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Organization & Productivity

Easily Organise Meetings with a Free Tool: Doodle

Organising lab meetings, journal clubs and even lab get-togethers can be a bit of a hassle, with emails flying about and spreadsheets coming out of your ears. Luckily, thanks to some nifty, free online tools you can remove the pain of being the resident meeting organiser forever. The best of these at I’ve seen is…

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What’s Your Idea of Project Management?

Many PhD students conducting their research are not aware of the fact that conducting autonomous research is project management. This assumption is realized by most students only after graduation or in the last year of their studies (a webinar discussing project management will be held this coming May). Because being a technician and a project…

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Your No.1 Time Management Lesson: Just Say No

Research is a challenging field that demands a tremendous amount of skill and dedication.  We are required to be creative but logical, independent but team players, innovative but grounded, proliferative but focused.  This balancing act requires not only a very broad set of skills and talents, but also the ability to manage it all with…

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Will the iPad Replace Your Lab Notebook?

The release of the iPad this week may bring the long-expected replacement of the paper-bound lab notebook by electronic notebooks one step closer. But are scientists, particularly PIs, comfortable with electronic lab notebooks? The rise of the tablets The concept of an electronic lab notebook isn’t anything new, and even the idea of implementing it…

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Why All Bioscientists Should Use Linux

A couple of weeks ago, Nick tried to convince us that we should all be using Macs. But why would you want to use a Mac (or a PC) when you could have an operating system that: Is free Does not slow down after a while and limit your productivity Does not need extra antivirus…

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Why Bioscientists Should All Buy Macs

Macs are great and there are a lot of reasons I recommend them to anyone who asks my opinion on which computer they should buy. But for bioscientists, perhaps the best reason to buy a Mac is summed up by one word: Mekentosj. Mekentosj is dedicated to producing fantastic software that addresses the needs of…

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10 Things You Must Do Before Starting a New Project

Rushing and overloading yourself in science is common, even normal. Surprisingly it is considered as an admirable aspect of “scientific flair” in some quarters. And the sad fact is that it is an ingrained part of the scientific landscape. But is this the best way to do things? Should you allow yourself to succumb and…

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To-Do or Not To-Do. That is The Question.

The manner in which some people orchestrate their daily activities is sheer poetry. Unfortunately, I’m not one of those people. I need help…and lots of it. So I put a lot of thought into managing my To-Do Lists, and here I’ll share with you what I have learned. Most people I know in industry use…

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Help! Excel Transmogrified My Gene Names!

I love that word. Transmogrified. It sounds like something Rob Grant and Doug Naylor, the writers of the sci-fi comedy series, Red Dwarf, would make up. As in, “Kryten and I were transmogrified into another time dimension”. Anyway, enough of 80’s cult TV shows. If you are still with me after the last two articles…

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Finally, Useful Heatmaps in Excel

Heat maps are a useful way to represent certain types of data; the data are colored by coloring according to the values in them, (e.g. red for high values, yellow for medium and green for low values), providing a powerful visual representation of a data set. This allows you to quickly see results from DNA…

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Taming the Data Stampede with Wikis

Since you’re a Bitesize Bio reader, you’re well aware that there is an abundance of both broad and specialized bioinformatics tools freely available for researchers – if you know where and how to find them. Recently emerging is a push to combine or link some of the most important concept-related databases as well as create…

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Why You Should Use Gmail

Gmail is no longer just an email provider, but is now packed with loads of useful tools that can make your like easier. In this article, I will share some of the Gmail features I have made use of for my work and research. Search your mail and the WWW Google, being one of the…

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Project Planning Made Easy

Whatever field you work in, effective project planning can make your work much more efficient, and make your like much easier. Liquid planner is a unique, online project planning interface that is free as long as your project has three or less team members. Liquid Planner has a nice interface for defining tasks and constructing…

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Don’t Overdo The Multi-tasking

Multi-tasking used to be my favourite way to get ahead. During my PhD I saw others around me working extremely long hours in the lab and not really having much of a personal life and quite early on I made the decision that this was not for me. Although I enjoy my work, having a…

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