Thursday, January 29, 2009

The Perils of Cool Research

A fellow graduate student thinks it's cool and begs for this analysis and that analysis as if I had any chance of understanding the task/data as well as he does (he's writing a review paper; I barely know how it works).

My advisor thinks it's cool and wants to write a brief report to get the results out fast, fast, fast.

Our collaborate thinks it's cool, and related to research his master's student is doing, and wants to combine the data set with *her* research to write a real paper on.

Everyone thinks it's so cool that I had a full dozen emails on this topic sitting in my inbox this morning. New emails, mind you; this count doesn't include the handful of emails left over from yesterday's post-presentation rush.

I sent my advisor a brief, slightly panicked email. When our paths crossed in a department meeting this afternoon, she offered comfort and assurance that we'd "sort it out". It sounds like a platitude, but it was actually very reassuring. I almost miss the days when I was embarrassed to discuss my research and its lack of significance.

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