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{ Category Archives } Tech

Scrivener for Dissertation Chunk Drafting

A favorite procrastination technique of dissertation writers is to waste time searching for that perfect tool for writing the dissertation in a more efficient manner. I indulged in this sinful habit a bit two nights ago and revisited the software “Scrivener” for OS X. I’m impressed and encourage my fellow PhD students to give it […]

Legal MP3 Downloads in China via Google

I listened to a great podcast recently of a Columbia University SIPA sponsored talk by Kai-Fu Lee on Google’s many different efforts to compete in the China market (Find their China site easily at One of the things Lee mentioned was the initial difficulty of competing with the MP3 downloads available, often illegally, through […]

Endnote Takes A Shot at Zotero

The cold war between Endnote, the bibliographic software owned by Thomson Reuters that has long had a virtual monopoly on the academic market, and Zotero, the open source alternative created by the incredibly resourceful and innovative Center for History and New Media at George Mason University has finally broke out into an open conflict. Endnote […]

Script for Creating a Chinese Vocab List

The Problem: Let us say you have a list of Chinese words or single Chinese characters in a file. There are a lot of them. You want some easy and fast way of getting the pinyin and English definitions of that list of words or single characters and you want this in a format that […]

Fool’s Flashcard Review

A long time ago, in the last millennium, I designed a flashcard application for Mac OS that implemented something I called interval study (known elsewhere as spaced repetition or the Leitner method). I sold and later gave away the software at a website I created for my software tinkering called the Fool’s Workshop. I used […]

Watching US Online Media Outside the US

I logged on to see if I could watch part of the debate in Texas between Clinton and Obama. The debate, I believe, was partly sponsored by CNN. I tried to view the live feed on CNN but was given a message that is all too familiar to those of us outside of the United […]

Yep and my PDF Jungle

I finally declared war on my PDF organizing system. I am struggling to manage some 2400 or so PDF files on my computer. This huge number of files consists of downloaded or scanned journal articles, newspaper articles, historical documents, PhD dissertations, books, and various personal documents that I got sick of dragging around the world […]

Japanese Dictionaries on Leopard

After my family acquired a “family pack” license, I installed the Mac OS X Leopard operating system on my machine last night and everything went smoothly with the installation. I did a clean install on a new larger hard drive and migrated over my user files using the migration assistant. Things seem to be going […]

Of Knols, Trolls, and Goblins

Google recently announced its new Knol Project. Quite a number of news articles and many more blog postings have appeared to comment on the launch of the new project. I’m rather puzzled by a lot of concerns shown by some whose writing on similar issues I usually admire. Further down in this posting, I will […]

Fixing Garbled Tags for Korean and Chinese Songs in iTunes

The song name, artist, and album tags in many music files (whether they are acquired legally or otherwise) from Chinese and Korean sources are completely garbled in iTunes on a Macintosh. I assume this is because iTunes assumes that the text is one encoding (Unicode or MacRoman?) and they were in fact encoded in another […]