Friday, August 26, 2011

A new version of GEOtop with a Draft User Manual available

Dear all,

we have updated GEOtop to the milestone version 1.45.

It is the result of the great effort of Stefano Endrizzi and Stephan
Gruber by the University of Zurich.

This new version includes:
- simplified I/O based on keywords
- other important debugged problems
The version is positioned in the trunk of the SVN in Bozen/Bolzano:

Furthermore, the draft version of the USERS MANUAL is ready to be
downloaded from the link:
Please let me know your comments on the manual in order to improve the
final version.

For who who did not read previous post about, GEOtop is a process-based hydrological models that, given the meteorological data and soil parameters in input, allows to know in
each point of the domain and in each time step:

the evaporation of the soil
the transpiration of the vegetation
the radiation and energy fluxes at the Earth surface
the pore water pressure in the soil
the water-table movements in saturated zone
the water discharge in an outlet
the temperature and ice content in the soil
the height and density of the snow
the mass balance of a glacier

Furthermore, thanks to the post-process software GEOtopFS (GEOtop
Factor of Safety), it calculates:

the dynamic probability of slope instability during a precipitation

The wiki-page is not completely up-to-date. But we are working to get it ready.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A quick guide to writing a solid peer review

This recent contribution by Nicholas and Gordon can be found here from the EOS AGU Journal of July the 12th. This below the flowchart:

The paper is really a good guide. However, it does not tell all the truth. What moves me as a reviewer (not considering that I accepted duties as associate editor or editor) is the curiosity to know a piece of exciting research a little before the rest of the guys. On the other hand, the expectations, are very often, not maintained by the incoming papers, and very few reward the efforts. However, this allows you to know what people thinks is important today, as opposed to what you (me) think it is, and is all experience gained. This can be summarized as: reviewing keep you close to active research.

A second aspect is that rarely you are completely expert of the subject treated. Most of the details of a paper from Authors you did not frequent before (on a topic you supposedly know enough), refers to paper and methods that you do not completely possess. This add sweat to your work, since you need to search and look to other papers to review one. The positive of this that you increase your knowledge. And the efforts are usually paid back with self-consciousness of what you know of a subject.

With time experience and erudition grow, and therefore the task or reviewing becomes easier, because you start to recognize the presence or absence of the structural patterns that makes of a paper a good paper. Outstanding paper are obviously matter or the science they contain.

Now, going back to my reviews.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Doing Ph. D. Studies

I found this nice and ironic presentation of what a Ph.D is. It is entitled Ph.D. School in picture.
There you will find the explanation of the mysterious figure above. Looking at the related post is also interesting. For instance at: Successful Ph.D. students.
A other pearl from the same Author is the post about getting tenure. Worth to read carefully to the end.