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From the Northeastern Section of the ACS, focusing on career management and development
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05/01/16
Critical Reading. Patents, business results and technical literature
Filed under: Interviewing, Job Offer (Situations), Observ. Trends
Posted by: site admin @ 12:48 pm

One of the short discussions we had in our class this year was
on the role of critical thinking.  It was not elaborate or drawn
out with many inferences and examples like it could.

It was about reading with a “thinking” attitude.

One of the members brought up how he would teach undergraduates,
especially how to read the technical literature.  The citation he used
mentioned the old paradigm structure of the scientific method, as
if it were gospel. 

SOME QUESTIONS
Another view is to seriously evaluate the source who funded
the work, who gains from its publication and the true value?  What is
it do you want to learn from the report, communication or
article?  Is this too hard to ask?

This blog has cited Galea’s Fortune piece which points out biases.
Scientific literature can be read [or mis-read] with a structure
to influence the readers’ take-away message.

CORPORATE RESULTS
The Economist offered a remarkably insightful piece about corporate
financial results on which we depend on for employment, investment
and purchasing.
  It should be totally unbiased and reflect truth as
well.  The article puts forth the “carnival of confusion, obfuscation,
and fibbing” that would make “even presidential candidates blush”.

The article speaks to Valeant, Microsoft, SunEdison, GM, GE
restating earnings, adjusting figures, and using measures of
profit that do not have regulatory significance. 

Rules of thumb:  profit should be revealed in standard accounting
rules, without adjustments for mature firms
                              firms should not have large and persistent gaps
between official accounting and adjusted profits
                               firms should not have low tax payments, since
it should be reporting profits to investors and government
                                look at the “cash flow”
Look at this before sending in your application!

TECHNOLOGY REALITY CHECK:  PATENTS
For the first time I have seen CEN talk about reading the patent
literature
[and not an ACS journal article] to learn about something.
The recent issue revealed more significance can be gained
from reading the patent literature
.  While not the headline
or example, this statement is something we will not find
many research professors teach our students and post-docs.

There is something legally binding in patents.  When researching
the literature about your work or potential job applications,
patents should be a must area to review.

One Response to “Critical Reading. Patents, business results and technical literature”

  1. site admin Says:


    TOPIC: CRITICAL THINKING https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/5-ways-become-better-thinker-deepak-chopra-md-official-?trk=prof-post"> D. Chopra
     1. Brain energy management
    get enough sleep,        take breaks and refresh mind and body
    meditate rather than caffeinate
      2. Mood (emotion) affects rationality (thinking)
    Perform a mood check and find ways to uplift your mood, to help thinking
      3. Thinking is affected by emotions; decisions are influenced by emotions,
    which we follow with logical explanation.
      4. Bad thinking categories:
    Conflicted thinking - aren’t clear about what the topic is and how to clearly
                                         define the major terms.
    Wishy-washy thinking - refusal to commit to a position.
    Arbitrary thinking - stab in the dark after a reasonable way to reach a conclusion
                                      has failed.
    Hidebound thinking - familiar prejudices, biases, and viewpoints that refuse to
                                         change in the present circumstances.
    Blinkered thinking - habit of not looking at things that make you uncomfortable;
                                       you blind yourself either on purpose or unconsciously.
      5. Intuition can be a hidden connector, a random thought, a moment of creativity.

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