Rosch speaks again about concepts:

Gabora, Liane M.; Rosch, Eleanor & Aerts, Diederik. (2008) “Toward an Ecological Theory of Concepts.” Ecological Psychology 20(1-2): 84-116.

Abstract: Psychology has had difficulty accounting for the creative, context-sensitive manner in which concepts are used. We believe this stems from the view of concepts as identifiers rather than bridges between mind and world that participate in the generation of meaning. This paper summarizes the history and current status of concepts research, and provides a non-technical summary of work toward an ecological approach to concepts. We outline the rationale for applying generalizations of formalisms originally developed for use in quantum mechanics to the modeling of concepts, showing how it is because of the role of context that deep structural similarities exist between the two. A concept is defined not just in terms of exemplary states and their features or properties, but also by the relational structures of these properties, and their susceptibility to change under different contexts. The approach implies a view of mind in which the union of perception and environment drives conceptualization, forging a web of conceptual relations or “ecology of mind”

How I wish I’d had this article when I did my lit review… I’m too tired to read it now, but tomorrow!

the right idea, but…

Max Van Kleek; Michael Bernstein; David R. Karger & mc schraefel. (2007) “Gui — phooey!: the case for text input.” In UIST ’07: Proceedings of the 20th annual ACM symposium on User interface software and technology, pp. 193-202.

Abstract: Information cannot be found if it is not recorded. Existing rich graphical application approaches interfere with user input in many ways, forcing complex interactions to enter simple information, requiring complex cognition to decide where the data should be stored, and limiting the kind of information that can be entered to what can fit into specific applications’ data models. Freeform text entry suffers from none of these limitations but produces data that is hard to retrieve or visualize. We describe the design and implementation of Jourknow, a system that aims to bridge these two modalities, supporting lightweight text entry and weightless context capture that produces enough structure to support rich interactive presentation and retrieval of the arbitrary information entered.

I already have this. It is called Emacs org-mode with org-remember-insinuate.

Oh snap, I just saw that there is an org-mode <–> Freemind converter. must not play must not play must not play

Do you know how much I love Emacs?

No, you really have no idea…

gems from the collection, or, things i found in the catalog recently

  • Tickle me emo : Lesbian balladeering, straight-boy emo and the politics of affect / Karen Tongson
  • Goth’s Medical pharmacology.
  • A record containing the following songs:
    • 740 02 Reet, petite and gone.
    • 740 02 Rusty, dusty blues.
    • 740 02 Is you is or is you ain’t (my baby)
    • 740 02 My baby.
    • 740 02 Salt pork, West Virginia.
    • 740 02 Boogie woogie blue plate.
    • 740 02 Buzz me.
    • 740 02 Open the door, Richard.
    • 740 02 Texas and Pacific.
    • 740 02 What’s the use of gettin’ sober (When you’re gonna get drunk again)
    • 740 02 What’s the use of getting sober (When you’re going to get drunk again)
    • 740 02 I like ’em fat like that.
    • 740 02 I like them fat like that.
    • 740 02 Somebody done changed the lock on my door.
    • 740 02 Early in the morning.
    • 740 02 Five guys named Moe.
    • 740 02 Jack, you’re dead.

The gettin’/getting and ’em/them uncontrolled title access points are truly jewels of access. Yay for the Southern Folklife Collection.


Exhaustion explained. Also snackiness.

“Although the brain represents only 2% of the body weight, it receives 15% of the cardiac output, 20% of total body oxygen consumption, and 25% of total body glucose utilization. The energy consumption for the brain to simply survive is 0.1 Calories per minute, while this value can be as high as 1.5 Calories per minute (100W) during crossword puzzle-solving”

(found in comment at: Academic Productivity)

Intuition strikes again…

Another bit from Academic Productivity:

Studies of the spacing effect have shown that when you space learning over separate learning intervals, long term retention is normally much higher compared with the equivalent amount of training from a single or “massed” session. This effect is robust across different time scales, different kinds of learning, and is even true across different species.

Without ever reading about the spacing effect, I changed my cataloging course design this semester to take advantage of it. Call it intuition or common sense… but it is always nice to have your practice supported by Science. More on spaced learning and cognitive psychology relevant to pedagogy here.

In defense of hermiting

Choose your own place for concentration, but remember that solitude has always been, in all the history of mental achievement, a requisite for great work.

Solitude calls forth the mood of receptivity. Only then do we get the best. Great things are worked out in silence. Then come the flashes of inspiration—the new visions. Emerson tells us that ” Solitude is to genius the stern friend—the cold, obscure shelter, where mould the wings which will bear it farther than suns or stars,” and we have this thought from Carlyle: ” Silence is the element in which great things fashion themselves together—that at length they may emerge full-formed and mamestic into the delight of life—which they are henceforth to rule.”

From: How To Concentrate (Originally Published 1930) Author… unknown? Definitely uncited.

Solitude is part of the Proper Environment. Apparently you also need Periodical Relaxation, Mental Freedom, and A Definite Schedule.

Lack of the latter is really, really bugging me since classes have started. Having those two days a week that have a completely different rhythm throws me off. I haven’t exercised in over a week and I’m starting to feel cruddy for lack of it. And my wrists are starting to hurt again. Apparently exercise keeps that at bay. Who knew!?

sousveillance and oligopticons

Dodge, Martin, and Rob Kitchin. 2007. “‘Outlines of a world coming into existence’: pervasive computing and the ethics of forgetting.” Environment and Planning B-Planning & Design 34, no. 3: 431-45.

Abstract: In this paper we examine the potential of pervasive computing to create widespread sousveillance, which will complement surveillance, through the development of life-logs—sociospatial archives that document every action, every event, every conversation, and every material expression of an individual’s life. Reflecting on emerging technologies, life-log projects, and artistic critiques of sousveillance, we explore the potential social, political, and ethical implications of machines that never forget. We suggest, given that life-logs have the potential to convert exterior generated oligopticons to an interior panopticon, that an ethics of forgetting needs to be developed and built into the development of life-logging technologies. Rather than seeing forgetting as a weakness or a fallibility, we argue that it is an emancipatory process that will free pervasive computing from burdensome and pernicious disciplinary effects.

I’m happy to find this article because I’ve been saying this about forgetting for a while now, but had nothing to point at.

treasures of random link clicking.

The Academic Word List (AWL) – developed by Averil Coxhead at the School of Linguistics and Applied Language Studies at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand. 570 word families that appear frequently in academic texts, but are not in the most frequent 2000 English words. Divided into 10 sublists based on frequency.

Effective Use of Microsoft Word for Academic Writing – This looked helpful for a moment. I’m always up for learning better ways to wrangle Office products. And then I noticed it is a 1 hour, 24 minute video presentation. Which makes me want to run screaming.

I do not like information transfer regarding skills via “presentation.” You cannot skim over what you already know. The speed at which humans can speak and take in speech is frustratingly slow for this kind of information. It isn’t dense enough.

I am freshly irritated about this because I recently attended a 4 hour class in which I learned a small amount of content I could have sucked up myself in less than an hour. But I wouldn’t have gotten the practice at putting what I learned to use. Or so I have been telling myself.

But back to the topic at hand… this Word presentation is on, which I have never seen before, as I don’t do TV (can’t sustain interest in any one show over a season).

Remarkable speakers, researchers and scholars present revolutionary thoughts and discoveries on ResearchChannel. The University of Michigan, the University of Washington and the National Science Foundation are just a few of the world-renowned institutions that participate and whose programs are featured.

Despite my frustration with presentation-watching, this may come in handy for keeping my brain occupied while I am exercising.

The Martini Method for finishing a PhD – Ha! No really, this blog––looks like it might actually be good. Because the key to academic productivity is another blog to read… but no really! Look! The Interruptron is going on my computer tomorrow because since I’ve stopped tracking all of my time by the minute in a spreadsheet (and outputting pretty pivot charts to show how much time I spent brushing my teeth versus folding clothing), I haven’t been as good at maintaining a work/rest schedule and productivity has slipped a little. The Interruptron makes graphs. I love it already.

And now back to taking notes from the book I need to return to ILL tomorrow.

early view: new pim article

Towards memory supporting personal information management tools
David Elsweiler, Ian Ruthven, Christopher Jones

In this article, the authors discuss reretrieving personal information objects and relate the task to recovering from lapse(s) in memory. They propose that memory lapses impede users from successfully refinding the information they need. Their hypothesis is that by learning more about memory lapses in noncomputing contexts and about how people cope and recover from these lapses, we can better inform the design of personal information management (PIM) tools and improve the user’s ability to reaccess and reuse objects. They describe a diary study that investigates the everyday memory problems of 25 people from a wide range of backgrounds. Based on the findings, they present a series of principles that they hypothesize will improve the design of PIM tools. This hypothesis is validated by an evaluation of a tool for managing personal photographs, which was designed with respect to the authors’ findings. The evaluation suggests that users’ performance when refinding objects can be improved by building personal information management tools to support characteristics of human memory.

Sounds very interesting.

I’m putting this here so I’ll REMEMBER to grab it when it’s available in .pdf.


Encyclopedia of cognitive science / editor-in-chief, Lynn Nadel.
London ; New York : Nature Pub. Group, 2003.

Description: 4 v. : ill. ; 28 cm.
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references and index.
Contents : v. 1. Academic achievement – Environmental psychology – v. 2. Epilepsy – mental imagery, philosophical issues about – v. 3. Mental models – signal detection theory – v. 4. Similarity – zombies. Glossary and subject index.