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Comment: My approach (Score 1) 823

by Retribution (#29925883) Attached to: How To Enter Equations Quickly In Class?

I simply cannot keep up when I write notes by hand -- but I type very quickly. I too have had trouble with equations, and my solution works for me, but isn't the best. Here's my approach, fwiw.

Type notes on my Eee, it has a 7-8 hr (actual) battery, and a relatively quiet keyboard, so as not to be a distraction. I can watch the instructor and the board while typing, unlike handwriting. Using emacs under windows at the moment (better battery life pending some driver updates for linux)

I keep a notepad for any graphs, and I just number any figures I draw. I switch between keyboard and pen as rarely as possible.

Equations are important -- I'm a math major now! For some classes, equations will come as fast as the instructor can scrawl them on the board. I write in an abbreviated shorthand, basically supremely-lazy latex. I neglect anything that could be implicit, and write, for example, omg and Omg instead of \omega and \Omega. I only started a little while back, and I still adjust my abbreviations as I go. That means it's not really parsable yet, but I am doing a good job of figuring out the minimum number of key presses to say what I need to say. After writing it for a while, at least it's easy to read (much like latex, you'll start to see it without needing to render it before long).

I like the mention of cameras. I've started doing that for meetings with my advisor, just using my iPhone to capture the whiteboard after we've gone back and forth on a few ideas.

I've been through N (where N is large) years of school, but only in this last year have I switched to typing. I have a great deal of trouble with handwritten anything (random word and letter transpositions everywhere, HORRIBLE if you're trying to write a mathematical theorem). Switching to typed notes has been one of the best decisions I ever made wrt taking classes.

What good is a ticket to the good life, if you can't find the entrance?