Tips and tools for philosophy studies

Read as PDF

Philosophy on the Internet


“A philosopher who is not taking part in discussions is like a boxer who never goes into the ring.” – Ludwig Wittgenstein seems to be the biggest public philosophy forum on the net, with often over 100 users logged on at same time.

Open source philosophy

Philosophy forums has a topic for open source philosophy here:

To that list I would like to add:

In our time archieve, podcast, BBC radio

Some sites where you can find free philosophy e-books: ebooks/ (“document-sharing website” (not free to download files, but cheap subscription) (got some copyright issues))


(reviews of different open source philosophy will come up later)


Databases for academic journals (needs subscription for most of the articles, however you can always read abstract and first page) (has a lot of free stuff)


When reading…

Look up things you don’t understand, and take notes

Look up and write down words and concepts you don’t understand, this makes it easier to understand and remember for the future.

Always look for different sources

Many texts and authors are hard to understand, then it can often be good to use supplement from secondary literature. Wikipedia is a good alternative. It may not be top quality and isn’t always 100% reliable, but usually it’s good, and works well as supplement to other sources.

When you find something interesting, look for more of it!

Find an author or text you like? Make a search for that item, and you find more of related content.

Save what you find to your computer

Interesting stuff you come across on the Internet, save it to your computer. Chance is web pages removes, or you simply don’t find them again. Besides it can be nice to have when you’re in offline mode. And you can organize and use the search function on the computer, to look for things within your own documents.

Videos such as on Youtube can also be downloaded, either as videos or converted to audio files. – here is example of a site where you can download on-line videos (works fine, but is slow – i’m sure there are other better out there).


Working with text

Free PDF editor

pdf-XChange viewer

Includes markup tools, adding notes, etc. Great stuff!

Notetaking software.

This is very useful when you’re working on some research article, or you just want to have your studies organized. The best notetaking software is probably Microsoft’s OneNote. Unless you have the Microsoft Office package, a free substitute I can recommend is Keynote NF:

It is simple program, but works very well to work with. It has the most of what you need from a notetaking software.

Remove line-breaks

Niftty little tool that can be good when copying from pdf-documents, as it usually includes a lot of line-breaks when pasting to text-documents!


About Recollecting Philosophy

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