11/2012 The curse of academics

This is a strange, and a sad phenomenon. Politicians form alliances and coalitions, to grab power. Businessmen form cartels and oligopolies. Criminals form gangs and loot the world. Everybody likes to share and prosper. Except, academicians, the most intellectual of all human beings. They are shy to share what they discover. They are shy to react when asked an opinion. I notice this happening to me very often. I start wondering if there is something wrong with me. Recently, I asked a number of my friends, their opinion on something which I was ready to publish. I was motivated, not only by a genuine admiration and respect for these colleagues, but also by an anxiety to see that I do not confuse others who will read my publlication. Only one colleague offered me his opinion. That was a non-committal,  non-convincing “looks okay” remark.   All others are either too busy, or are acting polite by not saying anything adverse.

To repair this situation, I take a few steps, since charity begins at home ::

  1. I put up all my findings and sicoveries on the w-w-web, and share them with the world.
  2. When someone asks me for an opinion, I take time and give a thorough listening. I give my detailed and frank opinion, some of which is not very enccouraging. I dont stop with just a non-committal, non-controversial “looks okay”.
  3. I relelntlessly consult my colleagues and keep them informed, even if they are not very responsive always.

I continue to grope for the truth. Hope I will find an antidote for this curse.

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About drpartha
I help my students discover mathematics and computer science. More about me at :: http://drpartha.org.in/profpartha/parthas.htm

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