Wednesday, 29 October 2008

research - importance of team work

I am just trying to put together a few thots I got about my work in general and role of a team in particular. I am just trying to put in words as I think.
I think its important to have had a research group (under a supervisor, in this context) working on similar things. I mean a team is so important in research I realise.
I started with my seniors code and tried to understand it for some time. During this time, I started believeing that whatever he must have done would have been validated. But as it turned out, some of his things (for eg. A particular value in one of the tables was labelled incorrectly) were not entirely right. By not right I mean not correctly presented. And in retrospect, I feel, I lost considerable time in reaching this conclusion. Time apart, it also means that I have naturally become suspicious about other things he has presented.
As it turns out, the senior who wrote the code left before i joined. So we couldnt meet when i started and moreover i was the only person working on this code ! All and All I feel, either he should have been here so that I could have discussed things with him. Or there should have been more than one person using this code, so that things would have been faster. By faster, I mean infinitely faster.
So I mean if we had a group (in fact only a couple of ppl working together would suffice) working on same thing as me, the phd would have been a different story till now …
I am not complaining or ruing, but reflecting ..

I imagine how fast and easy it would be to do research if someone was working with you on the same thing .. it would be really a blissful situation !!

Anyways, this is kind of what I am feeling about research in groups right now. Working in groups is going to be much much faster way to do research !

the point is, I want views from other phds/researchers on this point ... have they noted this too ..

Tuesday, 21 October 2008

A journey of imagination ..

As we count down the minutes to a remarkable event, I can hardly resist the emotions. Today, India will awake to a new reality. This event marks the entry of india among the deep-space faring nations.
But this is just the beginning. We need to chart higher goals and higher missions. The red planet, the outer solar system with its fascinating moons, the solar-interstellar interface and beyond beckon us with their limitless queries and charming riddles.
But this is no time to get carried away, it is rather time to reflect on more exigent beauties. The moon, our closest companion, is also a source of energy, and is perhaps going to rescue us from the looming energy crisis. With its helium reserves, it could be more important than we can imagine.

So as the early morning sun makes a soft arrival on the east coast of India, preparations are on in full swing. The majestic PSLV C-11 is allset to soar high, with no only indian instruments and dreams on board, but an international suite of experiments on board too.

15 minutes to go for launch. While its morning and alight on the screen, its a clear sky outside here. And within sight is the destination - a perfect half-moon with its soft soothing glow.

All is calm and confident. Was it a coincidence that I just finished watching the movie - "Nanhe jaisalmer", a story about the power of imagination. Its as if nature is conspiring to bid a fitting bye-bye to chandrayaan on its sojourn.

and its 9 minutes to go now. With imagination, comes its fair share of ideas. The Moon is an ideal destination for being a stepping stone to the outer world. Its our first base camp. The difference from Everest is only that in this climb, the summit is ever so farther.

And its 5 minutes now.
Best wishes to PSLV on its journey.
50 secs. Hope you have a safe ride.

And with the news that Chandrayaan has been successfully deployed in its orbit, I sign off. But not before congratulating the PSLV team for unblemished first phase of this mission.

clear skies ..