Things I’ve learned over the past 24 hours

  • I used to think sweat bands were silly, but if you spend all day typing on a laptop, they’re really comfortable!
  • Eating ramen noodles with two plastic spoons is a pursuit best avoided (though it was nice of the girl at the Students Union to give me the spoons).
  • When submitting a paper to a journal, it’s wise to reference a few other papers from that same journal.
  • If you have a choice (which I don’t), LaTeX likes .pdf files much better than .eps (for the record, pdflatex won’t compile them — you need to use TeX + Ghostscript).
  • If you do end up using .eps files in LaTeX and you’re creating them with Adobe Illustrator, save them as legacy files — LaTeX can’t handle anything newer than Illustrator 8.
  • Ditto be careful when saving image files to use with IDL. .eps = fail.
  • It’s always a good idea to read the “Instructions for Authors”.
  • Make sure you’re printing the correct damn document!
  • It really helps your concentration to get out of the office for an occasional half hour break.
  • It’s surprising how you can actually get used to carrying half a tree’s worth of citations around with you.
  • Don’t use astronomy-style citations when you’re writing a chemistry paper. You end up making work for yourself. Irritatingly, styles vary.
  • Creating figures can be a pain in the ass.
  • I really fancy an ice cold beer about now…

In other news, a book I requested from the library is taking a little longer to show up than I was expecting. I didn’t realise until this afternoon that there’s a good reason for that — it’s kept at the Ningbo campus in China! Oops. Ah well, I’m sure it’ll be worth the wait!

That is all.
Now, I’m off to back up some files and send some e-mails…

About Invader Xan

Molecular astrophysicist, usually found writing frenziedly, staring at the sky, or drinking mojitos.
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