Friday, January 30, 2009

Dr No-Know

What are you doing here ?
- PhD. In theoretical computer science.
Why are you doing it ? You like it ... ?
- (pause) Why do people do things ... *shrug*

Between a student (junior, semester just began) and me (PhD, 6+ years).
The last sentence was a bit cliche - it sounded like "shaadi kabhi koi sochke karta hai?" from the movie KANK. But, really - why exactly am I doing a PhD ? That too in this good-for-boring topic.

It is definitely not job ... they are either PhD aspirants or wanna-be advisors who tell you that PhD can get you a good job straight away. More so if your topic is orthogonal to money making trades.

Money ... no job no athanni. And teaching jobs, the only ones we are not overqualified for, even claim to pay us with satisfaction. Its official.

Fame ... why not ask about being lucky to born as the prince of Brunei.

We are talking about books, journals and long nights with pen and paper ... so I am skipping the whole angle of social life, girls or glamour.

Someone at the corner beside the free coffee is mumbling satisfaction ... or is it me singing A situation leading to sweet salvation ? This is pure gambling ... achieving satisfaction is purely a mental skill .. yes *skill*. If you are desperate enough to be satisfied, it will happen. Things people do for ...

I don't think I had any particular benefit in mind when I decided to replace a good, interesting, paying (oh yes...) job by this doctoral pursuit of bottomless knowledge. I just wanted to see this field in greater detail ... and I think I just wanted to do a PhD. As simple as that. Well... not quite, coming to think of it. My job was interesting but was not creatively rewarding and not _that_ challenging ... you know ... yes, I enjoyed it but not in _that_ way. It is hard to pinpoint. Escape route towards fatal attraction ... a provocative mix to give birth to yet another PhD graduate student. Yours truly.

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