I tried to explain to my mum why I was so quiet after all the things going on in the past few days, even though they were nice things. I’m not sure how good the quality of the image is.

The image shows a setup with a container in the center labelled “Processor,” representing my general processing capacity. It has a plug in the bottom and is filled with a small amount of liquid. To the left there’s an IV-like container labelled “Inside” and a similar one to the right labelled “Outside”. These represent the inside and outside influences, such as thoughts, worries, sensory input or social activities.

These IV’s are filled with fluids. In the second part of the image, the Processor has been filled to the brim with fluids from both sides.

In the third part, the container has been filled further, the side walls bulging out. This part is labelled “overload” and represents stressful situations, and trying to function beyond my usual capacities. I still “seem” functional, but I’m under a lot of pressure and have to struggle to keep it together and not burst (as in meltdowns or shutdowns).

The final part of the image shows the Processor emptying through the hole on the bottom, from which the plug has been pulled. The walls of the Processor are worn out from having been stretched. The pulled plug is labelled “rest”. This part of the image represents being exhausted after stressful times, and needing recovery time.

Of course the diagram is flawed, as most simplified representations are, but it helped explain the general issue. Maybe it is helpful for some other people to explain themselves to other people, relatives or friends.

All the World's Immigration Visualized in 1 Map - Metrocosm

This map shows the estimated net immigration (inflows minus outflows) by origin and destination country between 2010 and 2015.

Blue circles = positive net migration (more inflows). Red circles = negative net migration (more outflows). Each yellow dot represents 1,000 people. Use the ZOOM!

The data for this map comes from the U.N. Population Division, more information on how it was calculated at the bottom of the post.
Full screen version: http://metrocosm.com/global-migration-map.html



Hey guys! So I’ve been receiving questions regarding my note-taking style and strategy for quite some time now but I believe I have never answered them in detail. The good news is, I finally decided to make a post about this (plus, I had fun making the graphics :D). Note that I am a visual learner, so my note-taking methods may not be effective for some of you, but I hope you can all learn something.

Class Notes

I only use one notebook for all my class notes, an A4 grid notebook whose pages I divide into two columns.

I use the outline method for in-class notes, which means I write information chronologically, in the order that they are taught. Some teachers do not have properly structured presentations/lessons (good thing my physics teacher does) so when in need, I use arrows to connect related information.

Abbreviations to me are one of the most important things to master when taking notes. I personally make them up as I go along. Some examples of abbreviations I use are:

  • w/c - which
  • w/ - with
  • cpd - compound
  • envt - environment
  • digenz - digestive enzyme

It might be confusing, but to me, knowing the context and part of speech are enough for all abbreviations to be comprehended.

Here’s an example: ‘Indonesia’s tsunami pre-warning system is made up of two types of components’ could become ‘Indo’s snmi pre-warn sys 2 type comp’.

After Class

The first thing I would do is highlight keywords and terminology (and sometimes formulas). For physics, since my teacher is relatively succinct, I don’t really highlight, but for humanities and biology, I look for words that would be expected by a mark scheme, words that are crucial to the understanding of each particular piece of information.

I would then check if the material taught coincides with the syllabus, and if not, note down any points that are missing or have yet to be taught. You could write these on a post it or on the syllabus itself, but I prefer to highlight the syllabus’ pdf file.

Rewritten Notes

My rewritten notes are arranged based on the order they appear in the syllabus unless there are pieces of information that are related to more than one topic.

I use a black pen for rewriting notes as well as colored pens to write keywords and terminology only. I know some people who write whole sentences in colored pens but to me that is ineffective; we all have our own learning styles. When making tables, I usually use different colors for different columns (see the table for different types of radiation above) which is most often the color I associate with each word. For example, water would be blue, ocean would be a darker shade, ice would be a lighter shade, and water vapor would be purple.

I still abbreviate words in my rewritten notes, but they’re not as condensed as the ones in my class notes. Another thing I find helpful is leaving a bit of space between separate points especially if the page doesn’t have a lot of diagrams. I can’t think linearly, so I can’t remember super lengthy bullet points.

I use mildliners and a drawing pen to make my diagrams (more of these in my biology notes) but I only start with pencil if it’s a complex diagram. I rarely highlight my rewritten notes, but even if I do, it’s usually only the headings and formulas.

I don’t have a rough draft for my notes, but I try to visualize the layout. I try to alternate between words and pictures/diagrams so that when I’m sitting for an exam, all I have to do is imagine that I’m looking at that page and I can remember where everything is.

Well, that’s all from me. I hope that this information could be of some use to every single one of you. Don’t hesitate to ask me questions if you’re confused about note-taking or any other problems you might have :)