Monday, April 7, 2008

The Next Fix

Recently I have blogged about discontent. I suppose I have yet to run out material for that subject, but the general point has been made. I have on more essay in mind for that thread but it is on hold. After all that thinking about what I did not like I became to start to think interns of positives. For it is not enough to know what is not working, I have defined many things in my life by negatives, discovering a dislike, or what areas of research did not work for me, that list is a long one. For me to take the next few steps I have to define what I want.

If I were to ask my neighborhood Vorlon, "What do I want" It might answer, Never Ask that Question. Thankfully this neighborhood is currently free of Vorlons, so I can ask that question freely. So then what do I want, some things I have already stated, a job that lets me stay in my own bed more nights then not. What about the job I want, what do I want from it? If I can come up with a clearer answer to that question then the research I have started to do towards the next thing will be able to move forward with more direction.

Firstly, I have a passion, a love that goes all the way back through my life, I have been obsessed with space and all the worlds up there for years. I ended up in geology because quite honestly I don't have the chops for the math needed for astronomy, and I like something a little more concrete the light a lone. So the first requirement is that I am involved some way in the exploration of this solar system. Thankfully this is the best time ever to get involved in planetary geology, as there are literally Tera bytes of data beaming back in from deep space.

The field I want to study exists and is growing, there a few programs in Canada and many more south of the border. The first step is started, I have a long list of bookmarks in my browser connecting to one program or other. There are many more I have to look into. I will not hunt schools, I will hunt people and programs, I intend to be selfish about this. Any opportunity that does not make me think WOW COOL will be pushed a side for later consideration.

So what will make me say Wow cool, and how will I know if its right for me?. I know I am interested in Mars, and the little worlds interest me too, but that is too large a field to have any focus for a search. I want to pin things down some more, how? For that I have to question what am I good at.

That is a question that for all to often I have said nothing, or at least very little. I believe that response is in error. I know out here surrounded by hard rock geologists that my more generalized Earth and Environmental Science degree, makes me feel under qualified, but I found in the process of getting that degree some modes of thought where I can excel.

I am and have always been, and hope to remain something of a generalist. I am a big picture person, I like a holistic systems based approach to science. It is not the minute variations in feldspar clasts, or the optical properties of Sphene that interest me, but the story told by all the parts. Planetary geology, is an inherently interdisciplinary field, for it to exist at all astronomers, engineers, geologists, physicists and many others must work together just to get the data coming to Earth in the first place. So now the devil is in the details, the big one being who, and the what, the where is up for grabs.

I have a stack of PDFs on my computers desk top a file full of unsent unwritten emails a web browser, open with a lot of tabs leading programs of interests.

To quote the neighborhood Vorlon, "And So It Begins", as long as it does not end if in fire things will work out for the best.


Ien said...

Well put. I see a certain similarity with Jared Diamond. The world needs people who can make unexpected connections. We are good at that. You Go kid.

Anonymous said...

This solarsystem isn't big enough for the two of us!