Scholarly Smackdown: Google Keep vs. Trello

Looking for a very basic project management tool to create to-do lists, stay on-track, and maybe even get things done? On today’s Scholarly Smackdown we will discuss two possible options: Google Keep and Trello. Both tools feature: Bulletin board format that shows a page of lists No cost options Online-only web application with neither a desktop version nor […]

TiddlyWiki Review

Here at Commons Knowledge we like to talk about all of the various options out there for personal and information management tools, so today we’re talking about TiddlyWiki! “It’s like a hypertext card index system from the future” -Jeremy Ruston, in the TiddlyWiki intro video To summarize: this is a British, somewhat tricky to use, free […]

Learn Python Summer 2017

Are you sitting around thinking to yourself, golly, the bloggers at Commons Knowledge have not tried to convince me to learn Python in a few weeks, what’s going on over there? Well, no worries! We’re back with another post going over the reasons why you should learn Python. And to answer your next question no, […]

“Fact Check Yourself Before You Fact Wreck Yourself”: A Primer on Information Literacy Resources

We have all fallen for fake news at some point in our lives and we can all learn skills to help prevent that from happening again. Technology can change our world for the better and help us combat the problem of fake news. Facebook and Google are increasingly incorporating fact checking and ways to see if sources are […]

Telling Your Story With StoryMap JS

Earlier on the blog, we talked about ways to create story maps so we’re following that up with a tutorial for one of the options on there, StoryMapJS. StoryMapJS is a web-hosted program that lets you create interactive maps by adding Google slides and images onto a map layout from OpenStreetMap. More advanced users can […]

Writing the next great American novel, or realistically, finding the “write” tools to finish your thesis

The Scholarly Commons is a great place to write the next great American novel; in fact, I’m surprised it has not happened yet (no pressure dear patrons — we understand that you have a lot on your plates). We’re open Monday-Friday from 9-6 and enjoy a well-lit, fairly quiet, and overall ideal working space, with […]

Learning how to present with Michael Alley’s The Craft of Scientific Presentations

Slideshows are serious business, and bad slides can kill. Many books, including the one I will review today, discuss the role that Morton Thiokol’s poorly designed and overly complicated slides about the Challenger O-rings played in why the shuttle was allowed to launch despite its flaws. PowerPoint has become the default presentation style in a […]

Scholarly Smackdown: Ulysses vs. Mellel

On today’s edition of Scholarly Smackdown we are looking at Mellel and Ulysses, two word processors for Mac created with novelists, playwrights, and thesis writers in mind. Both of these programs let you control and customize aspects of your documents and give you control over your word processing experience in ways that MS Word and […]

Life after I Drive: Setting up a website for yourself or your project!

What happened to the I: Drive? It’s been retired, everything on it is in read only, the hardware has been left to die and will be dead by January 3rd 2018, and everything will go where these things go when they die (that great server in the sky I suppose). Always free options: Weebly, Wix, […]

Certificate in Science Communication!

Are you a graduate student at the University of Illinois studying the sciences? Are you interested in working with the public and developing your skills in communicating your research to wider audiences? Introducing the Certificate in Science Communication! This is a new program offered by the 21st Century Scientists Working Group and the Center for […]