Blogging for Operations Research (and for fun!)

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Slides from a panel discussion on social networking and operations research at the 2011 INFORMS Annual Meeting

Slides from a panel discussion on social networking and operations research at the 2011 INFORMS Annual Meeting

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  • 1. Blogging forOperations Research …and for fun! Laura A. McLay Department of Statistics and Operations Research Virginia Commonwealth University
  • 2. You know what a blog is, right? A blog (“weblog”) is a series of articles (“posts”)  akin to a journal  displayed in reverse chronological order Blog features  categories and tags  RSS (to access the blog in a reader)  Links to other sites (in posts or in a “blogroll”)  Widgets (twitter, tag clouds, recent comments, recent posts, etc.) Blog posts contain lots of information (as opposed to twitter) Blog posts are peer-reviewed if they allow comments Some people consider bloggers to be journalists
  • 3. Reasons to blog Fame and fortune! (OK, probably not) It’s fun! It’s “just like writing academic papers, except with shorter words and a higher likelihood someone will actually read them” [Paul Rubin]
  • 4. How to get started with blogging1. Come up with a theme and a snazzy name for your blog2. Create your blog3. Personalize your blog with widgets, etc.4. Maintain your blog*5. Publicize via twitter, Google+, FaceBook, etc. * This is the most important step (and the most work)
  • 5. Best blogging sites
  • 6. Open a account inseconds
  • 7. Widget opportunities areendless
  • 8. Punk Rock OR via the web
  • 9. Punk Rock OR via a reader
  • 10. What to blog about “Thoughts on the world of operations research” [Mike Trick’s blog] “Lessons learned and musing about software tools, software testing, computational experiments, optimization, operations research, and other interesting stuff that I run across...” [William E. Hart’s blog] “A mix of operations research items and software tricks that Ill probably forget if I dont write them down somewhere.” [Paul Rubin’s blog] “intersection of operations research and sustainability” [Ian Frommer’s blog] “Research, Education, Networks, and the World: A Female Professor Speaks” [Anna Nagurney’s blog] “Thoughts on business, engineering and higher education” [Aurelie Thiele’s blog]
  • 11. You’re not tenured yet. Isn’t blogging careersuicide?  The short answer: No.  Blogging is fun. Assistant professors are sometimes allowed to have fun.  The blogging journey is the reward.  Blogging has broader impacts to society and to our field.  Blogging is the best social networking tool currently available, because it provides content that people are willing to read on their lunch break.  Time named bloggers the 2004 “People of the Year.”