Posts by category

Short essays

Ready, fire, aim: the myth of the scientific method

Pure scientific research pays for itself

What does scientific genius look like in the 21st century?

Scientific rationale: convenient little white lies?

Benefits of avoiding replication studies


Scientific conclusions: a more journalistic approach

The formatting of Nature, Cell and Science papers improves their readability


This is the best decade to be a grad student

Benefits of an e-reader for academics

Article titles are more important than your name

Software to use

Using Inkscape for scientific figures, posters, and presentations

Organise scripts and figures easily with Jupyter Notebooks

Invest in a good text editor

LyX: a middle ground to LaTeX and Word

A better web reading experience

Image conversion with a right-click

Creating Figures

Scientific software skills make up for minimal artistic talent

To make a good schematic, copy, adapt, and refine

Know your image file formats

Figure captions need not be a half page

Figures need attention to detail

Remove redundant labels

Using Colour Effectively

Default colormaps: Are Parula and Viridis really an improvement over Jet?

Stop using rainbow colourmaps

Design for black-and-white printing

Design using the HSL colour space


Add any symbol without leaving the keyboard

A hyphen is not a minus sign, and other mistaken characters

Why LaTeX-typeset documents look professional

Four effortless LaTeX packages you should use

To italicise or not to italicise

Palatino and Source Sans Pro, the only fonts a scientist needs

Presenting data

Significant figures aren’t necessarily significant

Talks and posters

Scientific posters needn’t look like scientific posters

Simplify your slides

Skip the outline slide; use a sidebar

Powerpoint isn’t a scrapbook

Put three photos on your title slide

The realities of 15 minute scientific talks

Python and Matlab

Matplotlib animations the easy way

Elaborate Matplotlib animations

Vector and raster in one with Matplotlib

An improved Matlab command line

Python spoilt me; returning to Matlab is hard

Python spoilt me, Part 2