Friday, August 30, 2013

Lifehacker tells you how to stay motivated and finish your school work!

Lifehacker is one of my very favorite websites to visit.  I almost ALWAYS learn something valuable there.  I am always surprised by the breadth of information that can be found there.  I've learned how often to mow my yard and how to pick out the best school supplies.  For right now I thought it would be appropriate to give you a link to the Lifehacker post on How to Stay Motivated and Finish Your School Work!   I'm going to use some of these tips to manage my own work flow for writing.  The ideas are widely applicable. 

Don't delay.  Click on that link and study it NOW.  It might just save your grades this semester.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Posting on Dr. Graham's Blog

I have partnered with Dr. Gerald Graham and am contributing periodic posts to his blog "How Effective Leaders Get Things Done".  Gerald is one of the smartest men I know, and a nice guy to boot!  Take a look at his blog HERE.  My most recent post can be found HERE.


Thursday, August 15, 2013

More on Evernote!

I realized after I published my last post on Evernote, that I forgot to mention some of its really useful functionality.  First, Evernote can be used as a program on your computer (with a desktop icon if you like) or you can use it as a web-based program.  You can even use BOTH,  and changes you make in one will be synchronized to the other.   If you use the Desktop version, then you don't have to be connected to the internet to access it.  If you use the Web-based version, then obviously you do AND you can access it from any internet-enabled computer. In addition there is an Evernote App for your mobile device!

An additional tool that Evernote has that is VERY useful if you do a lot of browsing on the internet, is the Evernote Web Clipper, which is a browser extension used to save URL's, pictures, and text from web pages for later browsing.  You can select an entire page, a portion of the text, or even just the URL.  You can select the desired notebook to save the information to along with any tags that you want to attach.  For more information on Evernote, there is a great article on Mashable. 

For more applications that integrate with Evernote, check out the Evernote Trunk. 

For my previous post on Evernote, go HERE. 

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Getting Organized for a New School Term

The beginning of a new semester is the time to get organized.  While I still do make use of the ever-present yellow Post-It Notes of various sizes (the physical variety), I have found that one big disadvantage of them is that they are only in one place.  More and more all of us are using a tablet, a smart phone, and... oh yeah... the PC to keep track of what we need to do.  One GREAT cross-platform FREE software is Evernote.  I recommend giving it a whirl.  I have upgraded to the Premium version, but could probably get along just fine with the free version. 

Here are some things that you can do with it. 

Find a Tweet, or get an email that you would like to save?  Are you on your phone and not at your desk?  Your Evernote account comes with an email address, so you can simply forward whatever you have to Evernote.  I have a neat app on my iPhone called CamScanner.  It turns a camera shot into a PDF which I can then email.  One way to use this for business is to scan those restaurant receipts, turn them into PDF's, and email to Evernote.  You can then organize them according to the consulting project in Evernote. 

Another nice feature of Evernote is that the notes that you save (which can contain pictures, text, audio, or video) can be organized into Notebooks.  Notebooks can be organized into Stacks.  You might have a "Stack" for Class Notes.  Under that Stack, you have a Notebook for each class that you are currently taking.  Notes can have Tags, which can be searched for.  For example, use the Tag "Assignment" for class assignments. 

For an extensive list of the ways to use Evernote, try THIS article from Lifehacker.com.


Tuesday, August 6, 2013

The Beginning of the School Year

Some of you know that this year (May 2013) I retired after 33 years of teaching at Wichita State University.  As I start to see more and more information about the start of the school year, I am conflicted as to what I should be feeling.  On one hand, I am relieved that I don't have to gear up for teaching a new semester. On the other hand, there are definitely things that I would be looking forward to.

In the past, this is the time that I would start thinking about revisions to my syllabus.  What new things does the university require?  What did I learn from the last time I taught this course that might impact what I do this semester?  Even though students might not believe it, I would go back and read the student comments from my evaluations from last year.  I've read them before, but this time I would be looking at them with a view toward trying to learn what needs to change.  This year I don't have to do that. 

What will I miss?  I'll miss seeing my colleagues on a daily or weekly basis.  I'll miss complaining about parking (well maybe not so much that!).  I WILL miss the students.  I'll especially miss "my" HR majors.  I'll miss seeing them in class.  I don't have a solution for this.  I am NOT regretting my decision to retire, just realizing that there are things that I will miss.