How Science Can Help You Stick to Your New Year’s Resolutions

How Science Can Help You Achieve Your New Year's Goals

Are you having trouble sticking to your New Year’s goals? I am.

I have two: to lose the weight I gained last year, and to complete and successfully defend my dissertation. Although this requires me to focus on two goals, I believe I can achieve these two goals by focusing on one goal: being disciplined. As Nike says, “Just Do It.”

Most of all, I remind myself to maintain a positive mindset, and iterate. “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.”

How do you stay on track when you set a goal?

[Image via: Happify.com.]

<tamingdata /> Blog Milestones…

Milestones

Recently, I hit a few milestones with this blog that I would like to acknowledge.

I had just under 11k hits on this blog for the month of August 2014. That was the first time I had gone over 10k, period, and I almost made it to 11k.

A few days ago, I noticed I had passed the 100k mark for hits on this blog as the sum for this past twelve months. I’ve ignored this blog a bit for the past few months, while I started up a company and worked to complete my dissertation, so I was even more amazed at the numbers.

Last, but not least, this week, <tamingdata /> is five years old.

I must say, I feel so humbled and grateful that all of you are willing to give this blog your time and attention.

“Thank you”, from the bottom of my heart.

Bullet Journal: Students and Analog-to-Digital Day Planner Conversion (Yes! It is Possible!)

I received this note last week from my contact page.

Hi! I really enjoyed reading about your experience with the Bullet Journal. I am thinking about giving it a go, but I am in grad school and a lot of my planning is around assignments. I have a LOT of homework…reading, lesson plans, etc. If you have any ideas about how to use the Bullet Journal system with tons of homework assignments I would really appreciate suggestions! I have a master list now in an excel spread sheet but I have no idea how I would put them into the Bullet system without planning every day of the month out with due dates. Thank you for taking the time to read my message and if you have a minute I would love to hear from you. Thank you and love your blog! -Jenna

I wanted to share my reply today.

Hi Jenna!

First, I apologize for taking a week to get back to you. What with the Thanksgiving holiday, and then catching up on work, I am only today getting through all of my emails.

I am a doctoral candidate, and I have not yet found the perfect solution for managing my time.

What I do with the bullet journal is on the monthly index, I’ll set aside 3 pages. They look something like this:

(Page 1)
December 2014 Index
Personal
**list tasks

(Page 2)
December 2014 Index
Dissertation
**list tasks

December 2014 Index
Research Assistantship
**list tasks

I tend to put appointments, meetings, etc. in my digital calendar, and then use the bullet journal for task tracking.

I hope this helps.

Also, FastCoDesign had this article today [about Adobe, LiveScribe and Evernote’s analog-to-digital work with Moleskine].

From one of the slides:

“It’s not the first time we’ve seen Moleskine embrace the shifting digital culture. Recently, they’ve released notebooks that pair with Livescribe pens to automatically digitize notes and doodles, and Evernote to upload your analog day planner into your cloud-based calendar.”

I plan to look into this, myself.

Best Regards,

Jewel

Do you all have any suggestions for Jenna? Has anyone tried Moleskine with Evernote, Livescribe, or Adobe?

How Almost Every TV Show Plays Out

Have you ever wanted to write for TV? You have? Well, the infographic below will help you in your plot development.

3039019-inline-i-1-anatomy-of-shows

Are you surprised by anything you read?

I am surprised by how few plot lines there really are.

Are You a Late Bloomer?

too-late-to-learn-late-bloomers-people-who-succeeded-infographic

Are you an early bloomer? A late bloomer? Mid-life?

I cannot answer that question, myself. I’ve been a life-long learner, and I’ve enjoyed every stage of my life. I’m curious, though, about how other people feel about their lives.

[Via: Funders and Founders.]

If Game of Thrones Had Mass Transit…

What would a mass transit map for Westeros and EssosThe Known World from The Game of Thrones—look like? Michael Tyznik decided to find out and created these wonderful maps that both explain and poke fun of the complicated story lines of the book and HBO series.

Inspired by the work of Cameron Booth and his awesome Transit Maps Tumblr, I created these rail maps of Westeros and The Known World. Hopefully fans will notice some small touches — the closed stations along the Wall Line, for example.

Prints of the maps are available starting at $40 at inPRNT: Westeros and The Known World. You can also view the maps at high resolution on my Flickr: Westeros and The Known World.

Here’s the starting point. Clicking on the images will take you to a larger, zoomable image.

  1. We’re at the main station for the city of King’s Landing, viewing a map of “Rail Transport in Westeros”.
  2.  
    King's Landing Header-Rail Transport in Westeros-Game of Thrones-Michael Tyznik
     

  3. Next, we can view more closely the full transit Routes map and Key of “Rail Transport in Westeros”.
  4.  
    Rail Transport in Westeros-Game of Thrones-Michael Tyznik
     

  5. As you can see, in Westeros, all roads lead to King’s Landing.
  6.  
    Close up King's Landing-Rail Transport in Westeros-Game of Thrones-Michael Tyznik
     

  7. Rail transport even extends to Pyke, on the Iron Islands.
  8.  
    Close Up-Pyke Iron Islands-Rail Transport in Westeros-Game of Thrones-Michael Tyznik
     

  9. The Known World has mass transit in Essos, as well. Here is the Key, plus “Routes in Essos”. Based on the map alone, Essos is more sparsely settled than Westeros.
  10.  
    Rail Transport in The Known World-Game of Thrones-Michael Tyznik
     

  11. Please note that the service to Valyria has been discontinued, while service to Slavers Bay and the Gulf of Grief continues.
  12.  
    Close Up-Slavers Bay-Rail Transport in Westeros-Game of Thrones-Michael Tyznik
     

  13. Please note the closed stations along the Wall. Castle Black, as always, remains open and on guard. The distance between Winterfell and Castle Black is approximate.
  14.  
    Close Up-Winterfell-Castle Black-Game of Thrones-Michael Tyznik
     

  15. Last, but not least, is a close up of the Key and “Routes in Essos” from “The Known World” transit map.
  16.  
    Key-Routes in Essos-Game of Thrones-Michael Tyznik

    These maps are a labor of love. They show a great attention to detail, artistic ability, and creativity. I think these maps are a lovely way to mix reality and fantasy.

    What do you think of the transit maps. Do you have any comments you’d like to make?

    Valar morghulis, dear readers.

    [Source: Michael Tyznik via Buzzfeed.]

What is Sexual Harassment? And, Kudos to Gentlemen Everywhere

Are you a guy, wondering what women consider harassment? Are you a female and you struggle to put into words something that is almost invisible?

This poster does a great job of explaining every day examples of harassment. The author includes examples for men as to how they can react to shut down other men, and how men can be an ally — e.g., a “gentleman” — to their girlfriends, wives, mothers, and friends.

From RobotHugs:

TRIGGER WARNING: This comic discusses harassment, sexism, rape culture, and toxic attitudes towards women and femmefolk. It includes examples of slurs, harassment, and quotes from sexual offenders.

This is the longest comic I’ve ever done and it’s a monster and it took me forever and I never want to draw again.

Harassment by RobotHugs.com

Women: do you agree or disagree with any scenarios presented in this poster? What do you think about the authors’ advice to men on how to be an ally of women?

Men: did this provide examples to you of harassment and what it looks like? Do you agree or disagree with the advice on how to be an ally to women?

[Source: Robot Hugs.]

How Do Cultural and Intellectual Centers Re-locate Over Time?

Have you ever wondered why cities rise and fall, as do empires?

Charting Culture” is an animation that examines when and how “notable” people are born, stay or migrate, and where they die. Over 12,000 notable historical figures were tracked and the migrations display how people moved from city to city, empire to empire, between 600 B.C. to 2012 A.D.

Charting Culture

Published on Jul 31, 2014

This animation distils hundreds of years of culture into just five minutes. A team of historians and scientists wanted to map cultural mobility, so they tracked the births and deaths of notable individuals like David, King of Israel, and Leonardo da Vinci, from 600 BC to the present day. Using them as a proxy for skills and ideas, their map reveals intellectual hotspots and tracks how empires rise and crumble

The information comes from Freebase, a Google-owned database of well-known people and places, and other catalogues of notable individuals. The visualization was created by Maximilian Schich (University of Texas at Dallas) and Mauro Martino (IBM).

Read Nature’s news story: http://www.nature.com/news/1.15650

Find the research paper in Science: http://www.sciencemag.org/lookup/doi/…

Did you find anything unusual or surprising about this video?

I was fascinated by the data and by the visualization of it. However, I found it very Euro-centric. The authors did show Japan, briefly, but ignore the US South, the Middle East (the birth place of numbers 0-9), China, and the entire African continent.

What do you think?

[Source: Smithsonian Smartnews via Thomas Strömberg.]

Nomophobia? Can You Function Daily without Your Cell Phone?

Nomophobia is “the fear of being out of mobile phone contact”.

The term, an abbreviation for “no-mobile-phone phobia”, was coined during a 2010 study by the UK Post Office who commissioned YouGov, a UK-based research organization to look at anxieties suffered by mobile phone users. [Source: Wikipedia.]

Nomophobia - fear of being without a cell phone

Do you ever disconnect from your mobile device? If so, do you have feelings of anxiety when you do? Are you guilty of engaging in any of the above situations?

I don’t tend to use my phone when I am driving, but I am guilty of reading it just before I go to bed…and staying up later than I had planned. Lost sleep is not conducive to high performance the next day.

[Source: HuffPo.]