C. Sean Burns

Associate Professor

University of Kentucky
College of Communication and Information
School of Information Science

PhD, University of Missouri, 2013
MA, University of Missouri, 2009
BA, Monmouth College, 1996

Twitter: https://twitter.com/cseanburns
GitHub: https://github.com/cseanburns
ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8695-3643


Recent Publications

MEDLINE search retrieval issues: A longitudinal query analysis of five vendor platforms in PLOS ONE, with Tyler Nix, Robert Shapiro, and Jeffrey Huber. 2021.

What documents cannot do: Revisiting Michael Polanyi and the tacit knowledge dilemma in Information & Culture. 2021. If needed, use the Open Access (Post Print version).

Retrieving arguments and support after publication: Archiving links in communication research published in Communication Studies, with Patric Spence. 2020.

Manuscripts Under Review

Mixed Findings in Directly Replicated Experimental Studies on Fake News, with Renee Kaufmann and Anthony Limperos. My GitHub repository, news study project, includes the R code, and some of the data, for this project.

Current Manuscripts

I am writing a paper on tacit knowing, knowledge management, and open science.


I regularly teach the following four courses:


ICT 418: Linux Systems Administration
Undergraduate course covering systems administration using the Fedora GNU/Linux operating system. Topics include Bash scripting, managing users, installing, securing, and managing services such as MySQL, and more. Lectures and demo scripts for this course are on GitHub: Linux Systems Administration.
ICT 420: Semantic Web Development
Undergraduate course focused on HTML5, CSS3, JSON-LD, and Git as well as usability and accessibility. Main software tools: text editor, SFTP, GitHub. Demo and other material for this course are on GitHub Semantic Web Development.


LIS 617: Electronic Resource Management
Graduate course on managing electronic resources for libraries. Topics covered include the technologies and systems involved, legal issues such as managing copyright, contract negotiation, and more. Lectures and other material for this course are on GitHub: Electronic Resource Management.
LIS/ICT 658: Knowledge Management
Graduate course on organizational knowledge management with some emphasis on disaster and risk management and communication. Although this is an online course, students are central in selecting specific readings.

I regularly taught the following undergraduate course, but now teach it mainly when I take on summer teaching.

ICT 201: Personal Knowledge Management
Undergraduate course on managing personal information and knowledge work flows. I would share my lectures and resources for this course, but I'm working on a major revision and will wait until that revision is complete. Lectures and other materials for this course are on GitHub: Personal Knowledge Management.

Systems Administration

I maintain two Linux servers for colleagues and students at my School to support class activities. I use one dedicated server to host WordPress and Omeka installations that support the library science and the information and communication technologies (ICT) programs. I use a separate virtual machine on a hosting service to provide shell and MySQL accounts to support several courses in our undergraduate ICT program.

Statistics Notes

There are better and more complete tutorials on the web, and the R documentation is great, but I do keep some basic notes on using R for statistics on my wiki. Some of these notes are based on introductory presentations I've given on R, but some were written as refreshers if I needed them. Or, one way I learned how to use R is by replicating, in R, lessons from statistics textbooks that used other software packages. Some of the notes below are based on that process.

The Text, Please. Just the Text.

  1. On Forgetting
  2. On Ungrading and Learning
  3. Some Automation
  4. OpenURL
  5. Cold Showers
  6. Vim, Ed, and also Markdown
  7. Rest
  8. Breathing
  9. When I Feel Best
  10. Measuring Food with Pandas
  11. Mushroom Hunting
  12. diff, ed, patch
  13. Vegetarian Red Bean Soup
  14. Comical Kids
  15. Knots
  16. I Got Rice
  17. Solo Camping in a Thunderstorm
  18. Ten Miles
  19. When Did I Learn
  20. First Day Energies
  21. Quotes from Didion
  22. Wim Hof Guided Breathing
  23. Timing is Everything
  24. A Timer
  25. Back to Ubuntu
  26. Site Update
  27. 458 Days
  28. A Meaningless Post on Measuring Food
  29. Why Libraries Are Fascinating to Me
  30. Ferment Fail
  31. The Aliens Are Here
  32. Back to School
  33. An Open Science Example
  34. Phoning It In
  35. No Sudo For You
  36. The Liminal Space That Was
  37. The Aha Moment
  38. Mix It Up
  39. Wrong Hard Drive
  40. Larry McMurtry
  41. Professor Suda
  42. Another Anniversary
  43. One Year
  44. On Cooking Shows
  45. Cook's Log, Fermentation Date 28
  46. On Alphabetizing
  47. The Restorative Work of Reading Just Books
  48. Cook's Log, Fermentation Date 11
  49. Font Lode
  50. Be Virtuous
  51. Cook's Log, Fermentation Date 9
  52. Puzzled
  53. Salt the Hash
  54. Not Really a Kobayashi Maru
  55. I Miss John and Neighbors
  56. On Top
  57. Fermented Cabbage
  58. My Sysadmin Work
  59. Back To i3
  60. On File Systems
  61. Loud, Clamorous, Blaring
  62. In My Next Life
  63. You Have Mail, too
  64. You Have Mail
  65. A Good Long Walk
  66. Always the Tinkerer
  67. Fedora Switch Complete
  68. My Desktop after Eight Years
  69. I Will Pass on Time Travel
  70. Citizen Science
  71. On Aging
  72. The Trick to Social Media
  73. On Conservatives
  74. Lullabies and Mixtapes
  75. More Hard
  76. Somewhat Automated
  77. The Dark, Hard Days
  78. On Buddies
  79. Three Quarters of a Year
  80. On Fezzik
  81. On Ebooks
  82. A Good Read
  83. Let's Dance
  84. On Sudoku
  85. On Carrots
  86. Primate Lessons
  87. On Solace
  88. Surreality Polarity Reversal
  89. Dear Mom
  90. Not That 1984
  91. On the Historical Person
  92. A Pictorial List
  93. On Covid19 and Keystone Species
  94. s/awk/R/
  95. s/sed/awk/
  96. On Marriage
  97. On Teaching Linux
  98. Dark Nights
  99. On Revising
  100. On Distractions
  101. A Distro Hop
  102. On Conspiracy Theories
  103. Earth's Holocaust
  104. Come Sail Away
  105. On the Bookshelf
  106. The Chronicles
  107. Past Colleagues
  108. On Consistency
  109. Restaurant Dreams
  110. 35 Days
  111. An Action Under Which Description
  112. The Slow Down
  113. I'd Rather
  114. It's the Little Things
  115. On Research Speed
  116. On Stress Relief
  117. On Sheltering
  118. On Social Distancing
  119. Losing a Walker Friend
  120. When a Baby Cries as a Toddler
  121. Converting Markdown to HTML with Table of Contents Using Pandoc
  122. Switching Window Managers
  123. Remembering Some Text
  124. Some Observations on Usability Pertaining to a Child
  125. Bad Superblock
  126. A Quick Bash One-Liner and Children
  127. Tidyverse Skeptic Too
  128. Make Email Fun
  129. Some Routines I Find Calming
  130. The Product
  131. The Walkers
  132. On Solitude
  133. On Writing and its Tools
  134. Using Ed, The Standard Text Editor
  135. Keeping it Minimal