So Let it be Written, So Let it be Done!

October 24, 2008

The Latest Front

Filed under: drama,grad school,kamakula — kamakula @ 5:46 pm
Tags: , , ,

The latest front in the presidential race, well, not really latest, this line of attack has been going on since the beginning, but certainly rearing it’s head again on the heels of Colin Powell’s support of Barack Obama – Powell is only voting for him because he’s black. Yes, that’s the conservative pundit’s best attempt to marginalize the implications of Powell’s remarks. As usual, those idiots don’t quite realize that by implication, they are either suggesting that they themselves are voting for McCain because he’s white, or that black people in general are neither smart enough nor caring of their community, their nation, the economy, or any of the other issues to be able to make an informed decision.

It’s funny, the essential charactization of Barack Obama voters are either the actual racists in America (black people) or elitist white guilt assuaging arugula eaters. That’s why the McCain camp would have your believe there are “real” and fake parts of America. For example, nothern VA, fake. The rest of VA, real. Part of the racism issue is that many people, especially those in the majority, believe that racism is defined by intent. That is totally wrong. Unlike murder, there is no self-defense argument for racism.

But enough about that. Last week, I more or less officially chose a thesis advisor. This has been a tough issue for me. From all I’ve read and advice I’ve gotten, choosing an appropriate advisor has far reaching effects on one’s career. Now, I have a pretty solid idea of what I’d be doing in the first few year immediately following graduation, but in case that does not pan out, I want to be on solid footing if I choose a research or academic track instead of going back into industry.

By solid footing, I mean I want to have experience and skills in exactly the area I’d like to work, decision making with mobile intelligent agents. So, the best thing would be for me to work with a professor doing research in that area because a graduate student’s own research tends to be along the same lines. The issue, lack of options in that regard at Pitt. So, either I work on transferring to CMU (or another school), or I find myself doing work that’s tangentially related to what I really want to do. Anyway, whether or not I transfer, I still needed to choose an advisor for the time being. So I went with the guy I’d most likely want to work with, whose research is in a similar area and got the shock of my week:

He’s willing to help me develop my own research topic and essentially guide me along, if that’s what I want to do. It would require more initiative on my part, working on finding avenues for funding, coming up with ideas, etc, but, he’s willing to help as long as I put in the work. So, turns out that I probably made the best choice after all.

But leaving that aside for now, tomorrow will be pretty much an entire month (ok, exactly 4 weeks), since I last spoke with HEC. Interestingly enough, she hasn’t called or texted me in that time either. I was hoping I’d be over her by now, but uh. . .not quite. I guess this is one of those that only goes away when someone else takes her place. . .grr.

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