Monday, July 2, 2012

Conference High

Looking back at the last several posts, I'm realizing that I've been rather negative recently. Some of that is because I found out 3 weeks ago that I'm giving a 25 minute talk on Wednessday, and then 12 days ago that, no, I'm giving an hour long talk today instead. The list of attendees included 3 Very Important People. Needless to say, I've been a bit busy and nervous preparing my talk.

It's over now. Two of the people I was afraid of didn't show up for the morning session, and the remaining was very nice in asking the occasional clarifying question that more felt like gentle prompts to explain things a bit better. On the whole, it was well received. I got a random compliment on it from someone I don't know, and spent lunch talking to two people who had ideas for future work. Whether or not these actually turn into something (lets be honest, most lunch discussions don't) I have a better sense of where this project could go than I did going into the talk.

I made a mistake with this project. I started working on it as a side project in a different direction than I normally work in. And then, instead of reaching out to lots of people who know more about this area, I only really talked to one. As a result, my views on the prospects for this project were primarily shaped by him, and due to various factors, rather negative. Relying on only one other person is truly not a good idea, a lesson I should have learned after working on my thesis. This is my second time learning this the hard way. Maybe it'll stick this time.

At any rate, between the class that kicked my butt last term, the sessions of last conference and the discussions from this one, I am hoping to put a new spin on this project and breathe new life into it. Good times.

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