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Matt Might – Writing Productivity Tips for Academics


Matt Might is a professor in the School of Computing at the University of Utah. He blogs at blog.might.net and tweets from @mattmight, here he rounds up some of his great advice on writing productivity for academics.

Academics must become productive, efficient writers.

Yet, many fledgling academics struggle to produce even a trickle of words (let alone the flood) that is required.

Fortunately, a few small tricks generate an outsized impact on the output of technical words per minute.

[These tips are an amalgam of my posts on crippling technology to boost productivity and general academic productivity hacks.]

Find your place

Measure your words per hour in your usual spots. Where do you write best? Is it at home? The office? The back yard? The coffee shop? The park? The library?

Once you’ve found the best place for you, make it better:

  1. Move your books to your place. This is a forcing function. You’ll go to your place more often because that’s where your references are.
  2. Get an ergonomic chair. Nothing beats the Aeron chair.
  3. Get a high-quality ergonomic keyboard. If you’re going to write a lot in a short amount of time, protect your wrists. I highly recommend the Kinesis Advantage. Read more