February 27, 2010


Paper due (almost)
So I have two more days left
Procrastinate much?

I'm writing a paper on octopus intelligence (for animal intelligence seminar, of course). Really. So in that spirit, I give you OCTOPUS VIDEOS!!. They're actually neat little (or giant) organisms. And the invertebrate factor makes for an interesting discussion; one I may subject my dear readers to at some point.
Clearly, I haven't been a very good blogger lately. This semester has been more frenetic than I thought it would be. And I was betting on very. My computational neuro class, while fascinating, involves Matlab programming. Which makes me want to curl up in the fetal position. Cellular and molecular neuro is fantastic and makes me miss biochemistry.
So yes, that brings us to 3 classes. 10 credits. And almost 0 research. This makes me very irritable. I have some data to analyze, but most of it looks like trash. And I have some digital models to work on, but no time to do experiments.
Which brings us to our point: I have a lot of ambivalence about this interdisciplinary program thing. I chose this program, this university because I wanted the broad background in neuroscience. But right now, it is making me absolutely crazy. We're required to take a few more classes than the other biology programs, which doesn't seem like a big deal, but a few more grad classes is a lot. I know I'll be grateful for it in the long run (when I try to get a job), but I just want to be done with classes and get fully into my dissertation research. This is like how I felt about gen ed classes in college. Let's be honest here: US history post-Civil War was a royal pain in the ass when I was taking it. But I'm glad I did.
Has anyone else had this experience?
Anyway, I shall continue to trudge through the code and signal pathways and primary literature.



samann1121 said...

Can't say I'm glad I took post-Civil War US history. My TA screwed me over on a paper, and we didn't get past WWII, LIKE ALWAYS. I don't know a darn thing about this stupid country from 1950 through about 1998. Thanks, teachers. Thanks a lot.

But yeah, I know what you mean. Generally.

Norman said...

"I just want to be done with classes and get fully into my dissertation research."

I feel ya there. We have to take 54 hours of graduate classes, which ended up with me taking a bunch of classes that were real pains at the time and have very little to do with my research (International Trade Theory, two Public Economics courses). I'm glad I have the background, though.

On another note, I *love* Matlab programming! I've used it for modeling, but I mostly just like having the control over my statistical analysis. Not sure how much help I'd be on neural networks, but if you ever need help coding a Bayesian Model Averaging / Model Selection program, just give me a call!