Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Random thoughts

Can we make the Ducks-Wings series best of 15? Not because I want to give my boys in red and white more chance to win, but because there have been some great games. It's been genuinely enjoyable to watch.

Also, here's a poorly worded caption:
Bristol Palin on NBC's "Today Show" this morning with father Todd Palin and infant Tripp.
Uuuuuh. Ahem. Yeah. So!

So I'm drinking tea, and organizing my thoughts for the day. It's not been a great day, so far - I lost 3 hours of work this morning, when all the data I entered went ka-blammo before I even went into the office. I'm hoping things turn around before Avise swings by. Dr. Avise pretty much invented most of the scientific tools we use in my field, so I'm fairly humbled to have him visiting my few square metres of earth. And while I organize my notes, it occurs to me that people outside science don't really understand the importance of a lot of what we do.

No, I don't mean the math, and beaker, and measuring part of what we do. I think that's fairly understanble. But the social side - the meetings, seminars, symposia, poster sessions, and conferences... I'm not sure there's anything quite like it outside Science and Engineering. To someone else, it might look like I'm spending time getting ready to waste an hour with a big-wig, but to us, this is an important part of what we do. Ideas get exchanged, and you get feedback on where you're going. To scientists, ideas are king. Any idiot can count moose, but it takes ideas to turn that number into something useful, and productive.

And this is about where it dawned on me that I've got two feet in about three different cultures, here. The research world has its on social norms, its own language (That even scientists in other countries use), its own importent events... all it needs is its own foods, really.

Food for thought.

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