a journal of a researcher

Friday, April 22, 2005

I am leaving for France

I am writing my blog at Fredericton Airport. It has free high speed Internet connection. I did not see it in major Canadian cities, like Montreal, Ottawa and Toronto. I like the idea that internet connection has to be built for free as the road of the city. A city like Fredericton has to show it is on the IT fiber, so that it is not just a corner of the world, but a comfort home for people who know how to life a high quality life.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

A novel about academia

I bought a novel “Cantor’s Dilemma” from Amazon. Amazingly, the author, Dr. Carl Djerassi is a Stanford professor in Chemistry. He is the inventor of “the pill” for oral contraception. Besides his splendid career, his intellectual emphasis is placed on two subjects: "The first deals with policy research the area of human fertility control", and the second is “to examine the culture and behavior of scientists through an infrequently used vehicle: novels”. He has 4 novels, 2 shows and a paper about reproduction in Science. As in his web site, he is 82 years old this year. His traveling schedule shows he travels in average 2 times per month over Europe in this year.

I am wondering which figure is himself in his novel. Does he feel life is a burden or a joy by working so much up to so high age? Maybe he is a real superman.

A New Look of OISEE

Thanks to Ilia Goldfarb, OISEE project has a new face for the demo system.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Working Notes

I read more papers according to IJCAI reviews. I noted down my summary on these papers. I hope some reviewers or the authors of the reference papers can read my blog, so that we can have more discussion. I believe our approach is the current best by giving solid mathematic foundation on monotonicity in noise data. This method should be applied to many applications. Here is the final version of our IJCAI paper .

Why I like Canada?

Many reasons drive me to Canada. One reason to keep me here is that I found I can make things change. I yielded to my colleagues to push my work ahead. The consequence is that the rules are changed and my opinion is respected. Today, I received a poster from a reputed politician. It is the second time I have found that the poster is changed according to one email I sent to him. It was not a kind email, because I found he used way too many photos in his posters and his website. I told him that I want to see what he did to the community not the ceremonies he attended and I want to see his opinions not the honors he received. The consequence is I see the changes on his posters and web site. Well, maybe I am not the reason. But at least things go to my direction. I am glad to be part of the society.

Sunday, April 03, 2005

Think before you blog

I receive regularly a bulletin about network security from my institute. This issue has an article about blogging. The article mentioned several cases about people get trouble because of what appeared in their blog. Here is one story:

Michael Hanscom is a contractor who was working at a Microsoft office when he saw several Apple computers being unloaded. Amused that Microsoft was buying computers from a long-time rival, he took a picture and posted it on his “blog.” According to an article telling his story in Wired Magazine, he was terminated for his online content within a week.

It seems likely that what got Hanscom into trouble was his commentary on the photo. In his description, he provided details about the layout of the building he worked in and what kinds of work were going on there, a breach of Microsoft’s confidentiality policies.

The article reminds people how fast the Internet can spread information and how many millions of people can read your blog if your blog is linked by others. It is true from my experiences from my blog. I got query on my paper days after I posted it on my blog. It is a terrible speed that I was not prepared. Consequently, I broke the link and let the paper rest a while. But if you want to be visible on Internet, blogging is now more efficient than homepage. People like to read the dynamic information on blogs. Quote from the article:

Before you blog, be aware that you may have more readers that you think. Be ware of how your employer may react to criticism or even seemingly good-natured jokes. And never assume that a publicly posted Weblog entry won’t be read by employers or coworkers.