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  1. #1
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    how to cultivate good reading habits?

    Hi.......

    The regulars at the forum might have noticed my absence recently.Part of it was due to schedule constraints and part of it was due to the problem i am having,a solution to which i hope to get in the answers to this thread.

    Going through long discussions often puts me off.As a result,i very easily get bored at the forums sometimes.....and hence,do not log in for long spells sometimes.

    I have always liked discussions to be short,crisp and to the point....i tend to lose interest in them if they get longer and longer.....i ain't talking bout the no. of posts....only the length of individual posts.

    I know i miss out on some real fruitful discussion due to this habit of mine and would like to do away with it....has anyone got any ideas on how to keep yourself interested in reading for long times at a stretch??

    Regards,
    Gaur.

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  2. #2
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    Re: how to cultivate good reading habits?

    Gaur, it completely depends on the topic! If it's a topic you're very interested in, it's much easier to 'stay in for the long haul'. If it's something you're not as interested in, maybe it's not worth that extra investment?

    Generally speaking, however, I try to look at it as education - if you're going to learn something from reading, then it's worthwhile 'forcing' yourself to spend the time... if you don't see that happening, then focus only on threads that are topics of interest to you!

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    Annemarie Martin
    Secretary
    Association for Software Testing

  3. #3
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    Re: how to cultivate good reading habits?

    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by gaur:
    I have always liked discussions to be short,crisp and to the point....i tend to lose interest in them if they get longer and longer.....i ain't talking bout the no. of posts....only the length of individual posts.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Then you must completely dislike most of my posts.

    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica">quote:</font><HR>I know i miss out on some real fruitful discussion due to this habit of mine and would like to do away with it....has anyone got any ideas on how to keep yourself interested in reading for long times at a stretch??<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Well, one way is to practice. Read long posts just as you would read a book or a short story. Sometimes people who are not readers can improve their abilities to do this by just reading more and more; sort of forcing yourself. On the other hand, some people are just not readers. Either it is because they cannot concentrate, they lose track of the conversation, they have reading comprehension problems with long passages, or they just get bored regardless of the material. If that is your case, there is not much you can really do except either try to overcome it or do not participate in those discussions.

    If you get bored, then the posts are probably not relevant to you because if they were, you would probably not get as bored. Also remember that not all discussions can be short and crisp. Sometimes extended discussion is needed of topics that are complex. This is good as it shows people are thinking and expounding on points. And just because a post or any material is long does not mean it is not "to the point." Sometimes "the point" can be a little more complex than just a few sentences.

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  4. #4
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    Re: how to cultivate good reading habits?

    This is how I read things sometimes...and I'm going to "pick" on Jeff (and modify his post just a tad) because he usually types the longest and most complex responses (though, this isn't limited to Jeff only)...and then I'll get to the rest of my point....

    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by JeffNyman:
    This is something you will grow to learn to understand and appreciate over time...but, for the time being, will confuse you to no end.
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    And that's how it is for me at times. How do I get past it? Simple, I read it knowing that I will have to re-read it again and probably will have to come back to it after having had a chance to digest it for a while.

    Sometimes, I just look at a subject and realize that a thread or a post doesn't have a lot of importance to me. But, if it continually shows up with more and more responses, I will have to take a look at it...if only to see who is saying what. There is always something to be gained. We just have to seek it out.

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    Jason Trebilcock
    Cyberentomological Detection, Prevention, and Eradication Specialist
    Wells Fargo
    Jason Trebilcock

    "The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place."

    -George Bernard Shaw, Irish playwright and Nobel Prize winner, 1856-1950

  5. #5
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    Re: how to cultivate good reading habits?

    Okay, I know you say you are modifying my post "a tad", but where did this "quote" from me come from? That does not even match anything I said in the previous post. (Was this from a post elsewhere?)

    Anyway, what I did say in regard to gaur's post was that there are different reasons that people sometimes prefer not to read long passages (books, stories, papers, etc.), all the way from lack of relevance to a person having problems concentrating on or comprehending long passages. Sometimes it pays to determine what the reason is for avoiding long posts. If it is simply because a subject is not relevant to someone, then there is really not a problem. After all, if something is not relevant to me I might avoid it as well or at least not devote as much time to it.

    However, if the reason is because the person has a hard time concentrating, then perhaps they will want to work on that or at least recognize it as a problem.

    In gaur's case, it sounds like it is not so much an intrinsic problem, per se, as general temperment. As he says: "I have always liked discussions to be short,crisp and to the point....i tend to lose interest in them if they get longer and longer."

    And I agree with you when you say that sometimes you have to revisit a long passage (just as you might revisit a book you previously avoided or only skimmed). Perhaps it initially seemed to have little relevance but, in fact, had a great deal of it. I have found that here sometimes with threads that I initially did not even really look at too much only to see that after a lot of responses occurred, it might be worth giving the thread a glance.

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  6. #6
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    Re: how to cultivate good reading habits?

    Thanx all of u for ur responses.

    There was a time when i used to almost finish off a 300 page novel in one day....so i believe,the problem is not in concentrating.

    The problem is basically of the topic not being of interest to me.There r topics which i have no use of in the present but i feel they have gr8 educational value which might be good for my career and so i try to go through them as far as possible......but i read some of it and it starts getting boring after a while.....there lies my problem...i cannot go on long with something which is not of immediate concern to me.

    BTW Jeff,yes,ur posts r indeed long but i have found u to be one of the most experienced ppl on the forums having a wealth of information very few have.

    Regards,
    Gaur.

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  7. #7
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    Re: how to cultivate good reading habits?

    Gaur -

    I guess I'd ask why you see this as a problem? If something is not relevant to you or to your situation, then perhaps it's not a bad thing if you don't spend time on it? Granted, we all want to broaden our knowledge and experience, but if time and interest are not there, then focus on the areas that *do* interest you, and read those!

    So, I'm just trying to understand... if you read the posts/threads you *are* interested in, or that are relevant to you, why do you see it as a problem if you don't read the others?

    ------------------
    Annemarie Martin
    Secretary
    Association for Software Testing

  8. #8
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    Re: how to cultivate good reading habits?

    QAGirl,the point in trying to go through those posts lies in,as u correctly guessed,trying to broaden my knowledge base in this field.I do not have experience of the same kind as ppl like urself or Jeff or some other veteran forummers here.

    When i go through the replies u ppl post,i sometimes feel like i have a lot to learn....it's basically like u do not want to study for a test in school but u should force urself to do so.....it's just that school has got replaced by a much more serious concern called life.....i will be having some huge responsibilities in a few years time and i want to be placed well to face those.

    Forcing myself to get to know more & more of the industry would only help me in my quest for experience and excellence.....but no immediate requirement and it gets boring. Damn!

    The good news is that i have been reading more after starting this thread...dunno why!!

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  9. #9
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    Re: how to cultivate good reading habits?

    I sometimes will lose interest in a thread. Why? Several reasons:

    1) It's trailed off topic into an area where I have no interest.
    2) We're repeating ourselves.
    3) I felt that what I did read already answered the question.
    4) I don't get it and don't have the patience to re-read or find a dictionary to find what was intended.

    Sometimes what I'll do is skim through if I find the thread is losing my attention. Many times, I have been pulled back in by a later response that then peaks my interest in the earlier part of the thread.

    If you're finding yourself not actually absorbing the information, take a break. Sometimes you just need to let what you have read sink in before you can take in more.

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  10. #10
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    Re: how to cultivate good reading habits?

    Also, speaking to gaur's point about the posts and relevance, I think it is up to people who post long passages to help make those passages a little more palatable for people who might not like them or just might not have the time. For example, the passage might be very relevant to the person but if they are not sure, then they will likely not investigate further and just assume it has lack of relevance or, further, discontinue reading as the post gets longer and longer - relevant or not.

    For my own style, when I write long posts I try to break up sections into discrete paragraphs that are relatively self-contained and as minimally digressive as possible. I also use normative breaks (such as questions like "So what is my point?") between continous thoughts that are hard to encapsulate within one paragraph without losing the thread of discussion. This gives the reader a little breathing room and allows them to realize that I might be summing up here and thus the post can be broken into discrete sections.

    I also try to use bolding and italicizing where critical points are being made so that someone skimming, as Digits mentioned, can see things like ...crucial point... or this is the key idea, etc. This allows article skimmers to at least try to see one area that they might read first, even if it is not at the start of the post and then determine if they wish to go back and read more.

    I also do not to use things like LOL, IMHO, AFAIK, etc., because that tends to break up the reading pattern that a person has as they process the acronym. Granted, this takes milliseconds, but it still causes a break in the thought pattern. I also try to spell out numbers unless they should be written out as that also keeps the flow going. So, I might write "ninety-eight" (instead of "98") but I would write "218" (instead of "two hundred and eighteen"). The idea is to keep the reader flowing with the thought, not having them stopped up.

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