Online Research: Confusion in a World Full of Studies and Experiments

Great article on Niume… Lovelli Ariesti…

The relationship between writers and online research is one that requires maintaining a delicate balance between good time management skills, the will to keep moving forward, and grit. Of the last one, I won’t say much right now. We go the World Wide Web for many apparent and not so apparent reasons. To make friends, to check out a job posting, to respond to a job invite, to read an interesting article, to post comments, to write an email, to browse for seminars and schedule a trip… to conduct online research. Those not so apparent reasons, other than planning our travels, include maintaining our social media presence and building our personal brand. Of course, not only writers do online research. And online research (blog post) is not the only thing that writers do. Nothing comes between a writer and her researchWords could not express the confusion I felt about staying connected prior to taking up online learning. Online research? Is that a new type of research or is that just another fancy word for “Googling”? Wait, Googling is not research? What about all these bugs/features I have found incidentally? Did I not just research them?  [The Wold and the Crane]When people say “do your homework” or “do your research”, and people they do say that, they’re not suggesting that you come up with a publish-ready academic essay, although it would be so awesome if you did. All the Googling, checking out online publications based on keywords related to the topics, and then reading them closely to determine whether they are a) interesting, or b) far from interesting, are merely efforts to study a subject or a situation. The aim of this is usually to prepare for something. For example, a job interview or a movie date. Or a photo shoot and a movie date, Zombie Apocalypse, Food Street upcoming event, the possibilities are endless! [Un po’ Ghezzi (la prima volta al cinema era 3D) by @flaviab is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0]For people in the academic sector—students, librarians, teachers, mentors, provost—searching the World Wide Web for sources is just one part of the research project. Remember, the web is only 27 years old this year, while research comes from a very, very old Middle French word “recherche” that was already in use in 1577. It’s ancient!Instead of questioning what the World Wide Web is (hint: it is not the Internet*) and what it means to us, understanding online research is what we should be doing. I’ve come up with some of the best places to start:Lifewire Student Guidehttps://www.lifewire.comIf you’re looking for a guide to doing online research, this is a good place to start. Lifewire has a section called Internet & Network, in which you can read all about the Internet, including how to use it for research. In “How *Real* Online Research Works” and “What is ‘Hard’ Versus ‘Soft’ Internet Research?” we are introduced to the legitimate practices in researching online, with suggestions on how to set our priorities right. The articles are light and warm, fairly easy for everyone to understand. Even if you’re not a student, the articles are going to provide you with enough details to warm you up. The Internet: Ideas, Activities, and Resources comprehensive but not overwhelming chapter to learn more about doing research on the Internet, broken down into activities. Originally written for students, this online publication is a product of the Florida Department of Education and the Office of Instructional Technology. It has 6 chapters dedicated to the topic, with chapters 4 and 5 dedicat

Source: Online Research: Confusion in a World Full of Studies and Experiments


Authors & Social Media Conduct

True words spoken about social media conduct…taken from a Niume post by J.M. Sullivan.

Call me old fashioned, but with all of the things that get posted on Social Media these days, there are times when all I can do is quirk my head and ask, “Seriously?” Don’t get me wrong. I think Social Media is great. In fact, it has helped me so much in my writing, I honestly don’t know where I would be without it. But sometimes I wonder if maybe we weren’t better off when not everyone had easy access to share every single thought that they have with the rest of the world. Because honestly, there’s a lot of crap out there that the world just doesn’t need.Celebrity Wars, Twitter Wars, Hate Mail, Cyberbullying and so many other things are all over Social Media and it can be really hard to keep away from it.But as an up and coming author, YOU HAVE TO. Unfortunately, we are not in the position where we can say whatever we feel and people will still love us. Your conduct is a direct representation of who you are and what you stand for. And I hate to break it to you, but if you are posting mean things on your Social Media, that’s who they will see you as. And nobody wants to support someone they think talks a bunch of garbage (ESPECIALLY A WRITER).So how can you handle your presence on Social Media? How do you react in a situation where you feel you have been unfairly treated?Well, as hard as it can be, sometimes the best thing that you can do in a tough situation is to keep your mouth shut (and your fingers away from the keyboard.)If you can’t, that’s your decision. There’s not much I can do for you except tell you to grow some thicker skin or find a support system to listen when you are upset. (I have found that my cat is a great option. She quickly reminds me that my world is supposed to revolve around her and I need to get over it).The fact of the matter is this: there are millions of people on the interwebs, and I do not have the time, energy, nor desire to try and control what they deem worthy to share with the rest of the world. True Story.But since you are here, (and still reading) I’m guessing you have at least some interest in my opinion so here it is:If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all. Mind blowing, I know. But bear with me.I know that it seems simple. I also know that I might be biased because a a teacher and a mother my days are INFINITELY better when my kids are nice to each other. But from a professional standpoint, IT WORKS TOO.Whether you’re dealing with staff members in a meeting, parent conferences, telephone customer service representatives, husbands who have YET to take out the trash after you’ve asked 3 times… (ok, I’m rambling, but you get the idea.) I can almost GUARANTEE you will have more success being polite, understanding and kind than if you come off as an inconsiderate jerk.The writing world is no different.Now, I will say that sometimes people have bad days. There are days when I am cranky, and tired, and, and, and. I get it.Writing is tough. Trying to get your writing published is even tougher. Querying is absolutely terrifying. Putting your writing out there for others to judge is scary. Especially when it boils down to a single Query Letter and maybe a Synopsis (I’m getting flashbacks to college scholarship applications just thinking about it).But if there is one thing I’ve learned it’s that querying is totally subjective. It depends on what the agent is looking for, what they are currently repping, what industry trends are, your writing style, whether they think your personalities will mesh, etc.9 times out of 10 I have found that the rejection I received wasn’t because the agent thought my writing was garbage, it was because it just wasn’t a good fit. Other times, it was their opinion of my work (which stung a bit) but, sometimes you just have to take it with a grain of salt and figure out your coping mechanisms.I recommend chocolate.But please, for the love of everything good and right in the world, if you absolutely totally, 100% CANNOT LIVE unless you vocalize your hurt feelings, then please,Please.PLEASE.PPPPPLLLLLEEEEEEAAAAAAAAASSSSSSSSEEEEEEEEE. PLEASE.DON’T PUT IT ON THE INTERNET WHERE EVERYONE CAN SEE IT.Why?Here are a few reasons:1. Not everyone wants to hear your ______ (angry, pathetic, mean, vindictive, rude, whiney, jaded, vulgar, inappropriate, ridiculous, unfounded -choose which words apply) opinion.2. Not everyone NEEDS to hear your ______ (again, insert appropriate word choice) opinion.3. Once it’s out there, ANYONE can read it. Anyone. A-NY-ONE. And with technology nowadays, they can screen shot, keep, and SHARE it with hundreds of their closest friends in SECONDS. Literally. Seconds. Then what you’ve just said can NEVER be taken back.4. Riding the tail of my previous point is this: after you calm down, get the emotions out of your system, and become a rational human being again, you might REGRET it. But faced with the internet savvy folks of today, you might not ever be able to FORGET it.What it comes to is this:You are entitled to

Source: Authors & Social Media Conduct

That mysterious creature – 2017

Beautiful poem by John Duffy posted in Niume…

We have seen each other whispering in the morning air of Yesteryears calendars.

The silent glaze of the New Year.

I’ve seen you there in the Darkness and Light.

The sea’s whisper of your coming name.

The slow crash of Time beats relentlessly against the sandy shores of Life.

Every grain of sand echoes your name.

The scent of an invisible sea hangs in the air reminding me of you.

Caressing me like a gentle breeze caught in Times perpetual grasp.

I see you grow old with the ticks of the ethereal clocks through the eyes of my mind, I feel you age within the sights of my out worldly gaze… You are anniversary sighs of midnight.

The wand, a symphony of a new year of fireworks, played by the many, outside my windows, daylights welcome.

Your many sounds speak in explosive verses, sounds of new beginnings and layed to sleep thoughts.

I berate the heavens for newer adventures – newer happier horizons.

I bow at the thought of your in-coming presence.

It’s enough to shatter me into pieces of beauty, pieces of Hope.

Within these moments, I welcome you, 2017.

Bring me joy, happiness and peace – but still bless me with vitality.

For vitality is all I crave.

The strength to carry on.

The strength to conquer also 2017.

God bless 2017.

Source: That mysterious creature – 2017

16 Blessons in 2016

A beautiful post in Niume that shares the values of being, truth, love and life…

“I learned BLESSON from a Spiritual Renewal. A blesson is a life experience that shows up as a challenge and then realized as both a lesson and a blessing. Here are my Top 16 Blessons of 2016.16. Communication is about what they hear, not what you say. Most of the time, it is not the words that you say, but more importantly, what people understood. This reminds me when I’m preparing a report or talking to someone, what is the message that I want to convey and how do I deliver it in such a way that I will win over the other person.15. “Everyone falls” – Geoff Britten, American Ninja Warrior. Whether it’s falling in love, or out of love, making a mistake, a major failure. It happens to everyone, even to the best of us. You are not alone. Much of life is about resiliency and getting back on your feet after a failure, heartbreak or tragedy. We just need to learn, shake it off and stand up again. Be like the kangaroo. Always move forward.14. Legacy is about enabling people and systems to be effective and sustainable even when you’re gone. The essence of life is about imprinting our DNA to people and causes that matter.13. “The measure of who we are is how we react to something that doesn’t go our way.” – Greg Popovich, San Antonio Spurs Coach. In ideal and favorable situations, we are normal, sane, happy people. But how do we react under adverse conditions? How then do we bounce back and return to be normal, sane, happy people? Great men are defined when they rise above adversity. When they push themselves beyond their very limits. When they go beyond expectations. When they seek to excel and motivate themselves even when their hearts and spirits are breaking. When they find what’s inside of them when all else falls away.12. “If the rate of change on the outside exceeds the rate of change on the inside, the end is near.” Jack Welch. I have learned to revolutionize myself without losing my core values. I have been doing incremental changes and looking at a transformational one. Still, I love the same people, things, and I have been faithful to the same God. I’ve been to many places, made the right decisions, committed mistakes, and made some of my dreams happen.11. The story of the NBA Finals is not about who made the big shots, who wanted it bad enough, nor is it chasing after history. The greater lesson to me is making a promise and ultimately keeping that promise no matter the obstacle, criticism and how long it takes. 10. Integrity refers to “wholeness”. Words can be cheap and lip service is easy. Be someone who mean what they say, say what they mean, and walk the talk.9. “Adventure with all its requisite danger and wildness, is a deeply spiritual longing written into the soul of man.” Because life is not just about work, paychecks, family obligations and ticking off your to-do list. Life is meant to be savored, lived to glorify with God and in communion with our fellowman.8. In my relationships and encounters with people, I hope that even if doesn’t last, people will be better off for having known and spent time with me. Sometimes we meet people who will be in our lives forever and we grow and learn with them. Sometimes we meet people for a moment but they leave a mark that forever changes for the better. Because I knew you, I was changed for the better.7. Live purposefully. Plan and act with purpose. Not at random. Not because it works now but how it impacts to the future. See yourself, not as independent but interdependent with others. We are all part of a bigger whole. How does your decisions affect the lives of others and the world we live in?6. Fall in love with yourself. Learning to love your faults and accepting your not-so-beautiful qualities. Your life is about taking a deep breath by yourself without choking. About jumping without being scared of falling. It is your time to jump, fly, live fearlessly. To climb your own mountain and to go out and live. YOLO!5. If its true love, it can wait. We have to lose the wrong ones to get to the right one. Love is a marathon, not a sprint. It’s not how fast you fall but how long it lasts. Love takes and requires time. Slow and steady wins the race.4. “Sometimes, waiting is the most important time in our life. Even when you think that nothing is happening at this time in your life, God, for sure, is doing something. Those who are in a hurry usually make mistakes. Waiting makes us a better person and prepares us to be the best version of ourselves. It’s always a process. Slow down and enjoy the journey. Take time for what matters most because beautiful things take time.” – C. Depano3. Discovered a new favorite word Kintsugi. The act of fixing something, letting the break symbolize something that was stronger after being repaired. The gold illuminates the cracks and breaks that have been mended rather than hiding them. The gold seams hold the pieces back together, making it whole again.Kintsugi – The art of appreciating imperfection. Findi

Source: 16 Blessons in 2016

A blues version of a crazy beautiful country…

Been following Doc Maclean’s amazing tour through South Africa.  His honesty and instinct for music and people are just awesome. The best explanation of a beautiful, crazy South Africa posted by a non-South African.  He totally gets our world….Africa has opened it’s heart to me, and invited me in. So many new friends, new stories, new ideas. So much emotion. Over the last six weeks I’ve driven fourteen thousand km of African roads to play over forty shows. Ocean to ocean. And beyond. Delta blues on an old National guitar. Who would of thought this musical journey would take me here? Tonight I’m smelling the rain falling on the Karoo; hearing it’s welcome drumming- it’s roar- on the tin roof. We need this water. It is life: carefully gathered in small pots and basins, in larger swimming pools, but mainly sucked up by the thirsty soil. Like blood, it’s not something to be spilled down a sink.All manner of things are to be found on, or near these highways. To describe them is to describe South Africa: it’s wisdom, it’s madness, it’s triumph and despair, it’s sheer determination of spirit. Baboons. Burning luggage. Neon lights. Walkers. Dancers. Vendors. Fences. Cops and robbers. Kids in their school uniforms. Goats, sheep, cattle, pigs. Potholes. First and Third world uneasily sharing the same pathways, the same lands, the same skies, and I think the same dreams. It’s all close to the bone. It’s passion. It’s the breath of life, like this rain on the roof. Here, we all breathe deeply.

Source: A blues version of a crazy beautiful country…

The World Is Changing, and It’s All Coming To A (Zero) Point

There are strange things happening in the world today. The weather is drastically different, pretty much everywhere in the world. In some places in Europe, it’s snowing for the first time in years. In other places, seasons are arriving either late or early.If you are a person who is always aware of his/her surroundings, you might also have noticed that time is beginning to cease to be relevant. Now, this seems like a vague statement, so let me try to explain. . .I’m one of those people who likes to learn about history, about the advancement of our civilisation, and the quest for our higher selves. By that I mean, to reach a state of heightened sentience; i.e merging your mind with your soul.Wow, sounds like a tall order, doesn’t it?Yes, but it might very well be a possibility. If you read up on old civilisations they speak of fantastical events and of things that we as humans would never think to be even remotely possible.The Mayan calendar pointed to something happening in 2012. The calendar ended on 21 December 2012, and before 2012, many people took it as a prophecy of the end of the world. Needless to say, the end of the world did not occur, for here we are, four years later.The world did not end, yes, but things started to change from that date. As mentioned, the weather changed dramatically. It’s been snowing in places where it’s never ever snowed before. On a personal level, you might have noticed that life started to get really weird too. Life might have gotten really hard, to to the point where you feel like you’re fighting against the Universe.Fantastical events began to occur, and now, they’re becoming a staple of our day to day news. Natural disasters are happening more frequently, and in places where they have never ever happened before. Not that we know of, nor have ever seen. In science, there’s a concept called the Zero Point. This is a theory that the Earth, at a certain stage, will begin slowing down its rotation and will actually stop turning. Remember when people use to say, ‘when the world stops turning’ as an analogy for the world ending? Well, banish that thought, open up your mind, and hear me out.There are a few possible outcomes of this ‘Zero Point’ phenomenon. These are not written in stone (or maybe they are, somewhere) but look at them as possibilities.Firstly, it could mean the impending or approaching ‘end of the world’. Not a nice outlook, but hey, it’s possible isn’t it? There are indeed signs, but my personal opinion is, it’s not that.Secondly, it could be we might reach this Zero Point. It might be soon. It might be in a decade, or even longer. But we might get there. After we get there, the Earth might, and this is a theory, starting turning in the opposite direction. The poles (North and South) may reverse. This offers a very plausible explanation for why the polar caps are melting. . .Lastly, we could look at it as the Universe will reach a ‘balanced’ state. In this balanced state, we as humans, as sentient beings, may find it easier to tap into our higher selves.This, in my opinion, is already a reality. Ever find you’re having a bad day, and it just gets progressively worse, to the point where it feels like there’s other forces at work? For an example; you woke up and something went wrong and that kind of ruined your mojo for the whole day. As the day went on, more bad things happened and your mojo suffered even more. That may have had something to do with your mind; your mind manifesting things into the Universe.Ever had a sarcastic notion that you expressed, out of sheer frustration? It’s raining, and you say to someone, “It would be so funny if it flooded now, wouldn’t it?” It’s said ironically, and obviously you don’t really want it to flood, but guess what? It floods shortly afterwards.Okay, that was a bad analogy, and please know that I don’t want it to flood anywhere either; I do tend to exaggerate sometimes. But, I’m sure somewhere, someone can relate to a similar experience, maybe not on such a grand scale. You said something in intended utmost irony and the very thing you mentioned occurred, as if the Universe took you up literally. Needless to say, such occurrences have happened with me. Yes, not on the same grand scale as flooding; that happened to someone I know. But they’ve happened to me, and this particular train of thought, this blog post that I’m writing, therefore resonates with me, big time.Some of us are always on a quest for spiritual enlightenment. If you’re one of those people, you might have noticed the vibrations in the Universe are all jumbled up. Meditation might seem more productive to some, like they actually have veritable ‘super powers’.For you, you spiritual conquistadors, I say, “Carry on with your quest, for you are close to meeting up with your higher self”. The Universe is becoming malleable, it has become very sensitive, whether positive or negative, to human psychic energies. Specifically, the human will has

Source: The World Is Changing, and It’s All Coming To A (Zero) Point