but to get more control of my research process. I appreciate if I could get your thoughts on this subject.
Posts Tagged ‘references’:
The nature of research is that other people are probably working on similar ideas to you, and it is possible that someone will beat you to publishing them.
If you find this blog helpful (or even if you don’t but you’re interested in blogs on research issues and tools), there are a few other blogs about doing research that you might find useful. Here are a few that I read. Patter — Pat Thomson. The Thesis Whisperer — Inger Mewburn. The Research Whisperer – several RMIT researchers. the (research) supervisor’s friend — Geof Hill. My Research Rants – Jordi Cabot. The Three Month Thesis – James Hayton. profserious – Anthony Finkelstein. Academic Life — Marialuisa Aliotta. Help for New Professors — Faye Hicks. The Art of Scientific Writing – Faye Hicks. Explorations of style– Rachael Cayley. sharmanedit — Anna Sharman. GradHacker – writers from several universities. PhD Life – Warwick Uni students. PhD Comics — essential reading for every PhD student, and good therapy. I’ve created a bundle so you can subscribe to all of these in one go. Of course, there are lots of statistics blogs as well, and blogs about other research disciplines. The ones above are those that concentrate on generic research issues.
I’ve just finished another reviewer report for a journal, and yet again I’ve had to make comments about reading the literature. It’s not difficult. Before you write a paper, read what other people have done. A simple search on Google scholar will usually do the trick. And before you submit a paper, check again that you haven’t missed anything important. The paper I reviewed today did not cite a single reference from either of the two most active research groups in the area in the last ten years. Any search on the topic would have turned up about a dozen papers from these two groups alone. I don’t mind if papers miss a reference or two, especially if they have been published in an obscure outlet. But I will recommend a straight reject if a paper hasn’t cited any of the most important papers from the last five years. Part of a researcher’s task is to engage with what has already been done, and show how any new ideas differ from or extend on previous work.
The Time Series Data Library is a collection of about 800 time series that I have maintained since about 1992, and hosted on my personal website. It includes data from a lot of time series textbooks, as well as many other series that I’ve either collected for student projects or helpful people have sent to me. I’ve now moved the collection onto DataMarket which provides much better facilities for maintaining and using time series data. You can easily search the collection, graph any series, filter by seasonal period, and so on. You can also export data in many formats. Each data set has its own short link; for example, the famous Canadian lynx data is at http://data.is/Ky69xY. One particularly useful feature is the ability to read directly into R using the rdatamarket package. All you need to know is the short link. For example, to download “Deaths from gun-related homicides in Australia, 1915–2004″, use the following R code library(rdatamarket) deaths <- dmseries(“http://data.is/Ky6vVf”) The data is set to zoo class. To make it of ts class, use deaths <- as.ts(deaths[,1]) In this case, deaths only contained one column, but in general multivariate time series can be downloaded in this manner. DataMarket contains thousands of other time series
After years of saying that I was going to write a book to replace Makridakis, Wheelwright and Hyndman (1998), I’m finally ready to make an announcement! My new book is Forecasting: principles and practice, co-authored with George Athanasopoulos. It is available online and free-of-charge. We have written about 2⁄3 of the book so far (all of which is already available online), and we plan to finish it by the end of 2012. We hope to make a print version of the book available on Amazon in early 2013. This textbook is intended to provide a comprehensive introduction to forecasting methods and present enough information about each method for readers to use them sensibly. We don’t attempt to give a thorough discussion of the theoretical details behind each method, although the references at the end of each chapter will fill in many of those details. We use R throughout the book and we intend students to learn how to forecast with R. The book has it’s own R package: fpp. This contains all the data sets used in the book, and also loads a few other packages that are necessary to complete the examples. The book is different from other forecasting textbooks in several ways. It is free and online, making it accessible to
A great new feature has been added to Google Scholar Citations. For those authors who have set up a citations page, it is now possible to get email alerts for any new articles they publish, or for any new citations of their articles. So you can track citations to your own work this way, and stay up-to-date with key authors in your field. Setting up a Google Citations page is super-easy and was already worth doing. This new functionality is another reason to do it. After all, as researchers we want people to read our stuff, so we might as well make it as easy as possible for people to find what we write. To set up your Google Citations page, go to scholar.google.com/citations. To follow an author, find their citations page and look for the “Follow this author” box at the top right of the page. Hopefully, Google will add RSS feeds as an option in the future as I’d much rather get alerts that way then by yet more email in my inbox.
This is a gem of a book. It will become the book I give PhD students when they are learning how to write good R code. That is, if I ever see it again. I had hoped to write a review of it, but I haven’t seen it since it arrived in the mail a couple of weeks ago because a research student or research assistant has always had it on loan. I guess that’s a testament to how useful it is.
A researcher portal is a website that attempts to list all the publications of a given researcher. Some portals also allow sharing papers, interacting with other researchers, calculating citation statistics, etc. Every researcher wants their work read and cited, so these websites can be useful tools for getting your work noticed. They can also function as a de facto home page if you don’t already have a personal website. Conversely, they can be a good way to find new work by researchers in your field. However, unless a site provides a relatively complete list of your publications, and covers a large proportion of the research community in your discipline, it is of limited value.
Mendeley has a lot more facilities than JabRef, and I’ve recommended that everyone in my research group switch to Mendeley. However, if you’ve been using JabRef for a while then you won’t want to lose all your pdf links and other information stored in JabRef. Here are a couple of ideas to make the conversion simpler.