Seeing this as an academic community, I hope this question is on-topic. Academia is still a long way from beta
I have a few questions about reading journal papers in the field of engineering/applied physics.
- How do you keep and schedule a reading list?
- From the more recent papers, how do you track down the one (or few) papers that started an idea or technology?
- Then conversely, how do you move forward in time to trace how that technology evolved? How do you decide which is the next paper to read?
- (I think being able to do the tasks of 2 and 3 could help me formulate my own research questions in the future)
- How do you retain the gist of the information you read from an article?
- How do you do the dirty work of the above? What software do you use, if at all? If you write it down in a notebook, what are the essential data points? Like the date you read the paper, publication date, title, author, then writing down (or illustrating) what you see with your mind's eye the information that the article presented, and... anything else?
- I envision a notebook with the ideas I learned, then posing my own questions after reading each article. How do you do it?
You may (or may not) answer those questions one-by-one, but they're there to give you an idea of what I want to find out. Offers to make this community wiki are very welcome.